Editor’s note: This article first ran in the most recent print edition of the Marion County Tribune. Pella has since completed its playoff run.
The Marion County Tribune is proud of all our local young athletes, artists, scholars, actors, musicians, etc. However, there is always going to be a cream of the crop – those who demonstrate leadership and strength in their own teams, districts and even the state.
Below are our picks for the Tribune’s first-annual All Marion County football team, based upon their performances and character this regular season. The skill players who would start have an asterisk.
Quarterback: Dan Jungling*, senior, Pella Christian. Jungling passed for 1,153 yards and 10 touchdowns this season. On the ground, he had another 910 yards and averaged 7.9 per carry and had another 15 touchdowns. He led his team from an 0-4 start in non-district play to undefeated in the district, a title and a playoff berth. Defensively, he had three interception, a fumble recovery and 25 tackles.
Quarterback: Ryan Mace, junior, Pella. Mace threw for 1,591 yards and 19 touchdowns. He rushed for another 197 yards and four more touchdowns. Mace has shown great improvement and leadership the past two years for the Dutch and will be a key player in several areas in the postseason.
Quarterback: Steve Krpan, junior, Melcher-Dallas. Krpan was a significant part of the Saint offense, with 809 yards, 243 rushing yards and 19 touchdowns.
Running Back: Cale Anthony*, senior, Pleasantville. Regular readers of the Pleasantville Weekly and www.marioncountytribune.com have seen all season what Anthony can do. At the end of the regular season, Anthony took home the Class 1A District 7 rushing title with 1,793 yards. This was good enough to place him at number seven among all rushers in the state, regardless of class. He averaged 7.5 yards per carry and had 25 touchdowns for the Trojans. That’s not to mention what he did defensively or as a punter. For the record, he led the Trojans in tackles with 63. As a punter he averaged 37.8 yards per kick.
Running Back: Carter Bailey*, senior, Knoxville. Bailey had one big game that really helped push him over the top, but he was solid for the Panthers in nearly every facet of the game in 2019. As a ball carrier, he rushed for 925 yards, averaging 7.8 yards per carry and 11 touchdowns on a Panther team known more for defense than offense.
Running Back: Aaron Downs, junior, Pella. Downs did not have a full season, due to injury, but when he did play, he made a huge difference for the Dutch. Even in his reduced playing time, he added 614 yards of rushing offense, 213 yards receiving and 13 touchdowns.
Receiver: Logan Shetterly*, senior, Pella. Shetterly is another all-around great athlete. As a receiver this year, he had 781 yards and 12 touchdowns. He averaged 19 yards per catch and is a key to the Dutch’s defense and offense as they seek another state championship. He had three interceptions for the Pella defense, as well as 21.5 tackles.
Receiver: Ryan Krpan*, senior, Melcher-Dallas. On a Saint squad that struggled this season, Krpan was a highlight. He averaged 17.2 yards per catch, with 635 total and seven touchdowns. Much like the other athletes already mentioned, this is only part of the contributions he made to the Melcher-Dallas season in 2019. He had five interceptions on defense, including two pick-sixes. R. Krpan had 30 tackles overall.
Receiver: Kade Dunkin, junior, Twin Cedars. Any team would be grateful to have Kade Dunkin on their team. A great all-around athlete, Dunkin led the Sabers in many categories. As a receiver, he had 536 yards and five touchdowns. His 90.5 tackles on defense enhance his stature.
Line: Ben Olson*, senior, Knoxville. Olson was everywhere for the Panthers in their 6-3 season and finished 13th in Class 3A in total tackles with 75.5. He was Knoxville’s sack leader with five and had over 14 tackles for a loss. A solid dependable lineman, Olson added leadership to the Panthers on the field for nearly every down played.
Line: Luke Mulder*, junior, Pella Christian. Mulder gave the Eagles 53.5 total tackles – 14 of which for a loss, including 4.5 sacks and two fumble recoveries. As with many of the other athletes on this list, Mulder’s contributions to the offense were also significant, but defense is where he contributed the most.
