Players of the Pine Belt: Sumrall senior defensive end Braden Harvey

Published: Jul. 22, 2022 at 11:27 PM CDT
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SUMRALL, Miss. (WDAM) - Sumrall lost 21 seniors from a season ago and are young on defense.

Head coach Shannon White is relying on seniors like Braden Harvey to lead the charge.

“The better your start, the better your ending will be I believe,” Harvey said. “It might be the beginning of the year but that’s no excuse to putting half effort. Just go 100 percent always.”

Harvey is a sound voice for White to have in his locker room.

His message to the underclassmen – if you make a mistake, make it full speed.

“Taking 100 percent effort on each play, know what you’re doing, don’t hesitate,” Harvey said. “Hit hard every time even if you don’t know what you’re doing or you hesitate. As long as you hit somebody, that’s pretty much our motto.”

Harvey’s excited for the opportunity to hit some more people this season, moving from offensive tackle to defensive end.

“It’s more action packed than being offensive line,” Harvey said. “You gotta be quicker, you gotta be good with your hands.”

“Man he’s been a great, pleasant surprise for us,” White said. “He’s really physical and he can let loose and go. He’s got length and he’s come a long way in the weight room, too. He should be a really good defensive player for us.”

Up to 6-foot-3, 212 pounds, Harvey knows how important his size will be to play physical football in one of the toughest regions in the state.

“I’m playing against, like Columbia for example - Jaheim Oatis,” Harvey said. “He was like 380 [pounds], 6-foot-6. You can’t be like limpy to go against him, you gotta have something about you to keep going.”

The defending state champs Columbia should be just as formidable this season – not to mention Purvis, Poplarville and the rest of a grueling Region 7-4A schedule standing in front of the Bobcats.

“These are some of the better teams in 4A are in this district and so you gotta play every Friday night,” White said. “So you better be good. First you gotta be good if you’re going to compete with ‘em ‘cause you get blown off the field if you don’t. It’s a tough gig but we hope they feel the same way about us.”

Here’s a look at Sumrall’s 2022 schedule:

  • 8/26 - at South Jones - 7 p.m.
  • 9/2 - at Bay High - 7 p.m.
  • 9/9 - at Seminary - 7 p.m.
  • 9/16 - vs. Pearl River Central - 7 p.m.
  • 9/23 - vs. Newton County - 7 p.m.
  • 9/30 - vs. Columbia* - 7 p.m.
  • 10/7 - vs. Purvis* - 7 p.m.
  • 10/14 - at Lawrence County* - 7 p.m.
  • 10/21 - vs. FCAHS* - 7 p.m.
  • 10/28 - at Poplarville* - 7 p.m.

*Indicates Region 7-4A opponent

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