Kiy Hester one of the East's top juniors

In the state championship game against Delbarton, Montvale (N.J.) St. Joseph Regional might have dug itself a hole too big to climb out of, if not for Kiy Hester. The 2014 athlete made several stops against the run early in the game, including one that looked like it would have gone for a touchdown.

St. Joseph fumbled the ball three times in the first quarter, setting up Delbarton with great field position every time.

“We had some fumbles and our coach told the defense to hold us in there because the offense, they’ll come,” said Hester, an ESPN Watch List prospect. “So we just played hard and kept doing good.”

Once the offense found a rhythm, Hester became a major part of it, scoring a touchdown in the eventual blowout win.

College programs have already taken notice of Hester, who has several offers including Miami (Fla.), Michigan and Michigan State. Vanderbilt and Ohio State are interested, and Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer stopped by Hester’s school Monday.

A few teams have already made impressions on Hester, who has visited Michigan State and Rutgers in the last few months.

“[Schools] that caught my interest: Rutgers, Pitt, Vandy, Ohio State, Miami, Michigan State, Penn State -- schools like that,” Hester said.

He plans to visit a few schools this winter, mentioning Vanderbilt as a likely destination.

Hester is being recruited as a receiver, cornerback and safety.