In the latest Belleville News-Democrat sports poll, we asked readers to cast their vote for the Player of the Year for fall 2022.
And, when the final tally was counted, the winner emerged as ... Waterloo High School star Evan Davis, who secured 26% of the votes (1,890). The senior running back edged out Breese Central wide receiver Braden Revermann, who collected 25% of the votes (1,774).
Overall, Davis rushed for 1,760 yards and 16 touchdowns on 243 carries in helping the Bulldogs finish 7-4 and reach the second round of the IHSA Class 4A postseason appearance. Davis also caught 15 passes for 260 yards and 1 touchdown.
Here were the other Player of the Year candidates:
Kolby Anderson, Collinsville High School, senior, utility player. Anderson completed 10-of-17 passes for 177 yards while rushing for 398 yards and 10 TD on 65 carries in helping lead the Kahoks to a 9-2 season, the first playoff win in program history and a second round IHSA Class 7A playoff appearance. On defense, Anderson had 75 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 5 interceptions and 2 forced fumbles.
Robert Battle, East St. Louis High School, junior, quarterback. Battle completed 154-of-255 passes for 2,123 yards and 23 touchdowns in helping lead the Flyers to a 12-2 record and the IHSA Class 6A state championship. Battle also rushed for 733 yards and 11 TD on 109 carries.
Tyler Dacus, Edwardsville High School, senior, midfielder. Dacus helped lead the Tigers to a 17-6-2 mark and an IHSA Class 3A super-sectional appearance. Dacus also was a kicker for the football team and had a total of 65 kicks for 3,195 yards (49.15 average) in helping the Tigers to a 7-4 record and second round IHSA Class 8A playoff appearance. Dacus booted 55 extra points and 4 field goals.
Alyssa Frederking, O’Fallon High School, senior, setter/defensive specialist. Frederking posted 47 aces, 243 points, 48 kills, 26 blocks, 263 digs and 972 assists to in helping lead the Panthers to a 32-7 season and IHSA Class 4A super-sectional appearance.
Daion Gaston, Edwardsville High School, senior, wide receiver. Gaston caught 38 passes for 701 yards and 10 touchdowns in helping the Tigers to a 7-4 record and second round IHSA Class 8A playoff appearance.
Luke Gundlach, Althoff Catholic High School, senior, middle linebacker. Gundlach had 97 total tackles, 4 tackles for loss and 2 sacks for the Crusaders, helping them go 7-5 and reach the IHSA Class 2A quarterfinals. Additionally, Gundlach was an All-State linebacker selection for Class 2A and an academic All-State selection.
Jayden Howard, Belleville East High School, senior, linebacker. Howard notched 118 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, 3 sack, and 1 blocked kick in helping the Lancers to a 5-5 record and first round IHSA Class 8A postseason appearance.
Kylie Kisgen, Freeburg High School, senior, libero. Kisgen recorded 1,033 digs in her career as she reached that milestone during the IHSA Class 2A state tournament. She received All-Tournament honors at the Quincy Tournament and also was named to the state tournament All-Tournament team. Kisgen also earned All-Conference honors. She helped lead her team to the Final Four, which is the best finish for Freeburg Volleyball since 2009. Kisgen’s efforts also helped the Midgets to a 33-9 record.
TaRyan Martin, East St. Louis High School, sophomore, running back. Martin rushed for 1,557 yards and 24 touchdowns on 196 carries in helping lead the Flyers to a 12-2 record and the IHSA Class 6A state championship.
Colt Michael, O’Fallon High School, senior, quarterback. Michael completed 170-of-278 passes for 2,311 yard and 31 touchdowns in helping lead the Panthers to an 8-2 record and first round IHSA Class 8A playoff appearance.
Allen Middleton, Mascoutah High School, senior, wide receiver/defensive back. Middleton finished the season with 50 receptions for 855 yards and 7 touchdowns. He also rushed for 553 yards and 8 TD on 69 carries while completing 2-of-2 passes for 51 yards and 1 touchdowns. Additionally, the Southern Illinois University recruit had more than 500 return yards and 3 touchdowns and 62 tackles and 5 pass break-ups. Other accoldades include being named 1st team All-State for IHSA Class 5A; 1st team Mississippi Valley Conference as a wide receiver and 1st team MVC as a defensive back. Middleton helped the Indians reach the 5A quarterfinals and post an 8-4 record.
