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Carroll College football announces 2022 recruiting class

15 of 34 signees from Montana
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Posted at 3:27 PM, Feb 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-03 17:27:23-05

HELENA — Early Wednesday morning, Carroll College football's Twitter got rocking as the team announced its 2022 recruiting class.

Across the morning, 34 players were announced with 15 of them being from Montana, including four from in and around Helena.

From Helena, Forrest Suero, Kade Schlepp, and Tucker Zanto will all be staying home, and Gavin Vandenacre from Townsend will only need to make a short trip up Highway 12 to make his way to campus.

The other local products include Isaiah Claunch from Billings West, Trey Johnson from Glasgow, Tristan Pyette from Florence, and Bodie Smith from Whitefish to name just a few.

The Fighting Saints recruited in total one quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, one tight end, a dozen offensive and defensive linemen, six linebackers, five defensive backs, and four special teams players.

Below you can find excerpts from the Carroll College Athletics media release detailing all 34 signees.

(Editor's Note: from a Carroll College Media release)

Johnathan Amezcua / Wenatchee, Wash. / Wenatchee HS / DB, 6-foot, 170 lbs

Amezcua was a three-year varsity letter winner and two-time All-Conference defensive back at Wenatchee. He was a team captain, a two-time varsity letter winner in basketball and a member of the state 4x100m track team. Johnathan is the son of Monica and Juan Amezcua and has four sisters (Janelle, Juliette, Jemma, Jozel). He plans to pursue a degree in Nursing.

Amezcua on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because the atmosphere and culture on the football team and around campus. It felt like a family, and I really like the city of Helena and the outdoor activities in the area."

Dayne Barbie / Cut Bank, Mont. / Cut Bank HS / OL, 6-foot-4, 250 lbs

Barbie was first team All-Conference offensive lineman and two-time All-Conference defensive lineman at Cut Bank. He was a team captain, a four-year varsity letter winner in Basketball, and a varsity letter winner in Tennis and Track and Field. He was named to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Off the field, Barbie was a three-time Academic All-State performer, and Vice President of the National Honor Society. Dayne is the son of Kathleen and Pete Barbie and has one sister (Hadley) and two brothers (RJ, Bodie). He plans to pursue a degree in Health Sciences.

Barbie on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the great academics and the great football program. I loved the coaches, teachers, community and my future teammates."

Antonio Basterrechea / Kuna, Idaho / Kuna HS / LS, 5-foot-11, 160 lbs

Basterrechea was a two-year varsity letter winner and a 2019 state champion long snapper at Kuna. He was a team captain. Off the field, Basterrechea was a member of the honor roll. Antonio is the son of Andi Basterrechea. He plans to pursue a degree in Political Science.

Basterrechea on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because I love the atmosphere of the school and the football program. I fell in love with Carroll the moment I stepped on campus."

Spencer Berger / Billings, Mont. / Billings West HS / K, 5-foot-10, 170 lbs

Berger was a two-time first team All-State kicker and an All-State punter at Billings West. He was a 2018 AA state champion and played in three state championship games. He was a three-year varsity letter winner in baseball. He was named an alternate to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Off the field, Berger was named Academic All-State four times. Spencer is the son of Janell and Buddy Berger and has one sister (Kamryn). He plans to pursue a degree in Biochemistry with an emphasis in Molecular Biology.

Berger on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the family atmosphere on campus and with the football program. Carroll has a great football team which I can't wait to be a part of. There is no better school in the state to accomplish my goal of attending medical school."

Jaxson Cleverly / Washington, Utah / Crimson Cliffs HS / DB, 6-foot-2, 170 lbs

Cleverly was a three-year varsity letter winner and an All-Region and All-State defensive back as a senior at Crimson Cliffs. He had three interceptions as a senior and helped lead Crimson Cliffs to the state semifinals for the first time in school history. Off the field, Cleverly is a woodworking master. Jaxson is the son of Nicole and Brandon and has one sister (Brooklyn) and two brothers (Taylor, Mason). He plans to pursue a degree in Health Sciences.

Cleverly on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because I love the school, the players, the coaches and the campus. It was clear that Carroll was the best choice for me."

Nick Clouse / Seattle, Wash. / Bishop Blanchet HS / K, 5-foot-9, 175 lbs

Clouse was a two-year varsity starter and two-time first team All-Metro League performer at Bishop Blanchette. He was named the 2021-2022 Special Teams MVP. Off the field, Clouse earned the 2019 Nation German Exam Bronze Award. Clouse is the son of Tara Cannava and Jay Clouse and has one sister (Natalie). He plans to pursue a degree in Computer Science.

