Northeast Florida Sports Jacksonville

BIG SCHOOLS: First Team Defense

To say 2016 was a banner year for high school football, is an understatement. A record four area teams made it to Orlando and two brought home state titles.

Trinity Christian won its fourth state title in a row and University Christian won its second in a row (9th overall), while Bolles finished as state runner-up again.

But it was blue collar lunch pail team from Ponte Vedra that shocked many by winning 14 in a row before stumbling in the Class 5A state title game.

Lee brought alumni back and had the whole city supporting its run to the state semi-finals and sent a message to everyone too, “WERE BACK”.

These are just some of the stories of the past football season along with the stories comes great players too.

Here is the inaugural Duval Sports All-Area football team.



LB – Rico Schnitzler (Sr., Clay)

Stats: 140 tackles, 7 tackles for loss, 1 pass deflection, 1 fumble recovery, 2 forced fumbles

LB – Kierston Johnson (Sr., Lee)

Stats: 115 tackles, 6 tackles for loss, 1 interception,

LB – Austin Mims (Sr., Bartram Trail)

Stats: 105 tackles, 11 tackles for loss, 3 sacks, 2 INT, 2 pass deflections

LB – Nick Oliver (Sr., Parker)

Stats: 143 tackles, 14.0 sacks

DL – Kaleb Seymour (Sr., Parker)

Stats: 74 tackles, 26.5 sacks

DL – Cameron Evans (Sr., Fletcher)

Stats: 66 tackles, 16.5 sacks

DL – Shaquan Griffin (Sr., Baker County)

Stats: 59 tackles, 9 sacks

DL – Duncan van kouteren (Jr., Ponte Vedra)

Stats: 91 tackles, 7 tackles for loss, 5 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, 3 QB hurries

DB – Nick Roberts (Sr., Oakleaf)

Stats: 6 INT (4 TD), 27 tackles, 1 block FG, 1 block PAT

DB – Kwame Clark (Sr., Oakleaf)

Stats: 6 INT (1 TD), 44 tackles

DB – Dominick Santiago (Sr., Mandarin)

Stats: 6 INT (1 TD)

DB – JB Shepherd (Sr., Ponte Vedra)

Stats: 6 INT, 45 tackles, 9 pass deflects, 1 block FG

ATH – Ryan Smenda (Jr., Fleming Island)

Stats: 78 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, 6 QB hurries, 40.0 average on punts, 60 yard punt

P – Maurice Gomillion (Sr., Ribault)

Stats: 24 punts for 54.0 average, 58 long