QB: Nate Manning, Jr., Century

Stats: 153 of 244 for 2,007 yards, 23 touchdowns and four interceptions; 245 yards rushing and three touchdowns

The lowdown: Manning had a breakout year in his first full season as Century’s starter, tossing at least two passing scores in eight of 10 games. The dual-threat quarterback also took care of the ball, throwing one interception every 61 passes. Manning completed 8.2 yards per attempt and was the first D-back QB to throw for 20 TD passes or more since 2015.

Quotable: “The attitude he brings, that fearlessness, is what he is. He is a leader and he accepted his role. Every quarterback has to be that.” — Century coach Travis Hobson

Nate Manning 2018

Nate Manning runs downfield during a game against Preston during the 2018 season. 

RB: Landon Demuzio, Sr., Highland

Stats: 166 carries for 1,291 yards and 12 touchdowns; 61 receptions for 692 yards and nine touchdowns

The lowdown: Demuzio was Highland’s most dynamic weapon. The running back averaged 7.8 yards per rush and 11.3 yards per catch. He rushed for 100 yards or more in six of the final seven games for the 5A runner-up Rams. Demuzio finished seventh in program history in career yards (2,001) and eighth in career points (246). Demuzio also notched the 10th-best single-season touchdown outing (21) in school history.

Quotable: “We don’t get as far as we did without Landon. He has speed, patience and he had a transformation, like a butterfly.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

Landon Demuzio MV 2018

Highland’s Landon Demuzio splits two Mountain View defenders during their 2018 5A state semifinal matchup at Holt Arena.

RB: Payton Campbell, Sr., Marsh Valley

Stats: 150 carries for 1,510 yards and 24 touchdowns; 93 yards receiving and two scores

The lowdown: Campbell was a star in 2018 for Marsh Valley. The senior rushed for 100 yards or more in seven of nine games, including a four-game stretch where rushed for at least 200 yards and three touchdowns. Campbell averaged 10.1 yards per carry and scored a touchdown every six times he touched the ball.

Quotable: “His stats put him in the conversation with the other top running backs statewide, regardless of division. He had breakaway speed, but he relished and looked for contact.” — Marsh Valley coach Doug Armstrong

Marsh Valley football 2018 Campbell

Marsh Valley running back Payton Campbell breaks the tackle of Snake River defensive back Conner Randstrom for a big gain during their game Oct. 5, 2018, at Snake River High School.

WR: Hudson Williams, Sr., Century

Stats: 52 receptions for 589 yards and eight touchdowns

The lowdown: Williams was Century’s go-to receiver. He was the lone Diamondback to catch more than 30 passes and led the team in receiving touchdowns. Williams averaged 11.3 yards per catch and finished second on the team in scoring (48 points). Williams had four games this season where he tallied at least seven catches for 80 yards or more and one touchdown.

Quotable: “He is our glue guy on offense. We utilized him in every way. There was nothing he couldn’t do.” — Century coach Travis Hobson

Hudson Williams, century

Century receiver Hudson Williams reaches out for a catch against Pocatello on Sept. 7 at Holt Arena.

WR: Andrew VanSickle, Sr., Highland

Stats: 71 receptions for 820 yards and nine touchdowns; 81 yards rushing

The lowdown: VanSickle was a reliable pass-catcher for the Rams. The sure-handed receiver led the team in receptions and yards receiving while also being a threat to run with the ball on jet sweeps. He averaged 11.5 yards per catch, the third-best average on the squad. VanSickle’s 71 receptions are the third-most for a Ram in a single season.

Quotable: “He was phenomenal. Any time we were in a bind, he was the go-to guy. There wasn’t a guy that could cover him.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

Highland football 2018

Highland's Andrew VanSickle avoids the tackle by Pocatello's Adam Jones during their 2018 game at Holt Arena

TE Drake Hill, Sr., Highland

Stats: 31 receptions for 485 yards and two touchdowns

The lowdown: Hill was a deep threat for the Rams’ offense. He averaged a team-best 15.6 yards per catch and finished third on the team with 31 receptions. The 6-foot-2 senior could make contested catches and had his best game against Coeur d’Alene, when he caught four passes for 103 yards and one touchdown. His 80-yard score in the game was the ninth-longest touchdown catch in program history.

