2014 Seven Cherokee County players earn all-state honors

by Emily Horos
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December 25, 2014 12:05 AM
Cherokee County had a record seven players named to the Georgia Sports Writers Association All-State Football team, with four of those hailing from Etowah.

Eagles’ linemen Brad and Scott Morgan, running back Tyray Devezin and defensive back Stuart Head were all named First-Team All-State in Class AAAAAA. They were joined by a trio from Cherokee — receiver Andrew Harris, athlete Brittain Brown and linebacker Michael Bean — who were all named to the second team.

Etowah coach Dave Svehla called the selection of his players “fantastic.”

“That’s incredible,” Svehla said. “We had some good players, including the Morgan twins, who are outstanding football players. In order to achieve an individual award like that it helps to have a really good season. Making it to the semifinals really helped those kids as far as getting individual honors.”

The Eagles, who finished the season 11-3 and reached the Class AAAAAA state semifinals and made county history in the process, added to their story with all four players being named first-team all-state. Never before has a county team had four players receive the honor, so having all of them make first team is certainly unprecedented.

Scott Morgan said the award made for a nice Christmas present, but having his twin brother named alongside him made it perfect.

“I couldn’t ask for anything else,” Scott Morgan said. “This is really just the greatest, like wow. I can’t believe it. For us both to be all-state is something we worked for.”

Scott Morgan was named the Cherokee Tribune Defensive Player of the Year earlier this week, while Brad Morgan was a member of the all-county first-team offense. Both Morgans have committed to play at Georgia Tech next year.

Devezin’s mother, Ebony Devezin, planned to turn the honor into a Christmas surprise for her son. She decided to go out early Christmas morning and pick up a copy of the newspaper, announcing the award.

“It will be the greatest Christmas present for Tyray to see that he is all-state (today),” Ebony Devezin said. “It was nothing he talked about, but he hoped for it. His dream was to win a state championship, but winning all-state as a sophomore is going to be amazing for him.”

The selection of Tyray Devezin, a running back and defensive back, and Head is also notable because as they are just two of three sophomores to be selected to the first team in Georgia’s highest classification. McEachern quarterback Kyle Hockman was the third.

“It’s a total honor, but it happened because of my teammates,” Head said. “They put me in the position to make the plays that I did to make the team better. It’s really just an honor to get it.”

Head said he set goals for himself throughout the season. He began the year expecting to be a backup quarterback to Robbie Knox, but ended up starting on defense.

“I just did what my coach told me to,” he said. “I was coached up and I guess that made me standout. My goals changed as the season went on and that was a good thing. I’m definitely excited for the two years to come. I can’t wait to continue and see what I can accomplish in the next two years.”

Svehla attributed the increase in the number of all-state players from the county to increased attention rather than increase talent.

“I think at times in the past Cherokee County probably got the short end of the stick a little bit compared to Cobb and certainly Gwinnett with 20-plus high schools and an excellent tradition of football,” Svehla said. “I think sometimes we have been forgotten a little bit and all six county high have excellent coaching staffs that do a good job with their players and I think maybe some people are starting to take notice. I think it’s great for Cherokee County.”

Cherokee coach Josh Shaw wasn’t surprised to see a few of his players named all-state. Bean, Harris and Brown were all named to the Cherokee Tribune All-County First-team offense. Harris, who led the state in receiving during the regular season, was named the Cherokee Tribune Offensive Player of the Year.

“All-state is as good as it gets,” Shaw said. “We are just honored to have three guys on it, who contributed to the success that our team had this year. It’s great for them to get some recognition. It was definitely the most successful year we have had in a long time and that is just a tribute to the type of players that we had.”

