Opinion: Andy’s awards
It's fall sports awards time. Team awards, Kaw Valley League awards, state awards, they're all coming out now.
Might as well give out some awards of my own.
MVP: Kevin Marshall -- This guy's a stud who could start on any team in the state, I don't care what level. He led BLHS in tackles and had 14 sacks, which is pretty outrageous, considering the Bobcats mostly played running teams.
Unsung hero: Chandler Schaake -- He came to play every night, even topping 100 rushing yards when the Bobcats were getting blown out by Ward. His four interceptions were remarkable, again considering the lack of passing by opponents.
Future star: Brandon Leppke -- Sure, his final stats weren't great, but he was a freshman playing quarterback. He's got the physical tools, if he keeps working and stays confident he could be scary good in three years.
MVP: Cassie Lombardino and Brooke Sanders -- I couldn't choose. Lombardino was the leading hitter and when she was on the team really went to a higher level. But Sanders is one of the top setters and toughest competitors in the league.
Unsung hero: Michelle Chrisman -- This was another tough one because the Lady Bobcats have a lot of players who know their roles and play them well. But I think Chrisman rarely got much publicity this year and was possibly the team's most well-rounded player.
Future star: Elyse Douglas -- I liked this junior's versatility. She can dig, she can set and occasionally she'll come up with a big block. She's obviously a promising athlete.
MVP: Austin Knipp -- I don't know what more I can say about this kid. His shot, in terms of both power and accuracy, is as good as any college striker.
Unsung hero: Stephen Millison -- The league's most underrated player. He was seventh in the KVL in goals with 15, yet isn't known as a top-tier scorer because he's played next to Knipp for three seasons.
Future star: Beau Himpel -- He's a freshman with great skills, but we didn't see much of him on varsity. If he makes like Tanner Bowers and bulks up in the off-season he could be the team's next great midfielder.
MVP: Megan Tush and Amanda Vitt -- I'm not even going to try and choose between these two dedicated seniors. They took over a hapless team as freshmen and saw it through to this year, when it became one of the top 10 in the state in 4A.
Unsung hero: Alex Vitt -- The girls stole most of the headlines, but Alex was a bona fide star on the boys side. He earned the first league medal of any boy in Jeff Venema's tenure.
Future star: Kayla Peterson -- This freshman isn't just "Will's sister" any more. She's one of the best young runners and will be a key part of this team.
MVP: Amanda Leive -- This senior had a key role in the run to state, playing the best 18-hole round of any Lady Bobcat all season at regionals.
Unsung hero: Lindsey Fenton -- Fenton is only a junior and has already been to state twice. She's one of the most experienced golfers on the team, having competed with the boys before BLHS had a girls team. She's primed for a special senior season.
Future star: Alex Oakes -- She was the only freshman to make the varsity squad.