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The Clay County Advocate - Press-Flora, IL
  • Tigers receive All-Little Illini honors

  • Thirteen Olney football players garnered 2012 All-Little Illini Conference accolades after helping lead the Tigers to the inaugural LIC Egyptian Division title.
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  • Thirteen Olney football players garnered 2012 All-Little Illini Conference accolades after helping lead the Tigers to the inaugural LIC Egyptian Division title.
    Senior quarterback Justin Bailey, senior running backs Dirk Washburn and Jordan Hahn, junior wide receivers Carson Waggoner and Nolan Shan, senior offensive lineman/defensive end Anthony Helm, senior defensive end Dalton Keller, senior linebacker Mitchell Harmon, senior cornerback Ryan Bailey and junior kicker Chance Madden were named to the Egyptian Division first team, Waggoner (defensive back), junior offensive lineman Anthony Ochs and junior linebacker Ian Miller earned second-team honors and junior wide receiver Ryan Eagleson was an honorable-mention selection.
    "All of these kids would tell you it was a team effort and we had a lot of other guys who could've been recognized," Olney head coach Matt Music said. "It took every person in this program to get us to 9-2. This group set the bar for future Tiger players and had a big influence on our younger kids."
    The Tigers went 5-0 in the Egyptian with victories over Marshall (49-14), Flora (44-12), Robinson (21-20), Lawrenceville (35-33) and Newton (21-13).
    Olney defeated Robinson in overtime, overcame a 27-point deficit to stun Lawrenceville and fended off Newton in the rain on Homecoming.
    "It's always good when you go into something new and have success," Music said. "We knew it wasn't gonna be easy in the LIC. Just like the Apollo, you have to come ready to play every Friday or Saturday in the Little Illini.
    "The thing I like about the LIC is that all the towns are small, tight-knit groups who care about their sports programs. The fans travel well and there are a lot of rivalry games. Everyone really respects each other's programs."
    Olney tied a school record in victories with nine and knocked off Breese Mater Dei 29-23 in the first round of the IHSA Class 4A playoffs, just the fourth postseason triumph in program history.
    "These kids believed they could win and it showed our program is headed in the right direction," Music said. "It was a special season."
    (Justin Bailey)
    Bailey, a three-year varsity starter, threw for a school record 5,398 yards and 51 touchdowns while completing 51 percent (343-of-673) of his passes.
    "Justin is one of the best QBs in this area and the state," Music said of the 6-foot, 160-pound southpaw. "He's earned all the numbers and records and had a lot of great players beside him."
    Bailey passed for 1,728 yards as a sophomore, 1,546 as a junior and 2,124 this season while also scoring five rushing TDs.
    "Justin is a leader," Music said. "He bought into a new system and did everything I asked of him. He improved so much with game management from this year to last year. He's a tremendous kid who's fun to be around. I'm really gonna miss him."
    Page 2 of 6 - (Dirk Washburn)
    Washburn (5-9, 170) rushed for 521 yards on 100 attempts (three TDs), grabbed 21 receptions for 390 yards (three TDs) and also returned a kickoff 80 yards for a touchdown against Newton.
    "Dirk just did it all for us," Music said. "He totaled over 900 yards of offense and made 40 tackles on defense. A lot of running backs in the LIC had more yards but the other coaches saw what he did for this team."
    Washburn gained 1,626 yards on 352 carries (4.6 ypc) and snagged 48 catches for 604 yards as a four-year varsity contributor while finishing with 12 TDs. He amassed three 100-yard rushing games.
    "Dirk battled through some injuries and showed his toughness the last two years," Music said. "He was a team player who worked his tail off."
    (Jordan Hahn)
    Hahn (6-1, 169) toted the pigskin 117 times for a team-high 692 yards (5.9 ypc) and reached the end zone nine times. He ran for a career-high 133 yards in the victory over Robinson, scoring twice (52 and 10 yards).
    "Jordan and Dirk ran with power and speed," Music said. "Jordan made huge strides during the offseason. He was one of coach (Ryan) Denton's best track-and-field guys and it showed on the football field. After he ran over a guy, he wanted to be able to run away from him.
    "Jordan is a warrior. Every game, he had blood running down his nose."
    Music praised Hahn for taking care of business in the classroom as well.
    "Jordan is ranked number two in his class and to me, that's the most important thing," Music said.
    (Carson Waggoner)
    After missing four games with a broken left wrist, Waggoner turned in an electrifying performance against Mater Dei, hauling in six passes for 162 yards and two TDs (27 and 26 yards).
