6 from area chosen for All-Star tilt
Six local players have been selected to participate in the 36th annual Minnesota High School All-Star Football Game June 27 at Husky Stadium on the campus of St. Cloud State University.
This is the fifth time St. Cloud State has hosted the event that will pit the Outstate All-Stars against the Metro All-Stars. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
Area representatives are: Taylor Freetly, a 6-5, 205-pound tight end from Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg; Jay Hilbrands, a 6-4, 175-pound wide receiver from MACCRAY; Nic Johnson, a 5-8, 210-pound running back from Litchfield; Aaron Lindahl, a 6-3, 165-pound defensive back from Benson; Brandon Murphy, a 6-5, 215-pound offensive linemen from New London-Spicer; and Jordan Smith, a 6-3, 205-pound wide receiver from Willmar.
All six players were on the Tribune's All-Area team.
Freetly had 45 receptions for nearly 1,000 yards and 15 touchdowns this season for the Fighting Saints. Hilbrands caught 52 passes for 761 yards and 10 touchdowns, Johnson rushed for 1,246 yards and 23 touchdowns, Murphy was the Most Valuable Lineman in the West Central North Conference, Lindahl made 36 tackles and intercepted three passes, and Smith caught 39 passes for 547 yards and five touchdowns.
The Minnesota Football Coaches Association sel-ected the 86 players for the All-Star Game. This is the 30th year that features the Outstate against the Metro. The Outstate leads the series 15-14. The Metro All-Stars won last season's event, 22-17.
Among the players selected were Minnesota's Mr., Football Varmah Sonie of Apple Valley, as well as University of Minnesota recruits Matt Garin of Eastview and Josh Campion of Fergus Falls.
James Cortez, the head coach at KMS, will be one of the assistants for the Outstate team. KMS won the Class A state title this past fall. The head coach for the Outstate team is Mark Esch of Mankato West. Former Willmar head coach and current Brainerd assistant coach Deryl Ramey will be an honorary coach for the Outstate team.
John DenHartog of Hopkins is the head coach for the Metro team. The honorary coach of the Metro team is Stan Skjei, the Tribune's first Hengstler-Ranweiler Award winner in 1961 out of Appleton.
Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter will host the All-Star Football training camp. The players and coaches will report to Gustavus on June 21 to begin the seven-day camp.
Tickets can be purchased from the high school coach in your community. Tickets will also be available at the Husky Stadium gate on June 27.