TRI-CITY AREA — From the first game to the last, these football players could be counted on to deliver strong performances.

Here is a look at who made the 2023 edition of the Tri-City Times All-Area lineup and the numbers they generated en route to those accolades.

Sean O’Neil, Almont, kicker.

O’Neil connected on 55 of 59 extra point kicks and made four out of six field goal attempts this season.

This was the second year on Almont’s varsity for the 6-3 and 190-pound sophomore.

O’Neil completed the 2023 season as an All-Blue Water Area Conference second team selection.

Chase Davedowski, Almont, quarterback.

Davedowski completed 25 of 54 pass plays for 511 yards and 10 touchdowns during the 2023 campaign. He threw just one interception en route to those numbers.

The 6-0 and 150-pound junior also rushed for 51 yards and six touchdowns.

This was his first season on Almont’s varsity.

“He did a great job making the right reads and getting the offense into the right play call this season,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented.

Davedowski finished the 2023 campaign as an All-Blue Water Conference first team choice.

Chase Battani, Almont, runningback.

Battani amassed a Tri-City best total of 1,252 yards, including 19 touchdowns, this fall.

He required 138 carries to produce that output, leaving him with an average of 9.1 yards per rush.

The 5-10 and 180-pound junior also collected seven catches for 137 yards, an average of 19.7 yards per reception, with a pair of touchdowns to his credit.

This was his second season on Almont’s varsity.

“He brings the trifecta to our backfield,” Almont Coach James Leusby observed. “Chase can run, catch and block,” he noted.

Battani concluded the season an All-Blue Water Area Conference first team pick, an All-Region selection and Michigan High School Football Coaches Association Division 6 All-State first team choice.

He also was named the recipient of the Blue Water Area Conference Most Valuable Offensive Player Award.

Matthew Bacholzky, Almont, runningback.

Bacholzky carried the ball 58 times for 496 yards, an average of 8.6 yards rush, while contributing five touchdowns during the 2023 campaign.

The 5-10 and 150-pound sophomore also managed one catch for 40 yards, good for a touchdown.

This was his first season on Almont’s varsity.

“Matthew’s speed in the backfield turned out to be another good weapon for us this season,” Almont Coach James Leusby said. “It will be good having him back for two more seasons,” he noted.

Bacholzky completed the 2023 campaign as an All-Blue Water Area Conference second team selection.

Sonny Coscione, Dryden, wide receiver.

Coscione hauled in a Tri-City best 29 catches for 413 yards, an average of 14.2 yards per catch, this fall.

The 5-9 and 130-pound junior managed six touchdown receptions en route to those numbers.

This was his first year on Dryden’s varsity.

“He is one of the most well rounded athletes on the field at all times, Dryden Coach Hunter Gall commented. “Sonny runs great routes, is a physical blocker and has great run after catch ability,” he noted.

Coscione finished the 2023 season as an All-North Central Thumb League Stars Division honorable mention pick.

Luke Winkler, Almont, wide receiver.

Winkler wound up with seven catches for 147 yards, an average of 21 yards per reception, with a pair of touchdowns during the 2023 campaign.

The 5-8 and 145-pound junior also rushed the ball 65 times for 476 yards, an average of 7.3 yards per tote, while collecting eight touchdowns.

This was his first season on Almont’s varsity.

“He is one of the most electrifying players I have coached,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “Luke was a threat to go the distance every time he got the ball,” he noted.

Winkler concluded the 2023 campaign as an All-Blue Water Area Conference first team choice.

Wyatt Hurley, Capac, tight end.

Hurley hauled in 16 receptions for 183 yards, an average of 11.4 yards per catch, this fall.

The 6-5 and 230-pound senior provided three touchdowns en route to those numbers.

This was his fourth year on Capac’s varsity.

“He made a lot of big catches for us this year,” Capac Coach Rob Novy commented. “Wyatt will be tough to replace in our lineup,” he noted.

Brent Corneau, tight end, Almont.

His presence up front helped Almont’s potent offense run smoothly during the 2023 campaign.

This was his first year on Almont’s varsity.

“He was a great run blocker for us,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “It will be great having him around for another season,” he noted.

Corneau finished the 2023 campaign as an All-Region selection and All-Blue Water Area Conference second team choice.

Max Klein, Capac, line.

The 6-1 and 215-pound junior delivered game in and game out for the Capac Chiefs this fall.

This was his third season on Capac’s varsity.

“He was very consistent for us this season,” Capac Coach Rob Novy commented. Max was a linchpin of our offensive line,” he noted.

Klein finished the year as a Michigan High School Football Coaches Association 8-Player All-State choice for non-playoff eligible squads and an All-North Central League Stars Division honorable mention pick.

