The Detroit News All-Metro East football teams

David Goricki
The Detroit News

FIRST TEAM

Ends

Brian Blanzy, 6-4, 190, Sr., Grosse Pointe South: Blanzy used his size to his advantage, grabbing 44 passes for 706 yards and 7 TDs, averaging 17 yards a reception. "Brian's an outstanding pass catcher who runs great routes and has deceptive speed," South coach Tim Brandon said. "He had a truly amazing connection with his twin brother Sam, our quarterback and led our team in scoring."

Stefan Claiborne, 6-2, 180, Jr., Clinton Township Chippewa Valley: Claiborne could do it all, never leaving the field as a two-way starter and special teams star. He had 25 receptions and 10 TDs, averaging more than 20 yards per reception, was the team's leading tackler (88 tackles), returned an interception 95 yards for a score and blocked six kicks. He was never better than in the district title win to help Chippewa Valley end a 16-game losing streak in its series with Macomb Dakota, blocking a field goal and PAT while also scoring a TD off a blocked punt. Claiborne is being recruited by Michigan State, Ohio State and Michigan.

Kyle Muller, 6-2, 205, Sr., Clinton Township Chippewa Valley: Muller was a big part of Chippewa Valley's offense. He had 51 receptions, second most in school history, for 889 yards and 8 TDs. He also rushed for 6 TDs. "Kyle was a two-year starter at H-back, a captain who had an outstanding season for us," Chippewa Valley coach Scott Merchant said. Muller is being recruited by Illinois State and Saginaw Valley.

Offensive linemen

Trevor Curle, 6-3, 265, Sr., Utica Eisenhower: Eisenhower's Curle, a two-year starter and three-sport athlete, was the anchor on a line that helped Eisenhower pile up more than 1,900 rushing yards to earn a state playoff appearance. "Trevor is a great athlete playing on the offensive line," Coach Chris Smith said. "He's smart and plays with toughness."

Matt Doan, 6-1, 305, Sr., Romeo: Doan used his strength to dominate at the line of scrimmage and help Romeo's offense operate at a high level. "Matt is a very versatile player who played multiple positions throughout the year on the offensive line," Romeo co-coach Jason Couch said. "He is very strong, can bench 225 pounds 25 times, and has great mobility for someone his size and strength."

Zach Manolios, 6-0, 240, Sr., Sterling Heights Stevenson: Manolios moved from defense to offense to help Stevenson upset three-time MAC Red champion Macomb Dakota and earn a state playoff appearance. "I believe Zach was the best lineman in the county," Stevenson coach Kevin Frederick said. "He has a tremendous motor and pancakes defenders from start to finish. He sacrificed defensive playing time for the betterment of the team and became a leader on offense."

Kenton Rivard, 6-3, 300, Sr., Marine City: Rivard was the anchor on an offense that averaged 41 points, the most in the MAC, and helped Marine City to a 10-0 start. He also had 30 tackles, eight for loss from the nose guard spot. "We ran behind Kenton 80 percent of the time," Marine City coach Ron Glodich said. "In my 28 years at Marine City Kenton is the best offensive lineman we have produced. He's a powerful run blocker who has the agility to pull and has great balance for pass protection."

Nick Rowan, 6-2, 250, Sr., Fraser: Rowan was a three-year starter at center, helping Fraser earn its first playoff appearance since 1998. "Our offense was the second highest in Fraser history and Nick was a major reason for us rushing over 2,200 yards and passing for over 900," Fraser coach Pat Threet said. "We had six running backs that contributed and our offensive line was impressive."

Quarterback

Patrick Briningstool, 6-0, 195, Jr., Clinton Township Chippewa Valley: Briningstool took over after a 1-2 start and rallied Chippewa Valley to a 5-1 finish and then two more wins in the playoffs before a tough 48-35 regional loss to Detroit Cass Tech, where he threw for 313 yards and 2 TDs without a turnover. "He came in and started the final nine games and did a great job of leading the team, setting school records for us for TDs thrown in a game with six and a season with 27," Chippewa Valley coach Scott Merchant said of Briningstool, who completed 114-of-199 for 1,851 yards with just six interceptions.

