Former Great Basin Conference “Defensive Player of the Year” Travis Swanson of Hailey was recognized Nov. 18 with first-team honors for the Northwest Conference (NWC) All-League football first team.

     Swanson is a 6-3, 250-pound junior defensive end for the playoff-bound Linfield College Wildcats based in McMinnville, Ore. Linfield (8-1) has won the NWC championship with a 7-0 conference record.

     He is an important part of the Linfield defense that has allowed the fewest yards (274 per game) and fewest points per game (15.8 ppg) of all eight Northwest Conference schools.

     In nine games this fall, Swanson has 30 tackles, eight of them for a loss. He is a son of Rob and Amy Swanson.

     Linfield has earned a berth in the 32-team NCAA Division 3 tournament and will play its first game Saturday, Nov. 23 at noon against Chapman University (9-0) at Ernie Chapman Stadium Orange, Ca.

     In 2018, Swanson appeared in nine games for Linfield College and recorded the fifth-most tackles (32) for the Wildcats. He had a team-high 13 tackles for loss, and the second-most sacks (7) for Linfield during its 7-2 season.

     Swanson, majoring in chemistry, made second-team All-Northwest Conference in 2018 and appeared in nine games. In 2017, he played football for the Occidental College Tigers in California.

     Swanson was a 2017 Wood River High School graduate and a three-sport star in football, basketball and lacrosse. He played for coach Kevin Stilling’s Wolverine grid teams that went 20-10 from 2014-16 and earned the GBC league championship in 2016.

     An NCAA Division 3 program, coach Joseph Smith’s Linfield College squad has achieved the school’s 64th consecutive winning season in football, believed to be an American win record across all college football divisions.

     Playing its 105th season of collegiate football dating back to 1896, Linfield’s all-time grid record is 627-269-28. The program has won 43 Northwest Conference championships.

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