Space Coast Daily–Friday Night Locker Room Prep All-Star Football Team Announced
By Steve Wilson, The Friday Night Locker Room // February 10, 2020
THE SPACE COAST DAILY – FRIDAY NIGHT LOCKER ROOM TEAM IS BREVARD'S #1 SPORTS SOURCE
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – What a year it was for high school football on the Space Coast during the 2019 football season! The Cocoa Tigers, once again, reached the state final four.
For the second consecutive year, the Rockledge Raiders went undefeated in the county.
The Eau Gallie Commodores, under coach Chris Sands, finished the regular season with a 9-1 record. Nate Hooks’ Holy Trinity Tigers went as deep as they ever have in the playoffs. All sorts of individual and team records were set.
The 2019 Friday Night Locker Room/Space Coast Daily All-Star team is full of players that set records and made a positive impact on their team.
Below are the best of the best, as selected by the Friday Night Locker Room – Space Coast Daily team of veteran sports journalists and editors.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR – Ladarius Tennison, Rockledge High School
Tennison was the best; of that, there is no doubt. According to long-time defensive coach Pat Lusk, Tennison was, arguably, the best player to ever play at Rockledge High School.
Coach Lusk said the “he could play every position on the field and be better than anyone else.” Lusk went on to say, that included “QB, defensive line, offensive line, everything!” Head Coach Wayne Younger, who played the game, and now coaches the game, said that Tennison “practices harder than anybody I‘ve been around.”
OFFENSIVE MVP – Caziah Holmes, Cocoa High School
Holmes had an amazing career at Cocoa High. As a freshman, a lot of people looked at Holmes as a track star that played football.
By the time he left Cocoa, he was a football star that ran track.
His work ethic and dedication set Caziah apart from most others. He is focused and knows what he wants. Holmes finished the season with 1,716 all-purpose yards and 20 TDs.
More importantly, Caziah Holmes is an all-star off the field just as much as he is on the field. Penn State University is getting a quality young man and a terrific football player.
DEFENSIVE MVP – Dink Jackson, Eau Gallie High School
Jackson can be an all-star at multiple positions. He is a very gifted athlete that as a junior, now has over 40 offers.
Coach Sands beams when he talks about Jackson, saying that, “he has the ability to change direction with power better than anyone I’ve seen at the high school level.” He finished the season with 80 tackles, 26 of those for a loss! Jackson also had eight sacks, one interception and eight TDs.
ATHLETE OF THE YEAR – Kevin Chandler, Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy
Chandler of Holy Trinity did it ALL on the football field for Coach Nate Hooks’ Tigers.
He was one of those players that you could not take off the field. Number 23 had to be accounted for by the opposition on every single play.
Chandler completed the season with remarkable numbers.
He had 905 yards rushing, 904 yards receiving, 217 return yards, 24 TDs, 49 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss, three sacks, and three interceptions.
COACH OF THE YEAR – Nate Hooks, Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy
Hooks does “more, with less,” than any coach on the Space Coast.
A squad that numbers in the low 20s present a challenge each year.
This past year, for the second consecutive year, the Tigers reached the second round of the playoffs.
That’s the farthest a Holy Trinity football team has advanced. Coach Hooks said that next year, the Tigers will be shooting for round three.
Don’t bet against Coach Hooks and the Tigers!
ASSISTANT COACH OF THE YEAR – Billy Miller, Eau Gallie High School
You can find Coach Miller on the defensive side of the ball for the Commodores. According to Head Coach Chris Sands, Coach Miller is a huge reason for the recent success of the Commodores. Coach Sands went on to say that, “Billy has an ability to teach and communicate with our players, and they love flying around in our defense.”
COURAGE AWARD – TeeJay Griffin, Rockledge High School
Griffin was primed to have a big-time year for the Raiders in 2019.
He decided not to play basketball in his junior year so he could “live” in the weight room. TeeJay wanted his senior year playing football to be special.
Four games into his senior season he already had 20 tackles, three interceptions and one TD. Then fate struck. TeeJay was involved in an accident that shut down his senior season. It was a very serious accident; football became secondary.
TeeJay attacked his rehabilitation the same way he attacked offenses. He was relentless. Towards the end of the season, TeeJay was able to attend games, and also participate in the pregame coin toss. Coach Wayne Younger said it best when he said, TeeJay is a “true leader….OUR Leader.”
FNLR-SCD 2019 OFFENSIVE ALL-STARS
QB – Diego Arroyo, Cocoa High School
“DJ” Arroyo, once again, led his team deep into the playoffs with over 2,000 yards passing. With a powerful ground game and DJ at the helm, don’t be surprised if the Tigers are “title-chasing” again next year.
RB – Tony Wright, Melbourne High School
The junior from MelHi finished the season with 1,648 all-purpose yards and 19 TDs.
RB – DeAndrea “Dre” Blake – Melbourne Central Catholic
Blake finished the season as the No. 1 RB in Class 3A, District 2, the No. 6 RB in all of Class 3A, and the #17 rusher of all underclassmen in the state of Florida. He finished the season with 1,630 all-purpose yards.
RB – La’Anthony Valentine, Palm Bay High School
Playing out of position for most of the year, Valentine led the Pirates in rushing TD’s and accounted for 167 yards per game. He is a special talent that will excel at the next level.
RB – Jaiden Dollard, Astronaut High School
The multi-sport athlete at Astronaut really stood out this year for the War Eagles. Offensively, he finished the season with 1,698 all-purpose yards and 15 TDs. Dollard also recorded 85 tackles.
OL – Jordan Love, Rockledge High School
Raider head coach Wayne Younger said that Love is an “extremely hardworking and dedicated physical athlete that dominates the line of scrimmage.”