Running backs

Kumehnnu Gwilly, 6-2, 190, Jr., Utica: Gwilly used his strength and speed to run for 1,944 yards and 15 TDs, averaging 6.6 yards per carry in his second full season of organized ball. "He's been tremendous, just his natural ability to make his cuts, the way he runs and slashes through holes is incredible," Utica coach Tony Smith said. Gwilly is being recruited by MAC schools, including Western Michigan.

Devin Skatzka, 5-11, 180, Sr., Richmond: Skatzka rushed for 1,623 yards and 31 TDs to lead Richmond to a 10-win season and a regional championship game appearance. "He runs hard all the time, in practice, in games, if the scores zero-to-zero or we're up big," Richmond coach John Kocher. "He has an incredible motor and work ethic and is a physical defensive player at strong safety." Skatzka, a three-time state champion in wrestling, will wrestle at Indiana.

Athlete

Juan Johnson, 5-9, 180, Sr., Madison Heights Madison: Johnson could do it all as a playmaker — run the ball, catch it out of the backfield, return kickoffs and punts for touchdowns and make the big play at defensive end. He helped lead Madison to the regional championship game, in which defending state champion Ithaca pulled out a fourth-quarter comeback win.

"Juan's a special athlete," Madison coach Drake Wilkins said. "I call him a four-tool athlete because he hurts you on offense, defense and special teams. He's a gamer and makes four or five big plays a game … receiver, running back, kick returner and getting interception. He's probably one of the hardest hitting safeties or outside linebackers I've coached, especially for his size."

Kicker

Robert Smith, Sr., Utica Eisenhower: Smith was 9-for-9 on field goals, including a 44-yarder in an overtime win over Warren Mott. "He was clutch in every situation for us," Eisenhower coach Chris Smith said. "He was perfect on field goals and every time we sent him out there we knew he'd make it."

Defensive linemen

Antonio Balabani, 6-2, 230, Sr., Macomb Dakota: Balabani was a force on Dakota's defense, putting pressure on quarterbacks while getting 36 tackles and four sacks and recovering two fumbles to help Dakota earn a third straight outright MAC Red championship. "Tony is one of the toughest players in my opinion in the state," Dakota coach Mike Giannone said. "He is a proven big game player who helped us to a 29-5 record during his career." Balabani will play at Western Michigan.

Mike Danna, 6-3, 230, Sr., Warren De La Salle: Danna came back from a broken leg to help De La Salle win the Division 2 state championship. He had 47 tackles in seven games, including four sacks in the district championship win over Detroit East English and seven tackles and three sacks to end Birmingham Brother Rice's 33-game winning streak in the regional championship game. "He means so much to our team, our defense," De La Salle coach Paul Verska said. "He's a leader for us, a calming influence and his return led to players returning to their proper positions." He will play at Central Michigan.

Logan Fredal, 6-3, 220, Sr., Utica Eisenhower: Fredal was a four-year varsity player for Eisenhower, getting in on 49 tackles with two sacks to limit opponents under 15 points a game. "He was a great athlete who was able to play a lot of different positions for us, including defensive end, linebacker and receiver," Eisenhower coach Chris Smith said. "He was a great blocker as a tight end."

Dominic Trevino, 6-1, 250, Sr., Port Huron: Trevino, a three-year starter, was a disruptive force in the middle of Port Huron's strong defensive line. He made 30 tackles, including six sacks, and forced three fumbles. "He was a dominant force in the middle of our defense," Port Huron coach Ryan Mullins said. "He caused major disruptions for offenses. He made everyone on our defense better with his dominant play."

Linebackers

Marcus Bowers, 6-0, 215, Sr., Fraser: Bowers had 95 tackles and broke the school record with 298 for his career. He also had 15 tackles for loss, including four sacks, to help Fraser earn its first playoff appearance since 1998. "Having Marcus for the past four years has been like having an extra coach on the field," coach Pat Threet said. "He made all the calls for us."

Ravin Randall, 6-1, 220, Sr., Port Huron: Randall, a four-year varsity starter, was the MAC White MVP, getting in on 57 tackles, including 22 solos. "He led the team in the number of snaps played over the past two years as a linebacker-tight end," Port Huron coach Ryan Mullins said. "He was the most consistent player on our team for three years and a dominant blocker as a tight end. He's a natural leader and a three-time powerlifting state champ."

Randall has narrowed his college choices to Navy, MIT, Michigan Tech and Princeton.

