Woodland WR Nick Fuller And Mark Morris RB Nikko Asbell To Play In 2012 Earl Barden All-Star Football Classic This Summer
Written by Bryan Levesque on April 18, 2012
This summer in Yakima 2 local players will be participating in the 18th annual Earl Barden All-Star Football Classic.
The Earl Barden All-Star Football Classic features seniors from the 2A, 1A, 2B and 1B classifications and will be held on Saturday June 23rd at Zaepfel Stadium in Yakima with a 1pm kickoff.
Beavers WR/TE Nick Fuller will make the trip east and represent Woodland. Fuller, a 6’4″ 210 WR who also plays TE was a 2A GSHL All-League First Team WR as both a Senior and a Junior as well as a 2A GSHL All-League Second Team WR as a Sophomore. Fuller was also a three-time selection to the Daily News All-Area Team and was selected to the Second Team GSHLFootball.com All Level All-Star Team in 2010 as a Junior.
“It’s a great honor for Nick and the Woodland Football Program,” said Woodland head football coach Mark Greenleaf.
Greenleaf was not surprised that Fuller was invited to play in the all-state game, crediting both Nick’s natural size and his hard work.
“I always felt it was a possibility for him to play in the all-state game due to the potential he possessed since his freshman year,” Greenleaf added.
Statistically, Fuller did not have the numbers as a Senior that he had as a Junior, but that does not mean he did not have as good of a season.
In 2011 Fuller hauled in just 18 receptions for 350 yards, but 7 of those were for touchdowns. Those numbers were down quite a bit from 2010 when he caught 40 passes for 605 yards and 10 touchdowns. Greenleaf is quick to point out the teams win-loss records those years (0-9 in 2010 and 5-5 in 2011) and notes Fullers progression from his Freshman season through his Senior year.
“He was one of our go-to guys when we needed yards or touchdown this season, which equated to wins,” said Greenleaf. “At the start of his career he brought size and speed, then as he grew, he became a bigger target and a mismatch for most defensive backs. He was able to make clutch catches in some big games, like this past season as in example the Mark Morris and Washougal games.”
Fuller has left a stamp on the Beavers program that will be felt for years to come.
“I believe Nick came in at the right time of us changing our offense and made a difference in our overall approach to get vertical with our passing game,” said Greenleaf. “He has made some outstanding clutch catches that turned outcomes of games into the win column. He has played a big part of our success within the Woodland Football Program.”
Joining Fuller will be Mark Morris Monarchs RB Nikko Asbell.
Asbell is a prime example that you don’t have to be huge to be a very good high school football player. At just 5’7 175lb, Asbell was a fixture in the Monarchs backfield the past 2 seasons helping Mark Morris to a 13-9 overall record and a trip to the 2010 2A Semifinals.
“I think it is a great for Nikko, he has worked very hard and put in a lot of time over the past 4 years,” said Shawn Perkins, Mark Morris head football coach. “He should be rewarded for his success and all the good things he did for our team.”
As a Junior in 2010, Asbell was one of four Monarchs RB selected to the 2A GSHL All-League First Team, himself selected as a RB. That season he rushed for 599 yards on 62 carries and scored 6 touchdowns. Fellow backfield mate Dan Feeney played in last years Earl Barden All-Star Football Classic.
This season, Asbell stepped up for the Monarchs and became the featured back, rushing for 609 yards on 101 carries and 7 touchdowns in 4 less games than the year before. He was rewarded for his success by being selected to the 2A GSHL All-League Second Team as a RB in 2011 as well as being selected to the Daily News All-Area Team as a Second Team RB.
Perkins was grateful for Asbell’s ability to play in a loaded backfield, as well as be the teams leader and work horse.
“He learned a ton form the older kids and saw what it took to be a team player,” said Perkins speaking of Asbell’s time as an underclassman. “But he also took to heart what meant to be a leader. He has great physical skills and worked hard to make them even better.”
At 5’7 you may be asking what are these physical skylls Perkins is talking about.
“Speed!,” said Perkins. “And a desire to compete!”
Nikko may be one of the smallest players in Yakima this summer, but Perkins knows he will be a great help to the East squad.
“He is a great team player and has a desire to win,” added Perkins. “Oh and he flat loves to play the game!”
NOTE: GSHL players will be playing for the East team this season. Our players had been playing for the West in the past. The 4A/3A All-State game also has players from the GSHL play on the East team due to an unbalanced number of schools in the Seattle Metro area.
Here are the full rosters for both the East and West squads.
Head coach, Jeff Bartlow – Waitsburg-Prescott
|7||Jason||Jorgensen||5’11″||175||RB||Deer Park||Keith Stamps|
|10||C J||Matthews||6’4″||175||WR||Oroville||Tam Hutchinson|
|11||Nathan||Nobbs||5’10″||170||WR||White Swan/RSC||Andy Bush|
|20||Nikko||Asbell||5’7″||175||RB||Mark Morris||Shawn Perkins|
|21||Travis||Kretschman||6′||170||DB||Cle Elum||Tony Kretschman|
|23||Zach||Mohr||6’3″||175||WR||Deer Park||Keith Stamps|
|25||Kyle||Weiler *||6’1″||180||LB||Cashmere||Phil Zukowski|
|32||Dylan||Ellsworth||5’11″||195||DB||West Valley Spo||Craig Whitney|
|37||Michael||Newman||5’10″||180||RB||Cle Elum||Tony Kretschman|
|57||Brandon||Heide||6’1″||190||C||East Valley Spo||Adam Fisher|
|70||Roy||Watlamet||5’10″||210||OL||White Swan||Andy Bush|
Head coach: Robb Myhre, Nooksack