Local schools well represented in region football team

COVINGTON -- Alcovy, Newton and Rockdale had 21 players on the 2-AAAAAA All-Region team while powerhouse Lovejoy had the most players with 19 players total.

Lovejoy had a good season going 13-2 losing 21-14 to Norcross in the Class AAAAAA championship game. Rockdale, Alcovy and Newton, all of who were under .500 for the season, made it to the first round on the playoffs before being eliminated. Newton had the best record of the three going 5-6, followed Alcovy at 4-7 with Rockdale finishing the season 3-8.

Newton had four first team players and three on the second team while Rockdale had three on the first and second team with half the players on the second team, seven, coming from Alcovy while one player on the first team.


Making the first team-offense from Newton were James Hardeman (running back) and Nuka Yobo on the offensive line. Alcovy's running back/quarterback was the other player in the backfield with Hardeman. For the season, Hardeman rushed for 1,135 yards with White running for 630 while getting another 262 receiving.

Rockdale led the trio with three first teamers on defense with two from Newton. Making first-defensive teams from Rockdale were Kentavious Preston (linebacker), Shakymn Peters (defensive back) and Devante Walters as an athlete. Representing Newton are Kingsley Ejike (defensive line) and Nick White (defensive back).

At linebacker, Preston had 80 tackles including 16 sacks while forcing seven fumbles and recovering four. Peters had seven interceptions with 102 yards in returns while scoring one defensive touchdown. Walters, at defensive line, had 25 sacks while forcing six fumbles and recovering three while getting 85 tackles.

For Newton, Ejike had 87 tackles with 15 sacks, two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble while White had four interceptions and 11 pass knockdowns with one fumble recovery and forced fumble while stopping the ball carrier 65 times.

Second-team players from Alcovy are David Rush (OL), Curtiss Benton (OL), Antwon Glover (ATH), Ryan Adams (DL), Okon Godwin (LB), Marcus Williams (DB) and Rysan Richardson (K). From Newton are Vinnie Jengelly (OL), Treyvon Richardson (DL) and Joe Rockett (LB). Rockdale players are Tarjee Steel (WR), Kwesi Mintah (WR) and Anthony Davis (DB).

Honorable mention players are, from Alcovy, Joaquin Ross (LB), Leroy Robinson (LB), Tristen Payne (ATH) and Jaylin Penny (WR), Newton; Devonte Carter (DB), AJ Palomino (LB), Anthony Durham (LB) and Kemani Pittman (QB), Rockdale: Robert McCray (DL), Julian McKnight (DL), Kyle Beyah (LB) and Zuri Minnifield (QB).

Lovejoy took all the top spots with Al Hughes being named Coach of the Year, Travis Custis as Offensive Player of the Year, Nathaniel Norwood was Defensive Player of the Year and Brandon Davis at Special Teams Player of the Year.

Other players on the first offense team are Alejandro Bennifield (QB, Lovejoy), Trae Bonner (RB, Luella), Randy Robinson (OL, Lovejoy), Mike Jones (OL, Lovejoy), Justin Brown (OL, Lovejoy), Montel Robinson-Beasley (OL, Lovejoy), JuMichael Ramos (WR, Lovejoy), Arshad Jackson (WR, Lovejoy), Sterling Taylor (WR, Morrow), Jaquon Johnson (Ath, Druid Hills) and Ben Whealler (P, Druid Hills).

First team defense are Mike Davis (DL, Lovejoy), Tevin Jones (DL, Luella), Kristopher Christian (DL, Lovejoy), Zane Fields (LB, Lovejoy), Demarquis Gates (LB, Lovejoy), Veion Robinson (LB, Lovejoy), Tyrell Brown (DB, Lovejoy), Cinwon Whitehead (DB, Lovejoy) and Jamie Nunez (K, Lovejoy).