2014 Region 5 AAAAAA All Region Team

Congratulations to this years Etowah High School representatives for making the Region 5 AAAAAA All Region Team:

Coach of the year: Dave Svehla, Etowah

First-team offense

RB - Raishod Devezin, Etowah

OL - Brad Morgan, Etowah

OL - Nick Searcy, Etowah

First-team defense

DL - Scott Morgan, Etowah

DL - Blaine Miller, Etowah

DB - Stuart Head, Etowah

Second-team offense

RB - Tyray Devezin, Etowah

OL - Alex Smith, Etowah

ATH - Stanley Logue, Etowah

Second-team defense

DL - Brandon Reibly, Etowah

LB - Caleb Barden-Street, Etowah

LB - Alan Michael Harris, Etowah

DB - Tyray Devezin, Etowah

Honorable mention:

ATH Bronson Rechsteiner, Etowah

DB Cory Burdett, Etowah

DT Ryan Kaio, Etowah

QB Robbie Knox, Etowah





2014 Season

What an incredible season and experience for our boys in blue. They overcame obstacles, finished second in the region and went deep in the playoffs (better than either one of the losses I might add).


We took it to the final four. What an accomplishment guys. Our hats are off to you for the wonderful effort, heart and determination you've shown this season. Congrats on making history.  Not only for the school, but the county too. Way to go boys!  Go Eagles!


Thanks to all the coaches, families and volunteers who have made this season a reality.  Fund raising, clean up , meals, video, set up, parking, EVERYTHING. Without you guys, none of this would have been possible. 


Looking forward to next year!


2014 Final Four


2014 Etowah's furious flight puts team on the cusp of state championship game

by Emily Horos
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November 29, 2014 12:06 AM
WOODSTOCK — Etowah made history Friday night when it beat Newton 43-29 in the Class AAAAAA state semifinal and became the first football team in Cherokee County history to advance to the semifinals.

The second-seeded Eagles (11-2) will travel to Region 8AAAAAA champion Archer (10-3) next week for a chance to play for the state championship at the Georgia Dome.

However, in the fourth quarter of Friday’s game, as Etowah found itself trailing 29-21, it looked as if Newton would be the one moving on.

But it was the Eagles who ultimately advanced, and Etowah coach Dave Svehla thought his players performed well.

“We went through a stretch in the third quarter where we struggled a little bit offensively, but our defense stepped it up,” he said.

A shootout in the first half gave Newton (7-4) a 22-21 advantage going into the third. That quarter ended up being a defensive stalemate, and when the Rams scored on a 2-yard quarterback sneak by Romario Johnson with 9:17 left, the Eagles found themselves down by eight.

Etowah, however, went right to work as carries by Tyray Devezin moved the ball inside the Rams 10. Then, on fourth-and-inches from the 8, Scott Morgan got the handoff and carried the ball 6 yards for the first down. On the next play the ball was again given to the Georgia Tech-bound lineman, who punched it in for his second score of the night.

Etowah lined up for a 2-point conversion to tie the game, in the same formation it had used on the last two plays, with Morgan again in the backfield. Instead of getting the ball, Morgan made a strong block, which allowed quarterback Robbie Knox to hit a wide-open Noah Dye in the back of the end zone to tie the game at 29-all.

Seconds after tying the game, Etowah forced the first of two fumbles it recovered in the final 5 minutes. Alan-Michael Harris came up with the ball, and when the offense returned to the field, Devezin needed just two 16-yard runs to put Etowah up 36-29.

Svehla said that possession made the difference in the game.

“Obviously, to score and get the 2-point conversion was big, but to get the ball back was key,” Svehla said. “The momentum, at that point, was a huge, huge thing for our defense.”

Newton, which feeds off its quarterback, was unable to make anything happen on its next set of downs. The Rams suffered losses on each of the first two downs and, after an incomplete pass, were faced with a fourth-and-17. They went for it, and another incompletion turned the ball over on downs at their own 44.

Once again, with Devezin doing most of the work, Etowah used the clock and picked up yards. Devezin finished the drive with a 22-yard touchdown run with 2:25 to play.

Newton started its next drive at its own 27 and promptly gave the ball back with a fumble on the first play. This time, Caleb Barden-Street recovered, and Devezin picked up a first down to allow the Eagles to end the game in victory formation.

Devezin finished the game with 24 carries for 232 yards and three touchdowns. Knox was just 2-for-10 passing with no completions in the second half, but he did run for 79 yards, including a 48-yard touchdown in the first half on a fourth-and-2 from near midfield.