After only four Cal Poly football players were voted to the first team by conference coaches, seven Mustangs were named all-Great West Conference first-team selections Wednesday for a team chosen by the media.
Senior fullback Jake Romanelli headlined a group including cornerback and punt returner Asa Jackson, tackle Scott Winnewisser, defensive tackle Erich Klemme, safety Greg Francis and long snapper Troy Shotwell — all seniors.
Second-team selections for the co-champion Mustangs include junior quarterback Andre Broadous, senior running back and kick returner Mark Rodgers, junior center Geoff Hyde, senior defensive end Kyle Murphy, sophomore defensive tackle Sullivan Grosz, sophomore linebacker Johnny Millard and junior linebacker Kennith Jackson.
Senior tackle Art Munoz was the lone honorable mention.
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Romanelli, a former Templeton High standout, was the lone unanimous selection on the 18 ballots submitted by writers, television and radio broadcasters as well as sports information directors.
The 6-foot-3, 240-pound runner was the first Cal Poly rusher to top 1,000 yards since James Noble in 2006. Romanelli’s four straight 100-yard games was one shy of the program record, and he led the Great West with 92.27 rushing yards per game.
Jackson, a Buck Buchanan Award candidate who was limited by a broken foot, had 54 tackles, two interceptions — both returned for touchdowns — and seven pass deflections.
Jackson’s 18 yards per punt return ranked among the nation’s leaders, but he only finished with eight returns after breaking his foot returning a kickoff against Southern Utah in mid-October.
Southern Utah, which finished 1-3 in conference play and tied with UC Davis for last, took home three of the major individual awards. Quarterback Brad Sorensen, who passed for 3,143 yards and 17 touchdowns, was offensive player of the year. Kick returner Austin Minefee was special teams player of the year, and wide receiver Brady Measom was freshman of the year.
Other award winners included South Dakota linebacker Adam Broders as defensive player of the year, South Dakota offensive tackle Tom Compton as offensive lineman of the year and North Dakota’s Chris Mussman as coach of the year after guiding the Fighting Sioux to a share of the GWFC title and reversing last year’s 3-8 record to an 8-3 mark this season.
Cal Poly signs Australian post, 2 others to letters of intent
A 6-3 center from Australia with international experience highlights a group of three high school signees announced by the Cal Poly women’s basketball team.
Maddison Allen played for both the under-17 and under-19 national teams in Australia and played in an international tournament in Japan, according to a news release from Cal Poly.
She will come in as a freshman next fall and will be joined by 5-8 Brea guard Taylor Spears and 6-1 swingman Caroline Hughes of Pleasanton. Spears and Hughes are both three-star recruits ranked in the top 90 in their class and position by ESPN Hoopgurlz.
In a recent national tournament in Australia, Allen averaged 9.1 points, 12 rebounds, four blocks and two assists per game.
“She is one of the top players in her age group in Australia,” Mustangs head coach Faith Mimnaugh said in the news release. “Maddison narrowly missed out on an Australian Institute of Sport scholarship, and we are the lucky recipients of her outstanding play. A lefty post player that possesses great defensive skills, we expect Maddison to control the paint with her rebounding and shot blocking ability.
“She can run all day and will be great in our up tempo game.”
The other two are products of two successful winning teams.
Spears led Brea Olinda to a 31-2 overall record last year and averaged 8.5 points per game. She is ranked 59th by ESPN Hoopgurlz.
Hughes led Dougherty Valley to a 28-3 overall record and to a ranking of 23rd in California and 118th in the nation. Ranked 87th at her position by ESPN Hoopgurlz, Hughes averaged 12.2 points, 9.9 rebounds and 3.7 assists.
Cal Poly 40, Menlo 6
Britain Longmire, Ryan DesRoches, Sean Dougherty and Ryan Smith all won by pin Wednesday in leading the Mustangs to the nonconference dual rout on the road.
DesRoches had the quickest pin, needing only 32 seconds to defeat Jose Chacon at 174 pounds, while Longmire wasn’t far behind with a pin at 36 seconds over Zac Johnson at 125 pounds.
Dougherty gave Cal Poly another first-round win by fall by pinning Greg Alvarez in 1:38 at 184 pounds. Smith needed 4:23 to pin Ben Yura at 197.