Clouse on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because I love everything Carroll has to offer. It felt like one big family, and I was impressed with the hospitality of the teachers, coaches, players and community. I love the town of Helena."

Isaiah Claunch / Billings, Mont. / Billings West HS / QB, 6-foot-2, 200 lbs

Claunch was a four-year varsity letter winner, two-time All-Conference and two-time All-State quarterback at Billings West. He was a team captain, two-time Class AA runner up, two-year varsity letter winner in basketball, and four-year varsity letter winner in track. He was named to the 2022 Montana-East West Shrine Game. Off the field, Claunch was a member of the honor roll. Claunch is the son of Naomi and Kane Claunch and has one sister (Kiana) and one brother (Malachi). He plans to pursue a degree in Civil Engineering.

Claunch on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because it was the team and school that was most welcoming to me. The team chemistry and culture is extraordinary and something that I want to be a part of."

Connor Curnow / Dillon, Mont. / Beaverhead County HS / LB, 6-foot-4, 210 lbs

Curnow was a two-time first team All-State Linebacker and an All-Conference wide receiver at Beaverhead County. He was a team captain, three-year varsity letter winner in football and basketball, four-year varsity letter winner in baseball, and was a participant in state track. He was named an alternate to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Off the field, Curnow was named Academic All-State four times and a member of the National Honor Society. Connor is the son of Ali and Joe Curnow and has three brothers (Carter, Gage, Brody). He plans to pursue a degree in Business.

Curnow on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the family feel and the bond between the players and the coaches. I know I am going to get a great education at Carroll, too."

Jack Foster / Boise, Idaho / Bishop Kelly HS / OL, 6-foot-7, 240 lbs

Foster was a two-year varsity letter winner and an All-Conference offensive lineman at Bishop Kelly. He was a team captain, varsity letter winner in basketball, and a Idaho State Champion in baseball. Off the field, Foster was a member of the National Honor Society and the honor roll. Jack is the son of John and Andrea Foster and has three sisters (Evi, Josi, Naomi). He plans to pursue a degree in Business with an emphasis in Finance.

Foster on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the culture of great academics and great football. I believe that Carroll College will set me up best for the rest of my life."

Ty Henson / Star, Idaho / Eagle HS / OL, 6-foot-1, 240 lbs

Henson was a two-year varsity letter winner and a second team All-State selection at Eagle. He was named first team All-Conference, and a varsity letter winner in wrestling and baseball. Off the field, Henson was a member of the National Honor Society and selected as an American Legion Boys State representative. Ty is the son of Rochelle and Tom Henson and has one sister (Paige). He plans to pursue a degree in Environmental Science.

Henson on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the great athletic and academic programs. I loved the players, coaches and professors on my visit."

Payton Howe / Downey, Idaho / Marsh Valley HS / DB, 5-foot-10, 160 lbs

Howe was a three-year varsity letter winner, and All-Conference wide receiver and All-State defensive back at Marsh Valley. He was a team captain, a state champion basketball player and a state champion baseball player. Off the field, Howe was a member of the National Honor Society. Payton is the son of Jackie and Darren Howe and has one sister (Carter) and two brothers (Jax, Steele). He plans to pursue a degree in Nursing.

Howe on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the welcoming players, the pretty campus, and amazing coaching staff. Carroll is the place I'm supposed to be."

Hunter Irish / Olympia, Wash. / Olympia HS / OL, 6-foot-4, 290 lbs

Irish was a four-year varsity letter winner, first team All-Area and a first team All-SPSL offensive lineman at Olympia. He was a team captain, voted most inspirational, and the B.E.A.R.S. Coaches award winner. He was a varsity letter winner in wrestling, and participated in USA Boxing. Off the field, Irish was a two-time class president and a four-year member of the honor roll. Hunter is the son of Rachel and Trevor Irish and has one sister (Payton) and one brother (Cole). He plans to pursue a degree in Pre-Law.

Irish on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the first-class football program and first-class education. I love the community of Helena; it's a place that I can call home."

Gunner Giulio / Coeur d'Alene, Idaho / Coeur d'Alene HS / LB, 6-foot, 195 lbs

Giulio was a four-year varsity letter winner, two-time second team all-state defender, and 5A Inland Empire League MVP at Coeur d'Alene. He was a team captain, three-time state champion wrestler, and the two-time North Idaho Athlete of the Year. Off the field, Guilio was a member of the honor roll. Gunner is the son of Jennifer and Jim Guilio and has two brothers (Vincent, Boone). He plans to pursue a degree in Pre-Physical Therapy.

