Trio of Red Riders Named First Team All-State
Kirby, Komorowski and Spencer earn accolades
CLARKSBURG–Coach Tony Filberto and his Red Riders gave the Weirton community a thrilling ride through the postseason, coming just one game shy of the state championship.
Despite falling to eventual state champion Fairmont Senior in the semifnals, there is still plenty for Filberto’s squad to celebrate after the memorable campaign.
A trio of Red Riders were named Class AA first team all-state for their success on the gridiron.
Donovan Kirby rushed for 26 touchdowns and 1,668 yards on 229 carries to earn a first team spot as a running back.
Also earning first team accolades is defensive lineman Tyler Komorowski, while Sebastian Spencer garnered a defensive utility spot on the first team.
Local second-teamers include Oak Glen junior Zach Taylor in a utility role and Weir senior Reed Reitter as a punter/utility man.
Special honorable mentions from Oak Glen include Ethan Travis and Nick Chaney, while Weir’s Jake McCoy also made the list.
Oak Glen’s Connor Adams and Michael Lemley were awarded honorable mention accolades and Robbie Valenti of Weir was also named.
On the baseball field, Connor Neal started his 2018 by throwing a perfect game and a no-hitter.
His fall ended with a zero in the opponents’ column again after some more impressive pitching and catching.
The senior signal-caller led Fairmont Senior to an undefeated 14-0 season and the program’s first state championship in 72 years.
Now, he is the captain of the Class AA all-state first team, as selected by the West Virginia Sports Writers Association.
Neal completed 211 of 282 passes for 3,620 yards, 46 touchdowns and only three interceptions.
Neal ends his Fairmont Senior career with 79 career touchdown passes, 6,449 yards and only six interceptions in just two years as the starter.
He is joined in the backfield by another pair of Big 10 players, running backs Jake Bowen of Bridgeport and Ghovan Davidson of Robert C. Byrd.
Bowen ran for 2,267 yards, a single-season record for the Tribe, and 35 touchdowns.
Davidson capped his campaign with 2,104 yards and 26 rushing TDs.
Both broke school records for career rushing yards this year.
Injuries cut Ethan Payne’s sophomore campaign at Poca short, but the fantastic Dot running back still earned first-team honors with 1,081 yards and 17 touchdowns.
Mingo Central’s Drew Hatfield finished the regular season with 1,054 yards and 16 touchdowns to pick up a first-team spot at wide receiver.
Oak Hill’s Abe Farrow earned the other receiver spot with 826 receiving yards and 14 touchdowns in the regular season.
The offensive line is comprised of Fairmont Senior’s Zach Frazier, RCB’s Robert Arnold, Winfield’s Jacob Huff, Bluefield’s Mason Walker and Nitro’s Will Dean.
Bluefield’s Kaulin Parris is the first-team kicker.
Utlility spots went to Petersburg quarterback Jacob Hartman and Sissonvile signal-caller Will Hackney.
Bluefield’s Juice Edwards is the defensive captain at defensive back; Poca’s Bronson Skeens and Fairmont Senior’s Elijah Posey snared the other two secondary slots.
Joining Komorowski on the defensive line are Bluefield’s Sean Martin, Bridgeport’s Austin Sponaugle and Shady Spring’s Terymykal Alexander.
The linebacking corps is composed of Elkins’ Daniel Romans, Lincoln’s Hunter Moore, Wayne’s Mike Bartram, Bluefield’s Arnold Martin and Nicholas County’s Jared Sagraves.
Point Pleasant’s Cason Payne was selected as a utility and also the first-team punter.
Fairmont Senior’s Rhett Heston is also a utility man.
Second-team captains are PikeView running back Evan Rose and Keyser defensive lineman Don Woodworth.