Player of the Week: FCAHS defensive back Hayden Grice

Published: Oct. 24, 2023 at 11:37 PM CDT
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BROOKLYN, Miss. (WDAM) - Hayden Grice typically lines up at free safety for Forrest County Agricultural High School.

But an injury during the week forced Grice to the cornerback position ahead of a huge region 7-4A game with Sumrall.

“Shoot, playing corner you’re on an island,” said Grice, a senior who also handles kicking duties. “Free safety you can see the whole field but as a corner, you’re locked up one on one. It’s totally different than playing free safety.”

Grice turned out all right, intercepting two passes in the Aggies’ 10-0 shutout of the Bobcats – a win that clinched FCAHS’ berth in the playoffs.

“I think they saw him over there and he’s not a very imposing player,” said FCAHS head coach Larry Dolan. “They tried him out a couple times and he picked two of ‘em off.”

At 5-foot-9, 160 pounds, Grice has no problem playing the underdog role.

He embodies the spirit of the Aggies who are often overlooked.

“I take full pride in it because I love being the underdog,” Grice said. “I love it ‘cause I love proving other people wrong. I don’t care how tall you are, I don’t care how much you weigh. If you just play with heart and you’re coachable, I feel like you can do anything.”

“He is definitely our vocal leader, he’s our emotional leader on defense,” Dolan said. “He’s kind of our coach on the field. We pick at him about being ‘coach Grice’ because he knows what everybody’s supposed to do. And the kids look up to that.”

Teams in Class 4A are going to have to account for FCAHS which is back in the postseason for a second consecutive year.

“You look back at all those teams [Dolan] coached before, they knew they were going to get into the playoffs but they knew they were going to go far,” Grice said. “So we want to be that team where we can get this program back to where it was.”

“Last year we just wanted to get in,” Dolan said. “We’re over just wanting to get in. We gotta be in and we’d love to win one while we’re in there.”

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