Wildcats named to All-State teams

Thursday, December 14, 2006

As football season gives way to basketball, the usual post-season football awards have been announced.

Cassville players have once again topped several award lists with three Wildcat seniors being named to three different presti-gious groupings: the Associated Press All-State team; the Missouri Soccer Coaches Association All-State team; and the Springfield News-Leader's All-Ozarks team.

Senior Brian Elkins was a fundamental part of both the Wildcat offense and defense this year. For his feats on the field, he was named first team All-State (CA) and first team All-State (AP) as a running back. He also earned All-Ozarks first team honors as a linebacker.

After high school, Elkins would like to play football in college, most likely as a linebacker, and is considering going to Missouri Southern State University in Joplin or Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau.

When asked about his thoughts on Cassville's program, Elkins credited Coach David Large as the biggest reason for the team's success and expects Cassville to continue to do well under him.

"I will remember being on the field with all the guys on the team and around all the coaches, because they're all good guys," said Elkins.

Senior Nick Pianalto was also named to all three teams. He garnered first team All-State (AP) and first team All-Ozarks recognition for his work on the defensive line. He also picked up second team All-State (CA) honors for his defense.

Pianalto said he was keeping his options open when asked about his future plans but did state that he was considering either playing football at Missouri Southern State University or possibly walking on to the track team at the University of Arkansas.

Pianalto joined Elkins in singing the praises of the Wildcat football program.

"They're great coaches and great people," Pianalto said. His favorite football memory was the Wildcats' victory over Seneca last season that moved them onto the state playoffs.

Senior Josh Rambo was the third player from Cassville to receive honors. Rambo was named to the All-Ozarks first team and was named to the All-State (AP and CA) second team as an offensive lineman.

At this time, Rambo has chosen not to pursue football at the next level and intends on attending Central Christian College of the Bible in Moberly. Rambo most enjoyed coming together as a team during the year and stated he learned a lot from being involved with Wildcat football.

"It was good for teaching discipline and preparing me for the future," Rambo said. "(It) taught me a lot about sticking with things even if they are not going so well."

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