In the wake of a season to remember – complete with broken school records and hanging tough with the conference elite – the 2015 Tomahawk Hatchet football team was well represented when seven athletes were selected to the All-Marawood football squads two weeks ago.
Topping the list was Kaleb Kaminski who was a unanimous 1st team pick at defensive back as well as a 1st team selection at quarterback.
In looking back on Kaminski’s season, there is little wonder as to how the 6’0” senior garnered such high honors.
Kaminski (passing. 62/113, 886 yds, 7TD/defense: 2INT) not only engineered the third-ranked offense in the conference (2,202 total yards) but led the conference in passing yards and tied in passing TD’s (7-with Marathon’s Kellen Vetter).
“Kaleb is a very versatile quarterback,” comments head coach John Larson. “Not only can he throw the ball but he can be a dangerous runner as well. He possesses the strength to run over and through people and the speed to run away from them. His arm strength allows for accurate passing and the threat of a big play. Kaleb set a new school passing yard record vs. Cadott with 326 yards.”
“His passing yard total ranks as the school’s best in more than a decade. Kaleb is a team captain, great leader, works very hard in the weight room and is a good student-athlete with a 3.5 GPA.”
“Kaleb was 2nd on the team in defensive points. He is responsible for making the secondary coverage calls based on the offensive formations. His ability to read and react is what makes him a stand-out defensive back. He defends the run equally as well as the pass, is a great alley player and a sure tackler. Kaleb has a nose for the football and is our hardest hitting defensive player. Kaleb is one of the best defensive backs Tomahawk has ever had.”
Senior Dane Borchardt was also named 1st team on both sides of the ball.
Standing a sturdy 5’11” and 215 pounds, Borchardt proved to be a nightmare for opposing defenses as a battering ram fullback (133 carries/800 yds, 14 TD) as well as a punishing middle linebacker. He finished third in the run-happy Marawood conference in yards on the ground, 2nd in rushing TD’s (behind Marathon’s Ryan Gassner’s 18) and 2nd in overall scoring (84 points-behind Gassner’s 118).
“Dane is a very physical runner with great vision, balance and is a good blocker,” adds Larson. “He is also the guy that got the ball when we needed those tough yards. Dane caught the ball very well out of the backfield. Dane is a team captain, great leader, works very hard in the weight room and is a good student-athlete holding a 3.286 GPA. His 1,200 plus yards rushing on the season ranks as the best in recent years!”
“Dane was our team leader in defensive points as well as our defensive signal caller. He reads and reacts quickly, has a nose for the football and plays sideline to sideline. He is a very aggressive and physical player, which is what you look for in an inside linebacker. Dane was often double-teamed and it was the opposing team’s game plan to know where he was at all times. Dane is one of the best inside linebackers to play at THS.”
Senior receiver Brandon Vecchio (18 rec, 322 yds, 3 TD) earned 1st team honors due to an effective combination of size (6’0”,195) and athleticism, which proved consistently potent to opposing defenses and paid off in leading the Marawood in every receiving category except touchdowns.
“Brandon is a versatile receiver as we lined him up as a split end as well as a tight end.” Larson said. “Brandon has great hands and is a great route runner. Brandon did a great job of blocking on the perimeter and was also a solid drive blocker from the TE position. He can catch the ball in traffic and is great at getting yards after the catch. He is a tremendous all-around athlete, works very hard in the weight room and is a good student-athlete, holding a GPA of 3.6.”
Defensively, 6’0”, 205-pound senior Steven Renn pulled in 1st team recognition at defensive end, helping to compile the fourth ranked defense in the heavyweight laden Marawood Conference. Renn was an Honorable Mention on the offensive line as well.
“Steven was in our top 5 for defensive points,” Larson stated. “He is a tremendous leader on our defensive front. He plays with great enthusiasm and intensity. Steven is a very physical player and a sure tackler. He does a great job setting the edge and putting pressure on the QB. Steven was our best lineman on defense.”
“Steven has great feet, moves well, can trap block and is a solid drive blocker. His pass blocking is equally as impressive. He is explosive, a great competitor and very coachable. He is a great team leader who played the game with a lot of emotion and intensity! Steven never makes excuses for his mistakes and is always the first one to pick up his teammates if they make a mistake.”
The 5’8”, 170-pound senior Brian Vecchio was selected to the 2nd team at Outside Linebacker and Honorable Mention at wide receiver. As a receiver, Vecchio put up impressive numbers alongside twin-brother Brandon (17 rec/228 yds, TD), ranking 4th in the Marawood in receiving yards.
“Brian was our 2nd leading receiver on the season behind his brother Brandon,” Larson said. “Brian is a versatile receiver that we lined up as a flanker, as well as a slot back. Brian has good hands and is able to find that open area in the defense. Brian is a good blocker and is very physical. He can catch the ball in traffic and did a good job of getting yards after the catch.”
“Defensively, Brian was 4th on the team in defensive points. Brian has exceeded our expectations. His stats don’t stack up with the elite, but the importance of his play on our defense is immeasurable. He is disciplined with his technique, reads his keys and makes zero mental mistakes. That type of play makes everyone around him on our defense much better. Brian is a very physical player, solid tackler, good leader, works very hard in the weight room and is a good student-athlete, with a GPA of 3.6.”
Others garnering honorable mention honors are senior defensive end Hunter Langdon and senior defensive back Logan Loretz.
“Hunter is a great competitor who really came into his own this season.” Larson adds. “Hunter was a very physical player with a motor that never quit. He played both defensive end and defensive tackle on the season. Hunter excelled at putting pressure on the QB and was one of our team leaders in sacks. He also was fundamentally sound, did a great job of reading his keys and playing his responsibility. He was a guy who made everyone around him better!”
“Behind Kaleb Kaminski, Logan Loretz was probably the next hardest-hitting player on defense. He did an excellent job of being an alley player and making some big plays against the run. He was a solid tackler and had a nose for the football. He is a quality individual with tremendous character both on and off the field.”
The Hatchets finished the season 6-3 overall and a fourth place finish in the Marawood at 4-3.
• *All statistics are GNC statistics, as reported.