    "He's a stud," Music said of the 5-7, 140-pound Waggoner. "His coming-out party was the Breese game. He wrote his name in the history of ERHS football that night."
    Despite the injury, Waggoner paced Olney with 487 receiving yards (21 grabs) and tallied 18 tackles.
    "I like Carson's swagger," Music said. "He's not cocky, by any means, but he plays with confidence and plays like he's 6-2, 6-3. He's a very good football player and he'll work that much harder to get even better."
    (Nolan Shan)
    Shan (6-0, 148) led the Tigers in receptions (22 for 410 yards) and receiving TDs (six) while also rushing for 95 yards on 20 carries.
    "Nolan wanted to play quarterback and battled for the job but Justin won out," Music said. "Once Nolan realized he was gonna be second string (QB), he devoted himself to becoming a very good receiver.
    "He's a heck of an athlete. We used him in the passing game and on sweeps. Nolan is a vocal leader and leads by example."
    Page 3 of 6 - Shan is expected to take over for Bailey next season.
    "No job is given on our team but I expect Nolan to win the quarterback job," Music said. "He'll give us a multi-dimensional weapon at that spot."
    (Anthony Helm)
    The 6-4, 234-pound two-way lineman registered 81 tackles (54 solo), four sacks, two forced fumbles and an interception as a senior.
    "You couldn't block him," Music said. "Anthony is an animal and teams ran away from him. His sack-strip in the Flora game was impressive but the play I remember most was when he pancaked a kid from Robinson on our first TD. Coach (Tim) Nolen said it best when he said, 'This kid is huge.' Offensively, Anthony really enjoyed blocking for his teammates."
    (Dalton Keller)
    Keller accumulated 90 tackles (47 solo), had three sacks, forced two fumbles and blocked a punt.
    "We had two outstanding bookends in Anthony and Dalton," Music said.
    "Dalton made the biggest strides of anyone on our team. He played through a knee injury throughout his career and his motor never stopped."
    Keller also snagged five catches for 104 yards from his tight-end spot.
    "When I talked to him about moving to tight end, his eyes lit up," Music said. "His first catch was a (63-yard) touchdown at Marshall. Dalton was very quick for his size (6-1, 214)."
    (Mitchell Harmon)
    Harmon (5-8, 180), a 2011 All-Apollo Conference second-team linebacker, compiled 81 tackles (35 solo) this fall, giving him 197 for his career. He broke up two passes and recovered a fumble as well.
    "Mitchell was a playmaker on defense," Music said. "Every game, he made a major impact, whether it was a big hit, a tackle for loss or a pass break-up. He played with emotion and it was fun to see him out there hopping around.
    "Mitchell was always in the right place at the right time because he studies film and knows the game. He's gonna be a good coach if that's something he wants to do down the road."
    (Ryan Bailey)
    In addition to making 50 tackles (28 solo) and forcing a fumble, Bailey (5-10, 165) led Olney with six pass break-ups and three picks.
    "Ryan is the Bailey that doesn't get talked about but he doesn't care," Music said. "He just went out and did his job on the football field every week.
    "When you play cornerback, you're on an island with no help and you better have a short memory. Ryan made huge plays for us all season and he liked to come up and hit in run support. He's one tough kid."
    (Chance Madden)
    Page 4 of 6 - Splitting his time between football and soccer, Madden (6-0, 150) converted 44-of-49 extra-point attempts (90 percent) and booted three field goals.
    "I went to Chance in the spring after watching him in basketball and told him we needed a kicker," Music said. "I appreciate the soccer program for letting him kick for our program. He won a lot of games for us and I have total confidence in him. He's a great kid."
    Madden drilled both of his PATs in Olney's overtime wins against Robinson and Cumberland (13-12).
    "Nothing rattles him and that's because of the sports he plays," Music said. "He did everything on his own until soccer finished and he's already talked to me about kicking camps. Chance wants to get better and he's gonna get better. He'll be a major weapon again for us next year."
    (Ian Miller)
    Miller, who moved from Georgia last summer, recorded a team-leading 101 tackles (46 solo) for the Tigers.
    "I'm glad he came back to Olney," Music said of the 5-9, 212-pound middle linebacker. "The first time I met him it was, 'Yes sir, no sir. Ian picked up our defense quickly and became our Mike linebacker, which allowed us to play Mitchell on the outside.
    "Ian could've easily been a first-team selection. He knows what he needs to work on during the offseason and is gonna be a big-time player next season."
    (Anthony Ochs)
    Music called the 6-foot, 285-pound Ochs Olney's most improved lineman.
    "Anthony was our most consistent O-lineman and he could be extremely good as a senior," Music said. "He finally realized that from the snap of the ball until the play is blown dead, you can get after people. He comes from a hard-working family and he's made tremendous strides."
