Heyward, Armstrong named to GSWA All-State teams

After leading Peachtree Ridge to the Class AAAAA co-state championship this past season, head coach Blair Armstrong and lineman Cameron Heyward received two top awards from the Georgia Sports Writers Association, which released its All-State teams on Friday.

Armstrong was named the Class AAAAA Coach of the Year along with Roswell coach Tim McFarlin. Their two teams tied 14-14 and shared the state title earlier this month.

Heyward was selected by a panel of sports writers as AAAAA's defensive player of the year. The 6-foot-6, 280-pounder had more than 100 tackles and 13 sacks as a senior to lead a Lion defense that didn't allow more than 14 points in any of its five playoff games.

He was joined on the All-State first-team defense by Brookwood linebacker Rennie Curran, who had 150 tackles and 13 sacks, as well as Peachtree Ridge teammate Drew Butler at punter. Butler led Gwinnett with a 41.8 punting average.

Norcross wide receiver Darius Hanks made the AAAAA first team offense after catching 55 passes for 795 yards and seven touchdowns as a senior. He also intercepted a team-high six passes.

In AAAA, Dacula senior Cameron Kenney was a first-team selection as a kick returner. Kenney accounted for 15 TDs this past season, including 10 as a wide receiver and two on punt returns.

Four Gwinnett players made first-team All-State in AA, including offensive linemen Zack Skipper of Buford and T-Bob Hebert of Greater Atlanta Christian. The GSWA All-State first team in that class also included Buford defensive lineman Omar Hunter (80 tackles, 5 1/2 sacks) and linebacker T.J. Pridemore (102 tackles).

The following players also earned honorable mention acclaim from the GSWA: Norcross quarterback Bryce Dykes, North Gwinnett wide receiver Ryan McDaniel, GAC running back Caleb King and GAC quarterback Lee Chapple.