Seven Vols earn region grid honors

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AJ All-Region IV-AA selections

By Robert Howey



Seven Andrew Jackson High School players have been selected to the Conference IV-AA football team for the 2010 season.

The seven Volunteers include junior kicker Tyler Denkins, senior quarterback Darian Henderson, junior wide receiver Quincy Grier and senior athlete Tremaine Jackson on offense.

A trio of ace Vols were named to the defensive unit, including junior linebacker D.J. McIlwain, sophomore defensive tackle William Cunningham and junior defensive end Robert Massey.

Denkins handled AJ’s punting and placekicking. He averaged 38 yards a punt and drilled 17 extra points.

He also had five touchbacks on kickoffs and made three tackles during the season.

Henderson, at quarterback, was 100 of 249 passing with 13 touchdowns for 1,431 yards. He ran for 549 yards in 83 rushes and scored nine touchdowns.

Jackson was a versatile performer for the Volunteers. He had 34 catches for 542 yards and three touchdowns.

Jackson also ran for 253 yards in 25 carries, averaging 10 yards for rush. He had 250 yards on punt and kickoff returns.

Grier led the AJ receivers with 36 catches for 631 yards and eight scores.

On the Volunteers’ defense he had 31 tackles and broke up five passes.

The trio of McIlwain, Cunningham and Massey head AJ’s all-league selections on defense.

McIlwain, at linebacker, notched 96 tackles with two interceptions and a touchdown this season. Cunningham, who also played in the Andrew Jackson offensive line, posted 57 tackles, a sack, three tackles behind the line of scrimmage and two caused fumbles.

Massey, at defensive end, had 38 tackles, two sacks, two passes knocked down, two tackles for loss and a fumble recovery. Massey also drew playing time in the AJ offensive line.

He was injured in the preseason, but came on strong once he returned from his injury.

“All these players played well for us during the season,” AJ coach David Moore said. “We’re happy for all of them. Our seniors have set a good example to follow for our younger players and five of these all-region picks will be back for us next season, which is a plus in having returning experienced players.”

AJ, under first-year coach Moore, was 3-7 this fall.

The Vols’ season was highlighted by a 21-12 road win over county and region rival Buford.

AJ presented Moore his first win as the Vols’ head coach in a 35-18 win over Great Falls, which held an 18-14 halftime lead before the Vols charged.

Great Falls finished as the III-A runner-up and advanced to second round play in the Class A Upstate Div. II playoffs.