All but one of our finalists up for the 2016 Dayton offensive and defensive players of the year were vital cogs on teams that made the playoffs. These nominees are winners or have brought winning ways back to their program. Sometimes you sacrifice stats for the betterment of your teams and other times your numbers are sorely needed to carry the squad over the hill. Either way there is a selflessness and drive to bring home the victory and that is what all our Dayton finalists have in common.
Here is a look at the 2016 TriState Football Dayton Player of the Year finalists
Dayton Offensive Player of the Year finalists
Dakota Allen (Lebanon) Allen rewrote the record books at Lebanon. The senior was named Division I Second Team All-Southwest District and the GWOC National West Offensive of the Year helping guide Lebanon to its first playoff appearance in 14 years. He finished his senior season with 2,115 yards passing, 22 scoring strikes, 550 yards and 11 touchdowns on the ground. Allen tops the Warriors all-time leader boards with 5,994 yards and 62 touchdowns passing. He also ran for 855 yards and 19 scores in a Lebanon uniform.
Danny Davis (Springfield) The do-it-all Davis was named Second Team All-Ohio for a second straight season. Davis amassed 2,257 all-purpose yards (1,195 rushing, 559 receiving, 503 return yards) and 14 total touchdowns on his way to being named GWOC National East Offensive Player of the Year as a senior. This the second straight season Davis has been a finalist for our Dayton Offensive Player of the Year. He was an Honorable Mention All-TSF (RB) member as a junior. Springfield has never seen such a diverse and productive skills player. Davis finishes his career with 3,336 yards on the ground, 97 receptions, 1,861 receiving yards, 1,608 total return yards, 6,795 all-purpose yards and he scored 57 touchdowns (32 rushing, 22 receiving).
Hayden Kotwica (Troy) The heart and soul of a Troy squad that went 11-2 (both losses to Miamisburg by four and six points) and made the playoffs for the first time since 2011, Kotwica was named Division II Second Team All-Ohio and the GWOC American North Co-Athlete of the Year in 16. He amassed 2,650 yards of total offense (1,852 passing, 798 rushing) and accounted for 28 touchdowns (15 passing, 13 rushing) as a senior. He leaves the Trojans program having thrown for 4,648 yards, ran for 1,327, and accounted for 57 touchdowns (35 passing, 22 rushing).
Raveion Hargrove (Trotwood-Madison) This is the second straight season for Hargrove as a finalist for the Dayton Offensive Player of the Year. Hargrove ran for 1,699 yards and 21 touchdowns for the Division III state runner-up Rams. The junior was named First Team All-Ohio for his efforts. He was named Second Team All-TSF after running for 3,039 yards and 41 total touchdowns as a sophomore. His 5,090 career rushing yards put him less than 1,000 yards from the top 25 all-time in Ohio. He also has 60 rushing touchdowns at the varsity level. Hargrove is racking up MAC offers that include Akron, Ball State, Bowling Green, Ohio and Toledo.
Nick Kovacs (Springboro) There isnt a tougher receiver in Ohio than Kovacs. His one-on-one battles versus two-time Cincinnati Defensive Player of the Year finalist and Ohio State-bound Amir Riep of Colerain in the playoffs this season was epic! Kovacs hauled in 89 balls for 1,159 yards and 13 touchdowns on his way to being named Second Team All-Ohio as a senior. As a junior, he had 78 receptions for 1,190 yards and 19 touchdowns on garnering First team All-Ohio and Honorable Mention All-TSF acclaim. His 203 career receptions mad him just the 16th player in Ohio to to top the 200 reception mark. His 37 touchdown receptions is tied for 14th most in Ohio history. Kovacs is already taking classes and will play football for Toledo in the fall.
Ryan Montgomery (Franklin) An incredibly strong finish paced the way for Franklin to end the regular season undefeated as Montgomery was named Division III Second Team All-Ohio and the Southwest District Offensive Player of the Year as a junior. Montgomery was one-man wrecking crew, amassing 2,456 yards of total offense (521 passing, 1,935 rushing), compiling 2,920 all-purpose yards (1,935 rushing, 518 receiving, 466 return yards) and accounting for 41 touchdowns (34 rushing, four passing, two receiving, one kickoff return) as the Wildcats ended 15 going 11-1 with wins over five playoff teams. He will head into his senior season with 4,206 yards of total offense (1,203 passing, 3,003 rushing), 4,290 all-purpose yards (3,003 rushing, 596 receiving, 649 return yards) and has accounted for 55 touchdowns (42 rushing, 10 passing, two receiving, one kickoff return) during his career. Montgomery has an offer from Toledo with more on the way.
