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Sharks Load up on O-Lineman

October 5, 2020 - National Arena League (NAL) - Jacksonville Sharks News Release

JACKSONVILLE - The 2019 National Arena League Champion Jacksonville Sharks have announced today the signing of three offensive lineman Isaiah Hardy, Israel Evans, and Hunter Sallila.

Isaiah Hardy (6'6, 330) signed with the Sharks for the 2020 season and has decided to re-sign with the Sharks to begin his rookie year in 2021. Hardy finished his college career at the University of West Virginia. As a mountaineer, Hardy played in 22 games on the offensive line during two seasons at West Virginia. Prior to graduating Hardy helped the Mountaineers to the #2 ranked offense in the Big 12 and the #10 ranked the best offense in the nation. During the 2018 season, Hardy and his fellow lineman paved the way for 512 yards of offense per game as well as scoring 40.3 points per game. During both of his years at West Virginia Hardy and the Mountaineers earned college bowl game eligibility playing in the Heart of Dallas Bowl in 2017 and the Camping World Bowl in 2018 while they ranked #20 in the nation at the conclusion of the 2018 season.

Hardy's road to West Virginia was earned through the JUCO route where he played for Lackawanna College in Pennsylvania receiving several accolades during his three-year run with the Falcons including All-Northeast Football Conference First Team & Third Team Honors. During his sophomore year, Hardy anchored a 10-1 Lackawanna team that ranked #8 in the nation at the JUCO level appearing in the Valley of the Sun Bowl in Phoenix, AZ. Prior to transferring to West Virginia, Hardy helped the Falcons become the third-best team in NJCAA in both scoring and rushing touchdowns with 515 points scored and 36 rushing touchdowns during the 2016 season. Hardy is a New Jersey native from Laurel Springs, NJ and played offensive tackle at Timber Creek Regional high school.

Israel Evans Jr. (6'5, 335) has signed with the Sharks for his third season of arena football and first with the Sharks. Evans is a two-time AAL Champion who spent the 2019 season with the West Virginia Roughriders where he helped West Virginia as an offensive lineman to an AAL Championship and an undefeated 10-0 record in 2018. Evans played for the Atlanta Havoc in 2017 where he won his first AAL Championship with the 8-2 Havoc.

Prior to arena football, Evans spent his collegiate career at Mayville State University, an NAIA school in Mayville, ND. Evans started at left tackle for the Comets from 2015-2016. Evans, is originally from Tampa, FL where he played on the defensive line for Riverview High School recording 17 tackles, one sack, and one pass breakup before graduating in 2014.

Hunter Sallila (6'4, 310) signed for his second year of arena football and first with the Sharks. Sallila had a stint with the New York Streets during the 2019 season but finished the year with the Jersey Flight where he helped the Flight to a playoff appearance losing to the Roughriders who advanced to win the AAL Championship.

Hunter served a very accomplished college career at Merrimack College, a Division II school in North Andover, Massachusetts. During his career with the Warriors, he started in 42 games at right tackle, was named a team captain, two-time All-Conference right tackle, and was invited to the Senior National Bowl in Daytona Beach, FL. Sallila is a native of Fitchburg, MA where he spent most of his career at Fitchburg High but did spend one year at East Coast Prep. During his high school career he was a three-sport captain as a senior, a Mid Watch All-Star, High School Div. II All-Star, and a Central Mass All-Star in football. Before graduation, he also broke a school record in track & field at shot put.

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