Eric Rogers, 6-2, 230, Jr., Warren De La Salle: Rogers was a dominant force, making more than 100 tackles, with 15 for loss. He also forced three fumbles and recovered two. He made a team-high nine tackles in the Division 2 state title game win over Muskegon Mona Shores, including a sack, and one stop to keep Mona Shores short of first-down yardage on a fake punt. "He was a downhill player at middle linebacker, a very physical, hard-nosed hitter," De La Salle coach Paul Verska said. Rogers, a four-star recruit, is being recruited by several Big Ten and MAC schools.

Defensive backs

Dimitri Abro, 5-9, 170, Sr., Macomb Dakota: Abro raised his game to another level in his second year as a starter, intercepting five passes and returning three for TDs while getting in on 68 tackles, including 21/2 sacks. "Demetri is a game changer," Dakota coach Mike Giannone said. "He always seemed to find a way to be in the mix. He had three interceptions for touchdowns that changed the complexity of each of those games and in turn changed our season."

Jarrett Mathison, 5-11, 170, Sr., Marine City: Mathison was an outstanding two-way player for Marine City, which won 10 straight before a district final loss to Almont after winning the Division 4 title a year ago. "Jarret may be one of the best all-around players I have ever coached," Marine City coach Ron Glodich said. "Speed and power on offense combined with an unselfish blocker on the edge. He's a big play receiver who could go up and make tough catches. Defensively, he was a ball hawk who could deliver a big hit." Mathison had 135 carries for 1,458 yards (11-yard average), 23 receptions for 557 yards and 32 total TDs. He also had 63 tackles, an interception and a fumble recovery.

Greg McDade, 6-2, 185, Sr., Sterling Heights Stevenson: McDade was a factor on both sides of the ball, hauling in 25 passes for 505 yards and 4 TDs while getting in on 30 tackles and intercepting five passes, returning one for 109 yards and a TD.

"Greg's the most dynamic player in the conference," Stevenson coach Kevin Frederick said. "He's a lock down corner who has the ability to make plays on the offensive side of the ball that other kids can't make."

Tylen Redding, 6-2, 160, Jr., Warren Mott: Redding had a strong season on both sides of the ball to help Mott make a state playoff appearance. He made 27 tackles while intercepting seven passes and breaking up six pass attempts. He also had 23 receptions for 450 yards and 6 TDs. "He's a big-time player, great ball skills and a nose for the football," Mott coach Tom Milanov said.

PUNTER

Sam Blanzy, 6-4, 190, Sr., Grosse Pointe South: Blanzy played multiple roles for South, including quarterback, punter and team captain. Blanzy completed 55 percent of his passes for 1,488 yards and 17 TDs. He also averaged 43.7 yards a punt, including eight kicks inside the opponents' 20.

"Sam averaged over 43 yards per punt, but was also very accurate and a very dangerous weapon on fake punts, two passes to his twin brother Brian to set up game-winning scores," South coach Tim Brandon said.

Coach

Paul Verska, Warren De La Salle: Verska rallied his team from a 3-3 record to a Division 2 state championship after getting players healthy and back in the proper positions to make the run.

"We had some great players on defense and a tough kid who was a great leader at quarterback in Joe Garbarino," said Verska who earned his 200th career win early in the season and went on to guide De La Salle to its third state title appearance since 2006 and the school's first state football title, gaining his 100th win in his 13th season at the school.

SECOND TEAM

Ends: Sean Bunting, 6-1, 170, Sr., Chippewa Valley; Daniel Crawford, 6-2, 230, Sr., Macomb Dakota; Jalen Martin, 6-2, 195, Jr., Harper Woods Chandler Park

Offensive linemen: Phil Dakin, 6-2, 270, Sr., Grosse Pointe South; Zak Hill, 6-5, 320, Jr., Roseville; Joe Hilliard, 6-1, 225, Sr., Warren Woods-Tower; Justin Tockstein, 6-4, 290, Sr., Warren Mott; Brendan Wojtas, 5-10, 225, Sr., Warren Cousino

Quarterback: Delvin Washington, 6-0, 200, So., Harper Woods Chandler Park

Running backs: Kaiser Carleton, 5-6, 160, So., Macomb Dakota; Allen Stritzinger, 6-0, 180, So., Warren DeLaSalle.

