The post-season gridiron accolades continue to roll in, as seven local football standouts were named to the 2019 Associated Press All-State Football Team.
Pulaski County High School junior linebacker Tristan Cox was named All-State First Team as a defensive linebacker. Somerset High School juniors Kade Grundy and Kaiya Sheron were name second team All-State. Grundy as a receiver and Sheron as a quarterback. Pulaski County senior Jake Sloan was named second team All-State as a wide receiver. Somerset High School senior Ben Simmons was named second team All-State as a defensive lineman.
Somerset High School senior Jase Bruner was All State Honorable Mention as a defensive linebacker, while Southwestern High School senior Austin Barnes was named All-State Honorable Mention as a running back.
Earlier, Sloan was name to the second team All-State Coaches Football Team, while Cox, Sheron, and Grundy were named as Coaches Football All-State Honorable Mention.
Cox dominated play for the Maroons as both a defensive linebacker and an offensive running back. Cox made 94 tackles with 20 for losses. Cox also rushed for 509 yards and scored 8 touchdowns.
Sheron, who was named the Commonwealth Journal 2019 Football Player of the Year, was named the top football player in the state of Kentucky in the Class 2A division and was named the Most Valuable Player of the Class 2A Championship game. For the year, Sheron completed 178 passes for 3,218 years and threw 28 touchdown passes. Sheron rushed for 959 yards and ran for 8 touchdowns.
Sloan, an Eastern Kentucky University signee, caught 77 passes in 11 games for 899 yards, and averaged 12.9 yards per catch. Sloan had five touchdowns as a receiver and had one TD on a kick-off return. Sloan, who was named the Commonwealth Journal Offensive Player of the Year, ranks second in the state for career receptions for a career (312), ranks second in the state for receptions in a season (116) and third in the state receptions in a game (17).
Grundy was a threat on both offense and defense. As a receiver, Grundy caught 68 passes for 1,441 yards and scored 4 TDs. Grundy had four interceptions, and was a threat as a punt and kick-off returner.
Simmons was a huge part of the Briar Jumpers' success on both offense and defense. Simmons, a Morehead State University signee, led the Briar Jumpers as an offensive and defensive lineman. Simmons was selected as an Commonwealth Journal All-County offensive lineman.
Bruner, a University of Kentucky preferred walk-on, was an asset to the state champion Briar Jumpers on both offense and defense. Bruner led his team with 121 tackles, with 6.5 tackles for losses. Bruner forced one fumble, had two fumble recoveries and had an interception. Bruner, who was named the Commonwealth Journal Defensive Player of the Year, carried the ball 55 times for 434 yards, and caught 10 passes for 169 yards.
Barnes, who recently signed with Lindsey Wilson College, made 143 tackles with 13 for losses. Barnes rushed for 547 yards and scored 6 touchdowns.
Associated Press All-State Football
FIRST TEAM OFFENSE
Quarterback: Beau Allen, Lexington Catholic
Running Backs: Jeriah Hightower, Madisonville-North Hopkins; Braedon Sloan, Wayne County
Wide Receivers: Reese Smith, Boyle County; Michael Mayer, Covington Catholic; Kade Neely, Mayfield
Offensive Linemen: Owen LeMaster, Johnson Central; Walker Parks, Frederick Douglass; William Long II, Breathitt County; Jager Burton, Frederick Douglass; John Young, Louisville Christian Academy
Kicker: Jackson Smith, Boyle County
FIRST TEAM DEFENSE
Defensive Linemen: Demetri Scott, Louisville DeSales; Octavious Oxendine, North Hardin; Tyler Roberson, Louisville Trinity; Wilson Kelly, Boyle County
Linebackers: Jax Rogers, Mayfield; Michael Mayer, Covington Catholic; Brycen Huddleston, Highlands; Cody Goatley, Graves County; Tristan Cox, Pulaski County
Defensive Backs: Daisjaun Mercer, Hopkinsville; Eli Blakey, Louisville DuPont Manual; Jordan Lovett, North Hardin; Devin Neal, Frederick Douglass
Punter: Grayson Cook, Belfry
SECOND TEAM OFFENSE
Quarterbacks: Drew Hartz, Owensboro Catholic; Kaiya Sheron, Somerset
Running Backs: Charles Collins, Breathitt County; Kylan Galbreath, Mayfield
Wide Receivers: Kade Grundy, Somerset; Izayah Cummings, Louisville Male; Franklin Hayes, McCracken County; Reece Jesse, Hopkinsville; Jake Sloan, Pulaski County; DeAirious Smith, Lexington Christian
Offensive Linemen: Ethan Wolford, Belfry; Chris Malala, Louisville Male; Dane Jackson, Madison Southern; Blake Moody, Madisonville-North Hopkins; Parker Bates, Apollo.
