Football Fourth in Preseason SAC Poll; 12 on Preseason All-SAC Teams


ROCK HILL, S.C. ( -- Catawba College was picked fourth in the 2017 South Atlantic Conference Preseason Coaches Poll and placed a dozen players on the Preseason All-Conference Football Teams. The Catawba Indians tied preseason favorite Newberry with seven first team selections.

Catawba garnered 39 points in the poll to rank behind Newberry, Wingate and Mars Hill. Newberry took six of the first place votes and totaled 55 points. Wingate and Mars Hill each had one first-place vote and finished with 47 and 42 points, respectively. Carson-Newman was tabbed fifth with Tusculum sixth. Lenoir-Rhyne and Limestone rounded out the poll in a tie for seventh.

Four of Catawba’s first-team selections came on defense, led by preseason All-American linebacker Kyle Kitchens. Joining Kitchens on the first team is fellow linebacker Trey Evans, lineman Jordan Hemingway and cornerback Cris Page. Offensively, wide receiver Sam Mobley and lineman Quinzavious Sands claimed first team honors along with placekicker Brennan Lambert.

Kitchens posted 49 tackles, 14.5 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery last year. Evans tied for tops for the Catawba Indians with 73 tackles. He also chipped in 12.5 tackles for loss, three fumble recoveries, two sacks, one forced fumble and one interception. Hemingway turned in 34 tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss and one sack with Page posting 31 tackles, three interceptions, 10 break ups, 3.5 tackles for loss, three fumble recoveries and one interception.

Mobley, who caught 31 passes, hauled in four touchdowns and amassed 663 yards of receiving a season ago. Sands started all 11 games at left guard. Lambert converted 10 field goals and led the team in scoring with 51 points.

Catawba’s second team selections included quarterback Reid Carlton, running back Eamon Smart, defensive lineman Trevor Bembry, linebacker Michael Peppers and safety Jeremy Addison. Carlton threw for 1007 yards over nine games and connected on six touchdown strikes. Smart ran for a team-high 571 yards and scored twice. Bembry recorded 14 tackles with a pair of sacks and four stops for losses. Peppers shared the team lead with 73 tackles, while adding an interception and eight tackles for a loss. Adison made 50 tackles and broke up six passes.

The Catawba Indians will help open the season, hosting St. Augustine’s on Thursday, August 31 at 7 p.m.

2017 South Atlantic Conference First and Second Team Preseason All-Conference
QB – Ivan Corbin, Limestone
RB – Lawrence Pittman, Wingate
RB – Blake Hayes, Wingate
RB – Antonio Wimbush, Carson-Newman
WR – Markell Castle, Newberry
WR – Craig Rucker, Mars Hill
WR – Sam Mobley, Catawba
OL – Bryce King, Mars Hill
OL – Daniel Owens, Wingate
OL – Cabell Cantrell, Wingate
OL – Quinzavious Sands, Catawba
OL – Dakota Mozingo, Newberry
TE – Baptiste Staggers, Newberry
PK – Brennan Lambert, Catawba
LS – Ian O’Grady, Tusculum
RS – Jay Boyd, Tusculum

QB – Reid Carlton, Catawba
RB – Eamon Smart, Catawba
RB – Nelson Brown, Lenoir-Rhyne
RB – Tony Belle, Tusculum
WR – Lonnie Williams, Carson-Newman
WR – D’Anta Fleming, Limestone
WR – Keshaun Taylor, Mars Hill
OL – Jordan Seal, Carson-Newman
OL – Tyler Anderson, Newberry
OL – Austin Turner, Newberry
OL – Deveon Broadwater, Tusculum
OL – Austin May, Wingate
TE – Kedar Bryant, Mars Hill AND Jake Jensen, Wingate (TIE)
PK – Shea Rodgers, Newberry
RS – Lonnie Willams, Carson-Newman
LS – Dawson Campbell, Carson-Newman

DL – Brian Bembry, Carson-Newman
DL – Jordan Hemingway, Catawba
DL – Josh Parker, Newberry
DL – Jamarcus Henderson, Newberry
LB – Kyle Kitchens, Catawba
LB – Will Elm, Newberry
LB – Joe Blue, Newberry
LB – Trey Evans, Catawba
DB – Cris Page, Catawba
DB – Jay Boyd, Tucsulum
DB – Joshua Simmons, Limestone
DB – Kyle Dugger, Lenoir-Rhyne
P – Jonathan King, Carson-Newman

DL – Montel Presley, Carson-Newman
DL – Trevor Bembry, Catawba
DL – Britt Hastey, Tusculum
DL – Colton Strickland, Tusculum
LB – Zack Singleton, Wingate
LB – Michael Peppers, Catawba
LB – Raymond Hall, Limestone
LB -  Jerjuan Edwards, Mars Hill
DB – Kameron Johnson, Wingate
DB – Jeremy Addison, Catawba
DB – Marcus Kincaid, Lenoir-Rhyne
DB – PJ Brown, Limestone
P – Hunter Cantrell, Tusculum

2017 SAC Football Preseason Poll
1. Newberry (6), 55
2. Wingate (1), 47
3. Mars Hill (1), 42
4. Catawba, 39
5. Carson-Newman, 33
6. Tusculum, 26
7t. Lenoir-Rhyne, 19
7t. Limestone, 19

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