Lenorris Gaines had a season to remember for the Clewiston Tigers.
The junior athlete, who finished with 30 catches for 794 yards and seven touchdowns, was the only area player selected to the Class 4A All-State First Team.
“It’s a privilege, but it wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for the teammates I had around me,” Gaines said. “I just always felt like it was a minor set back for a major come back.”
The dynamic playmaker, who scored both of Clewiston’s touchdowns in a thrilling 16-10 road over crosstown rival Glades Day in Week 9 of the regular season, credits assistant coach Brad Garrett for the progress he has made on the field.
“I owe all my success to Coach Garrett for pushing and believing in me to the fullest,” he said.
Gaines, who also caught two interceptions on defense, recapped his junior season.
“I worked hard last summer,” he said. “The team had something to prove, so I had to work hard to make sure that happened. I came a long way in learning how to block for my teammates when I didn’t have the ball and thinking before acting on anything. But really, I just made plays when I had the chance.”
Gaines wasn’t the only All-State selection from our area. Glades Central senior linebacker Jarvis Philibert was a Class 4A All-State First Team Defense pick, while fellow teammate and senior cornerback Bernard Willingham made the Class 4A All-State Second Team Defense.
Meanwhile, Clewiston senior offensive lineman Joe Hernandez was selected to the Class 4A All-State Second Team Offense, while fellow teammate and senior running back Derry West was a Class 4A All-State Honorable Mention pick at his position.
In Class 3A, Pahokee senior cornerback Dontrell Johnson and linebacker Anton Paige were both All-State Second Team Defense selections, while senior athlete Rashaun Croney was a 3A All-State Honorable Mention pick as a utility player.
Class 2A had two All-State picks from Glades Day, as senior offensive lineman Dillon McGahee made the classification’s All-State First Team on offense, while fellow teammates and juniors William Mercer and Kevon Spence were 2A All-State Second Team Defense picks at defensive lineman and defensive back, respectively.
Here’s the complete list of our area’s All-State picks:
LB Jarvis Philibert – Class 4A All-State First Team Defense
DB Bernard Willingham – Class 4A All-State Second Team Defense
OL Dillon McGahee – Class 2A All-State First Team Offense
DL William Mercer – Class 2A All-State Second Team Defense
DB Kevon Spence – Class 2A All-State Second Team Defense
DB Dontrell Johnson – Class 3A All-State Second Team Defense
LB Anton Paige – Class 3A All-State Second Team Defense
UT Rashaun Croney – Class 3A All-State Honorable Mention
WR Lenorris Gaines – Class 4A All-State First Team Offense
OL Joe Hernandez – Class 4A All-State Second Team Offense
RB Derry West – Class 4A All-State Honorable Mention
In total, there were 11 All-State selections from our area.