Yousif Abu-Joudeh, Almont, line.

The Almont offensive attack clicked often, thanks to the undeniable presence of Abu-Joudeh during the 2023 campaign.

This was his second year on Almont’s varsity.

“He turned into one of the best offensive tackles to play for us,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “We will miss his presence in our lineup when next year rolls around,” he noted.

The 6-1 and 265-pound senior ended the season as an All-Blue Water Area Conference, All-Region and Michigan High School Football Coaches Association Division 6 All-State first team selection.

Isaiah Bankston, Almont, line.

The 6-0 and 230-pound senior helped Almont’s offense average 305.2 yards per contest this fall.

It was his second year on Almont’s varsity.

“When you got trapped by him you knew it,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “The big man can move,” he noted.

Bankston ended the season as an All-Blue Water Area Conference first team choice.

James Meadows, Capac, line.

Once again Meadows play up front helped the Capac offense have its share of success this fall.

This was his fourth year on Capac’s varsity.

“James came back from an achilles injury to become a solid performer for us,” Capac Coach Rob Novy said.

The 5-10 and 225-pound senior guard concluded the season as an All-North Central League Stars Division second team pick.

He was also named the recipient of his team’s Lineman of the Year Award.

Defense

Sean O’Neil, Almont, punter.

O’Neil punted the ball 22 times for 728 yards, an average of 33.1 yards per kick, this fall.

This was the second year for O’Neil, a 6-3 and 190-pound sophomore, on Almont’s varsity.

“It is nice to have a kicker who can handle all of the kicking duties for a team” Almont Coach James Leusby said.

In addition to his his placekicking and punting skills, O’Neil also contributed 87 kickoffs for 4,550 yards, an average of 52.3 yards per kick, to Almont’s cause. He registered 25 touchbacks en route to those numbers.

O’Neil wrapped up the season as an All-Blue Water Area Conference second team pick.

Yousif Abu Joudeh, Almont, line.

Abu-Joudeh registered two solos and 24 assisted tackles during the 2023 campaign.

This was the second year on Almont’s varsity for Abu-Joudeh, a 6-1 and 265-pound senior.

“He single handedly could disrupt an offense,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “Yousif was a real run stuffer,” he noted.

He finished the 2023 campaign as an All-Blue Water Area Conference first team selection.

Brent Corneau, Almont, line.

Corneau finished with six solos and 38 assisted tackles this fall.

The 6-1 and 185-pound junior also contributed one fumble recovery to Almont’s cause.

This was his first year on Almont’s varsity.

“He had a mindset that he refused to be blocked,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “Brent was a nightmare for our opponents,” he noted.

He finished the season as an All-Blue Water Area Conference second team choice.

Gordon Stolecki, Almont, line.

Stolecki provided Almont with 10 solos and 42 assisted tackles during the 2023 campaign.

The 5-11 and 180-pound sophomore also broke up one pass play.

This was his first year on Almont’s varsity.

“He is a solid player that plays defensive line with very good technique,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “Gordon was never out of position,” he noted.

Stolecki concluded the 2023 campaign as an All-Region pick.

Ayden Ferqueron, Almont, linebacker.

Ferqueron wound up with 28 solo and 102 assisted tackles this fall.

The 6-2 and 205-pound senior also broke up five pass plays.

This was his third year on Almont’s varsity.

“He was a linebacker that not only coulplay between the tackles but also sideline to sideline,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “Ayden was the leader of the defense and his competitiveness and toughness was contagious,” he noted.

Ferqueron completed the season as an All-Blue Water Area Conference first team selection, an All-Region choice and a Michigan High School Football Coaches Association Division 6 All-State first team pick.

He also earned the Blue Water Area Conference Defensive Player of the Year Award.

Brady Redd, Imlay City, linebacker.

Redd supplied Imlay City with 33 solos and 84 assisted tackles this fall.

The 5-11 and 170-pound senior also contributed two pass breakups and one interception to Imlay City’s cause.

This was his fourth season on Imlay City’s varsity.

Cohen Ferqueron, Almont, linebacker.

He managed 21 solos and 94 assisted tackles during the 2023 campaign.

The 6-1 and 185-pound sophomore also contributed three broken up pass plays, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery to Almont’s cause.

“We will be glad to have him back for two more years. “Cohen has the potential to be one of the best to ever play for Almont at the inside linebacker position,” he noted.

Ferqueron finished the campaign as an All-Blue Water Area Conference second team selection.

Chase Battani, Almont, linebacker.

Battani furnished 41 solo and 72 assisted tackles this fall.

The 5-10 and 180-pound junior also broke up eight pass plays, registered two interceptions and recovered one fumble.

