Here are the nominees for The Charlotte Observer/Deer Park high school football defensive player of the week.
Eligible players are at schools in Mecklenburg, Cabarrus, Gaston, Iredell, Lincoln and Union counties in North Carolina and in York and Lancaster counties in South Carolina.
The weekly winner will receive a trophy from Deer Park, the water company.
This week’s defensive nominees
Dallas Brannon, Independence: In a 34-14 win over previously unbeaten Watauga in the third round of the NCHSAA 4A playoffs, Brannon had 13 tackles, including seven solo stops.
Ian Coleman, Butler: In a 49-13 win over Mount Tabor in the third round of the NCHSAA 4A playoffs, Coleman had five tackles, two quarterback hurries, a tackle for loss and an 8-yard sack. He also had a 67-yard interception return for a touchdown.
Jayden Olden, Monroe: In a 24-23 loss to Bunker Hill in the third round of the NCHSAA 2A playoffs, Olden had a team-high 16 tackles. Nine of them were solo tackles.
Caiden Smith, Forest Hills: In a 38-21 win over Community School of Davidson in the third round of the NCHSAA 2A playoffs, Smith had a team-high 10 tackles, including six solo tackles.
David Sanders Jr., Providence Day: In a 34-27 come-from-behind win over Rabun Gap for the NCISAA Division I state title game, Sanders started on the offensive and defensive lines. On defense, he had seven tackles, three quarterback hurries, a blocked extra punt, a fumble recovery and caused a safety that led to the Chargers’ championship-winning final possession.
KD Smith, West Charlotte: in a 30-29 overtime loss to Boiling Springs Crest in the third round of the NCHSAA 3A playoffs, Smith had four tackles, two pass break-ups and two interceptions. The sophomore ran 14 times for 114 yards and a touchdown on offense and completed 5-of-8 passes for 101 yards and a another score.
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