Quotable: “He has tremendous speed. When he catches the short routes, he could go all the way. He made plays.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

Highland/Century 2018 football

Highland’s Drake Hill runs as Century’s Dillon Samana chases him down during their game Oct. 5 2018, at Holt Arena.

OL: Tanner Drury, Sr., Highland

The lowdown: Drury was a sure-thing at left tackle for the Rams. He was a leader on the line and the Rams’ top asset in their screen game. He had the speed and quickness to clear the way for the Rams’ pass-catchers.

Quotable: “His technique was flawless. He battled each and every down. If he got on a screen, he was a great blocker.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

OL: Colton Heinz, Sr., Highland

The lowdown: Heinz was a three-year starter for the Rams. He battled injuries in the past but played a full season in 2018 as Highland’s best offensive lineman. The Rams lost four starters from last year’s O-line and Heinz helped stabilize the unit from his center position.

Quotable: “He didn’t have a bad snap. He is good enough to pull like a guard. He had the most pancakes on the team. He was huge for us.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

OL: Tanner Branson, Sr., Marsh Valley

The lowdown: Branson was the best lineman in 3A District 5. He used his hands well and was a physical blocker. He helped clear the way for running back Payton Campbell’s breakout season.

Quotable: “He battled in the trenches every play to make our team better.” — Marsh Valley coach Doug Armstrong

OL: Anthony Land, Sr., Century

The lowdown: Land was Century’s best offensive lineman. He was a physical force who grew into his own this year protecting quarterback Nate Manning’s blindside.

Quotable: “I’m glad I had Anthony on my side. He understands how to move his body to challenge defenders.” — Century coach Travis Hobson

OL: Nathan Millward, Sr., Pocatello

The lowdown: Millward was the stalwart of the Indians’ offensive line. The senior was a bulldozer and helped create continuity on the team’s offense. Millward was experienced and finished his season by taking the penultimate snap under center in the season finale against Burley.

Quotable: ”He is one of those kids that you wish your entire team was made up of. He’s the leader in the weight room and the field. ... He made Pocatello High School a great place.” — Pocatello coach Dave Spillett

Kicker: Connor Slack, Sr., Century

Stats: 43 of 45 on extra-point attempts; 3 of 6 on field goals

The lowdown: Slack was nearly automatic on extra-point attempts this season for the D-backs. He missed two extra points in the D-backs’ first game of the season and responded by making 41 of his final 42 extra points. His longest field goal of the year was 31 yards.

Quotable: “He matured and found his strike. He was a weapon. He was reliable.” — Century coach Travis Hobson

Connor Slack

Century senior Connor Slack attempts a kick in the D-backs game against Highland on Oct. 4 at Holt Arena.

Punter: Nick McAdam, Sr., Pocatello

Stats: 43 yards per punt

The lowdown: McAdam was deadly on special teams, averaging 43 yards per punt. He flipped field position and had 10 punts inside the 10-yard line, setting up the Indians’ defense in favorable positions.

Quotable: “He has a very strong leg and was very precise when we needed him to switch the field.” — Pocatello coach Dave Spillett


QB: Matthew Klassen, Sr., Aberdeen

Stats: 15 of 33 for 249 yards, four touchdowns and four interceptions; 110 carries for 1,347 yards and 20 TDs

The lowdown: Klassen was a deadly runner this season. He averaged 12.5 yards per carry and had six games of 100 yards or more on the ground, including outings of 232 yards and 328 yards. Klassen also had three games with four rushing TDs or more.

Aberdeen Declo

Aberdeen quarterback Matthew Klassen heads for the end zone with Declo’s Keegan Duncan in pursuit during the first half of their game Oct. 31 at Aberdeen.

