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T.C.'s Hunter Joyer invited to U.S. Army combine

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Mon. November 30, 2009 | Eduardo A. Encina

Tampa Catholic junior fullback/linebacker Hunter Joyer has been invited to this year's U.S. Army All-American combine in January in San Antonio, Crusaders coach Bob Henriquez said Monday.

Some of the top junior football players in the country are invited to the combine -- which resembles the NFL combine with tests of skill, speed and agility. It essentially serves as a tryout for the next year's U.S. Army High School All-America Game, one of the top senior showcases in the nation.

Joyer has been a key part of the Crusaders' march to the Class 2B state semifinal on both sides of the ball. As a hard-running fullback, he's rushed for 436 yards and six touchdowns. He also starts at linebacker and has lined up at nose tackle and defensive end.

"He's added a lot in more ways than one," Henriquez said. "He pounds the ball at fullback, which keeps defenses honest. He's given us something we haven't had in the past. He takes the pressure off (running back Hank McCloud) in short yardage and he's become a lot better blocker. And on defense he has that size and athleticism to allow us to use him a lot of ways."

Henriquez also said leading receiver Conner Louis, who has 15 catches for 201 yards and a touchdowns, could receive an invitation to the combine.

The Crusaders (10-1) travel to Hollywood Chaminade for next week's Class 2B state semifinal game as TC aims for its second state title game berth in three years.

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