The Southern Lakes Conference released its 2021 fall all-conference selections with Badger High School student-athletes well-represented in a variety of sports. Badger students were honored in football, volleyball, girls golf, tennis, boys’ soccer as well as girls and boys cross country.
There were six Badger football players selected for first team all-conference. Cole Berghorn, a senior running back for Badger who received offensive player of the year honors. He had 220 rushing attempts for a whopping 2,178 yards and 27 touchdowns. He averaged 9.9 yards per rush attempt and only had one fumble on the season.
In 10 games played, senior quarterback Kegan Huber went 19-of-42 for 425 yards with three touchdown passes and five interceptions. Huber also ran for 644 yards on 102 attempts with 12 touchdowns. Earning the final selection for the first team offense was Badger offensive lineman Connor Bates.
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Badger also had three selections for the all-conference first team on defense. Senior William Dzierzanowski had a strong season on the defensive line, totaling 55 tackles, 14 of which were tackles for loss and 11 sacks. Junior Tyler O’Laughlin, a junior linebacker, led the Badgers in tackles with 90 and had five sacks. Of those 90 tackles, 28 of them were solo tackles. Junior defensive back Seth Johnson earned a first team selection with three interceptions, leading his team. He finished second on the team in total tackles with 64.
Junior tight end Aeneas Hayes and Dzierzanowski on the offensive line were selected all-conference second team on offense. Anthony Karantz, a junior kicker, also earned a second team spot. Senior defensive lineman Michael Metz was the lone representative for Badger on the all-conference second team. Metz played in eight games, tallying 32 tackles, 24 of them being solo tackles. Senior offensive lineman EJ Gritzner and junior defensive lineman Charley Zigmund received honorable mentions.
Senior Madison Zilskie received an honorable mention for the Badger volleyball team. Zilskie was third on the team in assists, first in service receptions, fifth in aces and had a total of 274 digs, leading her team.
Both the Badger boys and girls cross country teams were crowned conference champions this season under the guidance of head coach Mike Butscher for the boys and Stephani Reynolds for the girls. Senior runner Demetrius Farmakis, who just signed on to continue his academic and athletic career at North Dakota State University, earned a first team selection in the 5,000 meters with an average time of 16:36. Senior Dominic Alonzo (17:18), senior Brody Kluge (17:25) and senior Evan Wruk (17.34) also earned first team selections. Senior Angel Toribio (17.50) and senior Nolan Cassidy (17:58) received second team selections. Another senior, Nathan Rafe, was chosen as an honorable mention.
Molly Deering, who is just a freshman for Badger, was voted runner of the year in the conference. She also was selected for first team honors with a time of 19:51. Deering set a new school record earlier in the season with a time of 19:16 in the 5K during the Midwest Invitational. She beat the previous record held by former Badger Ava Trent by 26 seconds. Also earning first team selections were freshman Brooklyn Flies (20:51), sophomore Mya Lenz (20:55) and senior Katie Hoover (21:30). Vivian Ford, a senior, was selected for second team with a time of 21:34. Senior Sky Genrich was given an honorable mention.
Senior Grace Geils received a second team all-conference selection and sophomore Chloe Campbell earned an honorable mention.
The Badger boys’ soccer team finished the season with an overall record of 15-3-3, 5-2 in the conference, slotting them in second place under head coach Ross Fowler.
OJ Diaz, a senior forward for the Badgers, earned a first team all-conference selection. In just nine games, he tallied 22 goals, leading his team Senior midfielder Joel Torres took home a first team selection as a midfielder. He had four goals, 13 assists and 21 points in 11 games. Junior Tim DeVries earned a first team selection as a defender.
Senior Nathan Buntrock, a senior who stands 6’7, had an outstanding season as the goalkeeper for the Badgers, playing in 21 games, totaling 1,350 minutes played. He finished with a save percentage of .831, only allowing 14 goals all season while stopping a total of 69 shots. Buntrock recently committed to continue playing soccer at Carroll University beginning in the fall of 2022.
Senior defender Ron Sachdeva received an honorable mention.
The Badger cross country and swimming teams were not the only teams to win the Southern Lakes Conference in their respective fall sport. The girls tennis team, led by head coach Katie Schultz, took first place in the 2021 season. Senior Zaya Iderzul was selected as the singles layer of the year and was also honored with a first team selection. A first team all-conference doubles selection went to the paring of senior Emma Fasano and freshman Elli Hirn. Junior Tinker Trent was selected for the second team in singles and senior Lauren Hasse rounded out the all-conference selections for the 2021 Badger fall sports student-athletes with an honorable mention.