RB: Enoch Ward, Sr., West Side

Stats: 114 carries for 930 yards; 26 receptions for 532 yards; 25 total touchdowns

The lowdown: Ward finished the season with 150 points, breaking the school’s season-single scoring record. Ward’s versatility shined in his record-breaking season as he finished with 1,482 all-purpose yards.

RB: Jackson Yearsley, Sr., Century

Stats: 102 carries for 650 yards and 10 touchdowns

The lowdown: Yearsley finished the season strong, earning the role as top runner in Century’s two-headed backfield. He shined in the Diamondbacks’ zone scheme and was a reliable runner who used his vision to knife through holes.

Jackson Yearsley Preston - use with Century b1 story

Century’s Jackson Yearsley (6) breaks a bunch of tackles and rolls into the end zone against Preston during their game at Holt Arena in 2018.

WR: Drew Gunter, Jr., Century

Stats: 29 receptions for 629 yards and six touchdowns

The lowdown: Gunter was Century’s big-play generator on the outside. He was a deep threat who used his speed and athletic ability to stretch defenses. He opened opportunities for other receivers underneath because defenses had to honor his deep-play ability.

WR: Aaron Marshall, Sr., American Falls

Stats: 13 receptions for 357 yards and three touchdowns; 43 yards rushing and one TD

The lowdown: Marshall was Marsh Valley’s big-play threat on the outside. The team didn’t throw the ball a lot, but Marshall was the No. 1 option when they did.


Marsh Valley’s Aaron Marshall (7) gets his jersey pulled by Bear Lake’s James Alleman (3) during their game Sept. 22, at Marsh Valley High.

TE: Titan Fleischmann, Soph., Century

Stats: 20 receptions for 194 yards and three touchdowns

The lowdown: The sophomore tight end was a reliable blocker and passing outlet in Century’s offense this season. Fleischmann missed two games because of an injury but still helped the D-backs transform their offense. When he was on the field, he was a difference-maker.

OL: Conn O’Doherty, Sr., Marsh Valley

The lowdown: O’Doherty was a rock in the middle of the Eagles’ offensive line. The three-year starter observed defenses from his center position and was a feisty competitor who wasn’t afraid to be physical.

OL: Jack Moser, Sr., West Side

The lowdown: Moser was the key piece on West Side’s offensive line. He was a three-year starter who played every position on the O-line during his career. He made the calls all season from his strong-side guard spot.

OL: Mitchell Spence, Sr., Aberdeen

The lowdown: Aberdeen gave Spence a 98 percent blocking grade this season. The Tigers weren’t shy about running behind him as he helped create the base of the team’s run-first offense.

OL: Anthony T. Harrison, Sr., Snake River

The lowdown: Harrison was a solid two-year starter for the Panthers. He took on physical defensive linemen and held his own against anyone in the classification. Snake River coach Jeb Harrison said Anthony did not have a bad snap all season.

OL: Tyson Dory, Jr., Blackfoot

The lowdown: Dory was the Broncos’ best offensive lineman. The junior was a strong tackle who was assigned to protect quarterback Craig Young’s blindside. Dory also switched sides, depending on the play call. Blackfoot coach Stan Buck knew Dory was a reliable piece.

Kicker: Logan Armstrong, Sr., Highland

Stats: 27 of 31 on extra-point attempts; 5 of 8 on field goals

The lowdown: Armstrong helped solidify the Rams’ special teams unit. He had a strong leg that the Rams relied on when they reached the red zone.

Punter: Stockton Brown, Sr., West Side

Stats: 42 yards per punt

The lowdown: Brown was a rugby-style punter. The senior’s kicks were unpredictable, allowing for minimal returns from opponents. Brown rolled out on his punts, allowing his coverage team to get down field and make tackles.


QB: Jake Wray, Sr., Shelley

Stats: 141 of 239 for 1,830 yards, 16 touchdowns and four interceptions; five rushing touchdowns

Hillcrest vs Shelley (copy)

Shelley's Jake Wray gets off a pass as Hillcrest takes on Shelley at Thunder Stadium on Thursday, October 4, 2018. 

