Leier, Lovcik head Rugby all-state group
Seniors Kris Leier and Kyle Lovcik were both named to the Class AA football all-state first team.
Leier, a linebacker, was a tackling machine for the Panthers. His 88 unassisted tackles in the regular season were twice as many as anyone else on the team and he added 11 assisted tackles.
He also led the team with five tackles for loss in being named to the first-team defense.
Lovcik was a hard-nosed running back for Rugby. He completed the regular season with 1,141 yards and six rushing touchdowns. Both marks were best on the team.
Lovcik, who was a first-team at-large selection, added 138 receiving yards and had 40 unassisted tackles, second on the team.
The Panthers also had a pair of players who landed on the second-team.
Junior receiver Chris Hamilton was named to the second-team offense and senior Josh Michaels was picked for the second-team defense.
Hamilton was a big playmaker for the Panthers.
He caught 20 balls for 478 yards in the regular season for a gaudy 23.9 yard per catch average.
He also caught seven touchdown passes, which led all players on the Rugby offense.
Michaels also had a knack for the big play on defense. He recovered a fumble and led the team with two interceptions, returning one for a touchdown.
He had 32 unassisted tackles, good for third on the team, and tied for second-best on the Panthers with 12 assisted tackles.