Quartet of Demons earn All-Southland honors

KALB Sports
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NATCHITOCHES, La (NSU) – As easy as 1, 2, 3, the Northwestern State football team found four members on the All-Southland Conference teams Tuesday morning.

The Demons placed one player on each of the first two teams and a pair on the third team, which were chosen by a combined vote of the league’s coaches and sports information directors.

Record-setting wide receiver Quan Shorts earned first-team honors after setting a school record with 100 catches, the third-highest total produced by a Southland receiver in conference history. A 6-foot-2, 195-pound transfer from Texas Tech, Shorts finished the regular season fourth in the nation in catches per game (8.3) despite playing the final three-plus games with a case of turf toe. Despite the injury, he finished his career with a nine-catch, 132-yard performance against Stephen F. Austin on Nov. 21, his fifth 100-yard receiving game of the season, one shy of tying the school record.

In two seasons, Shorts filled up the NSU single-season and career record book. His 11 receiving touchdowns were 15th nationally and rank second in NSU single-season history behind Jazz Ferguson’s 13 a season ago. Shorts’ 994 receiving yards also stand second to Ferguson’s 1,117 in 2018.

In addition to owning the single-season receptions mark, he stands second in career catches (156), tied for fifth in receiving touchdowns (13) and 11th in receiving yards (1,536).

While Shorts earned his first all-conference award, senior offensive lineman Chris Zirkle nabbed his second career postseason conference honor. A preseason second-team selection, Zirkle found himself on the second-team following a season in which he consistently was Northwestern State’s highest-graded lineman.

A CoSIDA Academic All-District selection and semifinalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy, which honors student-athletes for their achievements on the field, in the classroom and in the community, Zirkle matched his 2017 second-team All-Southland selection. A 6-2, 287-pound League City, Texas, product, Zirkle started all 12 games and 16 in a row to end his career after returning for the final four games of 2018 after offseason shoulder surgery.

A pair of underclassman defenders represented the Demons on the third team.

Junior linebacker Ja’Quay Pough and sophomore cornerback Shemar Bartholomew joined Shorts and Zirkle on the all-conference teams, giving NSU its most selections since Ed Eagan (WR/AP/RS), Chris Moore and Pace Murphy combined for five spots on the 2015 team.

In his first season with the Demons, Pough collected 101 tackles, three sacks and three forced fumbles. He was named Southland Conference Defensive Player of the Week on Oct. 28 after recording 21 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss and a sack in the Demons’ 44-41 overtime win at Incarnate Word. Pough is the first Demon to reach the 100-tackle plateau since Marion Chapman in 2014 and became the first Demon to record at least 20 tackles in a game since Chapman that season.

A 6-1, 230-pound product of Sherman, Texas, who transferred from Texas Tech, Pough ranked 22nd nationally in forced fumbles (.25 per game) and 59th in tackles per game (8.4).

Bartholomew, a New Orleans native, ranked 12th nationally in interceptions per game (0.4) closed his sophomore season with a flourish, producing five turnovers in the final five games of the season. Included in that run were a pair of two-turnover games – an interception and fumble recovery at UIW on Oct. 26 and a two-interception game against Stephen F. Austin. He added a momentum-shifting, 96-yard interception return touchdown in the Demons’ 31-28 win at Sam Houston State on Nov. 16.

A 6-0, 185-pound cornerback, Bartholomew broke up four passes and added 23 tackles and a blocked extra point against McNeese in nine games.

2019 Southland Conference Football Individual Superlative Winners:

Player of the Year: Sully Laiche, Nicholls
Offensive Player of the Year: Chase Fourcade, Nicholls
Defensive Player of the Year: Chris Livings, McNeese
Newcomer of the Year: Trace Mascorro, Sam Houston State
Freshman of the Year: Tyler Hudson, Central Arkansas
Offensive Lineman of the Year: PJ Burkhalter, Nicholls
Coach of the Year: Frank Scelfo, Southeastern Louisiana

2019 Southland Conference Football First Team All-Conference Offense
Pos. Name School Class Hometown
QB Chase Fourcade2 Nicholls Sr. Metairie, La.
RB Julien Gums Nicholls So. New Orleans, La.
RB Tracy James Abilene Christian Sr. Dallas, Texas
TE/HB Woody Brandom Sam Houston State R-Sr. Corona, Calif.
WR Quan Shorts Northwestern State Sr. Humble, Texas
WR Lujuan Winningham Central Arkansas So. Humble, Texas
WR Dai’Jean Dixon2 Nicholls Jr. New Orleans, La.
OL PJ Burkhalter Nicholls R-Jr. Franklinton, La.
OL Pat Allen Southeastern Louisiana Sr. Reisertown, Md.
OL Hunter Watts2 Central Arkansas Sr. San Antonio, Texas
OL Bradston Burnside Nicholls Sr. Hattiesburg, Miss.
OL Colby Thomas Sam Houston State Jr. Manvel, Texas
PK Storm Ruiz Stephen F. Austin Sr. League City, Texas
P Matt McRobert Sam Houston State R-Jr. Berowra, Australia

2019 Southland Conference Football First Team All-Conference Defense
Pos. Name School Class Hometown
DL Sully Laiche4 Nicholls Sr. Gramercy, La.
DL Trace Mascorro Sam Houston State Jr. Refugio, Texas
DL Chris Livings2 McNeese Sr. Lake Charles, La.
DL Andre Walker Houston Baptist Sr. Slidell, La.
LB Jeremiah Chambers2 Abilene Christian Sr. Austin, Texas
LB Royce See Sam Houston State Sr. Shepherd, Texas
LB Allen Pittman4 Nicholls Sr. St. Rose, La.
DB Ferlando Jordan Southeastern Louisiana R-So. Atlanta, Ga.
DB Robert Rochell Central Arkansas Jr. Shreveport, La.
DB Michael Lawson Lamar Jr. Patterson, Calif.
DB Darion Dunn McNeese Jr. Oakdale, La.
DB Kevin Moore III Nicholls Jr. Lafayette, La.
KR Gamar Girdy Brito Houston Baptist Sr. Victoria, Texas
PR Michael Lawson Lamar Jr. Patterson, Calif.