Darren Pennell, Collinsville High School, junior, wide receiver/cornerback. Pennell caught 35 passes for 454 yards and 2 TD in helping lead the Kahoks to an 9-2 season, the first playoff win in program history and a second round IHSA Class 7A playoff appearance. On defense, he posted 36 tackes, 1 tackle for loss, 1 forced fumble, and 5 interceptions, including 1 INT for a touchdown.
Bryce Reese, Waterloo High School, senior, running back/linebacker. Reese posted 50 tackles and 64 assists for 114 total tackles in helping the Bulldogs finish 7-4 and reach the second round of the IHSA Class 4A postseason. He also had 2 interceptions and 2 tackles for loss. On offense, Reese rushed for 485 yards and 5 touchdowns on 50 carries.
Revermann, Breese Central High School, senior, wide receiver/defensive back. Reverman grabbed 57 receptions for 1,028 yards and 8 touchdowns in helping lead the Cougars to an 8-3 record and a second round appearance in the IHSA Class 4A postseason. On defense, Revermann had a metro-east leading 10 interceptions, 11 passes defended and 31 tackles (20 solo, 11 assists). He was 1st team All-Conference for both offense and defense, was an IHSFCA 1st Team All-State selection and a Chicago News Gazette All-State special mention.
Jerry Richardson, Collinsville High School, senior, running back. Richardson rushed for 911 yards and 10 TD on 135 carries while notching 28 receptions for 385 yards and 3 TD in helping lead the Kahoks to an 9-2 season, the first playoff win in program history and a second round IHSA Class 7A playoff appearance.
Jalen Smith, O’Fallon High School, senior, wide receiver. Smith caught 61 passes for 939 yards and 17 touchdowns in helping lead the Panthers to an 8-2 record and first round IHSA Class 8A playoff appearance.
Dominic Voegele, Columbia High School, senior, quarterback/defensive back. Voegele rushed for 1,350 yards and 15 touchdowns on 156 carries while also completing 93-of-165 passes for 1,130 yards and 10 TD in leading the Eagles to a 6-4 record and first round IHSA Class 4A playoff appearance. Voegele also shined on special teams, returning a punt for a touchdown while booting 36 kicks for 1,724 yards (47.89 average). On defense, Voegele had 3 interceptions and 78 total tackles, including 9 tackles for loss. Voegele was a 1st team All-State selection for Class 4A.
Brent Wuebbels, Highland High School, senior, quarterback/free safety. Wuebbels completed 147-of-200 passes for 1,950 yards and 34 touchdowns in helping lead the Bulldogs to a 9-2 season and second round appearance in the IHSA Class 5A postseason. Wuebbels had a passer rating of 148.182 and also rushed for 753 yards and 7 touchdowns on 78 carries (9.7 yards per carry).
Kendrick Lyons, Granite City High School, sophomore, quarterback/defensive back. Lyons completed 81-of-153 passes for 1,324 yards and 9 touchdowns for the Warriors, who went 1-8.
The poll ended at 10 a.m. Friday.
To be clear, this poll is not scientific. In fact, we invite you to vote as many times as you want. It’s all for fun, BND readers.
The next player of the week poll will appear on the BND’s website — www.bnd.com — at 5 a.m. Wednesday, as we shift to varsity boys and girls basketball. Please email nominations to email@example.com.
Previous poll winners for fall 2022: Travis Porter of Highland High School; Cole Stuart of Freeburg High School; Avery Hesseldenz of Freeburg High School; Revermann; Porter; Drake Rensing of Mater Dei Catholic High School; Chase Lewis of Breese Central High School; Brogan Hartman of O’Fallon High School; Annalie McWhorter of O’Fallon High School; Davis; Althoff vs. Johnston City as the playoff game readers most looked forward to; East St. Louis will advance to the state championship; and East St. Louis will win the state championship.