Guilio on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of how much the professors and coaches care about the students and the athletes. It felt like family, and I love the atmosphere on campus and in Nelson Stadium!"

Trey Johnson / Hinsdale, Mont. / Glasgow HS / DL, 6-foot-5, 215 lbs

Johnson was a three-year varsity letter winner and an All-Conference defensive end and tight end at Glasgow. He was a team captain, the Norm Thompson award winner, and selected to the 2022 Class B All-Star game. He was a three-year starter in basketball and state meet participant in Hurdles for Hinsdale. Off the field, Johnson is the Valedictorian at Hinsdale. Trey is the son of Heidi and Mark Johnson and has one sister (Mickayla) and two brothers (Brady, Lukas). He plans to pursue a degree in Anthrozoology.

Johnson on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of its great academic program, its tradition of winning, and the great teammates I will have."

Ben Larsen / Washoe Valley, Nevada / Damonte Ranch HS / OL, 6-foot-7, 260 lbs

Larsen was a two-year varsity letter winner and a first team All-State offensive lineman at Damonte Ranch. He was team captain and named a first team All-Region offensive lineman. He was a varsity letter winner in track. Off the field, Larsen was a member of the honor roll. Ben is the son of Melissa and Erik Larsen and has one brother (Sven). He plans to pursue a degree in Business with an emphasis in Marketing.

Larsen on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because I loved the school, the team, and Helena. It was a great fit for me."

Ryan Morgan / Langley, Wash. / South Whidbey HS / DB, 6-foot, 190 lbs

Morgan was a four-year varsity letter winner and a WSFCA 1A All-State wide receiver at South Whidbey. He was a team captain, a first team all-league performer at quarterback and defensive back, and a second team performer at tight end and linebacker. He was a four-year varsity letter winner in soccer. Off the field, Morgan was a member of the National Honor Society. Ryan is the son of Susan and Daniel Morgan and has one sister (Kate). He plans to pursue a degree in International Relations.

Morgan on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the great environment on campus and off campus. I am excited to be a part of the ROTC program."

Joaquin Porcayo / Yuba City, Calif. / Yuba City HS / RB, 6-foot, 205 lbs

Porcayo was an All-Conference running back and All-State running back for Yuba City. He was a team captain, invited to the Northern California All Star game, led the best rushing attack in school history, and invited to try out for the USA Nation Rugby 7's team. Off the field, Porcayo was a member of the honor roll. Joaquin is the son of Sina and Joaquin Porcayo and has one sister (Leilani) and two brothers (Maddux, Cruz). He plans to pursue a degree in Business.

Porcayo on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because I felt very welcomed and at home. I love the coaching staff and professors, and they want us to be successful on the field and in life."

Kris Prince / Spokane, Wash. / Mead HS / DL, 6-foot-2, 245 lbs

Prince was a three-year varsity letter winner and a two-time All-Conference defensive lineman at Mead. He was a team captain and varsity letter winner in wrestling. Kris is the son of Rebecca and Mike Prince and has one sister (Mackenzie). He plans to pursue a degree in Health Sciences.

Prince on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because it has great academics and a great football program."

Dylan Pullen / Washington, Utah / Crimson Cliffs HS / OL, 6-foot-3, 250 lbs

Pullen was a four-year varsity letter winner and a first team All-State and All-Conference offensive lineman at Crimson Cliffs. He was a team captain, and named the offensive line MVP. Off the field, Pullen was a member of the ROTC. He is the son of Beth McComb and Bronson Akuna and has two sisters (Marleigh, Ashlynn) and one brother (Kingston). He plans to pursue a Pre-Med degree.

Pullen on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the great tradition of winning and of great offensive lineman. I have a great relationship with the coaches, and I love the school, the team, and the culture on campus."

Tristan Pyette / Florence, Mont. / Florence-Carlton HS / RB, 5-foot-10, 195 lbs

Pyette was a two-time All-Conference and an All-State running back at Florence. He was a member of the 2021 Montana Class B State Championship team. He was a two-year varsity letter winner in basketball. He was named an alternate to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Off the field, Pyette was named Academic All-State and a member of the honor roll. Tristan is the son of Kris and Jessica Pyette and has one sister (Taylor). He plans to pursue a degree in Nursing.

Pyette on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because it is an amazing school and has an incredible environment. It has a great tradition of success that you can feel."

