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BF soccer players net all-league, MVP honors; Bonnell named coach of the year

Staff Writer | November 22, 2023 1:00 AM

Badger boy and girl soccer players earned Intermountain League honors for the 2023 season, with Eli Newell being named most valuable player and boys coach Paul Bonnell named coach of the year. 

Four Badger soccer boys received IML and Central Idaho League honors for their efforts and accomplishments during the 2023 season. Center back Jesse Fess, a junior, and midfielders Eli Blackmore and Nikita Rawson, both juniors, received “all-league” honors. 

Senior striker Eli Newell was voted MVP for the league. 

“Blackmore, Fess, and Rawson earned all-league for their consistent contributions to the team all season long,” Bonnell said. “Fess has been a critical component to holding teams scoreless against the Badgers for much of the season.  He is so solid at center back.”

“Blackmore has a sense of vision in the midfield and never gives up. Rawson is creative and dangerous in the attacking mid position. He scores with versatility, “ he said. 

“Newell earned MVP through his relentless play as striker. He was the top scorer in the league this year and also one of the top scorers at the state level in 3A, with 26 goals this season,” Bonnell said. 

In addition to the players being honored,  Bonnell was named the IML-ICL Coach of the Year. 

“I am grateful and honored to receive the award,” he said. “It belongs to our entire coaching staff. We bring different strengths to the team.” 

Bonnell thanked coaches Jared Gardin, Brycen Lunger, Derek Oxford, Matt Solis and Zach Reitz for all their contributions to the teams’ success.  

The boys’ team, parents, fans, and coaches also earned the Sportsmanship Award at the state championships this year. This was for positivity, school spirit, overall sportsmanship and attitude.

For the girls, seniors Brenly Hymas and Markynn Pluid were named all-league players for Bonners Ferry. 

Hymas has been the team’s top scorer for four years and team MVP for two years. 

“She has shown strong skills since her freshman year but has surpassed even her own records by scoring 20 goals this year, with almost as many assists,” Bonners Ferry girls soccer coach Emily Winebark said.  

“Brenly also showed herself to be a confident leader this year, as one of our elected captains. She always works hard, has been challenged with playing more midfield and defense than previous years, and is constantly keeping calm, focused, and encouraging to those around her. We will feel a huge loss next year without her,” Winebark said. 

Pluid has overall been the team’s most improved player over the past four years, something the other coaches in the league noticed, Winebark said. 

“As a midfielder almost all four years, she has shown an ability to have amazing footwork, perform smart pacing sequences, run an entire 90 minutes, and play physically and aggressively,” she said. 

Pluid also became the team's staple center midfielder this year as she proved her endurance, offensive and defensive skill could change the course of games. 

“Markynn has grown so much in her sense of the game and also her passion for it and this has shown. She is always looking for ways to get better, challenge her team, and win games,” Winebark said.

Brenly Hymas named all league player. She has been the top scorer for BFHS girls soccer for four years. (Courtesy Photo)

Jesse Fess blocks corner kick. He has been named all-league for IML-ICL and second team all state.  (PHOTO BY: EMILY BONSANT)

Markynn Pluid has been named all-league. (Courtesy Photo)

Nikita Rawson has been named all league and second team all state. (PHOTO: EMILY BONSANT)

Eli Blackmore has been named all league. (PHOTO BY: EMILY BONSANT)

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