The success of the Hanover Wildcats football program has been well-documented over the past five seasons. Since the beginning of the 2014 season, the Wildcats are 62-2, with the two losses coming in 8-Man DI Championship games in 2014 & 2015. Since that loss to Spearville in 2015, the Wildcats have reeled off 38 straight wins and three consecutive 8-Man DII State titles.
With that success comes all the accolades. Included in that is an opportunity for four players and a coach to showcase their skills in an all-star setting this weekend. Thomas Atkins, Cade Cohorst and Daiken Stallbaumer are playing in the 34th Annual 8-Man All-Star Game at Trojan Field in Beloit on Saturday and Matt Heuer is the head coach for their team, the DII East. Also, Carter Bruna will play in the Kansas Shrine Bowl on Saturday in Dodge City.
This week’s 8-Man All-Star Game representatives from Hanover have put in a lot of work to be prepared for Saturday’s game. It’s a group that went 50-1 in their four years and they hope to go out on top one last time.
Daiken Stallbaumer was the leader for this year’s 13-0 state championship team at QB, throwing for 1,265 yards with 20 TD and just one interception while completing 74% of his passes. He also ran for 730 yards and 20 scores. On defense, he had a nose for the ball with five interceptions and was named a 1st Team All-State DB. Stallbaumer was selected 1st Team All-TVL at DB and 2nd Team QB. He was also a 1st Team All-State At-Large pick during his junior season at Hanover. Stallbaumer is honored to be able to participate in this year’s 8-Man All-Star Game.
Thomas Atkins is a 6’4″ wide receiver and defensive back that was one of Stallbaumer’s favorite targets in 2018. Atkins finished with 475 yards and 8 TD receiving during his senior season. He was an honorable mention All-State back this season as well. When talking about playing one last football game with his teammates and Coach Heuer, he is very excited for the opportunity.
Cade Cohorst was a player that could fill many roles for Hanover. On offense, he played at end most of the time, but saw action at guard as well. Playing on the offensive line, he helped pave the way for an offense that averaged just under 51 ppg. On defense, he was one of the leaders that helped hold teams to just over 12 ppg. He had 58 tackles with nine for loss, three fumble recoveries and two interceptions. He was an honorable mention All-State pick on the line. Cohorst is also excited to have one more chance to play with his teammates.
Leading the group is Matt Heuer, who has been the Wildcats coach for 14 seasons and has a record of 140-25 in that time. He has coached his program to five state titles, winning DII back to back in 2008 and 2009 and most recently a three-peat from 2016-2018. Heuer has had a lot of talented kids go through his system and he is excited for the opportunities of this group.
The Hanover representatives will take the field on Saturday morning for the 8-Man DII All-Star Game for the East squad. Kickoff for the game is at 10:00. If fans can’t make it to the game, listen on KD Country 94 or KNDY Classic Country FM 94.1 & 1570 AM with pregame at 9:30 or on the 8-Man All-Star Game Radio Network at 8manallstars.com.