The banquet was held at Michelbook Country Club in McMinnville and was a nice way for the ‘Cats to cap off the 2008 season. Granted, the players and coaches would rather have still been practicing and getting ready for the 1st round of the NCAA’s but it wasn’t in the cards this season.
The staff handed out letters earned, the team awards (which are listed below) and then each senior gets the proper sendoff by their position coach and take home their well worn helmet. It’s always an emotional night for the seniors as the banquet is the final official act as a Linfield football player but the 2008 seniors should be proud of the template they left behind. This group of seniors was outstanding leaders off and on the field and showed their true character after a bitter loss during conference play. I’ve mentioned it before but the seniors rallied the team and finished their season strong and on a total upswing. People of lesser character wouldn’t have responded like that and it speaks to the success that this group of players will have once they leave Linfield and start their post-college lives.
Congratulations ‘Cats and I was very honored to have been a small part of this group. Outstanding players and people and they saw this whole thing through from start to finish.
2008 Team Awards (All awards are voted on by the players on the team (except for the "John LaRosa Dedicated To Excellence award which is selected by the coaching staff):
Best Defensive Scout Player- Brett McKechnie (Soph, DB)
Best Offensive Scout Player- Jon Montalvo (Sr, RB)
Most Improved- Ryan Henderson (So, WR)
Rookie of the Year- Drew Fisher (Fr, Safety)
Best Defensive Lineman- Taylor Summers (Sr, DE)
Best Offensive Lineman- Jared Hinkle (Sr, OT)
Best Defensive Back- Tyler McCann (Sr, Safety)
Co-Best Pass Receiver- John Torsey (Sr) & Travis Masters (Sr)
Best Special Teams Player- Scott Birkhofer (Sr, Place Kicker)
Best Defensive Player- Taylor Summers (Sr, DE)
Co-Best Offensive Player- Travis Masters (Sr, WR) & Reggie Ford (Sr, RB)
Defensive Captain- Alex Tkachuk (Jr, LB)
Offensive Captain- Jared Hinkle (Sr, OT)
John LaRosa- Dedication to Excellence Award- Brent Desmond (Sr, OT)
Most Inspirational- Reggie Ford (Sr, RB)
Linfield "L" Award - Morgan Kocher (Sr, OL)
"Willis Baker" Team Most Valuable Player - Taylor Summers (Sr, DE)