Summers named top lineman
Douglas High’s football team reaped the benefits of an outstanding football season by winning plenty of postseason honors.
The Tigers won the three biggest awards — quarterback Luke Rippee was Player of the Year (see separate story above), defensive end-tight end Nick Summers was Lineman of the Year and Mike Rippee was named Coach of the Year for guiding the Tigers to an 11-1 record.
Ten players — Rippee, Summers, wide receiver Andy McIntosh, running back Dusty Cooper, kicker Eric Emm, punter Tim Coleman, defensive tackle Tyson Estes, linebacker Jake Peterson, offensive linemen David Silvestro and Paul Mannelly — won first-team all-Sierra League and 4A Region honors. Rippee was a first-team selection both ways.
Rippee passed for a school-record 1,698 yards and 17 touchdowns, and contributed 72 tackles and intercepted three passes.
Summers was a two-year, two-way starter for the Tigers, and Rippee said the award was well-deserved. Summers had 65 tackles, 4.5 sacks, an interception and four fumble recoveries.
“Nick did just a fantastic job for us,” Rippee said. “It’s great. It’s an indication of what kind of kids played on this football team.
“Usually defensive tackle or nose guards win this type of award. To see a defensive end and tight end win this, it tells you what kind of year Nick had. he had two great years for us.”
Andy McIntosh finished with 50 catches for 884 yards and eight scores, and Cooper carried 225 times for 1,633 yards and 22 scores. Cooper also caught 17 passes for 154 yards and three scores.
Estes was a brick wall at tackle. collecting 48 tackles, 5.5 sacks and recovering three fumbles. Peterson, a three-year varsity player, was second on the team in tackles with 74. he also had an interception, fumble recovery and a sack.
Garrett Hostetler was a first-team all-Sierra League selection at offensive guard and a second-team all-Region selection.
Rippee has been full of praise for his offensive linemen, who keyed the Tigers’ high-powered Douglas attack. The group did an excellent job protecting Rippee, and opened enough holes for Cooper to rush for 22 touchdowns and more than 1,600 yards.
Coleman averaged around 40 yards a kick, while Emm kicked four field goals and was almost automatic on extra points.
Nine other players — linebackers Kyle Luken and Anthony Ripoli, offensive linemen Nate Walsh and Johnson Riggs, defensive end Stormy Herald, defensive backs Eddie Shope and Tommy Welton, and defensive linemen Dan Senger and Jake Marsh — were either second-team or honorable mention all-Sierra League picks.
Luken finished with 46 tackles, 3.5 sacks and two fumble recoveries, one of which he returned for a touchdown in the first win over Hug. Ripoli led the team in tackles with 85, and he also recovered a fumble. Herald had 45 tackles, 2.5 sacks and a fumble recovery. Senger contributed 47 tackles, two sacks and a fumble recovery. Marsh, a defensive tackle, had 48 tackles and a fumble recovery. Welton had eight interceptions and two fumble recoveries, and Shope had 36 tackles and two interceptions.
It was the second Coach of the Year honor for Rippee, who took the Tigers to the regional finals for the first time in school history.
“It’s a program award,” coach Rippee said. “It’s not an individual award. Nobody can do it by themselves. It starts with great assistant coaches and great players. It’s a great program award.”