Kicker: Jeffrey Sexton, Louisville St. Xavier.
SECOND TEAM DEFENSE
Defensive Linemen: Darion Dearinger, Anderson County; Ben Simmons, Somerset; Brady Holleran, Franklin County; Romarion Warner, Frederick Douglass; Sebastian Lawrence, Murray
Linebackers: Cade Bleidt, Trigg County; Joe Kuerzi, Louisville Male; Austin Gough, Owensboro; Charlie Ely, Louisville Trinity; Jack Dingle, Louisville Trinity
Defensive Backs: Josh Minkins, Louisville Ballard; Tony Parrott, Mayfield; Travis Brauer, Walton-Verona; Daterian Brigance, South Laurel
Mr. Football: Michael Mayer, Covington Catholic
Coaches of the Year: Joe Morris, Mayfield; Chris Wolfe, Louisville Male
Brandon Slaughter, Breathitt County, DB; Caleb Rose, West Carter, DB; Emery Woods, Bracken County, DB; Jayce Hacker, North Laurel, DB; Kaleal Davis, Newport, DB; Kaleb Flanery, Fleming County, DB; Spencer Gilbert, Lynn Camp, DB; Tyler Stice, Mason County, DB; Aiden Moore, Louisville Central, DL; Caden Hogg, Breathitt County, DL; Cidney Mills, Louisville Fern Creek, DL; Colton Bargo, Whitley County, DL; Ethan Wine, Corbin, DL; Luke Clark, South Oldham, DL; Vuk Sajlovic, Simon Kenton, DL; William Long, II, Breathitt County, DL; Zach Saylor, Whitley County, DL; Lane Weddle, Breathitt County, K; Ben Hollis, Whitley County, LB; Chris Howard, Williamsburg, LB; Dawson Fore, Corbin, LB; Dylan Osgood, Mason County, LB; Grayson Cook, Belfry, LB; Hale Bohler, Louisville St. Xavier, LB; Jase Bruner, Somerset, LB; Justice Thompson, Louisville Ballard, LB; Kobe Skortz, Owensboro, LB; Austin Taylor, Scott County, OL; Blake Gossett, Louisville Male, OL; Jon Nalley, Daviess County, OL; Kyron Humphrey, Fleming County, OL; Lucas Jones, Covington Catholic, OL; Micah Lee, Louisville Fern Creek, OL; Noah Miracle, Williamsburg, OL; Noah Orr, Corbin, OL; Phil Cox, Louisville Ballard, OL; Caleb Jacob, Covington Catholic, QB; Dalton Ponder, Williamsburg, QB; Elijah Wheat, McCracken County, QB; Jayden Stinson, Mayfield, QB; Luke Duby, Lexington Tates Creek, QB; Austin Barnes, Southwestern, RB; Azariah Israel, George Rogers Clark, RB; Clint McKee, Graves County, RB; Harold Hogg, Apollo, RB; Hunter Bradley, McCracken County, RB; Isaac Dixon, Belfry, RB; JaWaun Northington, Louisville DuPont Manual, RB; Jayden Farmer, Louisville Ballard, RB; Jayden Freeman, Paducah Tilghman, RB; Jordan Ramey, South Laurel, RB; Lavell Wright, North Hardin, RB; Quincy Perrin, Scott, RB; Alonzo Daniel, Mayfield, WR; Caleb Rose, Williamsburg, WR; Gavon Thomas, Williamsburg, WR; George Gavin, Central Hardin, WR; Jordan Watkins, Louisville Butler, WR; Miles Thomas, Lexington Tates Creek, WR; Race Richards, Graves County, WR.; Jamie Reed, South Oldham.
Coaches: Jerry Herron, Williamsburg; Darell Keith, Todd County Central; Kyle Moore, Breathitt County.
STEVE CORNELIUS is the CJ Sports Editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @CJSportseditor.