RB: Hulizes Ortiz, Sr., Aberdeen

Stats: 100 carries for 920 yards and 11 touchdowns

RB: Treyton Young, Sr., Snake River

Stats: 144 carries for 836 yards and six touchdowns

Treyton Young

Snake River’s Treyton Young runs during the Panthers’ 2017 3A state semifinal game against Gooding at Holt Arena.

WR: Bronx Holbrook, Sr., North Gem

Stats: 32 receptions for 780 yards and 10 touchdowns

WR: Pratt Matthews, Sr., Rockland

Stats: 40 catches for 671 yards and 11 touchdowns

OL: Luka Schneider, Soph., American Falls

OL: Alex Apel, Sr., Century

OL: Blake Williamson, Jr., Highland

OL: Riley Parker, Sr., Preston

OL: Justin Beck, Sr., Bear Lake

OL: Lane Barnes, Sr., Soda Springs

Kicker: Marino Vedova, Sr., West Side

Stats: 43 of 52 on extra-point attempts

Punter: Jayden Bell, Jr., Highland

Stats: 40.6 yards per punt on 18 punts


DL: Kamiah Olsen, Jr., Highland

Stats: 48 tackles, 7 tackles for loss and 5 sacks

The lowdown: Olsen was the top defensive lineman in the area. He led the Rams in tackles for loss (7) and sacks (5) while facing constant double-teams. Olsen was explosive off the line, thanks to his time in the weight room this summer. If Olsen faced one blocker, he often found himself in the backfield.

Quotable: “He was a man. He got it done physically and mentally. He was a weight-room freak. He wants to be great.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

Highland Madison football 2018

Highland’s Kamiah Olsen and Taylor Kerr (34) wrap up Madison’s Malachi Valora during their game Oct. 12 at Holt Arena.

DL: D’Qua Lang, Jr., Century

Stats: 56 tackles, seven hurries and 5 tackles for loss

The lowdown: Lang was an imposing player on Century’s defense. The 6-foot-5, 250-pounder fought through double-teams all season and made strides each week. He was fourth on the team in tackles (56), second in tackles for loss (5) and third in hurries (seven). Lang had 17 tackles and two hurries in 2017.

Quotable: “He was the one who made things work on the front. He is going to be special down the line.” — Century coach Travis Hobson

DL: Luke Togiai, Soph., Highland

Stats: 76 tackles, 6 tackles for loss and 4 sacks

The lowdown: Togiai made an impact in his first year as a starter. He finished second on the team in tackles (76), tackles for loss (6), and sacks (4). Togiai was a powerful defensive lineman who flashed his potential this season.

Quotable: “He came a long way. He has the pedigree; the name has been made. He lived up to the expectations and is doing this his own way.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

DL: Tanner Branson, Sr., Marsh Valley

Stats: 65 tackles, 6 tackles for loss and 3 sacks

The lowdown: Branson was a problem for offensive lines. He had the size to take on any blocker and the speed to run down ball carriers. He punished players when he tackled them and used his wrestling background to his advantage.

Tanner Branson

Marsh Valley's Tanner Branson chases down a Sugar-Salem ball carrier during 2017 season.

Quotable: “He was the anchor of our defensive line.” — Marsh Valley coach Doug Armstrong

LB: Dylan Jester, Jr., Highland

Stats: 90 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss and 1 sack

The lowdown: Jester became the leader of the Rams’ linebacker corps, despite not starting until the fifth game of the season. He was a rotational player for the first four games but was too good to keep off the field. Jester finished the season averaging 7.5 tackles per game.

Quotable: “You want to talk about a kid with confidence? He wants to be the best every time. He is really a kid that wanted to become a great football player.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

LB: Adam Ames, Sr., Century

Stats: 88 tackles, 4 tackles for loss and three bat downs

The lowdown: Ames was Century’s most important piece on defense. The converted safety added 30 pounds in the offseason to handle the wear and tear at linebacker and became a coach on the field. The D-backs needed a linebacker, and Ames was the perfect fit, finishing second on the team in tackles.

