Mitchell junior Justin Greenway named to Class 11AA all-state football teamIn the Mitchell High School football team’s home opener Sept. 3 against Brookings, Justin Greenway and Matt Thomas got to know each other very well.
By: Travis Mester, The Daily Republic
In the Mitchell High School football team’s home opener Sept. 3 against Brookings, Justin Greenway and Matt Thomas got to know each other very well.
Mitchell defensive coordinator Arend Kuyper had Greenway, a junior defensive back for the Kernels, follow Thomas all over the field with hopes of slowing down the Bobcats’ most dangerous offensive weapon.
The idea worked that night as Greenway allowed Thomas, a talented threat out of the backfield and as a receiver, just 36 yards receiving on two catches. The plan continued to pay dividends for the rest of the season, as well.
And the rest of the state took notice.
After a season-long effort that solidified his position as one of the state’s shut-down corners, Greenway was honored as one of four defensive backs on the Class 11AA all-state team. The team, announced Monday, was voted on by the South Dakota Football Coaches Association.
“It’s pretty fun when you have a chance to shut someone down,” said Greenway, who said he was surprised to be selected to the all-state team based solely on his defensive efforts. “I definitely wasn’t thinking for defensive back. I thought maybe special teams, but either way it was exciting to hear.”
Greenway, a 5-foot-10, 175-pounder, had 47 tackles, two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble on the season, of which he missed one game due to a knee injury. But his coach says his importance went beyond the stat sheet.
“We were fairly confident that he would get the votes necessary after his performance,” Kernels coach Kent VanOverschelde said. “Knowing that Justin is going to be able to perform at that level like he did, it just makes it easier because it forces our opponent away from one of their strengths.
“It’s just been a great experience to have him available to really accept the challenge.”
Greenway was joined on the all-state team by five other Eastern South Dakota Conference performers. Pierre senior Terrelle Walker and Watertown senior Kirk Gilbertson were also honored as defensive backs, while fellow Pierre seniors Adam Deneke (running back) and Brian Long (guard) also were selected. Watertown senior Mitch Schwanke was honored as the long snapper on the all-state team.
Greenway was one of five juniors to be selected to this season’s all-state team. All other selections will be graduated when next fall rolls around.
“I’d say I look forward to football all the time,” Greenway said. “But it’s already exciting to think about next year because I think we’ll have a chance to do some good things.”
After its second-consecutive state championship and undefeated season, Sioux Falls Washington landed seven seniors on the all-state team.
Linebacker Brandon Mohrisa was a repeat selection and quarterback Matt Hermanson, a University of Montana recruit, also was named to the team.
O’Gorman, which ended Mitchell’s season in the first round of the playoffs, had five all-staters. Senior halfback Kelby Tague and junior fullback Sam Steffl led the way for the Knights.
Roosevelt, which beat Mitchell in the season opener at Howard Wood Stadium, also had five players selected to the team. Senior linebacker Chris Cook and junior defensive back Shea DeJong paced Roosevelt to a 10-2 season.
Class 11AA all-state team
QB - Matt Hermanson, sr., Sioux Falls Washington
FB - Sam Steffl, sr., Sioux Falls O’Gorman
RB - Kelby Tague, sr., Sioux Falls O’Gorman
RB - Adam Deneke, sr., Pierre
WR - Trey Naasz, jr., Sioux Falls Lincoln
WR - Blaine Dunne, sr., Sioux Falls Washington
TE - Scott Mulder, jr., Sioux Falls Lincoln
OT - Derek Farniok, sr., Sioux Falls Washington
OT - B.J. Wright, sr., Sioux Falls Roosevelt
OG - Brian Long, sr., Pierre
OG - Matt Betsworth, sr., Sioux Falls Roosevelt
C - Hayden Ziegler, sr., Sioux Falls O’Gorman
DE - Austin Ridl, jr., Sioux Falls O’Gorman
DE - Kenny Fideler, sr., Sioux Falls Washington
DT - Konnor Wildfeuer, sr., Sioux Falls Washington
DT - Austin Whaley, sr., Sioux Falls O’Gorman
LB - Bradon Mohr, sr., Sioux Falls Washington
LB - Clint Wilson, sr., Sturgis
LB - Chris Cook, sr., Sioux Falls Roosevelt
LB - Alex Schnell, sr., Rapid City Stevens
DB - Terrelle Walker, sr., Pierre
DB - Kirk Gilbertson, sr., Watertown
DB - Shea DeJong, jr., Sioux Falls Roosevelt
DB - Justin Greenway, jr., Mitchell
K - Jordan Taylor, sr., Sioux Falls Roosevelt
P - Tom Schleusener, sr., Rapid City Stevens
Player - Serkaut Aware, sr., Sioux Falls Washington
Long snapper - Mitch Schwanke, sr., Watertown
Honorable mention - Alex Schultz, Sioux Falls Lincoln; Devon O1Farrell, Sioux Falls Washington; Seth Johnson, Rapid City Stevens; Marquese Brooks, Sioux Falls Roosevelt; Keyen Lage, Sioux Falls Washington; Blake Lohr, Watertown; Kyle Benne, Rapid City Stevens; Kyle Thomas, Watertown; Drew Iddings, Rapid City Stevens; Zach Lewallen, Sioux Falls Roosevelt; Jeff Maassen, Brandon Valley; Steven Payne, Sioux Falls O1Gorman; Alex Millard, Sioux Falls O1Gorman; Cole Halgerson, Sioux Falls Washington; Matt Thomas, Brookings; Kris Klapprodt, Rapid City Stevens.