Defensive linemen: Brady Beedon, 6-4, 205, Sr., Marysville; Brian Mack, 6-3, 225, Jr., Grosse Pointe South; Ross Morisette, 6-4, 190, Sr., New Baltimore Anchor Bay; Nicco Moroso, Jr., Chippewa Valley

Linebackers: Lawrence Bryant, 6-0, 220, Jr., Grosse Pointe North; Dennis Fitzsimmons, 6-0, 220, Jr., Marine City; Ryan Smith, 6-0, 215, Sr., Warren De La Salle

Defensive backs: Jared Cutlip, 6-0, 185, Jr., Sterling Heights Stevenson; Mike Ostrowski, 5-11, 185, Sr., Warren De La Salle; Sam Shkreli, 6-1, 195, Sr., Utica Ford; Darren Tannant, 6-1, 165, Jr., St. Clair Shores Lakeview

Athlete: Darius Jordan, 6-1, 165, Sr., Warren Woods-Tower

Punter: Kevin Large, 5-8, 175, Jr., Utica Ford

Kicker: Anthony Secchi, 5-8, 160, So., Roseville

HONORABLE MENTION

Ends

Thomas Jackson, Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett; Trevor Conklin, L'Anse Creuse North; Jeff Mainhardt, Fraser; Jimmy Schindler, Warren Woods-Tower; Brad Tanner, Romeo; John Hall, Macomb Dakota; Kadari Johnson, Utica Eisenhower; Mitch Heimbuch, Romeo; Dillon Webb, Grosse Pointe North; Brandon Carlini, Warren Fitzgerald; TraMon Wiley, Eastpointe East Detroit; Jacob Brooklier, Center Line; Nate Marsh, Madison Heights Lamphere; Norris Moore, Harper Woods Chandler Park; Josh Stiltner, Algonac; Nick Kerby, Almont; Mike Daws, Imlay City; Jake Schmidt, Richmond; Bret Zihlavsky, Richmond; Charles Caine III, Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett; Jackson Allen, Sterling Heights Parkway Christian

Offensive linemen

Noah Daniel, Romeo; David Pettway, Port Huron; Doug Paulsell, Warren Cousino; Joe Lechkun, Harrison Township L'Anse Creuse; David Zolinski, St. Clair; Darrien Rutledge, St. Clair; Derek Braun, Marysville; Trevor Barndollar, Madison Heights Madison; Chase Mitchell, Madison Heights Madison; Antonio Bailey, Warren Fitzgerald; Miguel Chene, Clawson; Paul Lama, Clawson; Joshua Furesz, Mount Clemens; Dominic Tatangelo, Center Line; Brendan McCallum, Madison Heights Lamphere; Devonte Johnson, Harper Woods Chandler Park; Lorence King, Warren Michigan Collegiate; Sydney Coley, Harper Woods Chandler Park; Darius Harper, Harper Woods Chandler Park; Christian Dawkins, Warren Michigan Collegiate; Joe Flaherty, Almont; Nick Macauley, Richmond; Brady LaFore, Richmond; Collin Kain, Yale

Quarterbacks

Joey Garbarino, Warren De La Salle; Paul Hurley, Romeo; Larry Ochadleus, St. Clair; Mitchell Peer, L'Anse Creuse North; Nick Palmer, Warren Cousino; Daniel Robinson, Grosse Pointe North; Ty Sparks, Clawson; Frankie D'Ascenzo, Sterling Heights Stevenson; Dylan Walker, Fraser; Tavin Allison, Harrison Township L'Anse Creuse; Alex Merchant, Marine City; Jacob Cyccone, Sterling Heights; Kyle Burch, Port Huron Northern; Stephen Gregersen, Warren Fitzgerald; Will Bobek, St. Clair Shores Lake Shore; Ryan Walker, Center Line; Trevor Nichols, Almont; Wyatt Bannister, Imlay City; Mitchell Visbara, Macomb Lutheran North; Connor McCarron, Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett

