Eight area players on INA first team

Messenger photo by Britt Kudla Dakota Jaeschke of Southeast Valley makes a catch against Dike-New Hartford in the Class 2A playoffs.

Eight Messenger-area football players were named first team all-state Iowa Newspaper Association selections, the organization officially announced on Monday night.

Four athletes from Class A state runner-up Bishop Garrigan — senior Gibson Behr, senior Joel Vaske, senior Grant Buscherfeld and senior Chase Winkel — were honored. A pair of standouts from Webster City’s Class 3A state runner-up squad were also picked: senior Robert Frederiksen and junior Cooper Lawson.

South Central Calhoun senior Kody Case and senior Dakota Jaeschke of Southeast Valley were honored as first teamers in Class 2A as well.

The 5-foot-11, 180-pound Behr rushed for 1,557 yards and 20 touchdowns at 7.2 yards per carry for the 12-1 Golden Bears. The 6-2, 170-pound Vaske, a receiver, had a team-best 33 catches for 634 yards and nine scores.

The 185-pound Buscherfeld was recognized as a linebacker, where he made 77.5 tackles. Winkel, also a linebacker at 245 pounds, made 78.5 tackles. Buscherfeld, who was a first teamer last season as well, rushed for 288 yards and nine touchdowns as a fullback on the offensive side of the ball.

The 210-pound Frederiksen emerged as a first-year starter and developed into a star from Webster City’s offensive backfield. He accumulated 1,981 yards and 22 rushing touchdowns as the Lynx went 11-2 overall. The 275-pound Lawson, a state-runner-up in wrestling last winter, was an anchor on Webster City’s dominant offensive line.

Case, a University of South Dakota recruit, was a jack of all trades for 7-3 SCC. He rushed 85 times for 811 yards and 11 scores, while catching 34 passes for 707 yards and 11 more TDs. The 155-pound speedster also returned three punts to paydirt and converted on nine two-point conversion tries.

Case was a first teamer last season as well for the Titans.

Jaeschke eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark in receiving for Southeast Valley (6-4). The 201-pounder finished with 1,049 yards and 16 touchdowns — both ranked second individually for Class 2A — on 43 receptions.

There were two Messengerland second team all-state selections: Caleb Olson, a sophomore linebacker from Webster City; and Reed Kruse, a senior tailback from Newell-Fonda. Webster City senior Drew Fielder (3A, punter); Emmetsburg’s Nicholas Schany (1A, linebacker) and Grant Deitering (1A, defensive back); and Garrigan’s Drake Buscherfeld (A, offensive line) were third team choices from the area.

The INA all-state captains for each class were Jacob Zachary of West Des Moines Dowling (4A); Pella’s Nick Finney (3A); Tristan Wirfs of Mount Vernon (2A); Levi Jungling of Pella Christian (1A); Gladbrook-Reinbeck’s Thomas Mussig (A); and Jake Danner of Ar-We-Va (eight-man).