Wyatt Sandford / Coeur d'Alene, Idaho / Coeur d'Alene HS / OL, 6-foot-4, 265 lbs

Sandford was a three-year varsity letter winner, first team All-Conference, and second team All-State offensive lineman at Coeur d'Alene. He was a team captain, a two-star prospect, and named preseason All-State. Off the field, Sandford was given the Distinguished Team Scholastic Award. Wyatt is the son of Toby Sandford and has one brother (Davon). He plans to pursue a degree in Education.

Sandford on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the great Education program and the great culture that the coaches have built. I have former teammates at Carroll and can't wait to play with them again."

Kade Schlepp / Helena, Mont. / Helena HS / WR, 6-foot, 175 lbs

Schlepp was a three-year varsity letter winner and a second team All-State wide receiver at Helena High. He was a varsity letter winner in basketball and track and field. Off the field, Schlepp was named Academic All-State four times, a member of the National Honor Society, and a member of the honor roll. Kade is the son of Willie and Kellie Schlepp and has one sister (Rylie) and one brother (Trey). He plans to pursue a Pre-Med degree.

Schlepp on why he chose Carroll College "I chose Carroll College because of the atmosphere around the team, school, and games. The education and fans at Carroll College are second to none. Carroll College was the best fit for my future."

Zack Schlottmann / Hillsboro, Ore. / Glencoe HS / TE, 6-foot-3, 230 lbs

Schottmann was a four-year varsity letter winner, first All-Conference defensive end, and second team All-State tight end at Glencoe. He was a team captain, Glencoe Lineman and Special Teams player of the year, and a four-year varsity letter winner in basketball. Off the field, Schlottmann was a member of the honor roll. Zack is the son of Darcey and Craig Schlottman and has one sister (Tia). He plans to pursue a degree in Environmental Science.

Schlottmann on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because I could tell that the coaches and teachers genuinely care about you. It was by far the best fit for me."

Jadon Sheveland / Wasilla, Alaska / Wasilla HS / K, 6-foot-2, 170 lbs

Sheveland was a three-year varsity letter winner and first team All-State kicker at Wasilla. He was the Medium School Kicker of the year and player in the All-Alaska Shriners game. He was a four-year varsity letter winner in soccer and the 2019 Christian Character Award winner. Off the field, Sheveland was a member of the National Honor Society and a member of the honor roll. Jadon is the son of Janelle and Jeff Sheveland and has one sister (Maggie). He plans to pursue a degree in Environmental Studies.

Sheveland on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the great culture and community on the team, on campus, and in Helena."

Bodie Smith / Whitefish, Mont. / Whitefish HS / DB, 6-foot-1, 170 lbs

Smith was a four-year varsity letter winner and a two-time first team All-State wide receiver and safety at Whitefish. He was a team captain, three-time All-Conference defensive back, All Conference in basketball and a state placer in three events for track and field. He was named to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Bodie is the son of Nikki and Scott Smith and has one sister (Bailey) and one brother (Ty). He plans to pursue a degree in Sports Medicine.

Smith on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because I loved the facilities, coaches and teachers and really felt like they wanted me here. It is a great school with awesome class sizes."

Forrest Suero / Helena, Mont. / Helena HS / DL, 5-foot-11, 250 lbs

Suero was a three year All-Conference and two-time All-State defensive lineman at Helena High. He was a team captain, second team All-State offensive lineman, and team Defensive MVP. He was a member of the AA American Legion state champion 2021 Helena Senators baseball team. He was named to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Forrest is the son of Michelle and Ignacio Suero and has three brothers (Caeden, Gabe, Torrey). He plans to pursue a degree in Sociology.

Suero on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the family atmosphere on campus and the football team. Carroll has been my favorite school since I can remember!"

Connor Sullivan / Kalispell, Mont. / Glacier HS / WR, 5-foot-10, 160 lbs

Sullivan was first team All-State defensive athlete and a second team All-State wide receiver at Glacier. He was a team captain, an All-Conference defensive back and wide receiver, and a varsity letter winner in basketball and track. He was named as an alternate to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Off the field, Sullivan is a four-time member of the Academic All-State team and a member of the National Honor Society. Connor is the son of Heather and Bill Sullivan and has one sister (Kiera). He plans to pursue a degree in Education.

Sullivan on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because it gave me a sense of belonging. I love the atmosphere around Helena, the classroom and the team. All the coaches want us to succeed on the field, in the classroom, and after college."

Jacob Sweatland / Missoula, Mont. / Hellgate HS / LB, 6-foot-1, 210 lbs

Sweatland three-year varsity letter winner and a second team All-State linebacker and running back at Hellgate. He was a team captain, an All-State wrestler, and a varsity letter winner in track. He was named as an alternate to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Off the field, Sweatland was a member of the honor roll. Jacob is the son of Carrie and Brian Sweatland and has one sister (Annie). He plans to pursue a degree in Chemistry.