Josh Myers (Miamisburg) One of the elite high school linemen lineman to ever play in Ohio. Myers was named Division II First Team All-Ohio for a second straight season and was also named the Southwest District Offensive Player of the Year (A very rare feat for a lineman) as a senior. He will become the first player ever to be named Postseason First Team All-TSF three straight years. As a sophomore Myers was named Division I Second Team All-Ohio. He is currently enrolled and taking classes at Ohio State where he will suit up for the Buckeyes in 17.
Fred Pitts (Wayne) Pitts ran for 1,265 with 19 touchdowns on his way to Third Team All-Ohio honors as a senior. Four times in the Warriors first nine games Pitts ran for 175 yards or more. Those games were against some pretty staunch competition – Moeller, Miamisburg, Northmont and Springfield. He finished his career with 2,261 yards and 35 total touchdowns (34 rushing).
Dayton Defensive Player of the Year finalists
Matt Wilcox (Wayne) A four year varsity starter, Wilcox played more snaps on defense than ever before as a senior. It paid big dividends for a Wayne squad that only allowed 10.9 points per contest. Wilcox amassed 3,695 all-purpose yards (2,530 receiving, 978 rushing) and found the end zone 47 times (25 receiving, 22 rushing) as a Warrior. His 188 receptions are tied for 22nd most in Ohio history. Wayne teams went 49-6 while Wilcox was in uniform. Wilcox who has verbally committed to Bowling Green earned many honors at Wayne – Third Team All-Ohio (DB) as a senior, Honorable Mention All-Southwest District as junior and sophomore, Second Team All-TSF (WR) as a junior, Second Team All-TSF (ATH) as a sophomore and Second All-GWOC Central as freshman.
Mikeyion Hunter (Trotwood-Madison) Hunter made a huge impact on the Trotwood-Madison defense after transferring from Thurgood Marshall for his senior season. He was in on 102 total tackles (58 solo), had 10 sacks, forced five fumbles and recovered three fumbles for the Rams. Hunter was a Second Team All-Southwest District selection for his work.
Jack Knipper (Beavercreek) A solid finish to the season during league play saw Knipper get the respect of his peers and opposing coaches earning him First Team All-Southwest District and GWOC National East Defensive Player of the Year honors. He finished his senior campaign with 70 total tackles, five-and-a-half sacks and had an interception.
Chris Meyers (Miamisburg) One of the most pleasant surprises of 16 Meyers earned his only varsity letter at Miamisburg in grand fashion. Myers was in on 79 total tackles, with seven-and-a-half sacks and three fumble recoveries as a senior. His diligence paid off with First Team All-Southwest District and GWOC National West Defensive Player of the Year honors.
David Rueth (Alter) Rueth was the leader of an incredibly fast and ferocious Knights defense highlighted by its linebacking corp. Alter finished 13-1 behind a defense that allowed just 8.1 points per game with only one foe scoring more than 15 points. Rueth was recognized for his work with Division IV First Team All-Ohio honors, a second straight First Team All-Southwest District selection and GCL North Defensive Player of the Year accolades. The senior finished the year with 105 total tackles including 50 total tackles (39 solo) in four playoff games, had a fumble recovery and two interceptions.
Alex Reigelsperger (Wayne) a real force with his outside rush Reigelsperger was a Second Team All-Southwest District selection as a junior. Reigelsperger was named First Team All-TSF a year ago. The only sophomore on the defensive unit. He will head into his senior season with 13.5 career sacks. His offers include Kentucky, Purdue, Rutgers and Western Michigan.
Kobe Vinegar (Trotwood-Madison) The relentless Vinegar was named DIII First Team All-Ohio and GWOC American South Defensive Player of the Year as a senior for the 12-3 state runner-up Rams. The Trotwood-Madison defense gave up only 10.7 points per contest including just 8.6 per game during the regular season. He ended 16 with 138 total tackles (79 solo), three-and-a-half sacks, forced four fumbles, recovered three fumbles and returned two of those for touchdowns.
Join us as we recognize Team of the year winners from Dayton, Cincinnati, Northern Kentucky & Indiana, Player of the year finalists from all of those areas, WCPO Player of the Week winners and all members of the 2016 Postseason All-TSF squad as they will be honored at our upcoming TSF Year in Review Show on Monday, February 20th at The Holy Grail – Banks in downtown Cincinnati.