Quotable: “Our defense wouldn’t be what it was without him.” — Century coach Travis Hobson

Kobee Gunter 2018 Century

Pocatello’s Kobee Gunter (1) tried to evade the tackle of Century’s Adam Ames during their game Sept. 7, 2018, at Holt Arena.

LB: Taylor Kerr, Sr., Highland

Stats: 67 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and 1 sack

The lowdown: Kerr wasn’t the biggest linebacker in the area, but his lack of size did not limit his impact on the field. The 5-foot 9, 160-pounder was the Rams’ starting outside linebacker who could provide support in the run and the pass games. He finished fourth on the team in tackles (67).

Quotable: “He was more finesse than power, but he always got the job done. He covered well, made plays.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

DB: Carter Fellows, Sr., Highland

Stats: 50 tackles, five bat-downs and three interceptions

The lowdown: Fellows shadowed the opposing team’s top receiver all season. He had the speed, physicality, and athleticism to match up with any receiver. As his confidence grew each week, his play improved.

Quotable: “He was our guy. He is a kid that got stuff done. You could rely on him.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

Carter Fellow pumps a fist

Highland’s Carter Fellows pumps a fist after intercepting a pass in the end zone from Mountain View’s Noah Bryant that stopped a possible touchdown drive just before halftime of their 2018 5A state playoff game at Holt Arena.

DB: Deshun Harwell, Sr., Century

Stats: 31 tackles and nine bat-downs

The lowdown: Harwell was left on an island at cornerback this season. The senior had the experience and earned the trust of his coaching staff, so they let Harwell work one-on-one every game. Harwell was counted on to blanket the other team’s best receiver, and he delivered.

Quotable: “He embraced the role of being the one-on-one guy better than any corner I’ve seen in a long time. He didn’t back down.” — Century coach Travis Hobson

Century football

Century's Deshun Harwell runs with the ball during the 2017 season. 

DB: Jayden Bell, Jr., Highland

Stats: 74 tackles, 10 bat-downs and two interceptions

The lowdown: Bell was the best defensive back in the area. He was the complete package for the Rams, using his 6-foot-3 frame to successfully defend the run and the pass. When Bell wasn’t playing safety, he locked down opposing team’s receivers in the slot, leading to a team-high 10 bat-downs. He also finished third on the team in tackles (74).

Quotable: “He is one of the most physical safeties we’ve had in a long time. He got after kids. He liked that role.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani

Highland Shadow Ridge

Highland’s Micah Naumu and Jayden Bell bring down Kody Presser of Shadow Ridge (Nevada) during a game Aug. 25, 2018, at Holt Arena.

DB: Cole McKinlay, Sr., Century

Stats: 39 tackles, three bat-downs and two interceptions

The lowdown: McKinlay patrolled from the back of Century’s defense at his safety position. The senior brought physicality and speed to the team’s backfield, plus range that allowed him to make any play on the field. McKinlay also understood how to attack offenses as a former quarterback.

Quotable: “He did a great job. I never had to worry about someone throwing over the top of us.” — Century coach Travis Hobson


DL: Joey Newman, Sr., Century

Stats: 50 tackles, 6 tackles for loss and 5 sacks

The lowdown: Newman was a speedy defensive end for Century. He was the team’s best pass rusher and a force in the run game. His top trait was his jump off the line of scrimmage, which helped him lead the team with 14 hurries.

DL: Jack Moser, Sr., West Side

Stats: 57 tackles, 6 sacks and 5 tackles for loss

The lowdown: Moser was second on the team in tackles (57), sacks (6) and tackles for loss (5). The senior constantly battled double-teams at his defensive tackle position and used his quickness to make plays all over the field.

DL: Spencer Watson, Sr., Aberdeen

Stats: 43 tackles, 14 tackles for loss and 2 sacks

The lowdown: Watson was a force on the Tigers’ defensive line. He controlled the middle of the field, totaling 14 tackles for loss. The 6-foot-7, 300-pounder’s presence forced teams to run offense away from him.

