The Mound Westonka High School football team celebrated another memorable season at an awards banquet November 21st at Gale Woods Farm.
Head coach Nick David opened the banquet by saying, “I am very proud of and thankful to all of the players, coaches, water boys, student managers, cheerleaders, parents, fans, game workers, and all the others that helped make the 2021 Mound Westonka White Hawks football season a memorable one.”
The varsity team finished 8-1 this year and won the Twin Cities Maroon Subdistrict Championship. “It was truly a season to remember with several games that had our fans at the edges of their seats during the entirety of the game,” David said. “The passion and emotion that this team played with was second to none.”
Coach David took time at the banquet to recognize his fellow varsity coaches: Mike Wallace, Jared Chapman, Brian Ibs, Doug Runke, Kyle Ague, Brandon Brakstad, Ryan Rank, Greg Sullivan, Turnar Kist, Oscar Johnson, Jackson Rynda, Kurt Bowe, Colin Charlson, and Mike Schwartz. He also recognized the seventh- and eighth-grade coaching staff of Eric Rodelius, Jason Tuttle, Eddie Kutz, Anthony Doerr, Dave Leinfelder, and Adam Wyman, as well as the Westonka Youth Football coaches.
“These coaches did a terrific job of preparing our team for game days and getting our players to understand that there is so much more to football in what it can teach you than just the X’s and O’s,” David said. He also gave special thanks to his wife, Melissa, and the entire “Coaches’ Wives Club.”
White Hawks Earn All-District Honors
White Hawks student-athletes received several Twin City District Football awards. Seniors Ryan Butler (OL), Jake Gaylord (QB), Tyler Von Bank (WR/LB), and juniors Fletcher Anderson (TE/LB), and Sam Dioszeghy (OL/DL) earned All-District honors for their performance on the gridiron this season. Five other players—senior Joe Zachow (WR/DB), juniors Tyler Albert (RB), Marc Maas (OL), Cam Peterson (TE/LB), and sophomore Mikey Oftedahl (OL)—were All-District Honorable Mention selections.
Pride on Display
In addition to stats recorded under the Friday night lights, the players’ efforts off the field were given equal recognition at the banquet. Individual players were recognized by their coaches for their efforts in practice and in the weight room, for volunteering with the youth football program, and for being positive role models in the community.
Senior Jake Gaylord was selected to the Individual Class 4A Academic All-State Football Team. He carries a 3.98 cumulative GPA and excelled on the football field this past season.
Senior Anthony Kulisek was named to the All-District “Why We Play” Team for exhibiting the following qualities: true love for football; commitment and loyalty to school, team and community; willingness to sacrifice for the team; integrity; courage of convictions; goal-oriented approach; sharp focus and strong competitive drive; excellent work ethic; willingness to accept challenges; mental toughness; strong football skills; and strong leadership.
The Lifter of the Year Awards, which recognizes hard work in the weight room, went to freshman Beck Jenson and John Seemann, sophomores Jaaron Konkel and Mikey Oftedahl, juniors Sam Dioszeghy and Marc Maas, and seniors Ryan Butler and Tyler Von Bank. Tyler Von Bank also was the 2021 Iron Man Award winner.
Among the multiple team awards given out by coaches at the banquet was the White Hawks PRIDE Award. The PRIDE Award is given to the White Hawks Football player who has most exemplified the concept of team, and who, through the behind the scenes dedication, effort, and caring for his teammates, has provided the glue that binds them as one. This player plays with the most Purpose, built strong Relationships, Improved Daily, showed Discipline, and consistently displayed high Effort and Energy throughout the season. This year’s award went to senior Jacob Peterson. “It is players like him why guys like me coach the game of football,” said Coach David.
Senior Captain Tyler Von Bank was chosen as the 2021 MVP, “We couldn’t have asked for much more out of Tyler this season. He was on the field basically every snap leading our defense and making play after play on offense at multiple positions. Tyler has been a mainstay on the varsity football team as starter for the past three seasons and has been honored twice as a Twin Cities All-District selection. He is one of the most talented players I have ever had the opportunity to coach,” said Coach David.
New Leaders Chosen
The team had 16 seniors who played their final season of White Hawks football this year. This year’s senior class helped win 24 varsity games during their four years and have set a precedent for what is expected out of our White Hawks Football program for years to come!
The coaches gave special recognition to graduating seniors - team captain Ryan Butler, Jake Dallman, team captain Jake Gaylord, Dylan Helman, Manu Jordan, team captain Anthony Kulisek, Adam Mack, Tyler Marshall, Tristan Oates, team captain Jacob Peterson, Jack Pfeiffer, Andrey Sivtsov, Max Swanson, Ben Tice, team captain Tyler Von Bank, and team captain Joe Zachow.
“I cannot say enough great things about these boys or thank them enough for their contributions these past four years,” David said of the 2021 senior class.
Next year’s team captains will be announced before winter break as the White Hawks Football program adopted a new, more rigorous process for selecting captains last year in 2020. The White Hawks also have ten underclassmen that will be a part of the Leadership Council next year: sophomores Jacob Hansberger, Jaaron Konkel, Mikey Oftedahl, Isaac Paul, and Carter Reinbold, and freshmen: Cole Drill, Beck Jenson, JT Kimbrough, Cole Munsterteiger, and John Seemann.
“We will look to these fourteen players to lead us as we continue on with the process of building a state championship football program here at Mound Westonka,” said David.
2021 Senior Class
2021 All-District Selections
2021 Twin Cities Honorable Mention All-District Selections