A banner year of high school football in La Plata County officially came to a close Thursday with the all-state announcement from the Colorado High School Activities Association.
Coaches from around the state honored a pair of Durango Demons in Class 3A and four Bayfield Wolverines in Class 2A.
Bayfield finished the season 8-2 and reached the quarterfinals of the state playoffs after it won a fourth consecutive Intermountain League championship. Durango finished 6-5 and fell in the opening round of the state playoffs and third in the South Central League after it had a chance to win the league title in a tiebreaker in the final week of the regular season against eventual state runner-up Pueblo East.
Here’s a look at the players who earned all-state awards:
Bayfield High SchoolThe Wolverines were led by senior David Hawkins, a Division I prospect who starred at running back, middle linebacker, punter and as a punt blocker. He also had one of the biggest touchdown receptions of the season in the league championship game at Salida. His performance landed him on the Class 2A All-State First Team.
Hawkins rushed for 1,109 yards and nine touchdowns on 191 carries. He added 140 receiving yards. Defensively, the 6-foot-3, 225-pound linebacker had a team-high 102 tackles and three sacks. He added two blocked punts, one interception and two fumble recoveries, including one for a touchdown.
“Coming into this year, we had to compete knowing we were missing a few key elements from our state championship team a year before,” Hawkins said. “We were seeing what we could put together, and we put together a hell of a year. To get some recognition, it feels great.”
Hawkins was a second-team all-state selection a year earlier. He said he will make his college decision in February.
“David has dedication and a will to be great,” BHS head coach Gary Heide said. “I started from Day 1 his freshman year at the CSU-Pueblo camp, and it stayed that way the entire four years. He dedicates himself to be the best athlete he can be.”
Bayfield had three players named to the second team in Isaac Lorenzen, Keyon Prior and Daniel Westbrook.
Lorenzen and Westbrook were stalwarts of a defensive line that once again intimidated opponents. Lorenzen finished with a team-high 13 sacks and tied with Westbrook for second on the team with 68 tackles. Westbrook had eight sacks, one blocked punt, one blocked field goal and a forced fumble and also was a force on the offensive line. Lorenzen also forced a fumble.
“Lorenzen was a huge leader in the locker room with his actions, demeanor and by the way he practiced 100 percent all the time,” Heide said. “Daniel was a great leader with how he played on the field. He amazes me with the success he has in all his sports. We always had a good O-line and D-line under coach Frank Hawkins, and the ones that stand out are the ones the opposing coaches notice. Those two took the bull by the horns when Ryan Phelps graduated, and they were a force to be reckoned with.”
Prior came up with a pair of unforgettable plays for the Wolverines with “The Pagosa Pitch” and the touchdown pass to Hawkins in Salida to help win a league title. The all-around player saw time at running back, wide receiver, kick returner and corner back. He had four interceptions and also blocked one punt and a field goal to go with 50 tackles. Offensively, he had 1,045 total yards with 533 on the ground and 482 receiving to go with 30 passing yards. He had nine offensive touchdowns.
“It’s amazing coming from last year getting honorable mention in the conference and then coming in finishing the senior year and being regarded as one of the top players in the state,” Prior said.
Prior’s leadership outweighed his impressive on-field stats, Heide said.
“He’s one of the best athletes in the state, and he’s a guy that we depended on through all the years he’s played. He’s a playmaker,” Heide said. “He’s intelligent, humble, never complained about not getting the ball or who was. He’s a team-first guy. His humbleness and character, everybody is measure to Keyon Prior.”
All four BHS boys also were All-Intermountain League selections along with linemen Spencer Funke and Rhett Hoover, junior slash player Dylan Hilliker and quarterback Hayden Farmer.
All-IML honorable mention selections included Alec Demko, Crosby Edwards, John Foutz, Cameron Liddell, Max McGhehey, Reed Merchant and Ethan Morris. Heide was named the league’s coach of the year.
Durango High SchoolDawson Marcum was the heartbeat of the Durango Demons in 2018, and he was awarded with a Class 3A All-State Second Team award.
“It’s pretty cool,” said Marcum, who is never focused on individual accolades. “I’m not much about it, don’t really like the individual stuff. It’s for the team.”
Marcum rushed for 1,131 yards and 11 touchdowns. He also passed three times and completed all three for 68 yards and a touchdown. Receiving, he added 19 receptions for 261 yards and two scores. He also had 94 tackles to finish second on the team behind Gus Kidd’s 103. He had two interceptions, forced three fumbles and recovered one.
“Him being such a dynamic player and a leader on our team, we’re always looking for guys like that who dedicate themselves 100 percent into the program,” DHS head coach David Vogt said.
Marcum played through a fracture in one of his hands the final four games and also had a knee injury late in the year.
“It didn’t take too much to keep playing because I did it for the team,” Marcum said. “You gotta have grit to get better every week and you gotta live for it. I did the best I could for them.”
One of Marcum’s top blockers, Carver Willis, was named to the honorable mention list. Defensively, Willis also had one interception and 12 tackles, including two for a loss. He had one reception on a pass tipped at the line of scrimmage.
“That’s how much he impressed other coaches,” Vogt said of his junior lineman’s all-state nod. “He was so much a part of what we did offensively. We tried to run to his side as much as possible. It’s a blessing we have him another year.”