Tarver and Turk headline All-Conference team for Huntingdon

Tarver and Turk headline All-Conference team for Huntingdon

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. – Two Huntingdon Hawks earned individual awards and 12 Huntingdon players earned All-Conference recognition with the release of the USA South All-Conference football awards on Thursday. 

Freshman linebacker Linell Tarver was named Defensive Rookie of the Year and head coach Mike Turk was named Coach of the Year. Seven Hawks were named first-team All-Conference and five were second-team selections.

"We're excited for all of these guys," Turk said. "Some of these guys have played for us over the years and some are guys who haven't played a lot in the past, but have really stepped up this year to fill some voids.

"It's nice to see them recognized by the coaches in the league and it says a lot about the success our team has had. It's a good recognition for those individuals and our program."

Tarver's selection as Rookie of the Year marks the third straight season Huntingdon has produced the conference's Defensive Rookie of the Year. Linebacker Trey Hayes won the award in 2015 and defensive lineman DeAnte' Griffith took the honor in 2016.

"It's pretty special to have the Defensive Rookie of the Year for three years in-a-row," Turk said. "Linell has come in, worked hard and become a key part of our defense. We're proud of the way he is continuing to develop and he is very deserving of this honor."

Tarver has started in every game this season and is third on the team with 59 tackles. He also has 2.5 sacks, 2.5 tackles for loss, three quarterback hurries and one pass broken up. He had a season-high 11 tackles against North Carolina Wesleyan and 10 tackles against Methodist.

This is also the third straight season Turk has been named USA South Coach of the Year. Turk is the first football coach in the history of the USA South to receive the honor in three straight seasons.

During the past three seasons, Turk has guided Huntingdon to a 28-5 overall record, a 20-1 record in the USA South, three conference championships and three NCAA playoff appearances. In 14 seasons with the Hawks, Turk has led Huntingdon to a 98-41 record and four NCAA playoff appearances.

"I am very honored to be the Coach of the Year," Turk said. "I've always viewed this as a staff award. I think it says a lot about how far our team has come and the job our coaches have done with the team this year. The fact that we have improved as much as we have during the course of the season really speaks to the job this coaching staff has done."

Huntingdon's first-team All-Conference selections are running back Vic Jerald, receiver Otis Porter, H-Back Colton Chinn, offensive linemen Chris Hering and Adam Mann, linebacker Trey Hayes and defensive back Jarrett White.

This is the second straight season Hayes and Hering have earned first-team honors and Porter was a second-team selection last season.

Huntingdon's second-team selections are quarterback Chip Taylor, linebacker Brandon Williams, defensive backs Anthony Wood and Demetrius Beverly and kicker Chase Young.

This is the third straight season Young has been named a first-team or second-team selection and the second straight year Williams, Wood and Beverly have been recognized by the USA South.

Wood was also named to the USA South's All-Sportsmanship team.

The 12 All-Conference selections bring Huntingdon's total to 43 All-Conference performers in the past three seasons and 56 selections since joining the conference in 2013.


The complete All-Conference awards are listed below.


USA South All-Conference Football Awards

Offensive Player of the Year: Brian Mann, Ferrum

Defensive Player of the Year: Montel Lee, Ferrum

Offensive Rookie of the Year: Elijah Hairston, Maryville

Defensive Rookie of the Year: Linell Tarver, Huntingdon

Coach of the Year: Mike Turk, Huntingdon




Quarterback: Connor Blair, LaGrange

Running Back: Vic Jerald, Huntingdon

Running Back: Brian Mann, Ferrum

Receiver: Marcus Campbell, LaGrange

Receiver: Trey Lancaster, N.C. Wesleyan

Receiver: Otis Porter, Huntingdon

Tight End/H-Back/Fullback: Colton Chinn, Huntingdon

Offensive Line: Jesse Benavides-Munoz, Maryville

Offensive Line: Wilson Gregory, Averett

Offensive Line: Chris Hering, Huntingdon

Offensive Line: Adam Mann, Huntingdon

Offensive Line: Jordan Patti, Ferrum



Defensive Line: DeAngelo Collington, Maryville

Defensive Line: Kenneth Covington, Averett

Defensive Line: Montel Lee, Ferrum

Defensive Line: Al Matthews, Ferrum

Linebacker: DejonBrooks, Averett

Linebacker: Trey Hayes, Huntingdon

Linebacker: Antonio Johnson, N.C. Wesleyan

Defensive Back: Tyriek Able, Averett

Defensive Back: Eddie Graham, N.C. Wesleyan

Defensive Back: Rod Smith, Ferrum

Defensive Back: Jarrett White, Huntingdon


Speical Teams

Return Specialist: Delquan Bigelow, Averett

Kicker: Cole Westberry, Averett

Punter: Cole Westberry, Averett




Quarterback: Chip Taylor, Huntingdon

Running Back: Sean Bowman, Averett

Running Back: E'Montie Dears, Methodist

Receiver: Dylan Cummings, Methodist

Receiver: Mac Seagle, Maryville

Receiver: Johnny White, Ferrum

Tight End/H-Back/Fullback: Josh Bare, Ferrum

Offensive Line: Justin Byrd, Maryville

Offensive Line: Breon Foust, N.C. Wesleyan

Offensive Line: Thomas McFadden, N.C. Wesleyan

Offensive Line: Sam Powers, Ferrum

Offensive Line: D.J. Twitty, Methodist



Defensive Line: Donnell Alexander, N.C. Wesleyan

Defensive Line: Shareef Boddie, Averett

Defensive Line: Will England, Methodist

Defensive Line: Jacorey Jackson, Maryville

Linebacker: Cedric Brown, Maryville

Linebacker: Tyus Brown, Ferrum

Linebacker: Brandon Williams, Huntingdon

Defensive Back: Demetrius Beverly, Huntingdon

Defensive Back: Pierre Chadwick, Maryville

Defensive Back: Kwajay Witcher, Ferrum

Defensive Back: Anthony Wood, Huntingdon 


Speical Teams

Return Specialist: Kevin Norcott, Averett

Kicker: Chase Young, Huntingdon

Punter: Kenneth Horne, Maryville



All-Sportsmanship Team

Desmond Springs, Averett
Bubba Craven, Brevard
CJ Kaashif, Ferrum
Tolan Jones, Greensboro
Anthony Wood, Huntingdon
Nicholas Searcy, LaGrange
Alex Gobble, Maryville
Landon Cheviron, Methodist
Cody Vaillancourt, N.C. Wesleyan


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