Elite Company: Northeastern's Freshwater named to all-state football team
By Malcolm Shields
Thursday, January 5, 2017
It was a dominating season for Northeastern sophomore Traveon Freshwater.
His efforts on the field was recognized as the defensive lineman was named to the Associated Press all-state prep football team at the position on Thursday.
Freshwater, who has garnered interest from Division I programs, led Northeastern with 22 sacks to go along with 150 tackles in 2016.
His selection to the all-state team adds to his list of postseason awards.
Freshwater, listed at 6-foot-3, 210 pounds, was named the Northeastern Coastal Conference Defensive Player of the Year and tabbed to The Daily Advance All-Area team.
Freshwater told The Daily Advance on Thursday that it meant a lot for him to earn the selection to the all-state team.
“I thought that it was well deserved,” Northeastern coach Antonio Moore added.
Even as a freshman in 2015, Moore saw the potential in Freshwater, who has interest from North Carolina State, East Carolina, Old Dominion, Wake Forest and South Carolina.
Recruiting websites Scout.com and Rivals.com note that Duke has Freshwater on its radar.
Freshwater made the move from JV to varsity during the middle of the 2015 season.
Over the past two seasons, the NHS coach said that he has seen the biggest improvement in Freshwater’s confidence.
The coach also credited the work Freshwater put in the weight room and fine-tuning his fundamentals during the offseason for his success in 2016.
During the 2016 season, Freshwater played on the defensive line, linebacker, running back and in certain situations at safety.
“It was pretty tough,” Freshwater said.
The sophomore added that he knew that he could handle the workload if he put his mind to it.
On offense, Freshwater led the team with 1,441 yards with 23 touchdowns.
When former all-area running back Clarence Jones finished his NHS career in 2015, Moore knew that Freshwater could make the transition into running back.
What was notable about Freshwater’s rushing statistics was that in at least four games, Moore said that Freshwater did not play in the second half because Northeastern held a large lead.
Even with his success, there is room to improve for Freshwater, who noted that he wants to be a more vocal leader for NHS going forward.
Member newspapers nominated roughly 250 players for consideration for team and individual honors.
Class 4A state champion Greensboro Dudley had the most selections on the team with four.
Reidsville, which defeated Edenton in the 2A state championship game, had one selection on the team in kick returner Austyn Chestnut.
The AP will announce its state coach of the year today, followed by the offensive and defensive players of the year Saturday.
Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.