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Pirates’ hard work culminates in all-district rewards

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Posted: Monday, January 7, 2019 5:40 pm

When Bubba Walters glanced at the District 14-2A Div. I all-district teams, the Center Point coach’s thoughts drifted to the Pirates’ offseason.

More specifically, he reflected on his players’ hard work during the spring and summer, all the times they entered the weight room before and after school, all the the extra effort they exerted to prepare for the upcoming football season.

When football season arrived, that hard work paid off. The Pirates advanced to the playoffs for the third straight year, and 17 players earned all-district honors. Junior running back Cody Daily received Newcomer of the Year honors after rushing for 669 yards and 10 touchdowns on 80 carries during the Pirates’ five district games. Riley Leifeste and Damian Whitehead were first team all-district selections on both offense and defense.

“They earned that,” Walters said. “It showed when we got out there and played. We competed with everybody. Could we have done better? Yeah. But overall, I was extremely pleased with how we were represented on the all-district teams. It showed how hard our kids worked.”

Center Point’s offensive line was especially well-represented on the all-district teams. Last season, the Pirates (5-6) collected wins through savaging opponents on the ground, averaging 324.6 yards per game and 6.8 yards per carry. Other coaches in the district noticed the Pirates’ linemen’s efforts, as all five starters received all district recognition.

“Our linemen were our dark alley players,” Walters said. “They worked their butts off, so I was really pleased with all five kids getting recognition.”

But perhaps most importantly, the all-district players further elevated Center Point’s football program, leaving an example for the younger players to follow.

“They showed what it takes and they got recognized,” Walters said. “Hopefully these younger kids see that and go, ‘Hey, I can be an all-district player, too. I got put in time and got to work hard at it.' Each year in the last four or five years those seniors have left a legacy and something to shoot for. This year, our seniors achieved that goal.”

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