This was his second year on Almont’s varsity.

“He was pound for pound the toughest kid we have and is one fierce competitor,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “Chase did it all for us this season,” he noted.

Battani ended the season as an All-Blue Water Area Conference second team selection.

Lucas Mantini, Almont, defensive back.

Mantini amassed 20 solo and 42 assisted tackles during the 2023 campaign.

The 5-11 and 145-pound senior also contributed 14 pass breakups and one interception to Almont’s cause.

This was his second year on Almont’s varsity.

“ He did an outstanding job getting our defense lined up correctly all season long,” Almont Coach James Leusby said. “Lucas made play from his safety position,” he noted.

Mantini finished the 2023 campaign as an All-Region choice and an All-Blue Water Area Conference honorable mention pick.

Matthew Bacholzky, Almont, defensive back.

Bacholzky collected 26 solo and 22 tackles this fall.

The 5-10 and 150-pound sophomore also broke up 20 pass plays and intercepted one pass.

This was his first year on Almont’s varsity.

“He did a great job locking down the left side of our secondary for us this season,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “Matthew was a player that could play both man and zone coverages,” he noted.

Bacholzky ended the season as an All-Blue Water Area Conference honorable mention choice.

Luke Winkler, Almont, defensive back.

Winkler provided Almont with 26 solos and 22 assisted tackles during the 2023 campaign.

The 5-8 and 145-pound junior also contributed 19 pass breakups and five interceptions to Almont’s cause.

This was his first year on Almont’s varsity.

“He was a lockdown corner that also helped us out in run support,” Almont Coach James Leusby commented. “Luke had a great debut season for us,” he noted.

Winkler completed the 2023 campaign as an All-Blue Water Area Conference first team pick, an All-Region selection, an Michigan High School Football Coaches Association Division 6 All-State first team choice and an Associated Press first team pick for Division 5-6 squads.

Carlos Uribe-Arce, Capac, defensive back.

Uribe-Arce provided Capac with 42 solo and 37 assisted tackles this fall.

The 5-9 and 160-pound senior also contributed seven interceptions and three forced fumbles to Capac’s cause.

This was his fourth year on Capac’s varsity,

“His playmaking ability led us to the success we had this year,” Capac Coach Rob Novy commented.

Uribe-Arce finished the season as an a Michigan High School Football Coaches Association All-State pick for non-playoff eligible teams and an All-North Central Thumb League Stars Division second team selection.

Uribe-Arce was also named the recipient of his team’s Most Valuable Player Award.

Second Team

Offense
Joe Dalessandro, Capac, kicker; Carlos Uribe-Arce, quarterback, Capac; Matt Evans, quarterback, Imlay City; Jacob Stewart, runningback, Almont, Sam Schneider, runningback, Capac; Cole Walton, wide receiver, Almont; Travis Dupont, wide receiver, Imlay City; Danny Newsom, wide receiver, Imlay City; Brian Canelo-Rodriguez, tight end, Capac; Nolan Maday, tight end, Capac; Kade Vanderploeg, tight end, Imlay City; Noah Campbell, line, Almont; Dylan Taylor, line, Almont; Gavin Dams, line, Capac; Cole Willard, line, Almont; and Jaydin Hall, line, Imlay City;

Defense
Carlos Uribe-Arce, Capac, punter; Isaiah Bankston, line, Almont; Trent Tice, line/defensive back, Capac; Santiago Perales, defensive back, Dryden; Peyton Frankowiak, linebacker, Capac; Travis Dupont, Imlay City, defensive back; Gavin Dams, defensive back, Capac; Sam Schneider, defensive back, Capac; Sonny Coscione, defensive back, Dryden; Brian Canelo-Rodriguez, line, Capac; Nolan Maday, defensive back, Capac.

Honorable Mention

Offense
Gianni Coscione, quarterback, Dryden; Peyton Franckowiak, runningback, Capac; Tanner Land, runningback, Imlay City; Danny Newsom, wide receiver, Imlay City.

Defense
Andrew Cezik, punter, Imlay City; Tanner Land, defensive back, Imlay City; and Jaydin Hall, line, Imlay City.

Coach of the Year– For directing his team to a 12-2 overall record, a pacesetting 7-0 Blue Water Area Conference mark, district and regional titles and a second-place finish among Division 6 squads statewide, Almont Coach James Leusby earns Tri-City Times All-Area Coach of the Year accolades.

Kevin Kissane

Kevin Kissane has been covering high school sports for the Tri-City Times since 1985. When not standing on a field or court with his camera and notepad, he enjoys golf, travel and family. Kevin is a 1980 graduate of Capac High School, and is also a grad of St. Clair Community College and earned a degree in journalism from Central Michigan University.