Thomas Jefferson trio earns all-state honors in Class 4A

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Wednesday, December 23, 2020 | 12:00 PM


The Thomas Jefferson football team added to an already crowded trophy case this season by capturing WPIAL and PIAA championships.

A trio of Jaguars who anchored the offensive attack were recognized for their efforts Wednesday.

Seniors Jake Pugh, Ian Hansen and Preston Zandier guided the Jaguars all the way to a celebration in Hershey and were among 10 WPIAL players selected to the Class 4A all-state team in a vote of Pennsylvania football writers.

Pugh, a senior quarterback, threw for 1,881 yards and 25 touchdowns, including 216 yards and two scores and two rushing TDs in a WPIAL title game overtime win over Aliquippa.

Hansen, a senior wide receiver, caught 42 passes for 785 yards and seven scores, averaging 18.7 yards per catch.

Zandier, a senior wide receiver and Youngstown State recruit, caught 47 passes for 718 yards and 12 touchdowns. He also had 34 tackles on defense.

Thomas Jefferson won its 10th WPIAL title and fifth PIAA championship.

Belle Vernon juniors Cole Weightman (linebacker) and Devin Whitlock (athlete) also were selected. Weightman was one of the team’s leading tacklers and a first-team all-Big Eight Conference selection. Whitlock ran for 1,082 yards and 21 scores and also threw for more than 500 yards as the Leopards reached the WPIAL semifinals.

Aliquippa senior Vernon Redd was recognized at running back after rushing for 1,292 yards and 18 touchdowns and leading the Quips to the WPIAL title game.

Also honored were Armstrong sophomore quarterback Cadin Olsen (118-230, 2,035 yards, 23 TDs), Mars senior running back Teddy Ruffner (200-1,570 yards, 24 TDs), McKeesport senior offensive lineman Colin Lyons and Plum senior athlete Reed Martin.

Martin converted a 41-yard field goal, had 24 touchbacks on kickoffs and hauled in 39 passes for 534 yards and six TDs.

Owen Anderson and Tom Gravish from PIAA runner-up Jersey Shore were named the Player and Coach of the Year, respectively.

The all-state teams for Class 5A and 6A will be released later Wednesday. The honorees for Class A, 2A and 3A were announced Tuesday.

2020 Pa. Football Writers All-State Team

Class 4A

OFFENSE

Quarterback

Braden Wheary, Jersey Shore, 6-0, 185, sr.

Jake Pugh, Thomas Jefferson, 5-10, 165, sr.

Lek Powell, Bishop McDevitt, 6-0, 180, sr.

Cadin Olsen, Armstrong, 6-4, 200, so.

Sean McTaggart, Lampeter-Strasburg, 6-2, 205, sr.

Running back

Vernon Redd, Aliquippa, 5-10, 165, sr.

Cam Russell, Oil City, 5-11, 190, sr.

Jayden Williams, Allentown Central Catholic, 6-0, 215, sr.

Teddy Ruffner, Mars, 5-9, 195, sr.

Wide receiver

Cayden Hess, Jersey Shore, 6-0, 170, sr.

Ian Hansen, Thomas Jefferson, 5-8, 170, sr.

Zach Hunsicker, Lehighton, 6-1, 180, sr.

Preston Zandier, Thomas Jefferson, 6-2, 195, sr.

Tight end

Beau Heyser, Lampeter-Strasburg, 6-2, 230, jr.

Offensive line

Ryan Brubaker, Cocalico, 6-6, 280, jr.

Joe Lorson, Jersey Shore, 6-0, 215, sr.

Colin Lyons, McKeesport, 6-3, 265, sr.

Max Pacheco, Conrad Weiser, 6-0, 270, sr.

Zac Shelley, Lampeter-Strasburg, 6-2, 270, sr.

Athlete

Owen Anderson, Jersey Shore, 5-11, 195, sr.

Justin Holmes, Northwestern Lehigh, 6-3, 205, jr.

Reed Martin, Plum, 5-9, 175, sr.

DEFENSE

Defensive line

Parker Owens, Lampeter-Strasburg, 6-4, 210, sr.

Justin Fagley, Oil City. 6-1, 220, sr.

Lavon Johnson, Allentown Central Catholic, 6-4, 320, jr.

Owen Ordonez, Lewisburg, 6-3, 220, jr.

Mario Fontanazza, Oil City, 6-1, 290, sr.

Dalton Dugan, Jersey Shore, 6-0, 180, sr.

Linebacker

Hayden Packer, Jersey Shore, 5-10, 190, so.

Cole Weightman, Belle Vernon, 6-4, 215, jr.

Duncan Weir, Shikellamy, 5-11, 185, sr.

Ryan Aument, Selinsgrove, 6-0, 218, sr.

Nick Del Grande, Lampeter-Strasburg, 6-5, 250, jr.

Luke Williams, ELCO, 6-2, 205, jr.

Defensive back

Dakota Cole, Oil City, 6-0, 175, sr.

Ayden Garnes, Bonner-Prendergast, 6-1, 175, sr.

Jesse Martin, Garden Spot, 6-2, 195, sr.

Teague Hoover, Selinsgrove, 5-10, 165, sr.

Specialist

Jack Landis, Lewisburg, 5-9, 165, sr.

Athlete

Braden Bohannon, ELCO, 5-11, 175, sr.

Devin Whitlock, Belle Vernon, 5-8, 165, jr.

Player of the Year

Owen Anderson, Jersey Shore

Coach of the Year

Tom Gravish, Jersey Shore

Bill Hartlep is the sports editor of the Tribune-Review. You can contact Bill at bhartlep@triblive.com or via Twitter @TribHSInsider.

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