McKenzie celebrated its best season in school history – a season where the Rebels won 14 straight games before bowing in the state championship – on Feb. 6 with its annual awards banquet.
McKenzie opened the season with a victory over archrival Huntingdon and earned a spot in the state championship by defeating Trenton-Peabody in a thrilling state semifinal game and ending the Golden Tide’s three-year state championship run. Sadly, the Rebels suffered a 24-21 loss to South Pittsburg in the state championship in Chattanooga Dec. 3.
Running back Marquez Tharpe was a finalist for Mr. Football this year to cap the thrilling season.
McKenzie handed out awards to its outstanding players and students. Marquez Taylor earned the most outstanding back award. Zach Aird and Andrew Cole received the outstanding receiver awards. Hayden Hudson was the most outstanding lineman, Jackson Cassidy was named the top defensive back and the most valuable player. Rashad McCreary was the most outstanding linebacker. Gage Moon earned top defensive lineman. Drew Chappell was most improved. Trey Cook won the team captain award.
The David Long Academic Award winners were Meya Chesser, Collin McClearin, Andrew Cole, Hayden Hudson and Trey Cook.
The Jeff Givens sportsmanship award went to Collin McClearin and Brandon Hatley. The Phillip Carter Most Inspired Award went to Daniel Latimer. The Howard Nolen Team First Award went to Etijay Tharpe. The Kermit Holland 3D Award went to Trey Cook.
All Region 6 players included Brandon Hatley, Daniel Latimer, Gage Moon, Rashad McCreary, Camden Allison, David Chaney, Trey Cook and Etijay Tharpe.