LANCASTER, Pa. --- Five Moravian College football players have been named to the 2018 Centennial All-Conference Teams with sophomore wide receiver Nick Petros selected to the First Team, senior defensive lineman Nick Tone and sophomore defensive back Jackson Buskirk earning spots on the Second Team and junior offensive linemen Tyler Maxsim and Brett Poling being selected to the Honorable Mention squad. Senior Jacob Kober was named to the Centennial Conference Fall All-Sportsmanship Team.
Petros became just the third player in school history to reach 1,000 receiving yards in a season as he finished the year with 1,017 yards on 57 catches with a school-record 11 touchdowns. Five of Petros' touchdown receptions were longer than 67 yards including a career-best 80 yard TD versus Dickinson College, and he caught a total of 20 passes longer than 20 yards including 10 of his 11 touchdowns. Petros finished the season with 68 points on his 11 TD receptions and a two-point conversion. Petros also punted 59 times this fall for an average of 35.6 yards including just one touchback, three fair caught, 12 inside the 20-yard line and five longer than 50 yards with a school-record 74-yard punt at Franklin & Marshall College.
"Nick had phenomenal sophomore season," stated Head Coach Jeff Pukszyn. "Nick is the ultimate competitor and he works to be the best in everything he does. Besides being a very good athlete, he also understands the game very well which really helped him be in constant positions for success. His drive, work ethic and selfless attitude are what make him, not only a great player, but a great teammate as well. I'm excited to have Nick back for two more years."
Tone, who served as a team-captain this fall, was second on the squad and led the defensive line with 60 tackles including 30 solo stops. Tone led the squad with 13 tackles for loss, seven and a half sacks and four forced fumbles this season, and he added a fumble recovery and a pass break-up. Tone completed his career with 132 tackles, 67 solo stops, 22 tackles for loss of 88 yards, 13 and a half sacks for loss of 71 yards, four forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and three pass break-ups in 38 career games.
"Nick played his best football as a senior, and for a coach, that is exactly want you want to see," Pukszyn said. "He is a very explosive player who played inside and outside for us this year on the defensive line. His relentless play and drive to be the best earned him this spot on the All-Conference Second Team."
Buskirk led the Moravian defense with 68 tackles including 40 solo stops, and he also contributed six pass break-ups and a pair of fumble recoveries including one he returned five yards for a touchdown in a 14-9 win at McDaniel College. Buskirk has 141 tackles, one tackle for loss, two fumble recoveries, two interceptions and 14 passes defended in 19 games with two seasons left to play.
"Jackson is another good athlete who is constantly around the football," commented Pukszyn. "Jackson is big and strong enough to make plays in the run game but also has the athleticism to make plays in space in the pass game. Jackson is another great competitor on this team who wants to excel at everything he does. His constant drive for success is certainly going to help elevate our secondary play over the next two years. Like Petros, we are excited to have Jackson for another two years."
Maxsim started all 10 games this season at left tackle thus year for the Hounds. Maxsim is a three-year starter at the position and has seen action in 27 career contests. This fall, Maxsim, Poling and the rest of the offense line helped the Hounds average 316.9 yards per game including 130.8 yards on the ground per contest.
"Tyler has worked extremely hard over the past few years and he his playing at a high level right now," Pukszyn noted. "His size and length alone make it difficult for any pass rusher get around Tyler. He is a student of the game and his increased knowledge has helped him become a better a player. I'm excited to have Tyler back for another year."
Poling started every game at center for a second straight fall for the Greyhounds after starting at right guard during his freshman season. Poling was also selected to the Centennial All-Conference Honorable Mention squad for the second consecutive year.
"Brett is the cog in the offensive line," explained Pukszyn. "He not only takes care of what he needs to do, but he makes sure that the other four guys are doing what they need to as well. He also did a great job of settling in a young QB half way through the season as well. Brett has a tenacious attitude that has been contagious in the offensive line and it has showed in their play."
Kober contributed 58 tackles with 27 solo stops, two tackles for loss, a sack, an interception and four passes defended in his final season with the Greyhounds. Kober finished his career with 88 tackles in 27 games with one sack, three tackles for loss, one interception, four passes defended and a pair of blocked kicks.
"I would argue that no one was more excited to see Jacob have the senior season that he had," stated Pukszyn. "He played better and better each week and really took control of the secondary. Jacob has always been a team first guy and was a great example for the younger players in our program."
Coach Pukszyn guided the Greyhounds to a 5-5 mark this fall, and is slated to return 82 of the 94 players from this year's squad next season.
To view the full 2018 Centennial All-Conference Teams, visit http://www.centennial.org/sports/fball/2018-19/releases/All-CC.