Dorton entered his senior season with the ninth-best career kickoff return average all-time at EWU (24.3). His 947 kickoff return yards are just six from earning a spot on EWU’s top 10 career leaders list.
2017: Earned second team All-Big Sky honors as a kick returner (as selected by the league’s head coaches). Played in EWU’s first 10 games before missing the Portland State (11/18/17) game with an injury. Dorton averaged 27.4 yards on 22 returns to finish ranked ninth in the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision and ninth in school history. The team was ninth in FCS at 24.3 per return in 2017. Dorton had a 96-yard return for a touchdown at Southern Utah (10/21/17), accounting for EWU’s only points in a span of 35:04 in the 46-28 loss. On his TD, Dorton faked a reverse and then ran down the sideline for the 13th-longest return in school history to help EWU regain a two-possession lead at 21-8. In the fourth quarter, with EWU trailing 32-28, he had a 36-yarder shortened to 14 yards because of a holding penalty. As a result of his performance against the Thunderbirds, he was EWU’s special teams player of the week. Dorton also had two returns of 51 yards and others of 49 and 38 in 2017. He added 10 catches for 164 yards (16.4 per catch) with a pair of touchdowns. He had TD catches in back-to-back games versus Montana (9/23/17) on a 32-yarder and Sacramento State (9/30/17) with a 21-yard scoring grab. Dorton had a 49-yard kickoff return versus the Hornets to become EWU’s special teams player of the week.
HS: Graduated from Chiawana HS in 2015. Dorton was a first team 4A All-State selection by the Associated Press as a defensive back and was also on the Tacoma News Tribune All-State team. He was named by the Seattle Times as a “White Chip” selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. The Tri-City Herald selected him to its All-Area first team as a defensive back and second team as a wide receiver. He was a two-way starter and was selected to the All-Mid-Columbia Conference (MCC) first team as a wide receiver and cornerback, and was a second team selection at punter as a senior in 2014. On the season, Dorton caught 23 passes for 398 yards and seven touchdowns, plus he had 29 carries for 226 yards rushing with two TDs and even completed 4-of-6 passes for 102 yards. Defensively, he had six interceptions, returning one for a TD. He also led the team in kickoff returns and averaged 34.2 yards per punt during the 10-game regular season, with a long of 66 yards. Chiawana finished the year with a 12-2 record and advanced to the championship game of the State 4A Playoffs for the second-straight season, losing to Bothell 24-14. Prior to the season, Dorton was named to Ron Siegel’s Preseason Senior All-State first team as a multi-purpose player. As a junior in 2013, Dorton was named to the All-MCC first team as a wide receiver and kick returner. Chiawana won the 2013 State 4A championship as they defeated Camas (and future Eagle teammates Reilly Hennessey and Zach Eagle) 27-26 in the title game. In the championship game, Dorton caught a 57-yard touchdown pass with 55 seconds to play that pulled Chiawana to within 26-20. The Riverhawks recovered the ensuing onside kick and scored as time expired, then kicked the point after touchdown to win by a point. He had 28 receptions for 463 yards and five touchdowns during the regular season. He also averaged 32.2 yards on 10 kickoff returns and intercepted five passes on defense. As a sophomore in 2012, Dorton was seventh in the MCC in scoring with eight touchdowns and one two-point conversion (50 points), and was 10th in all-purpose yardage while averaging 26.7 yards on 10 kickoff returns. A three-sport athlete, Dorton also played basketball at Chiawana and was a standout sprinter on the track team. In his senior season he placed third at the State 4A Championships in the 200 (22.16) and was fourth in the 100 (11.03). He finished sixth in the 100 as a junior. He had personal-best times of 10.72 seconds in the 100 meters and 21.73 in the 200 as a senior. His personal best in the long jump of 21-11 came in his junior season. His football coach at Chiawana was former Eagle Steve Graff (1981-82), who previously coached at Pasco High School. Eastern linebacker Miquiyah Zamora (’12) also attended Chiawana.
Personal: Sociology major. Born 6/18/97 in Pasco, Wash. Parents are Reggie and Anna Mae Dorton. His uncle, Doug Dorton, was a defensive back for the Eagles and lettered in 1994.
Dre’ Sonte Dorton Long Plays of 40+ Yards (5)
96 yard kickoff ret. (TD) – Southern Utah – 10/21/17 . . . #13 longest in EWU history
51 yard kickoff return – Montana – 9/23/17
51 yard kickoff return – Fordham – 9/16/17
49 yard kickoff return – Sacramento State – 9/30/17
40 yard kickoff return – Washington State – 9/15/18