Sweatland on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the great coaches and the culture around the football program. I always felt welcomed. I know that Carroll College is a great school that will set me up for the rest of life."

Gavin Vandenacre / Townsend, Mont. / Broadwater County HS / WR, 6-foot-3, 180 lbs

Vandenacre was a four-year varsity letter winner and three-time first team All-State wide receiver at Broadwater County. He was a team captain and is the Broadwater County all-time leader in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns. Gavin was a first team All-State performer in basketball and as a sprinter in track and field. He was named to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Off the field, Vandenacre was a member of the honor roll. Gavin is the son of Paige and Trinity Vandenacre and has one sister (Haven) and one brother (Holden). He plans to pursue a degree in Business with an emphasis in Finance and Accounting.

Vandenacre on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the emphasis of character in the school and with the football program. I know that they are invested in my improvement and want to help me become a better person."

Carter Warnick / Billings, Mont. / Billings West HS / DL, 6-foot-4, 260 lbs

Warnick was a three-year varsity letter winner, second team All-State offensive lineman, and first team All-State defensive lineman at Billings West. He was a team captain, defensive lineman of the year and Billings West Teammate of the Year award winner. He was a two-time varsity letter winner in basketball and track and field. He was named an alternate to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Off the field, Warnick was a member of the honor roll. Carter is the son of Natalie and Matt Warnick and has two sisters (Emma, Abigail) and one brother (Collin). He plans to pursue a Pre-Med degree.

Warnick on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the atmosphere on campus, around the team, and in Helena. It is the place I want to be."

Jaxson Washington / Coeur d'Alene, Idaho / Coeur d'Alene HS / DL, 6-foot-1, 260 lbs

Washington was a three-year varsity letter winner, two-time All Inland Empire League, and 2021 first team 5A Idaho All-State at Coeur d'Alene. He was a team captain and the 2021 Athlete of the season. He was a four-year varsity letter winner in wrestling and a three-time 5A Idaho State Wrestling qualifier. Off the field, Washington was a member of the honor roll. Jaxson is the son of Phebe and Greg Washington and has three sisters (Maara, Mihret, Kynzie). He plans to pursue a degree in Business.

Washington on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because it felt like the perfect fit for me. The coaches, players, and community were very friendly and I can't wait to play with my former teammates that are already there."

Waylon Wolfe / Lebanon, Ore. / Lebanon HS / LB, 6-foot-2, 225 lbs

Wolfe was a four-year varsity letter winner, first team All-Conference and a second team All-State linebacker at Lebanon. He was a team captain, a first team All-conference tight end, and a varsity letter winner in baseball. Off the field, Wolfe was named a scholar athlete. Waylon is the son of Molly and Chad Wolfe, and has one brother (Austin). He plans to pursue a degree in Psychology.

Wolfe on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because of the brotherhood between the players. I want to be a part of something special while getting a great education, and Carroll is the best place to do that."

Tucker Zanto / Helena, Mont. / Capital HS / LB, 6-foot-1 205 lbs

Zanto was a second team All-Conference and honorable mention All-State linebacker as a senior at Capital. He was a team captain, was named the 2021 Capital linebacker MVP and was the Ray Petrelli award recipient. He was a member of the 2021 State track team and 2020 State wrestling team. Off the field, Zanto was the National Honor Society President, Helena Exchange Club student of the month, and Helena Optimist Club Giraffe Award winner. Tucker is the son of Mandi and Brett Zanto and has one sister (Taylor) and one brother (Tatum). He plans to pursue a degree in Business with an emphasis in Financial Planning.

Zanto on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because I want to be a part of the long tradition at Carroll. It is a great school and is the perfect place for me to continue my academic and athletic career."

Colter Zink / Billings, Mont. / Shepherd HS / LB, 6-foot-2, 220 lbs

Zink was a four-year varsity letter winner and an All-State linebacker at Shephard. He was a team captain and a two-time All-Conference performer. He was named as an alternate to the 2022 Montana East-West Shrine Game. Off the field, Zink was named Academic All-State four times, and was a member of the honor roll. Colter is the son of Brenda and Brad Zink and has one brother (John) He plans to pursue a degree in Civil Engineering.

Zink on why he chose Carroll College: "I chose Carroll College because I was impressed with the coaches, players and professors. The knowledge and energy of the coaches, the welcoming spirit of the players, and the number of degree opportunities at Carroll made it the right place for me!"