By BEN JOHNSON
Mason McMillan had his doubts. He wasn’t sure if picking up a Class 5A football honor was a possible reality.
That skepticism was put to rest on Monday, when McMillan was selected as a Class 5A All-Star by the Oklahoma Coaches Association.
“I was happy because it’s been a goal of mine for a long time,” McMillan said of when he found out he had been chosen. “I didn’t think it was a realistic one until my senior year.”
McMillan was an easy recipient after the campaign he put together this year. Tahlequah’s 5-foot-11, 186-pound running back set a new school rushing record with 1,117 yards on the ground. He also scored seven touchdowns on 207 carries.
“I have to give all the credit for that to my O-line,” McMillan said. “They really helped me out this year, and so did the fullback (Bear Frank).”
Joining McMillan at the running back position in 5A was Dakota Diessner (Durant), Carson Smallwood (Pryor) and Benny Steffenson (Grove). Other 5A players on the offensive side of the ball include quarterback Hayden Holmes (Coweta), wide receivers, Hunter Raspberry (Coweta) and Austin Morris (Bishop Kelley), and offensive linemen, Drake Hamilton (Pryor) and Colby Cole (Collinsville).
“It makes me feel like all the hard work that me and my team did during the summer paid off a little bit,” McMillan said.
In Class 3A, Sequoyah quarterback Brayden Scott was selected as an All-Star, along with defensive back, Niko Hammer. Scott was one of five quarterbacks named to the 3A team.
Scott, a 6-foot-2, 215-pound signal caller, passed for 1,809 yards and 32 touchdowns while completing 124 of 210 passes. Scott, who racked up 7,069 yards during his four-year career, also leaves Sequoyah was the school’s leader in touchdown passes with 90.
Despite being Sequoyah’s leading receiver with 33 catches this season, Hammer picks up All-Star honors as a defensive back for the Indians. On defense in 2012, Hammer had two interceptions and 26 tackles.
The OCA All-State football teams were also named on Monday with Fort Gibson’s Jake Gandara named as one of four running backs for the East team. Stigler quarterback Cade Shearwood, Wagoner wide receiver Kerwin Thomas, Gore offensive lineman Chance Douthit and Vian offensive limeman Rob Boyd were also selected to the East team on offense.
On defense, Wagoner’s T.J. Ponds and Vian’s Rowdy Simon were named as linebackers to the East team.
As for McMillan and Scott, their future in football is rounding into shape as 2013 approaches. McMillan said he plans on playing college football in Tahlequah.
“I’m hoping to play for Northeastern (State),” McMillan said. “I took my official visit on Saturday. I’m pretty dead-set on this one.”
Scott intends on signing his letter of intent with Memphis on Wednesday at Midwest Sports Goods in Tulsa. Scott plans to graduate at mid-term and enroll at Memphis for the start of the spring semester.