For The Tribune
Nick Richert was named Mr. Seymour and Evens Cribs received the toughness award during the Seymour football team’s awards dinner, conducted Wednesday night at the Pines Evergreen Room.
“(Richert) represents everything we stand for,” Owls head coach Josh Shattuck said in presenting Richert with his award.
“He is one who picks us up when we’re down,” Shattuck said. “It will be impossible to replace him. He was a three-year starter and he would be a heck of a college player if he chooses. He is everything we ask for in our program.”
Richert was Seymour’s only two-way starter this fall and was named Hoosier Hills All-Conference honorable mention on both offense and defense.
He finished fifth on the team in tackles and assists with 53 solos and 12 assists. He also recovered two fumbles and had three assists.
In presenting Cribs with his award, Shattuck asked, “Who’s the toughest kid on the team? He’s as good as it gets. In my eight years as a head coach I have not had a kid motivate me and inspire me as much as him.”
Shattuck became emotional as he continued. Evens’ brother, Nikson, died in an automobile accident, on Interstate 65 between Seymour and Columbus, last summer.
“He was our toughest competitor week after week,” Shattuck said. “He was a scrapper, a fighter, a survivor on and off the field. He shut down receivers.”
Cribs was named All-HHC honorable mention.
He led the Owls in tackles this fall with 56 tackles and 22 assists. He recovered two fumbles and had one interception.
Cribs and Richert, along with junior Alan Perry, were the Owls’ captains this fall.
Shattuck presented the coaches award to Zach Carpenter, Cailen Shepherd and Jackson Morris, who were all four-year starters.
Carpenter finished the year with 814 yards rushing for an average of 5.3 yards per carry and eight touchdowns, and he caught 11 passes for 137 yards and two touchdowns.
Carpenter topped the 100-yard rushing mark six times during a seven-game stretch.
“Zach worked hard in the weight room and he made other teams tackle him,” Shattuck said.
Shattuck called Shepherd a technician.
“He always knows where he is going,” Shattuck said. “He started in the offensive line as a freshman and that’s pretty good at a 4A school.”
Morris graduates as Seymour’s career reception leader with 141. This fall he topped the Owls with 51 catches for 680 yards and eight touchdowns.
Morris quarterbacked the Owls his freshman year, then moved to receiver midway through his sophomore season.
Morris was named All-HHC honorable mention at wide receiver this fall.
Austin Alcorn was named Seymour’s most improved player.
Shattuck said that award is based on his improvement from the end of the previous season through this season.
This fall Alcorn registered 23 tackles and 8 assists.
Dawson Cravens was named scout team player of the year.
“(Cravens) got after it,” Shattuck said. “He played with character.”
Two Owls were named to the All-HHC first team, Perry at quarterback and Todd Kiewitt at linebacker.
Perry, a junior, holds Seymour career records for passing (4,526) and total offense (6,649).
He set a single-season rushing TD record with 23 and tied for third all-time with touchdowns in a game with 5, and is third in career rushing touchdowns with 35, and he is just a junior.
Kiewitt had his season cut short by a knee injury, but he still finished fifth on the team with 56 tackles and 11 assists, and he had one sack.
Shattuck gave special praise to the seniors and gave a review of their careers as they didn’t win any games their seventh-grade season, won one game in eighth grade.
During their freshmen season, this class won one game as freshmen and none on the varsity level. They won two games as sophomores, five games as juniors and eight games this fall.
That win total included and eight-game win streak, and a tie for second in the HHC with a record of 5-2.
Shattuck said there were 19 juniors, 21 sophomores and 23 freshmen that played this fall, and recalled his first year at Seymour (2013) he had a total of 46 in all grades combined.
The team tied the single game mark for TD’s in a game with seven at New Albany, had the second-most rushing yards ever in a game with 425 against New Albany, scored 40 touchdowns which is third most for a season in school history, and scored 64 points against New Albany for the fourth-most in a single game.
Shattuck said that while the team made great strides this fall, there is still work to be done, as the Owls were 8-4 this fall.
He said the “Winter Warriors” weight-lifting program started this week.
Shattuck announced a new phrase that the team will abide by going forward: TORCH — Tradition Of Reliability Commitment Heart.
“You are part of the onslaught of Seymour football,” he said. “We have a room full of guys who light the torch every day.”