From COVID to Possible Champs
Football, Sports

From COVID to Possible Champs

By Hayden Freestone

When he was a freshman, Lance Miller went to the principal’s office expecting a normal office visit. But it ended up being bad news that he would be quarantined for two weeks and that others from the football team would also be quarantined.  

This year’s football seniors have been through a lot in their careers. Freshman and sophomore year Covid-19 was running rampant, infecting many and sending others into quarantine. 

The entire freshman team ended up getting quarantined three times from contact tracing. For a total of around 30 days. Delta also issued a schoolwide quarantine multiple times. So in the end these students missed around a quarter of the school year. 

“So they were a group that had to be completely isolated from our other group because at that time your freshman team could take out your JV or varsity team if anyone tested positive,” head coach Chris Overholt said.

The experience of the 2020-21 school year turned out to be a major part of these seniors’ grit and resilience.

 “If any of them remain and play football after this year it would be a miracle,” Overholt said, recalling what he was thinking at the time.  

Braxton Russell 32
Braxton Russell(32) and Landon Brooks(19) make a tackle against the Yorktown running back. (Photo By Daniel Tokar)

These seniors who are a part of the team this fall are Prestyn Bailey, Kaiden Bond, Nathan Dewees, Parker Harris, D’Amare Hood, CJ Jones, Jayleon Jones, Corbin King, Chayse Lennis, Matt Lyons, Jonny Manor, Lance Miller, Isaac Moss, Callon Puente, Braxton Russell, Brayden Stanley, Ryder Turner and TD Wine. 

They are 7-4 currently entering Friday night’s sectional championship game at Garrett.  They are trying to win the Eagles’ first sectional title since 2016.

The senior class is full of multi-year starters, with King, Russell, Bond and Turner among those who have contributed on varsity greatly for many years to the team.  

It is also full of coaches that have had hundreds of seniors come through Delta.  Head coach Overholt has been the head coach for 8 years and a coach for 18 years. Defensive Coordinator David Edwards and Offensive Coordinator Billy Lynch along with the other assistant coaches have dozens of years of experience coaching football. 

This year the seniors have taken charge of teaching the freshman how the football team operates and what to do and what not to do. 

“The seniors have helped the underclassmen who contribute to the team and others including the freshmen, teaching them the ways of the team and the ground rules,” Overholt said. 

With the leadership of these 18 seniors the team is hoping to win the sectional championship and more.  

The seniors have wanted to win sectionals for years but have fallen short. Being their senior season they have a stronger desire to win. 

“It would be really big,” Miller said. “The team has not won sectionals since I’ve been here so it would be great to win that for the team and my teammates.”

So the seniors will look back on this year as one of the best in their life.

“It would be a lot to me as a football player to have something good like winning sectionals to leave high school with me,” Callon Puente said.  

Callon
Callon Puente walks on senior night with his parents. (Photo Provided)

Football will also help players after high school.

“I think that it will help me keep my body in shape. Football teaches me how to and what exercises to do that will help me the most,” Puente said. 

These seniors have many different plans after high school and they want to go different places. 

“I plan on going into the military or reserve and do blue collar work like construction,” Puente said. 

Miller wants to stay home and study.

 “I plan on going to Ivy Tech and majoring in engineering,” Miller said.

The seniors want to go in very different directions but they will always have Delta to look back on and their memories from the school.

The seniors of 2024 have gone through a lot in their time, but they hope that has helped them in their pursuit of a sectional championship. 

November 3, 2023

About Author

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haydenfreestone Hayden Freestone is a senior at Delta High School. He is a first-year journalism student. He enjoys watching football and basketball.


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