OL – Andrew Hart, Viera High School
Hart helped lead the Hawks to another successful season. Behind Hart’s outstanding line play, the Hawks, once again, were a playoff team in 2019.
OL – Hunter Plotkin, Merritt Island High School
Plotkin was a key reason that Coach Hurlie Brown’s offense was able to move the ball this year.
OL – Richie Leonard, Cocoa High School
The senior lineman from Cocoa was one of the main reasons the Tigers running attack had continued success in 2019. The Tigers finished the season with over 2,100 yards rushing, thanks in large part to Leonard’s relentless play on the line.
OL – D’Adrian Freeman, Rockledge High School
Coach Wayne Younger loves to talk about Freeman. He said that Freeman is a “great player; tough and physical.” Freeman played on both sides of the ball at a high level.
TE – Gunnar Greenwald, Satellite High School
Greenwald had 379 yards in receiving and three TDs. His powerful blocking on the line helped the Scorps ground attack during the 2019 season.
TE – Lincoln Hays, Melbourne High School
Hays played both OL and TE for Coach Tony Rowell’s Bulldogs.
WR – Chase Smith, Bayside High School
Smith is both an outstanding football and basketball player for Bayside. Coach Corey Bloomfield said that Smith has done “everything we’ve asked him to do.” The Bears expect big things from Smith in 2020.
WR – Jayden Campbell, Eau Gallie High School.
Campbell caught 58 passes for 751 yards and nine TDs for the Commodores. According to Coach Chris Sands, Campbell was the “spark plug of our offense.” He went on to say that, “any time we needed a play made, Jayden seemed to make one.”
WR – Jamari Nelson, Eau Gallie High School.
Nelson caught 55 passes for 500 yards and three TDs. Coach Chris Sand said that Nelson is, “smart, technical, and is one of the hardest working athletes that I’ve been around.”
P/K – Brady Denaburg, Merritt Island High School
In 2019, Denaburg punted 15 times for a 39.8-yard average. He was also 10 – 13 on FG’s with a longest of 50 yards.
P/K – Jake Nobles, Rockledge High School
Nobles was 34-36 on PATs, and 5-6 on FG’s with a longest of 47 yards. Coach Wayne Younger said Nobles was, clutch in pressure situations” and was also successful on a two-point PAT.
Special Teams – Jacob Leonard, Merritt Island
Leonard was the long snapper for the Mustangs. If you know the long snappers name, then he probably “messed up!” Not too many people know Jacob Leonard. He is that good!
Newcomer – Phineas Allen, Rockledge High School
As a freshman, Allen started every game this year for the Raiders and made an immediate impact. According to Coach Wayne Younger, he is a “tremendous talent and the sky is the limit.”
FNLR-SCD 2019 DEFENSIVE ALL-STARS
DL – Dajavon White, Cocoa High School
White was a monster on the defensive line for the Tigers. He is exceptionally quick off of the ball and very difficult to block.
DL – A.J. Hall, Rockledge High School
Hall is one of the most talented defensive linemen at Rockledge. Coach Younger described Hall in saying, “he is one of the most explosive defensive tackles I’ve been around.”
DL – Cooper Davis, Viera High School
The multi-sport athlete at Viera had a huge year for Coach Derek Smith.
DL – Marquise Freeman, Cocoa High School
Freeman is not only an exceptional football player but a very talented basketball player. He is one of the best all-around athletes on the Space Coast.
DL – Louis Arnold III, Astronaut High School
Arnold is one of those rare players on the D-Line that has the ability to shut down an entire side of the ball. Coach Justin Worden said that Arnold is, “as loyal as they come.” Worden went on to say that Arnold is a “great representation of buying in, working hard, and trusting what you are told.”
LB – Isaiah Gamble, Heritage High School
Gamble set the school record for tackles in a career. Gamble will be attending Brown University in the fall to continue his education and play football.
LB – Joshua “JD” Arnold, Satellite High School
Arnold recorded 115 tackles, with 15 of those for a loss. Arnold also had four interceptions, one blocked FG and one fumble recovery.
LB – Hunter Pratt, Space Coast Jr/Sr High School
Pratt was a mainstay on the defensive side of the ball for the Vipers in 2019.
LB – Nick Etienne, Heritage High School
In 2019, Etienne led the Panthers in tackles with 105; 13 of those were for a loss. He will continue his career at FIU.
LB – Mike Henderson, Astronaut High School
Henderson had an astounding 157 tackles for the War Eagles in 2019. Coach Justin Worden described Henderson as a “tackling machine.” Henderson made all of the defensive calls on the field, and still had the ability to focus and get to the ball.
LB – Antonio “AJ” Williams, Cocoa High School
Williams had an amazing 149 tackles this year for the Tigers. He was one of the reasons that Cocoa reached the final four. Coach Ryan Schneider described Williams as a “great player and even a better person.”
DB – Rashard Farmer, Heritage High School
Farmer, who led the county in interceptions in 2018, finished with four in 2019. He was selected to play in the FACA all-star game.
DB – Jordan Blackmon, Eau Gallie High School
Blackmon is one of those tough DB’s that you like to coach. Coach Chris Sands said that Jordan is a “rare combination of physicality, speed, and effort.”
DB – Jared Spragins, Melbourne High School
Spragins recorded four interceptions for the Bulldogs. On the offensive side of the ball, he also had 21 receptions for 293 yards and four TDs.
DB – Trey Palmer, Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy
Palmer finished the season with 123 tackles. Trey will continue his education and play football at Florida Tech.
DB – Cedric Hawkins, Cocoa High School
Hawkins has been a starter for the Tigers since he was in the 8th grade. He also recorded five interceptions.
CLICK HERE FOR BREVARD COUNTY NEWS