Steamboat football student athletes honored at banquet

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Football season-end awards

Academic all-state first-team

Jasper Gantick

Graham Geppert

Matthew Lettunich

Cole Verploeg

Academic all-state honorable-mention

Wiley Button

Ben DeLine

Nigel Hammond

Jay Hanley

Kevin Stokes

*Steamboat High School team was named Western Slope League Team Academic Champion, with a 3.16 GPA.

Western Slope all-league first team

Ben DeLine

Nigel Hammond

Jay Hanley

Mac Marsh

Western Slope all-league

honorable mention

Matt Lettunich

Alex Wood

Austin Hinder

Team awards

Scout team player of the year - Bryce Mayo

Special team player of the year - Ben DeLine

Offensive player of the year - Jay Hanley

Defensive player of the year - Matt Lettunich

Lineman of the year - Mac Marsh

Most valuable player - Nigel Hammond.

— Steamboat Springs High School football coach Aaron Finch said this year's seniors are some of the best he has ever coached.

The group led the Sailors back from a 1-2 record and into the playoffs for the third consecutive year. In those three years, the group led Steamboat to 27 wins.

It was fitting, then, that five seniors, along with a junior and a sophomore, have been honored as Steamboat's selections to the Western Slope League's All-League team.

Seniors Ben DeLine, Nigel Hammond, Jay Hanley and Mac Marsh all earned first-team recognition, while senior Matt Lettunich earned honorable mention, in awards announced at the team's season-ending banquet Wednesday night.

Junior Alex Wood and sophomore Austin Hinder also earned honorable mention.

"This is a group where you get excited to see where they're going to end up and not just athletically," Finch said. "They supported a bunch of the younger guys and added a really good feeling to this team all the way through the season."

All four of the first team selections are looking to play in college.

DeLine has verbally committed to Colorado State, while Hanley is deciding between Missouri, Colorado, Kansas State and Hawaii.

Marsh is looking at Colorado State, Wyoming, CSU-Pueblo, and Mesa State. He was named Steamboat's Lineman of the Year at the banquet.

"It meant a lot to me," Marsh said of the recognition. "It's been my goal and dream since I started football to be Lineman of the Year and all-conference."

Hammond is hoping to play Division III football, and was named the team's most valuable player for this season.

"It's great - it's such an honor," Hammond said of the MVP award. "I was just so stoked to play and earn that honor."

Steamboat also placed nine players on the academic all-state team and was selected as a team academic champion for the fourth year in a row.

"That's what's great," Finch said. "It's not just about playing and making the playoffs, but also making the grades in school. It's really all about winning in life."

Three Western Slope League players received all-state recognition.

Palisade's Jesse Kirsttatter (Western Slope Lineman of the Year), Billy Logsdon (Special Team Player of the Year) and Rifle's Hazen Moss (Back of the Year) will all play in the all-state game in Greeley.

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