Running backs

Martell Pettaway, St. Clair Shores South Lake; Latorris Greer, Grosse Pointe North; Myrick El, Warren Michigan Collegiate; Lucas Schimon, Romeo; Dahron Washington, Port Huron; Steven Charles Jr., Warren Cousino; Mike Evans, Roseville; Trevor Quandt, Marine City; Ryan Ellul, Marysville; Chris Gault, Madison Heights Madison; Najon Moore, Warren Fitzgerald; Ju'Juan Clowers, Clinton Township Clintondale; Colton Randle, St. Clair Shores Lake Shore; Gary Allen, Eastpointe East Detroit; Donovan Holt, Clawson; David Gooley, Mount Clemens; Trevor Guilmette, Madison Heights Lamphere; Daire'on Owens, New Haven; D.J. Griffin, Harper Woods Chandler Park; Nick Baker, Almont; Greg Stark, Armada; Brendan Golds, Capac; Joe Duff, Cros-Lex; James Fuhrman, Yale; Montana Essian, Sterling Heights Parkway Christian

Defensive linemen

Austin Ballard, Warren DeLaSalle; Darrell Cowart, Warren Woods-Tower; Austin Kowalczyk, Utica; Collin Koscielniak, Utica Eisenhower; Dez Lance, Sterling Heights Stevenson; Devonte Nichols, Warren Mott; Rob Hock, Utica Eisenhower; Bruce Hudson, Port Huron; Jordan Cureton, Port Huron; Sean Russell, Utica Ford; Drew Beesley, Warren De La Salle; Khary Harris, Warren De La Salle; Matis Elston, Fraser; Michael Lumley, Marine City; Andrew Zannetti, Warren Woods-Tower; Daviyon Jones, Madison Heights Madison; Aubrey Gulley, Warren Fitzgerald; Darrick Gibson, Clinton Township Clintondale; Ray Chandler, St. Clair Shores Lake Shore; Andrew Whitlow, Eastpointe East Detroit; Matt Laanstra, Clawson; Cam Jones, Clawson; Ben Elliott, Mount Clemens; Eric Lee, Mount Clemens; Mitchell Denmark, Madison Heights Lamphere; Andre Carswell, Warren Lincoln; Shalonda Treadway, Warren Michigan Collegiate; Jordan Harris, Warren Michigan Collegiate; Steven Childs, Harper Woods Chandler Park; Justin Croswell, Macomb Lutheran North

Linebackers

Kenneth Butler, Warren Michigan Collegiate; Nate Conner, Romeo; Kyran Daniels, Warren Mott; Brendyn Pittman, Macomb Dakota; Mike Couch, Almont; Jake Corey, Utica Eisenhower; Tom Robinson, Sterling Heights Stevenson; Zack Kowalski, Utica Ford; Will Poplawski, Grosse Pointe South; Parrish James, Grosse Pointe North; Jacob Headlee, Marine City; Jared Ambrose, St. Clair; Jeremy Berger, Marysville; Spenser Vasbinder, Port Huron Northern; Randen Bacon, Madison Heights Madison; Emil Warda, Madison Heights Madison; John Galloway, New Haven; Kenneth Butler, Warren Michigan Collegiate; James Pruitt, Harper Woods Chandler Park; Michael Vernier, Algonac; Mason Ruhlman, Algonac; Chase Torretta, Almont; Chad Szczesny, Armada; Brad Harris, Capac; Matt Kettlewell, Cros-Lex; Brett Ebner, Cros-Lex; Patrick Pauli, Imlay City; Garrett Bondy, Yale; Matthew Gushee, Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett; Riley McManus, Sterling Heights Parkway Christian

Defensive backs

Toriano Hudson, Warren Woods-Tower; Robert Campbell, Macomb Dakota; Andrew Trost, Grosse Pointe South; Tru Wilson, Warren De La Salle; Joe Servitto, Warren Cousino; Joey Maleszyk, Warren Cousino; O'Dell Snyder, Grosse Pointe North; Brian Moy, St. Clair Shores Lakeview; Jaulen Brayton, Roseville; Delano Bolar, Warren Fitzgerald; Justin Conrad, Eastpointe East Detroit; Cam Campana, Clawson; Tavarez Ogunda, Mount Clemens; Dominick Breham, Center Line; Alan Kelly, Harper Woods Chandler Park; Kevin Medley, Armada; Ian Detroyer, Capac; Kyle Herr, Imlay City; Brennan Kersten, Yale

Kickers/punters

Olivia Viney, Marine City; Noah O'Brien, Mount Clemens; Christian Cacevic, Warren Michigan Collegiate