It was a big year for the Cardinal Conference in football as the Mingo Central Miners completed an undefeated 14-0 season and captured the Class AA state championship at Wheeling Island Stadium.
There were several big-time players with big-time stats.
Locally, here in Logan County, a bunch of Chapmanville Regional and Logan High School players landed spots on the All-Cardinal Conference Football Team.
Chapmanville Regional’s Dylan Smith, Adam Vance, Timmy Bigley, Ryan Craddock and Evan Willis were on the All-Conference First Team, along with Logan’s Jamal Minter, Braxton Goff and Shawntez Matthews.
On the Second Team were Chapmanville’s Billy Shepherd, Austin Butcher, Seth Whitt and Dillon Renniger and Logan’s Daniel Browning and Cody Maynard.
Chapmanville’s Tristan Browning and Cory McGraw and Logan’s David Early, Dino Noe, Cezar Cruz and Chucky Felder were named Honorable Mention All-Conference.
The all-conference teams were picked by the 10 Cardinal Conference coaches.
Smith, a junior wide receiver and defensive back, was a factor on both sides of the ball for the 5-5 Tigers. He ran with the ball 57 times for 376 yards and 10 touchdowns as a running back and was the league’s top wideout with 53 catches for 861 yards and 11 more touchdowns. Smith was a Class AA First-Team All-State selection on defense. He had 63 total tackles, three interceptions, a sack and two fumble recoveries, including two defensive scores.
Vance, a junior quarterback, was 151 of 226 passing for 2,055 yards with 18 touchdowns and six interceptions.
Bigley finished the season with 82 total tackles (56 solos and 26 assists). He also had two sacks.
Craddock had 59 solo tackles and 35 assists with two fumble recoveries and one sack.
Willis had 50 solo tackles and 21 assists and two sacks.
Logan’s Minter finished the season with 26 catches for 427 yards and five touchdowns. He also saw time at quarterback and was 23 of 54 passing for 247 yards with one TD and four picks. He ran 44 times for 208 yards and a score. On defense, Minter had 57 tackles, four pass breakups, a sack, two interceptions, three caused fumbles and a fumble recovery.
Goff caught 38 passes for 613 yards and six touchdowns and ran with the ball 20 times for 160 yards and three touchdowns. On defense, Goff had 50 tackles, four caused fumbles, four sacks, three fumble recoveries (one for TD) and five pass breakups.
Matthews was Logan’s leading tackler from his linebacker post with 83 tackles, an interception, two pass breakups, a sack and a fumble recovery.
Second Team pick Shepherd, a CRHS wide receiver, finished the season with 36 catches for 472 yards and two TDs. On defense, he had 49 total tackles with two picks and two fumble recoveries.
Butcher had 43 solo tackles, 21 assists, three sacks, two interceptions and a fumble recovery. As a wide receiver, Butcher had 40 catches for 464 yards and three TDs.
Whitt was a big part of the Chapmanville defense and had 58 solo tackles, 26 assists, one sack and one fumble recovery.
Renniger had 36 total tackles and two interceptions and was also the CRHS kicker, making 17 of 21 extra point kicks.
Daniel Browning had 72 tackles, five sacks, a QB pressure, a punt block, a pass breakup, three fumble recoveries (one for TD), a safety and one caused fumble for Logan.
Maynard closed out the year with 57 tackles, four pass breakups and a caused fumble.
Honorable Mention pick Tristan Browning had a good year in his first and only season with the Tigers. The running back and Lincoln County transfer, was hampered by injuries late in the season and had 117 rushes for 591 yards and six TDs.
McGraw was a top offensive lineman for the Tigers.
Early, quarterbacked the 5-5 Wildcats this season as a freshman, completing 89 of 150 passes, for 1,525 yards, with 18 TDs and seven interceptions. He rushed 67 times for 321 yards and five TDs.
Noe saw action for Logan on offense, defense and special teams as he was one of the Wildcats’ kickers.
Cruz had 35 tackles, a sack and a fumble recovery.
Felder saw action on both sides of the ball for Logan. On defense, he had 44 tackles, seven pass breakups, a pick and two caused fumbles. He also caught four passes for 68 yards and had a handful of carries.
State and conference champion Mingo Central landed Jeremy Dillon, Dalton Fields, Dalton Sheppard, Isaac Fox, Robbie Daniels, Caleb Lester, Drew Hatfield, Tyler Grimmett and Joe Hunt on the First Team.
Daniel Buchanan, Kaleb Hurley, Thomas Harmon, Zach Curry and Mikey Hall of the Miners were on the Second Team.
Lee Chafin, Trey Lester and Billy Mitchem were All-Conference Honorable Mention.
2016 All-Cardinal Conference
Mingo Central — Jeremy Dillon, Dalton Fields, Dalton Sheppard, Isaac Fox, Robbie Daniels, Caleb Lester, Drew Hatfield, Tyler Grimmett, Joe Hunt
Sissonville — Chance Brown, Colton Faber, Austin Cook, Trent Rhodes, Matt Smith, Bryce Taylor, Hunter Thomas
Winfield — Andrew Huff, Zack Bratton, Thomas Minnear, Grant Dickson, Chris Farha, Jacob Huff
Herbert Hoover — Colten Rollyson, Peyton Carey, Brody Thomas, Chase Stover, Austin Beane
Chapmanville Regional — Dylan Smith, Adam Vance, Timmy Bigley, Ryan Craddock, Evan Willis
Scott — Josh Kirkendoll, Nathan Ramsey, Garrett Roberts
Logan — Jamal Minter, Braxton Goff, Shawntez Matthews
Wayne — Mike Bartram, Casey Bradshaw
Nitro — Grant McVicker, Jay Poindexter
Poca — Matt Gibson
Mingo Central — Daniel Buchanan, Kaleb Hurley, Thomas Harmon, Zach Curry, Mikey Hall
Sissonville — Caleb Whittington, Cayd Snyder, Mayson Miller, Zack Harrison
Winfield — Cole Shell, Tanner Kennedy, Nick Vance, Ethan Raines
Herbert Hoover — Justin Stover, Ian Avis, Zach Spencer
Chapmanville — Billy Shepherd, Austin Butcher, Seth Whitt, Dillon Renniger
Scott — Carter Lyles, Jacob Ryan, Michael Hager
Logan — Daniel Browning, Cody Maynard
Wayne — Ethan Perry, Nicholas Perry, Chris Brewer
Nitro — Deshawn Womack, Nick Reip, Jamie Buckalew
Poca — Carson Cottrill, Dakota Meadows
Mingo Central — Lee Chafin, Trey Lester, Billy Mitchem
Sissonville — Will Hackney, Tyler Abshire
Winfield — Ben Clark, Trystan Willard, Matt Richardson
Herbert Hoover — Ben Bailey, Matt Vance, Cade Drake, Rhett White, Justin Morris
Chapmanville — Tristan Browning, Cory McGraw
Scott — Brandon Ellis, Conner White, Peyton Hassler, Taylor Hensley
Logan — David Early, Dino Noe, Cezar Cruz, Chucky Felder
Nitro — Jason Douglas, Jeremiah McClanahan, Christian Legg
Poca — Bobby Ford, Kenny Gibson
(Paul Adkins is the Sports Editor of the Logan Banner. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @PAdkinsBanner).