The High Plains League has chosen recipients of all league football honors. Head Syracuse High School football coach, Jordan Irsik, is pleased to announce eight players selected. Irsik feels they should have had three or four more players make all-league team, based on statistics, but were outvoted for senior players on other teams.
The selection process begins when individual coaches submit names. The players are then voted on by the other HPL coaches, however, coaches may not vote on their own players.
Seniors who received all league honors are #65 Brandon Pinto, All HPL 2nd team defensive tackle, #66 Ryan Thompson, All HPL 2nd team defensive end, #3 Joe Mitchell, All HPL 2nd team defensive back, # 68 Gunner Upson, 1st team All HPL center, #6 Luis Perez, All HPL 1st team linebacker, Kansas Football Coaches Association (KFCBA) 2A All State Nominee.
Perez was also nominated for the Shrine Bowl, the annual Senior All-Star game for the best players in the state for all classes. “We are hoping he will be voted in for that as well,” said Irsik.
Juniors #ll, Alex Barraza, 1st team All HPL defensive back, 2nd team running back and 2nd team returner and sophomore #67 Roy Aguilar, 1st team All HPL offensive line and defensive line, #24 Ruendy Portillo, All HPL 2nd team defensive back.
Irsik said, “I am incredibly proud of these young men for their accomplishments this season. It means a lot when the opposing coaches in our league respect us enough to vote for that many of our student athletes as the best football players in the league.”
A lot of the players who were voted in were surprised. Irsik responded by saying, “I’m not sure they realize how much they’ve actually improved until the votes came in.” He added, “This was the most selections Syracuse Football has had in a long time and we tied the Lakin Broncs for most selections in the league.”
Team awards, as voted on by players and coaches include: Most Valuable Player: Roy Aguilar, Most Improved Players: Alex Barraza and Juan Pinon and Most Inspirational Player: Gunnar Upson
Senior Gunnar Upson reflected, “The coach totally changed their culture. He made it to where we wanted to put the work in. He made me want to play for my teammates and see them as brothers, so I just went out and gave it my all every snap.” He would like to thank his teammates, coaches, family, friends, and fans for all the support and love they have shown. He is especially is thankful to everyone for the support through the tough time of losing his Grandma earlier in the season. “You all showed me who I wanted to be around and showed me what you all were about.”
Roy Aguilar said, “Well I’m honored that my hard work and dedication has been noticed, this is a big step forward towards my future goal in playing college football. I am grateful for this achievement and would like to thank all my teammates that helped me improve and held me accountable.”
Alex Barraza is proud of his accomplishments, he feels he worked hard in practice to get in this position and he is blessed to have met his goal as a Junior. “I want to thank my teammates and coaches for pushing me to get better every day at practice.”
While Irsik is waiting for more awards to be announced, he believes two or three athletes have a good chance of being selected as All-State. “I think these awards are not just a reflection of these young men, but a reflection of their teammates and our assistant coaches.” Irsik is assisted by Jordan Wahlmeier, Casey Finlay and John Le and part of the program are Jr. High coaches Dalton Soullas and Colten Soelzer.
“We did a great job of holding each other accountable, pushing each other throughout our summer and fall workouts and practices, and making a change that will be seen in this football program for a very long time,” said Irsik.
Players chose a team photo instead of individual photos/photo by Krista Norton
The Lady Bulldogs were undefeated during the Border Wars, defeating Eads on Friday, 42-7 and Walsh on Saturday 62-5, bringing their record to 3-1. But the winner wasn’t announced until Tuesday evening. Syracuse Athletic Director Josh Johnson explained, “It came down... [More]
Monday night at home at the Herndon Gym, the Junior High boys swept Lakin! Head coach Vance Keller said, “We’re a young team with only six eighth graders and 12 seventh graders. We’ve had six total that started the season with injuries so we haven’t had... [More]
Three Syracuse High School volleyball seniors were honored on Tuesday, October 5, during the volleyball tournament at Syracuse. Kaetlin Thomeczek, daughter of Joe and Dami Thomeczek has played volleyball since the third grade, playing with Syracuse Youth Activities Association... [More]
Head coach Steve Navarro said, “The coaching staff has really enjoyed working with this group of kids this year. They have been putting in hard work despite some less than stellar conditions for practice and meets. We are excited to see what they can do now that we are... [More]
Baseball: The Bulldogs faced the Goodland Cowboys at home on Thursday, April 8, losing game one, 2-22 and game two, 1-17. Head Coach Dustin Doze said the Bulldogs really struggled throwing strikes again and they had too many errors. We need to clean things up if we want to... [More]
One year ago, athletes and coaches were beginning practice for their spring sport, some practicing during spring break, others enjoying the break from school. Soon they found out their break was extended a week, some with great joy, others with apprehension. Then came the unfortunate... [More]
Substate began and ended quickly but these Varsity teams left it all out on the court. In heartbreaking last second baskets, our basketball season was over. The boys lost by two points in the last five seconds and the girls lost by three. A wrap up of the season will come in... [More]
The SHS Bulldogs faced the 4-A Holcomb Longhorns for the final home game of the season, with the varsity teams unable to win. The boys will be the number three seed in first sub state match up at home, Monday, March 1, against the number 6 seed, Stanton County. This will be the... [More]
A social media challenge is going on. It’s called the “ten year challenge”. There is that little nagging suspicion that this is in part a ploy to get people to post pictures so their facial recognition software can be up to date. However my initial thought... [More]
