The Ridgeview Wolfpack’s Carson Sykes had a game to remember in week five against the Lee High Generals at Five Star Stadium in Ben Hur. Sykes was all over the gridiron making plays. Sykes finished the Mountain 7 contest with three tackles, a fumble recovery and three interceptions. The outstanding breakthrough performance earned Sykes the CoalfieldSports.com Defensive Player of the Week award for week five.
“I felt honored just to be nominated, but to actually win it I feel very happy, humbled, and proud,” said a jubilant Sykes.
The Wolfpack are off to their best start in the four year history of the program and are undefeated heading into a much needed off week.
“Everyone around school is so excited and pumped for this year’s season,” Sykes said. “On Friday nights, the student section is more alive than ever, and as a player we can feel the excitement and energy from the crowd on the field.”
Sykes has a role model, someone he looks up to and receives words of wisdom from on a regular basis. Carson’s brother, Jalen Sykes, played quarterback for the Haysi Tigers. Jalen led the now defunct program to state semifinal appearances in 2013 and 2014, the final two years of Haysi’s storied program. Jalen was also a stalwart on the defensive side of the ball during those memorable Haysi seasons.
“My brother Jalen has taught me so much throughout my life and career. He encouraged me to pursue my dream of being a defensive back. Jalen and I have always loved football and supported each other,” Carson explained. “He has influenced me to become a starter in a varsity sport and to never fear anyone on the field.”
With the success the Pack have had, Sykes still has some goals that he and the team hope to accomplish before the dust settles.
“For me, I want to just get better with every game and try to get in on as many plays as I can to help out my team,” Sykes said. “As a team, our goal is to stay focused and to bring a state title back for Ridgeview and Dickenson County.”
Sykes is very quick to acknowledge his team on his breakout performance from week five.
“I know after the game I said I wanted this award, and it makes me happy that I won it. For me though, this is a team award because without all the guys in front of me, without my defensive line and linebackers putting so much pressure up front, I would not have had the opportunities to make the plays I did,” Sykes said. “With teammates like Mathew Sexton and the ‘Legion of Boom’ (McKenzie and Alijah Sproles) creating loose balls for me to recover I was able to have the game of my career, and I thank my team for that.”
Sykes continued to build on the momentum from week 5 on Friday night against Gate City, recovering a fumble against the Blue Devils. Sykes and his Ridgeview teammates have week seven off before hosting the John Battle Trojans on the Ridge in week eight on senior night.
I was born a Haysi Tiger but unfortunately succumbed to a broken heart on a cold rainy afternoon in King William, Virginia on December 6, 2014.
However, I was reincarnated as a Wolf, and became a runner of the Ridgeview Wolfpack on August 28, 2015. You now hear me howling most autumn Friday nights high atop Rose Ridge in Dickenson County or anywhere else my Pack of hungry Wolves may be, from Grundy to Falcon Hill or from Ben Hur to Pikeville, Kentucky.
I never wolfed down (pun very intended) a Tiger Taco like Mr. Brady Hess, but I was and still am known to devour a pizza from Pizza Factory on Main Street in Haysi.
I have always wanted to write about sports and now I have the opportunity to thanks to those who have built this wonderful place on the world wide web. Hope y’all enjoy.