DL: Jack Hall, Sr., Highland

Stats: 56 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks

The lowdown: Hall finished third on the team in sacks (3.5), relying on his speed to beat offensive linemen around the edge. He began taking reps at wide receiver this summer before moving to the D-line, where he shined.

LB: Brian Jackson, Sr., Pocatello

Stats: Unavailable

The lowdown: Jackson was at the center of Pocatello’s defense. The 220-pounder was a force in defending the run, using his wrestling skills to become a sure-tackler. Pocatello coach Dave Spillett described Jackson as an “old-school football player.”

Pocatello Burley 2018

Pocatello's Brian Jackson (32) and Jadyn Downs (8) during their game 2018 against Burley at Holt Arena.

LB: Kory Killpack, Sr., Shelley

Stats: Unavailable

The lowdown: Killpack was the hammer in the middle of Shelley’s defense. Killpack was a “weight-room warrior” this summer and it helped him produce on the field. Former Shelley coach Jake Monahan, who stepped down after the 2018 season, said Killpack was the hardest worker on the team.

LB: Payton Campbell, Sr., Marsh Valley

Stats: 61 tackles and one interception

The lowdown: Campbell was the leader of Marsh Valley’s defense. He always found himself near the play and delivered bone-crunching hits to ball carriers. He helped form a formidable 3A defense with his speed and motor.

DB: Dillon Robinson, Sr., West Side

Stats: 27 tackles, nine interceptions and five bat-downs

The lowdown: Robinson was a playmaker at safety for West Side. He set a single-season school record with nine interceptions and returned one INT for a touchdown. He had 15 interceptions in the last two years.

DB: Carter Scott, Sr., Century

Stats: 31.5 tackles, five bat-downs and two interceptions

The lowdown: Scott was undersized at 5-foot-9, 150 pounds but still did more than hold his own on the outside. He finished third on the team in bat-downs (two), thanks to his ability to make plays on the ball in the air.

DB: Jadon Whitworth, Sr., Highland

Stats: 61 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and one bat-down

The lowdown: Whitworth was the commander of the Rams’ secondary. He was the most experienced defensive back, setting the team’s coverages and calls. Highland coach Gino Mariani said he was “the brains behind the defense on the field.”

Highland- Coeur d'Alene 2018

Coeur d’Alene wide receiver Colby Nosworthy runs the ball upfield by Highland defender Jadon Whitworth in last season's game at Coeur d’Alene High.

DB: Reece, Robinson, Sr., Blackfoot

Stats: 32 tackles, four bat-downs and three interceptions

The lowdown: Robinson was the Broncos’ best defensive back. He tracked the opposing team’s top receiver every game, using his speed to limit big plays. Robinson, a corner and safety, was reliable in run support, too.


DL: Brigham Cook, Sr., West Side

Stats: 48 tackles, 10 sacks, 7 tackles for loss, six fumble recoveries and five blocked kicks

DL: Ty Belnap, Jr., Snake River

Stats: Unavailable

DL: Trei Hough, Sr., Pocatello

Stats: Unavailable

DL: Spencer Watson, Sr., Aberdeen

Stats: 43 tackles and 14 tackles for loss

LB: Jose Aguayo, Sr., Blackfoot

Stats: 59 tackles and 2 sacks

LB: Jake Moser, Sr., West Side

Stats: 55 tackles, 3 tackles for loss and 2 sacks

LB: Dillon Samana, Jr., Century

Stats: 92 tackles, 6 tackles for loss and three forced fumbles

DB: Logan Armstrong, Sr., Highland

Stats: 30 tackles, four bat-downs and 2 tackles for loss

DB: James Seelos, Sr., Soda Springs

Stats: 32 tackles, nine bat-downs and one interception

DB: Colton Mechan, Sr., Firth

Stats: 26 tackles and two interceptions

DB: Scott Dunn, Jr., Preston

Stats: 28 tackles, seven bat-downs and two interceptions