Football: Rhamondre Stevenson named conference's Offensive Player of the Year

File Photo: Rhamondre Stevenson named conference Offensive Player of the Year
File Photo: Rhamondre Stevenson named conference Offensive Player of the Year

By a unanimous vote, Cerritos College sophomore running back Rhamondre Stevenson (Centennial, NV HS) was named the National Division Central League Offensive Player of the Year. Stevenson, who broke the school record for most rushing yards in a season (2,111), also led the nation in rushing, while his total was the second most in a season in California Community College history. On the national level, Stevenson's total ranks sixth all-time, and was for 11 games, while two of the totals ahead of him were for 12 games. All total, the Falcons, who won the Southern California Bowl, had 20 players earn all-conference recognition, with seven of them be by unanimous vote. The unanimous vote makes them eligible for All-State and All-American recognition.

Joining Stevenson as 1st Team selections were sophomore center Fidel Mendes (Long Beach Jordan HS), sophomore offensive guard Adam Tourville (La Habra HS), sophomore linebackers Tishawn Barnaby (Centennial, NV HS) and Latrell Stearns (Gahr HS), sophomore defensive end Jason Nettles (Long Beach Poly HS), freshman safety Noah Guzman (Bishop Amat HS), along with freshman defensive tackle Anthony Shipton (Villa Park HS). Those who received 2nd Team recognition included sophomore wide receiver Jacob Gasser (Los Alamitos HS), freshman offensive tackle Ernesto Ramirez (Bishop Amat HS), sophomore cornerback Robert Corner (Buena Park HS), sophomore placekicker Leonard Artz (Warren HS/Long Beach CC), while freshmen C.J. Parks (Mater Dei HS) and Jovohn Tucker (St. John Bosco HS) were selected as all-purpose players. Honorable mention selections consisted of sophomore offensive lineman Justin Gonzalez (La Mirada HS), freshman tight end Matt Den Hartog (Los Alamitos HS), sophomore quarterback Isaiah Bravo (West Covina HS), freshman defensive back Noah Peterson (Villa Park HS), sophomore defensive end Jordan Thomas (Norwalk HS) and freshman defensive tackle Daleon Arthur (Cabrillo HS).

Four of the team's five offensive linemen earned post-season honors, and helped Stevenson reached his lofty totals. As a team, the Falcons averaged 260 yards a game on the ground, which was the second most in the state. Bravo, who completed 133-of-256 passes for 2,125 yards and 20 touchdowns, had three of his receivers and a tight end earn all-conference nods. Gasser finished second on the team with 32 receptions for a team-leading 643 yards (20.1 average) with three touchdowns. Although Parks earned his honors for punt returning, he also led the team with 33 receptions for 371 yards and also returned nine punts for 128 yards (14.2 average). Tucker, the team's third leading receiver, returned 15 kickoffs for 356 yards (23.7 average) and also pulled in 24 passes for 581 yards and a team-leading seven touchdowns. Den Hartog, the team's best blocking tight end, also caught a touchdown pass.

Artz made good on 5-of-6 field goals, including a long of 37 yards, while converting 12-of-14 extra points. 

The team's top six tacklers on defense were recognized for their efforts, with Barnaby (94 tackles 4 1/2 tackles for loss) and Stearns (93 tackles, 3 INT's for touchdowns) leading the way. Guzman led the secondary with 74 stops, including 4 12 tackles for loss and six pass breakups, with Nettles leading the team in sacks (seven) and tackles for loss (17 1/2) to go along with his 68 tackles. Thomas accounted for 51 tackles, with 10 for loss and 3 1/2 sacks, with Peterson (38 tackles) and Corner (33 tackles, six pass breakups, three interceptions) also helping to anchor the secondary. Shipton clogged up the middle and managed 28 tackles and two tackles for loss while getting double-teamed on most plays, with Arthur coming on to post 19 tackles and four tackles for loss.