The West High football team’s top award is not just a year-end honor, but a statement about the Wolf Pack’s future, too.
Junior running back and defensive back Marcel Dancy led his team on the field and in practice to emerge as the recipient of the 2014 John C. Kimball Award. This is the 21st year West has handed out the award, named for the former team doctor. The team banquet was Dec. 16.
“It’s an honor to get it,” Dancy said, explaining that he saw the award as representing the Wolf Pack as a whole. “The award is really from all of the team.”
Dancy stood out as the Wolf Pack’s leading rusher, averaging 123 yards per game rushing as the team went 5-5 for the season. He also totaled 172 receiving yards, 176 kickoff return yards, 12 touchdowns and 58 tackles on defense.
West coach Steve Anastasio said that Dancy also distinguished himself by being tough to tackle. He cited a play in West’s 48-14 loss to Tracy High on Nov. 7 when Dancy charged into the crowd at the line of scrimmage and emerged on the other side, completing a 38-yard touchdown run.
“He showed a lot of poise on the field and played really hard,” Anastasio said, adding that he expected Dancy would be an inspiration to his 2015 teammates.
“That’s the great thing about it. We look for him to do even bigger things next year.”
Dancy said he felt that the West team had already created a culture that inspired everyone on the team.
“Day in and day out, every practice is a competition among the team,” he said. “We just have the type of players who always want to get better, who always want to be the best.”
Among the other players receiving awards at the team banquet was senior Lautaime Alailefaleula, the Back of the Year and last year’s Kimball Award winner. Junior Steven Ramirez was named Lineman of the Year, and senior Chance Wilson was named Utility Player of the Year.
Until 2009, the Kimball Award was handed out in conjunction with Tracy High’s Peter B. Kyne Award. Since 2010, the teams have had separate events to honor the recipients. The Kyne Award will be presented Jan. 6 during a 12:30 p.m. luncheon at the Tracy Community Center, 950 East St.