Line: Trenton Reed*, junior, Twin Cedars. The Sabers were short on manpower, admittedly, but his 55 tackles are very impressive – including the 11 for a loss and his 5.5 sacks.
Linebacker: Levi Roose*, junior, Pella. Roose had 36 tackles, including three sacks for the Dutch this season. He will continue to make a difference in the postseason.
Linebacker: Kodi Huisman*, junior, Pella. Huisman had 35 tackles, including 12 for a loss and two sacks. Much like Roose, expect good things from Huisman.
Linebacker: Isaac Mann, junior, Pleasantville. Mann had 49.5 tackles on the season, including nine solo tackles for a loss and a sack. His offensive contributions were also significant.
Defensive Back: Keegan Cox*, junior, Knoxville. Cox’s eight interceptions on the season set a record for the Panthers. He tied for fifth in the state, among all classes, with this mark as well.
Defensive Back: Brady Wiseman*, senior, Pleasantville. Wiseman tied for third in the state in fumble recoveries with six. He had over 27 tackles for the Trojans this season and four sacks. The sack total led the Trojans.
Defensive Back: Dallas Clark*, sophomore, Twin Cedars. Things are likely only going to get better for the blue and white, with Clark having a season with the team under his belt. Clark was the Sabers’ starting quarterback with strong numbers, but defensively, he finished second in the state with seven fumble recoveries. He added 46.5 tackles for Twin Cedars and five sacks.
Defensive Back: Wyatt Darnell*, senior, Knoxville. Darnell had 40 tackles for the Panthers, including eight for a loss and three sacks. His production in other facets of the game make him very valuable.
Defensive Back: David Willis*, senior, Pella Christian. Willis had 46.5 tackles on the season, including seven for a loss and 1.5 sacks. Just an outstanding player to have on the field.
Reserve: Blaise Hubler, senior, Knoxville. Hubler’s five sacks and 23.5 tackles were clutch in many Panther outings.
Reserve: Levi Messamaker, junior, Twin Cedars. With his 55.5 tackles on the season, he clearly knows where to find the ball.
Reserve: Cole Metz, sophomore, Melcher-Dallas. Metz led the Saint defense with 49 total tackles.
Kicker: Wyatt Darnell, senior, Knoxville. We tried to stay away from naming players twice, but Darnell was the best kicker in the county this season. He went 26/28 in point after attempts, which gave him a rating of 92.9 percent and went 4/4 in field goal kicking.
Punter: Ryan Mace, junior, Pella. Another two-time selection, Mace’s 31 punts went for 1,157 yards and averaged 37.3 yards per kick. Mace was the best in Marion County and burying offenses when the situation called for it.
Kick Returner: Kolbie Jarvis, senior, Pleasantville. Jarvis never returned a kick to the house, but what he did do was gain 364 yards through the course of the season. With 15 returns, he averaged 24.3 yards per catch.
Punt Returner: Luke Mulder, junior, Pella Christian. Mulder, another two-time selection, averaged 29 yards per return. No one did better than that in Marion County.
Knoxville: Bode Cox and Cael Hollinrake
Melcher-Dallas: Lance Clark
Pella: Blake Recker and Braydon Peterson
Pella Christian: Deven Haveman
Pleasantville: Braidy Friday
Twin Cedars: Lane Jones
There are several players who deserve honorable mentions. The Tribune supports all athletes, but here are those who would stand out on our depth chart.
Knoxville: Kieren Nichols, Mike Hudson, Kyle Ramsey, Ben Brewster
Melcher-Dallas: Noe Von Trzebiatowski, Gabe Enfield, Logan Godfrey
Pella: Silas Vanderhoff, Nolan Clayberg, Josh Warner, Nick Grandia
Pella Christian: Jase Amelse, Bennett Sponk, Cody Boender
Pleasantville: Caylor Clark, Tagen Douma, Colby Sandholdt
Twin Cedars: Brayden DenBurger, Hunter McCombs, Austin Test