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REAP THE REWARDS

LYNX BLANKET ALL-DISTRICT FOOTBALL TEAM

Webster City senior Trey Mathis (32) runs away from the Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley defense during a Class 3A state quarterfinal earlier this month. Mathis won the 3A District 2 rushing title with 1,310 yards and he was also recently named the district’s Defensive Player of the Year. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

WEBSTER CITY — The Webster City football team was dominant on its journey to a Class 3A District 2 championship this fall. So it’s only fitting that the Lynx had a dominant showing on the all-district team as well.

Announced last week, the 3A District 2 team featured a slew of WCHS players on both sides of the ball. Trey Mathis also picked up the district Defensive Player of the Year award, while Bob Howard was named the Coach of the Year.

WCHS players named to the all-district team included Mathis (running back/linebacker), Chase Rattenborg (running back), CJ Hisler (running back), Truman Klein (offensive line), Trey Shannon (offensive line), Beau Klaver (offensive line), Jack Van Diest (linebacker), Tyler Olson (defensive back), Jamin Stuhr (defensive end) and Connor Hanson (defensive line).

Three other Lynx players earned honorable mention status — Ty McKinney (defensive back), Skyler Scott (linebacker) and Neven Stark (offensive line).

WCHS ripped through the district unbeaten and put together a perfect 7-0 regular season. Ranked No. 6 in 3A by the Associated Press, the Lynx pushed their win streak to nine en route to the state quarterfinals before they ultimately came up short against Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley.

WCHS offensive linemen Truman Klein (70) and Neven Stark (73) celebrate a touchdown against BHRV in the Class 3A state quarterfinals. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

The district didn’t anoint an overall district Player of the Year, but Mathis would have been an obvious candidate. The senior was a fixture on both sides of the ball for WCHS, as he led the district in rushing yards with 1,310, and he also scored 17 touchdowns on the ground. Defensively, he accumulated 571⁄2 tackles to lead the team. He had 41⁄2 tackles for loss.

The Lynx nearly unstoppable ground attack led to the numerous awards for the backfield and line. Rattenborg and Hisler also ranked in the top five in the district; Rattenborg was third with 764 yards and 10 TDs, while Hisler was fifth with 565 yards and five scores.

All three of the WCHS backs averaged at least 5.7 yards per carry.

The offensive line anchored the ground game. WCHS ranked fourth in the class with 3,108 yards rushing and 39 TDs. Klein, Shannon, Klaver and Stark helped WCHS win the district rushing title by a whopping 1,199 yards.

WCHS also boasted one of the top defensive units in 3A. The Lynx allowed just 13.5 points per game, and only 11 an outing inside the district. No District 2 opponent scored more than 14 points.

WCHS head coach Bob Howard prepares to send a play into the game with Tyler Olson (80) against BHRV. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

All three levels of the WCHS defense played a part in the success. From the left side, Stuhr tormented quarterbacks all fall, leading to 53 tackles. He had seven tackles for loss and five sacks. Hanson plugged the middle from his nose tackle position, often taking on two defenders. He finished his sophomore season with 431⁄2 tackles, four of them in the backfield.

Van Diest was in charge of shutting down the opponents’ rushing attacks on the perimeter. He made 381⁄2 tackles, 10 for a loss with four sacks.

Few opponents attempted to challenge Olson from his free safety spot. The 2019 first-team all-state talent made 24 tackles and collected three interceptions.

Over his three years in the starting lineup, Olson came up with 17 INTs, the second most in school history behind Dylan Steen, who piled up 22 from 2016-18. Steen ranks third all-time in 11-player state history, and Olson is tied for 13th.

McKinney, also a part of the Lynx secondary, had 281⁄2 tackles and two INTs this season. Scott, who often attacked the backfield on the blitz, made 441⁄2 tackles, including 61⁄2 sacks.

In his 44th year on the sideline, Howard increased his career win total to 350 and led his second WCHS team to an unbeaten regular season. It was the Lynx third district title under the Hall of Fame head coach.

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