Senior quarterback Cameron Griffin and junior tight end Davis Shackelford of Glen Rose were voted first-team all-state by the Texas Sports Writers Association, and senior running back Westen Halcom earned a spot on the second team.
Three other seniors who played huge roles on coach Cliff Watkins’ District 4-4A Division II champion Tigers received honorable mention in the TSWA voting. They are offensive tackle Hayden Shaw, defensive lineman Keegan Bunt and defensive back Braylen Meador.
“It says a lot about the team and the hard work the kids put in,” Watkins said of having six players honored by the TSWA. “Individual accolades don’t come without (team) success. It’s great to see the kids recognized for everything they have accomplished.”
Watkins’ 2018 Tigers lost only one regular-season game and captured the district crown with a 4-0 mark. It marked the third consecutive year the Tigers have gone unbeaten in winning a district title under Watkins.
Last season the Tigers defeated Aubrey, Dalhart and Lubbock Estacado to reach the fourth round of the 4A Division II playoffs, where they were eliminated by Iowa Park, 31-28. They finished with an 11-2 season record, following the Tigers’ 9-2 mark in 2017. The 2018 success marked only the second time the Tigers have reached the quarterfinal round of the state playoffs in football.
The 6-1, 180-pound Griffin compiled an incredible total of 4,609 yards in total offense last season. He passed for 3,546 yards and 49 touchdowns, and added 12 more scores and 963 yards rushing. He was unanimously voted by the district coaches as the league’s Most Valuable Player. Griffin was the Tigers’ starting quarterback for two seasons and set school records for passing yards in a season, touchdown passes in a season, TD passes in a career and TDs in a single game. He threw for 6,453 yards in all had led the team to 20 wins in 24 games in his two seasons for GRHS.
In early January, Griffin became the first football player in GRHS history to be named first-team all-state by the Associated Press Sports Editors.
Shackelford (6-0, 190) was the team’s leading receiver with 50 catches for 1024 yards and 15 touchdowns in 2018. He was voted as the Utility Player of the Year in district play. Shackelford owns school records for receiving TDs in a season and receiving TDs in a game. He is tied for the GRHS record for receiving TDs in a career, with one more season ahead of him.
Halcom (5-8, 175) led the team for the third straight season in rushing with 1,921 yards and 27 TDs on 226 carries for the 2018 Tigers. He was voted as the district’s Offensive Most Valuable Player for a second year in a row in2018. Halcom holds school records for career rushing yardage, rushing yards in a season, rushing in a game, rushing TDs in a season, career rushing TDs, career points scored and season points.
Shaw (6-2, 285) was a three-year starter on the offensive line and was a key blocker for Halcom’s rushing success and in protecting Griffin in passing situations.
Meador (5-9, 170) led the Tigers in tackles for a loss, with 16, and was second in overall tackles with 162. He also broke up five passes, blocked a field goal and recovered a fumble. In the voting by the district coaches, he was chosen as the Defensive Player of the Year.
Shaw (6-2, 285) was voted as the district’s Lineman of the Year, and was also joined by Bunt (6-2, 200) as a first-team all-district selection. Bunt recorded 83 tackles including a team-leading nine quarterback sacks.
The TSWA released its Class 4A all-state football team late last week. Its nominees were selected based on the entire season, including statistics compiled throughout the playoffs. The Associated Press all-state teams feature nominations based only on regular-season stats.
As for college commitments made by GRHS seniors so far, letters-of-intent were signed earlier this month by Griffin (West Texas A&M), Shaw (McNeese State) and first-team all-district defensive end Jess Niedziela (West Texas A&M), the Tigers’ all-time leader in quarterback sacks. Halcom is considering his options, but had not made a decision as of Wednesday.