Comet ‘ground movers’ Crooks and Heitz named to All-District football first team
Press Staff Report
The legacy of O.J. Simpson is tainted with tragedy.
But his football career had some shining moments.
When Simpson became the first NFL player to exceed 2,000 yards rushing in a season — in just 14 games, mind you — he often used the first-person version of “We” as in “We did it” whenever discussing the accomplishment.
When Charles City junior Trever Heitz likely breaks his school’s all-time rushing record and subsequently passes 2,000 yards for his career, it will be another “We” accomplishment.
And Chase Crooks will and has already been a part of it.
This week, the Class 3A-District 3 All-District Football Teams were announced. Crooks and Heitz were among those named to the first team.
After becoming Charles City’s first sophomore to rush for 1,000 yards in a season, Heitz led the Comets this past year with 829 yards while averaging 4.8 yards per carry.
Crooks, one of only two sophomores named to the first team, was honored for his work on the offensive line. Crooks also got to carry the ball himself when he took a blocked punt deep into the red zone while helping the Comets defeat Oelwein.
Crooks and Heitz also made impacts on the other side of the ball as they were both among the Comets’ leaders in solo tackles and solo tackles for losses.
Charles City had four players chosen for the second team: Jeremiah Chapman, Ian Collins, Caden Collins and Alec Staudt.
Chapman, a junior, was one of the team’s primary game breakers. Second to Heitz in rushing yards (421, 5.8 ypc), Chapman recorded the school’s second longest TD run from scrimmage (97 yards) against Oelwein. Chapman averaged 23.6 yards on kickoff returns while accumulating 331 yards.
Ian Collins, a sophomore, led the Comets with 20 receptions, 331 receiving yards and five touchdown catches. Including a 78-yard KO return score and a TD run of 20 yards, Collins led the team with seven touchdowns.
Caden Collins, a junior, led the team with 46 tackles, which included 39 solo stops and four solo tackles for losses.
Junior Alec Staudt took over as starting quarterback early in the season and went on to throw for four scores as well as rushing for four more. He also had three interceptions as a defensive back.
Heitz, Staudt, Caden Collins, Evan Bjelica, William Wilson, Ryan Nettleton and Justin Heyer — all Charles City juniors — were named Academic All-District.
Class 3A-District 3
All-District Football Teams
Defensive Line — Christian Kremer (Independence), Carson Petlon (West Delaware), Dakota Swatek (Decorah), Cole Kramer (Waverly-Shell Rock)
Linebackers — Cole Davis (Independence), Kaine Millard (Independence), Matthew Doyle (Independence), Joe Burke (West Delaware), Wyatt Voelker (West Delaware), Cael Luzum (Decorah), Jacob Hanley (Waterloo East), Tyler McNally (Waverly-Shell Rock), Cael White (Waverly-Shell Rock)
Defensive Backs — Kalep Lamphier (Independence), Logan Woellert (West Delaware), Galen Iverson (Decorah), Ahkil Muhammad (Waterloo East)
Utility — Ben Petlon (West Delaware), Gabe Austin (Decorah)
Offensive Line — Dylan Ruether (Independence), Landry Jones (Independence), Luke Kehrli (West Delaware), Jermy Chaplin (Waverly-Shell Rock), Chase Crooks (Charles City)
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends — Blake Bartz (Independence), Kyle Kelley (West Delaware), Logan Halverson (Decorah), Matthew Franzen (Decorah), Tyrell Newman (Waterloo East)
Running Backs — Andrew Magner (Decorah), Kjuan Owens (Waterloo East), Trever Heitz (Charles City)
Quarterbacks — Logan Schmitt (Independence), Dylan Reyes (Waterloo East)
SECOND TEAM ALL-DISTRICT
Charles City — Ian Collins, Caden Collins, Alec Staudt, Jeremiah Chapman
Waterloo East — Javontaz Jefferson-Sisk, Christian Zearing, Lakey Martin, Alexander Glover
Decorah — Tucker Young, Seth Shindelar, Mitchell Luschensky, Keaton Solberg
Waverly-Shell Rock — Payton Leonard, Brayden Wolf, Jentry Staack, Donovan Wessel
Independence — Ben Moore, Marcus Beatty, Brady Webb, Brandon Haas
West Delaware — Mitchell Korgmann, Kieran Monaghan, Christin Nunley, Cael Meyer
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Logan Schmitt (Independence)
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Cole Davis (Independence)
SPECIALTY PLAYER AWARDS
PLACE KICKER — Gabe Austin (Decorah)
PUNTER — Ben Pelton (West Delaware)
CO-COACHING STAFF OF THE YEAR
Independence and Waterloo East
Charles City — Evan Bjelica, Trever Heitz, William Wilson, Ryan Nettleton, Caden Collins, Justin Heyer, Alec Staud