Many years ago I took a fun, impromptu weekend trip to Los Angeles. I convinced a friend to join me. We got off the plane, rented a convertible and decided to let loose. We stopped to eat, threw our bags in the trunk of the convertible, and walked across the street to the restaurant.... [More]
It’s the end of 2021 and there is a strong possibility of snow on New Year’s Eve. I can’t think of a better way to end the year than with hope and moisture. Some people may say it won’t happen. The odds are in their favor honestly as we live in a very... [More]
It’s here! It’s Christmas! It’s the birth of Jesus. It’s when astrologers and farm animals treated Jesus better than religious people. It’s lights, music and people giving. And I am NOT in the Spirit right now. I prayed, I have given. I have... [More]
Don’t forget your raisin’. I laugh because when I first heard this, I thought what do raisins have to do with the storyline of the show I was watching - Country Music by Ken Burns. Then I got it. Don’t forget where you come from. I remember growing up... [More]
There’s never enough time! Look at the obituary section. No one escapes. Young and old pass on, all before their time. I have hopes and dreams for my family and myself. I look back at when I was young and single and making disastrous life choices that led me into... [More]
I am the first to admit, I can get irritated with everyone from my family to people in town. Maybe they commented on something on social media I didn’t care for or maybe I didn’t love a look they gave me. Maybe they said something without thinking or I did. Maybe... [More]
Here we are, Thanksgiving! And then Christmas and then New Years. Whew I am tired already! LOL Thanksgiving - a time to be thankful, a time for gratitude. I like how in Spanish it is Dia del accion de gracias, the action of thanks. To me it says thankfulness is... [More]
On Tuesday, January 18, 2022, the KDHE announced that as of February 1, 2022, COVID-19 contact outreach and monitoring would be discontinued. The KDHE contact tracing staff will be reassigned to contact investigations. The letter added that individuals who are positive... [More]
How can 3,150 square feet provide so much to a community? It takes ingenuity, tenacity, and funding. And a dedicated Library Director. Stop by the Hamilton County Library and you will find a multitude of people from all walks of life and all ages patronizing this welcoming... [More]
Dr. Erol Ozan, an information technology professor and author, understood how life’s journey is often richer through the unscripted and unplanned moments and destinations that seem like lost moments when he was quoted saying, “Some beautiful paths can’t be discovered... [More]
As a farmer, being a good steward of the land is one of the most important responsibilities. This term is often used in conservation circles, but some people may not even realize what that term means. Simply, a steward is a person whose job is to manage or look after the land... [More]
Wind gusts from 75-85 mph possible. Please take precautions! From the US National Weather Service in Dodge City - ...High Impact Intense Wind Wednesday... Here is the timeline for the expected windstorm on Wednesday. South winds will remain elevated and gusty Tuesday night... [More]
Majestic, fabulous, magical are a few words to describe the setting for the annual City of Syracuse’s Parade of Lights on Wednesday, December 1 on Main Street and the annual appearance of Santa at the Hamilton County Library. Keeping with a long-standing tradition,... [More]
The Hamilton County Hospital is reporting a shortage of lab personnel, which is compounded by a severe nationwide shortage of experienced lab technicians. This shortage has resulted in a delay in their ability to quickly obtain certain lab values. As a result, the... [More]
Handicapped platforms have recently been added to the seating area at the Herndon Gym, thanks to four high school seniors, Yriel Ibarra, Keith Hedberg, Jaden Grilliot, Connor Ochs. Superintendent Paul Larkin explained the project was brought about with input from someone who... [More]
Richard L. James died quietly in his sleep on January 13, 2021 from complications arising from a leg infection. Richard or “Mr. Rich” as his family called him was born in Syracuse, KS on July 9, 1941 to Albert and Rowena James. He grew up in Syracuse and... [More]
Elvin G. “Tex” Hazen was born May 5, 1948, in Holly, Colorado to Willie and Florence (Wear) Hazen. He passed away at his home in Holcomb, Kansas on Saturday, January 8, 2022. On December 31, 1967, he married Lynda M.... [More]
Betty L. Warner went to her heavenly home on January 3, 2022. At the time of her death, she was at the Holiday Resort Care Center in Emporia, Kansas. She was formerly of Ulysses, Kansas and was 88 at the time of passing. Betty was born on November 10, 1933 in Granada, Colorado... [More]
Janis Maureen Baker Janis Maureen Baker, 88, Hays, died Wednesday, January 5, 2022 at Rush County Memorial Hospital. She was born May 11, 1933 in Scott City, the daughter of Maurice and Ruby (Couch) Liggett. Janis was salutatorian of her class at Syracuse High School... [More]
Curtis Allen Dowell, left this Earth on Monday January 3rd in Springfield, MO at 8:30 AM, at the age of 61. Curt had lead a rich and adventurous life, he was a person to enjoy life to the fullest. He was born December 29, 1960 in Syracuse, KS to Charles & Gaylene Dowell.... [More]
Sherry Lou (Reinert) Finlay, age 68, passed away at the Kearny County Hospital in Lakin, Kansas on Monday, December 27, 2021. She was born on May 25, 1953 in Garden City, Kansas the daughter of Leslie Harry Reinert and Marjorie June (Sneath) Reinert. She started her journey... [More]
Curtis Clifton Young, 80, died Friday, December 24, 2021, at his home in Lakin, Kansas. He was born June 17, 1941, in Lakin, Kansas the son of Otis & Helen (Uhler) Young. Curtis has been a lifetime resident of Lakin. He... [More]
A funeral service for Gene Wright will be held at 11:00 a.m, on Tuesday, December 28, 2021, at Valley Memorial Funeral Chapel in Holly, Colorado. Interment will follow in Coolidge Cemetery. Warren Eugene “Gene” Wright, age 76, of Holly, departed this life... [More]
©2022 The Syracuse Journal. Powered by Pluto Sites.