28 local players make 2018 All-Valley Area Football Team

Published 9:54 pm Friday, December 21, 2018

This season was the year of the turnaround for many football in the Greater Valley Area. 

Springwood improved its win total from last season, while Beulah and Valley turned 2-8 2017 seasons into playoff appearances this year. 

LaFayette and Lanett both won playoff games out of the Alabama bunch of teams in the Valley area. 

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While a strong senior class moves on to the next level, there are still a number of talented underclassmen in the area, including Valley freshman running back B.J. Baker, who is the youngest player on this season’s all-area group.

After three consecutive losses in the state final, Chambers Academy broke through this season to complete an undefeated season at Troy University to win the first football state championship in school history. 

The win also marked the second consecutive year that a team from the Greater Valley Area completed an undefeated season with a state championship after Lanett accomplished the feat in 2017, which was also the Panthers first state championship.

The Rebels of Chambers Academy led the way with seven players on the 2018 All-Valley Area Football Team, led by senior running back C.J. Lyons. 

Player of the Year: 

Trikweze Bridges, SS/WR Lanett High School

Coach of the Year: 

Jason Allen, Chambers Academy


QB Kristian Story

 Lanett High, junior

The quarterback completed 102 of 145 passes for 1828 yards, 36 touchdowns and threw only six interceptions in nine regular season games for the Panthers. Story also lead the Panthers in rushing with 839 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns.

RB C.J. Lyons 

Chambers Academy,  senior

Lyons willed his way into leading the Rebels to the school’s first state championship. This season he averaged over 15.5 yards per carry. He finished his career with more than 4,000 rushing yards.

RB B.J. Baker 

Valley High, freshman

Baker finished the year with 857 yards on 145 carries for nine touchdowns.

RB Chris Person 

Beulah High, junior

Person had a breakout season and rushed for over 1,000 yards this year. Person heavily and the junior had over 25 carries twice.

WR Coleman Hull

Springwood, junior

Hull was the Wildcats’ leading receiver this season, lining up at tight end. Against Coosa Valley, he reeled in 120 receiving yards.

WR Tifton Dobbs

Lanett, senior

Dobbs caught 20 passes for 345 yards and 10 touchdowns for the Panthers in the regular season.

WR Steven Coker

Valley, senior 

Coker caught 11 passes for 229 yards and four touchdowns for the Rams to finish his High School career.

OL Alston Knox 

Chambers Academy, senior

Chambers Academy head football coach Jason Allen called Knox the best offensive lineman on the Rebels’ team that has rushed for over 18,000 yards in the last three seasons.

OL Hunter Bryant

Beulah, senior 

Bryant led the Bobcats’ offensive line that opened up the way for the rushing attack of Lonzie Portis, Chris Person and Caden Dowdell.

OL Trevin Williams

Springwood, sophomore

Williams protected Wildcats’ quarterback Jordan Plank and opened gaps for running back O.J. Tolbert.

OL Jake Waldrep

Chambers Academy, junior

The six-foot-three, 315-pound lineman was the largest player on the Rebels’ line this season and opened up holes in the running game. 

OL D’Terrion Glaze

Lanett, senior

Glaze opened holes for the Panthers that allowed plays like Story’s 98-yard touchdown scramble possible.

ATH- DJ Dunn 

Valley, senior

Dunn did it all for the Rams this past season. The senior saw snaps at quarterback, running back and defensive back. On the ground, he rushed for 455 yards and five touchdowns. On defense, Dunn finished with 20 tackles.

ATH Lonzie Portis

Beulah, senior 

Portis rushed for 17 rushing touchdowns and passed for four others this season for the Bobcats. He had three runs that were longer than 80 yards and finished the year with 887 rushing yards and 470 passing yards.


SS Trikweze Bridges,

Lanett, senior

Bridges finished his senior season with 88 tackles, seven tackles for a loss, 10 forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, eight interceptions and four pick sixes.

SS JaQuavian Boston-Gaines 

LaFayette, senior 

The hard-hitting senior finished the season with 106 total tackles, 16 tackles for a loss, nine sacks and one forced fumble.

DB Jordan Walker

LaFayette, junior 

Walker had 37 tackles, seven interceptions and two fumble recoveries for the Bulldogs this season.

DB Colton Hand,

Chambers Academy, senior 

Hand led the Rebels in interceptions this season.

LB Caden Dowdell

Beulah, senior

Dealing with injuries throughout the season, Dowdell still finished with 77 tackles, 10 tackles for a loss, four sacks and one fumble recovery in eight games this season.

LB Brody Smoot

Chambers Academy, junior

Smoot led Chambers Academy in sacks this season, spanning the entire field and throwing up an “X” after every tackle.

LB Braxton Allen

Chambers Academy, junior

Allen has over 300 career tackles with the Rebels.

LB Trent Craft,

Springwood, senior

Craft led the Wildcats with 39 tackles this season.

DL Dijon Darden

Chambers Academy, junior

Darden led the Rebels in tackles for all defensive linemen.

DL Trevor Vines

LaFayette, senior 

Vines had 113 tackles, two tackles for a loss, three fumble recoveries, two forced fumbles and a sack this season.

DL Lajareon Bryant 

LaFayette, senior

Bryant finished the season with 110 tackles, 11 tackles for a loss, five sacks and a forced fumble.

ATH Larontavious Huston 

Lanett, sophomore 

Hurston finished the season with 32 tackles and five interceptions.

ATH Isaiah Glidewell 

Beulah, senior 

Glidewell led the team in sacks, tackles for a loss and QB hurries.

K Daniel Etherton,

Valley, senior 

Etherton was honored with a national award, Luis Zendejas Kicking Academy High School Kicker of the Week, after going three-for-three on field goals and extra points.

Honorable mention:

QB Payton Allen, Chambers Academy, sophomore

Allen threw for over 1,400 yards, 17 touchdowns and five interceptions. He also scrambled into the end zone to seal the state championship win for the Rebels.

RB O.J. Tolbert, Springwood, sophomore

Tolbert rushed for 749 yards and touchdowns this season for Springwood.

WR Kolby Davidson, 

Lanett, senior

Davidson caught 16 passes for 317 yards and five touchdowns.

WR Jordan Gillespie, 

Chambers Academy, senior 

Gillespie was the leading receiver for the Rebels this season.

OL -Joshua Holloway,
LaFayette, senior

Holloway has started 47 games over the last four seasons for the Bulldogs.

DL Lavontae McCullough, 

Lanett, senior 

McCullough, along with Glaze, led the Panthers on the defensive line this season.