Football team honors its own at annual banquet
Athletics - posted on 1/28/2009
The Lakeland football team recapped its 2008 season and looked ahead to the 2009 season at the program's annual banquet, which was held last Saturday, Jan. 24, at Bossard Hall on the Lakeland campus.
Several individual awards, as voted on by the Lakeland players, were distributed by the coaches. About 125 players, family and friends attended the ceremony.
Senior linebacker John Wagner (Kewaunee) was named Lakeland's Defensive Player of the Year. Wagner, who finished tied for sixth in the nation with 124 tackles, was also the Northern Athletics Conference Defensive Player of the Year and was named to the 2008 D3football.com All-North Region second team. Wagner, a co-captain, also tied for the team lead in tackles for loss with 12.5.
Senior wide receiver Matt Pawlyk earned Lakeland's Offensive Player of the Year honor. The Marinette native led the conference with 13 touchdowns and was second with 55 receptions for the year. Pawlyk's 980 receiving yards, which also led the conference, are the second-most by a player for one season in Lakeland history. The 6-foot-5, 200-pounder was tabbed as the NAC's Offensive Player of the Year and also garnered 2008 D3football.com All-North Region second team accolades. Pawlyk was also one of the team's captains in 2008.
Junior wide receiver Jacob Heinemeyer, who received All-NAC honorable mention, was awarded as the team's Special Teams Player of the Year. The Shiocton native, who was the team's second-leading receiver and a co-captain, led the Muskies in punt and kick return yardage, and also led the squad with 1,093 all-purpose yards.
The team's Fighting Muskie of the Year award, which is given to the player that best represents the Lakeland program, was awarded to senior linebacker Brent Miller. The Menasha native was one of the most important players on the field, leading the defense as a captain. Miller was second on the team in tackles, tied for the team lead with 12.5 tackles for loss, led the team with 5.0 sacks and had three interceptions for the season.
Tailback Ben Duenas (Shiocton), who finished second on the team in rushing, was awarded as the team's Offensive Rookie of the Year. Safety Tony Faller (Oostburg) was named Lakeland's Defensive Rookie of the Year. Faller registered 51 tackles and three interceptions on the year.
Lakeland coach Kevin Doherty also recognized the team's seniors and all-conference award winners.
The banquet concluded with the 2008 highlight film, which was created by kicker Nic Horstmeier (Random Lake).
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