    (Ryan Eagleson)
    Eagleson (5-10, 146) played his best game of the season in Olney's come-from-behind victory at Lawrenceville, snaring four receptions for 156 yards and two TDs (77 and 41 yards) while also piling up nine tackles, intercepting a pass and recovering a fumble.
    "Ryan was Mr. Versatile," Music said. "We put him everywhere on the field. He played outside receiver, slot and defensive back."
    After sitting out his sophomore year, Eagleson had 10 catches, 40 tackles (22 solo) and two interceptions.
    "Ryan was a great addition to our team, just like Ian and Chance," Music said. "He's gonna do a lot for us next year."
    2012 All-Little Illini Conference Egyptian Division football selections
    (First-team offense)
    Quarterback
    #12 Justin Bailey (Sr.) – Olney
    Running backs
    #22 Dirk Washburn (Sr.) – Olney
    #34 Jordan Hahn (Sr.) – Olney
    Page 5 of 6 - #25 Zach Shoulders (Soph.) – Lawrenceville
    Wide receivers
    #80 Carson Waggoner (Jr.) – Olney
    #14 Nolan Shan (Jr.) – Olney
    #5 Dylan Davidson (Sr.) – Newton
    Linemen
    #72 Anthony Helm (Sr.) – Olney
    #54 Nic Iovanac (Sr.) – Robinson
    #56 Max Loeb (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    #55 Brandon Vessels (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    #67 Adam Kendall (Sr.) – Marshall
    (First-team defense)
    Linemen
    #72 Anthony Helm (Sr.) – Olney
    #82 Dalton Keller (Sr.) – Olney
    #40 Derrick Nicholas (Sr.) – Robinson
    #56 Max Loeb (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    Linebackers
    #42 Mitchell Harmon (Sr.) – Olney
    #21 Blake Hale (Sr.) – Robinson
    #21 Cole Hulen (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    #4 Lucas Huston (Jr.) – Newton
    Defensive backs
    #84 Ryan Bailey (Sr.) – Olney
    #20 Michael Elliott (Jr.) – Robinson
    #3 Dylan Johnson (Sr.) – Newton
    #28 Cory Moore (Sr.) – Flora
    (First-team special teams)
    #1 Chance Madden (Jr.) – Olney
    #31 Daniel Littlejohn (Sr.) – Marshall
    (Second-team offense)
    Quarterback
    #3 Dylan Johnson (Sr.) – Newton
    Running backs
    #31 Jason Richart (Soph.) – Robinson
    #21 Cole Hulen (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    #27 Brock Hook (Sr.) – Marshall
    Wide receivers
    #24 Austin Weck (Sr.) – Robinson
    #12 Gage McIntosh (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    #10 Kyle Nicholson (Sr.) – Flora
    Linemen
    #77 Anthony Ochs (Jr.) – Olney
    #65 Jesse Richart (Sr.) – Robinson
    #50 Bert Maddle (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    #55 Kyle Frohning (Sr.) – Newton
    #53 Jonah Woomer (Sr.) – Flora
    (Second-team defense)
    Linemen
    #39 Geoffrey Harrison (Sr.) – Robinson
    #27 Jacob Potts (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    #71 Travis Lidy (Sr.) – Newton
    #67 Adam Kendall (Sr.) – Marshall
    Linebackers
    #25 Ian Miller (Jr.) – Olney
    #52 Nic Berty (Jr.) – Robinson
    #48 Tanner Fry (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    #6 Garrett Webb (Sr.) – Newton
    Defensive backs
    #80 Carson Waggoner (Jr.) – Olney
    #9 Landon Hoagland (Jr.) – Robinson
    #24 Thomas Grove (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    #5 Dylan Davidson (Sr.) – Newton
    (Second-team special teams)
    #25 Brandon Tolliver-Goode (Jr.) – Newton
    (Honorable mention)
    Wide receivers
    #88 Ryan Eagleson (Jr.) – Olney
    Page 6 of 6 - #86 Derek Schackmann (Sr.) – Newton
    Defensive lineman
    #60 Tanner Keeler (Sr.) – Robinson
    Linebackers
    #24 Cole Rice (Sr.) – Marshall
    #42 Connor Earleywine (Sr.) – Flora
    Defensive back
    #10 Evan Staggs (Sr.) – Lawrenceville
    (Final Egyptian Division standings)
    Olney (5-0)
    Robinson (4-1)
    Lawrenceville (3-2)
    Newton (2-3)
    Marshall (1-4)
    Flora (0-5)
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