2019 Southland Conference Football Second Team All-Conference Offense
Pos. Name School Class Hometown
QB Breylin Smith Central Arkansas So. Conway, Ark.
RB Donovan Williams Sam Houston State So. Paris, Texas
RB Carlos Blackman3 Central Arkansas Sr. Gosnell, Ark.
TE/HB Bransen Schwebel2 Southeastern Louisiana Sr. Amite, La.
WR Tyler Hudson Central Arkansas Fr. Spring, Texas
WR Cyron Sutton McNeese Jr. New Orleans, La.
WR Xavier Gipson Stephen F. Austin Fr. Dallas, Texas
OL Jair Joseph Nicholls Jr. Belle Rose, La.
OL Grant Burguillos2 McNeese Sr. Mandeville, La.
OL Tamatoa Neher Lamar Sr. Hauula, Hawaii
OL Chris Zirkle2 Northwestern State Sr. League City, Texas
OL Jarius Gooch Southeastern Louisiana Sr. Water Valley, Miss.
PK Bailey Giffen Lamar Jr. Bryan, Texas
P Blake Patterson Houston Baptist Jr. Round Rock, Texas

2019 Southland Conference Football Second Team All-Conference Defense
Pos. Name School Class Hometown
DL Isaac Adeyemi-Berglund Southeastern Louisiana Sr. Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
DL Joseph Wallace Sam Houston State Jr. Dallas, Texas
DL Nathan Grant Central Arkansas Jr. Carrollton, Texas
DL Daniel Crosley2 Lamar Sr. DeRidder, La.
LB Laryon James Nicholls Sr. Baton Rouge, La.
LB Alexis Ramos Southeastern Louisiana Jr. Salinas, Calif.
LB Hunter Brown Sam Houston State R-Sr. Weston, Fla.
DB Zyon McCollum2 Sam Houston State Jr. Galveston, Texas
DB Xavier Lewis Southeastern Louisiana Sr. LaPlace, La.
DB Juan Jackson2 Central Arkansas Sr. Gardendale, Ala.
DB Cory McCoy McNeese Jr. Leesville, La.
DB Adonis Davis Abilene Christian Sr. Bastrop, Texas
KR Cameron Myers Central Arkansas R-Fr. Plant City, Fla.
PR Cyron Sutton McNeese Jr. New Orleans, La.

2019 Southland Conference Football Third Team All-Conference Offense
Pos. Name School Class Hometown
QB Chason Virgil Southeastern Louisiana Sr. Mesquite, Texas
RB Devonte Williams Southeastern Louisiana Sr. Columbia Md.
RB Justin Pratt McNeese Sr. Spring, Texas
TE/HB Jordan Talley Nicholls Sr. Clinton, La.
WR Ben Ratzlaff Houston Baptist Jr. San Diego, Calif.
WR Jerreth Sterns Houston Baptist So. Waxahachie, Texas
WR Austin Mitchell Southeastern Louisiana R-Jr. Plaquemine, La.
OL Jaylin Hendrix Central Arkansas So. Everman, Texas
OL Brandon Floores2 UIW Sr. La Vernia, Texas
OL Toby Sanderson Central Arkansas Jr. Edmond, Okla.
OL Tyler Edwards Sam Houston State R-Sr. Buna, Texas
OL Terence Hickman2 UIW Sr. Converse, Texas
PK Hayden Ray Central Arkansas So. Bryant, Ark.
P Bailey Raborn McNeese Jr. Lafayette, La.

2019 Southland Conference Football Third Team All-Conference Defense
Pos. Name School Class Hometown
DL Kameron Hill Abilene Christian Jr. Fresno, Texas
DL Cody Roscoe McNeese Jr. Houston, Texas
DL Jevon Leon Sam Houston State Fr. Houston, Texas
DL Cole Burgess Abilene Christian Sr. North Richland Hills, Texas
LB TJ Campbell Central Arkansas So. Southaven, Miss.
LB Ja’Quay Pough Northwestern State Jr. Sherman, Texas
LB Kelechi Anyalabechi UIW So. Pearland, Texas
DB Shemar Bartholomew Northwestern State So. New Orleans, La.
DB Khristian Mims2 Nicholls Sr. Baton Rouge, La.
DB Jaylon Jimmerson UIW Fr. Pittsburg, Texas
DB Willie Roberts Stephen F. Austin Fr. Fort Worth, Texas
DB Jaylen Thomas Sam Houston State Jr. Houston, Texas
KR Xavier Gipson Stephen F. Austin Fr. Dallas, Texas
PR Devonte Williams2 Southeastern Louisiana Sr. Columbia, Md.

Copyright 2019 NSU. All rights reserved.

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