Championship Rewind: West High Seniors Leave Impressive Legacy

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Jeff Yoder Photo / iagameday.smugmug.com

Ryan Murken

Your Prep Sports

CEDAR FALLS – The seniors on the West High football team didn’t get the state title they were chasing and so close to attaining the past two seasons.

West Des Moines Dowling dashed the Trojans title hope for the second straight season in the Class 4A title game on Friday.

Dowling rallied for a 35-21 win over top-ranked West High to earn its fifth straight 4A crown.

The loss ended the title hopes for West High but doesn’t diminish what has been an impressive two-year run for the Trojans.

West High went 22-4 over the past two seasons with a pair of 4A runner-up finishes, its first two title game trips since 1999.

“I haven’t allowed myself a chance to think about what life is going to be like without this senior class because the minute I do it’s going to be tough to move on,” West High coach Garrett Hartwig said. “They are all very special to me, they are all very special to this program. They have won more games as a group than any group of seniors in a long time at West High.”

The 35 seniors on the West High roster were a huge part of the success the past two seasons.

West High was a combined 11-12 in 2014 and 2015 but with key contributions from the current senior class ascended to the top of 4A the past two seasons.

“I’m just proud of our group of seniors,” West High senior quarterback Evan Flitz said. “We put it out there for our program. In our four years here, we wanted to do what we could to make it better and I hope we have.”

West High had 14 senior starters in Friday’s title game including players that put up big numbers.

Flitz completed the best season for a quarterback in program history with 2,978 yards and 31 touchdowns and his favorite target Traevis Buchanan had one of the best seasons for a receiver ever at West High with 69 receptions for 1,165 yards and 15 touchdowns.

Two-way starter Trumell Roberts led the Trojans with 896 rushing yards and 62.5 tackles.

Iowa recruit Dillon Doyle had 49.5 tackles while fellow linebacker Caden Fedeler had 43 and defensive end Dillon Shephard had a team-high 6 sacks.

The West High senior list is full of important players that did fill the stat sheet.

Offensive lineman like Guy Snow, a stalwart at center, Nate Daniels, Joe Briddle and Jonathan Gannon.

Steady contributors such as Chris Mott, Austin West and Andre White and standout senior kicker Lucas Karwal.

According to Flitz, this senior class didn’t start something at West High but it did bring an aura of excitement to the program with the help of its head coach.

“I think we established an energy with this program,” Flitz said. “It all starts with Garrett Hartwig. I wouldn’t play for any other man in the country or the world. His leadership and charisma for this program is outstanding.

Extra Effort

The seniors on the Regina roster finished ever season in the Class 1A title game. The 28-7 loss to Van Meter in the 1A championship on Friday was the 18th career playoff game for the Regina seniors, the equivalent of two full regular seasons of postseason games.

Regina went 47-7 over the past four seasons and 16-2 in postseason games with the losses

“This group of kids has worked so hard and been so dedicated and committed,” Regina coach Marv Cook said. “It’s one of the closest knit and one of the great groups that we’ve had at Regina.”

One Final Ride

No Regal made more of his time in the postseason that senior running back Isaac Vollstedt.

Vollstedt rushed for 157 yards and a touchdown in the Class 1A title game, the eighth 100-yard postseason game of his career.

In the final nine postseason games of his career dating back to the 2015 title game Vollstedt had eight 100-yard performances and scored 15 touchdowns.

Vollstedt finished his career with 2,604 yards and 35 touchdowns with nearly half of that production coming in the playoffs.

The 6-foot, 200-pound Vollstedt had 1,206 career postseason rushing yards and 15 playoff touchdowns.

Offensive Player of the Week

West High senior quarterback Evan Flitz made his final game a memorable one.

Flitz set Class 4A title game records for completions (30) and yards (347) and tossed three touchdown passes in a 35-21 loss to West Des Moines Dowling.

In his final prep game, Flitz finished 30-of-40 through the air, completing passes to eight different players.

Best of the Rest

·         Regina senior running back Isaac Vollstedt rushed for 157 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries in a 28-7 loss to Van Meter.

·         West High senior receiver Traevis Buchanan had seven receptions for 144 yards and two touchdowns in a 35-21 loss to West Des Moines Dowling.

·         West High senior receiver Austin Geasland had a career-high eight receptions for 80 yards in the 4A title game.

Defensive Player of the Week

West High senior Trumell Roberts was all over the field in the 4A title game.

Roberts had two tackles for loss and a sack among his five tackles on defense and also rushed for 50 yards and caught six passes for 35 yards as West High fell to West Des Moines Dowling 35-21.

Best of the Rest

·         Regina senior defensive end Cole White had 9 tackles, including eight solo stops in a 28-7 loss to Van Meter.

·         West High junior defensive tackle Landon Green had six tackles including three for loss in the 4A title game loss.

·         West High junior safety Cole Mabry led the Trojans with seven tackles, including five solo stops in the 4A title game.