The 2015 season was a great one for Carter County as all five high school teams made the TSSAA playoffs. While the season has come to a close, it is time to honor the best of the county for their success during the year with the All-Carter County team.
Player of the Year- Coby Jones, Hampton
It was a heated race for the Player of the Year honor, but one student-athlete stood out above the rest as Hampton’s Coby Jones has been named the Player of the Year. Jones led the Bulldogs to the Class 2A semifinals with over 3,100 yards of total offense and 36 touchdowns – 24 of which came through the air. The senior also made a huge impact on the defensive side of the ball as he was the leading tackler for the Bulldogs.
Coach of the Year- Mike Lunsford, Hampton
Carter County’s Old ball coach led the Bulldogs to a 13-1 season that included his 200th career victory in addition to the team’s 11th straight conference championship. Lunsford’s squad averaged 48 points per game on offense, while limiting opponents to just under 20 points per game.
Newcomer of the Year- Corey Russell, Elizabethton
The freshman made an immediate impact for the Cyclones this season. Russell saw significant snaps at running back, in the defensive secondary and also served as the punter for Head Coach Shawn Witten’s squad. The 2015 season was the beginning of an excellent high school career for Russell who will only improve throughout the next three seasons.
The 2015 All-Carter County Team
Cloudland: Austin Whitehead and Colby Birchfield
The talented senior duo were a nightmare for opposing defenses to stop, and led the ‘Landers to their first conference title in 11 seasons. Whitehead and Birchfield combined to become the most successful one-two rushing attack in Cloudland football history.
Elizabethton: Hunter Tyree, Jeremiah Turner, Preston Whitehead
The Cyclones reeled off 10 straight wins in the 2015 season that ended in the second round of the TSSAA playoffs. Tyree and Turner had huge impacts on the offensive side of the ball, while Whitehead spearheaded a defensive unit made it tough for opposing defenses to move the ball – much less score.
Happy Valley: Sage Haun and Austin Hicks
Haun and Hicks played crucial roles in getting the Warriors back to the playoffs for the first time since 2011. Haun kept the offense churning from his quarterback position, and Hicks added 13 scores on the ground. Defensively, Hicks was a centerpiece as he recorded just under 150 tackles and three interceptions on the season.
Hampton: Jerry Lunsford, Adam McClain, Jared Wiltshire and Clay Fletcher
Four other Bulldogs join Jones on the All-Carter County team. Along with Jones, Lunsford and McClain powered the running game for the Hampton offense that averaged over 50 points a game in the regular season behind the offensive line anchored by Fletcher. Wiltshire was also a threat for the Bulldogs as he was one of Jones’ favorite targets in the passing attack, and made opponents pay with his speed.
Unaka: Micah Hunt and John Boy Ramsey
The Rangers qualified for the TSSAA playoffs, and were led by Hunt in the running game. Hunt proved all season to be a threat at any time, while Ramsey improved throughout the season to lead Unaka at the quarterback spot.
The 2015 All-Carter County Team
MVP: Coby Jones, Hampton
Coach of the Year: Mike Lunsford, Hampton
Newcomer of the Year: Corey Russell, Elizabethton
John Boy Ramsey