Dec. 2—With the conclusion of the North Dakota high school football season weeks ago, postseason honors have been rolling out with a number of area teams and athletes recognized for their 2021 contributions.
It comes to no surprise that Bowman County, the 11B Region 4 champions, have received numerous accolades over the past few weeks. The Bulldogs finished the season 10-2 with an appearance in the 11B semifinals, losing to eventual state champions Kindred.
But their season didn't go unnoticed as six different Bulldogs were named to the All-State team released by the North Dakota High School Coaches Association.
It was an even split, three on the first team and three on the second, for Bowman County. Senior quarterback Quaid Lardy was one of three QBs in the state named to the first team, along with senior wide receiver Clay Heimer and junior defensive lineman Mace Stuber.
In the regular season, Lardy threw for 2,240 yards and 22 touchdowns, often looking towards his fellow All-State teammate Heimer, who reeled in 81 catches for 1,256 yards and 14 total touchdowns.
Last year, Heimer received All-State honors on defense as a defensive back, but this year it was his offensive production that sparked his selection.
In addition to the All-State selection, Heimer was the senior athlete of the year in the region and was up for the award across all four regions in the state, but it went to Harvey/Wells County wide receiver Madden Thorson out of Region 2.
Stuber helped anchor the Bowman County defense that held Region 4 opponents to 8 points per game across seven contests. His stat line consisted of 54 tackles, 9 tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and 8.5 sacks in the regular season.
On the second team, the Bulldogs were represented by senior linebacker Carson Massey, junior defensive lineman Grant Kees, and sophomore defensive back Bohden Duffield.
Massey led the teams in sacks with 11.5, while Kees had 7.5 of his own. Duffield had four interceptions and two defensive touchdowns, including an impressive strip-and-score against Beulah on Oct. 15.
And leading it all was head coach Nick Walker, who was named the coach of the year in 11B and in the region, guiding the Bulldogs to their second state semifinal appearance in school history.
On the 11A side, the Dickinson Midgets also reached the semifinals in their division, falling to Bismarck St. Mary's. Despite a 4-5 record, the Midgets earned the No. 5 seed in the 11A playoffs.
Dickinson had two players named first team All-State, both seniors, linebacker Luke Mavity and defensive back Troy Berg. Mavity led the Midgets in tackles with 78 and had one sack. Berg, who missed two games with an ankle injury, led the team in interceptions with four and recovered three fumbles.
Appearing on the second team is linebacker Sam Stillings and defensive back Ben Carlson. Stillings led the team in sacks with 3.5 while Carlson had 41 tackles and two interceptions.
For 9-man football, Hettinger-Scranton senior running back Connor Andress was a second team All-State selection after being the driving force behind the Night Hawks' Region 6 championship. He rushed for 1,099 yards and ten touchdowns.
A pair of Mott-Regent-New England teammates in senior tight end Zack Jalbert and senior quarterback/running back Nathan Kaufman also earned second team All-State honors. In the Wildfire's first round playoff game against Napoleon/G-S, Kaufman accounted for over 400 yards and seven touchdowns in a 66-42 win. He also spent time at quarterback over the course of the season and threw for 500 yards and seven touchdowns.
NDHSCA ALL-STATE HONOREES
11A First team Offense
Senior DB Troy Berg, Dickinson
Senior LB Luke Mavity, Dickinson
11A Second team
Junior linebacker Sam Stillings, Dickinson
Junior DB Ben Carlson, Dickinson
11B First team Offense
Senior QB Quaid Lardy, Bowman County
Senior WR Clay Heimer, Bowman County
11B First team Defense
Junior DL Mace Stuber, Bowman County
11B Second team
Senior LB Carson Massey, Bowman County
Junior DL Grant Kees, Bowman County
Sophomore DB Bohden Duffield, Bowman County
11B Coach of the Year
Nick Walker, Bowman County
9B Second Team
Senior RB Connor Andress, Hettinger-Scranton
Senior QB/RB Nathan Kaufman, Mott-Regent-New England
Senior TE Zach Jalbert, Mott-Regent-New England