Grafton Sports-light: Get to know GHS Soccer’s Layne England

Our Regional Sports Editor got the rundown on Grafton High School Bearcat Soccer standout Layne England for this edition of Grafton High Sports-light.

Question 1: Describe your major highlights and achievements in sports in the past. What stands out to you about your high school athletic career? 

Growing up, my rec league soccer team won a lot of tournaments. I have a shelf filled with medals from those rec tournaments. The team that won all the tournaments back then has stuck together and I’m proud to have been a part of the sectional championship team from last year and the sectional/regional championship team this year. One major highlight would definitely have to be the two hat tricks I scored this season. 

Question 2: What clubs, teams or other extracurricular activities are you involved in during high school?

I am part of the GHS Soccer Team, and I also swim for the Bearcats.

Question 3: Why are you so passionate about playing your sport? What drew you to the sport? What sets golf apart from other sports in your mind?

I’m so passionate about soccer because it was my life growing up. I was always into the soccer video games, and I loved going and watching the boys high school team play when I had the chance. Soccer is set so far from other sports because unless you’ve played soccer growing up or have played for consecutive years in a row it isn’t easy to gain that coordination with your feet. 

Question 4: How would your coaches and teammates describe you? 

My coaches and teammate would most likely describe me as a leader, passionate, motivational, hardworking, determined, trustworthy, helpful, supportive, generous.

Question 5: What is the best piece of advice you have gained from a coach over your years playing any sport? How would you say golf differs from other sports?  

The best piece of advice I’ve ever received from a coach was from my current coach Arthur Knight. Since we have the state semifinals coming up, he told all the seniors that were going to play our game in the next three days no matter what. Knowing that, he told us not to hesitate with anything. If you have an open shot, shoot it. If you want to make a pass, make a pass. Just do everything you can to leave it all out there. 

Question 6: How do you manage your athletic responsibilities and other outside recreational and non-recreational activities?

I try to do all that I can in my power to help benefit me on the field. I always make sure to stay hydrated to prevent cramps and limit myself whenever a muscle might need an off day. I never push my body farther than it can go.  I take leadership responsibility very seriously when it comes to the younger players on the team. I give them my input and try to do anything i can to make them the best possible player they can be. 

Question 7: What is the biggest lesson you have picked up from playing sports?

I’ve learned to dedicate yourself to your goals. When I was younger, I always looked up to the high school soccer players, seeing them make it to states made me want to make it there myself one day. Ever since then that’s been my goal. And now tomorrow we leave to head to Beckley to play in the semifinals of the state tournament.  After all these years of dreaming to make it to states it finally came true. 

Question 8: How long have you been involved in golf? How would you describe yourself as a player? What are your strengths and what are your weaknesses?

I’ve been playing soccer for 14 years (I’m 17 now). Over the years I’d say I’ve become quick with decision making, and I never doubt the decisions I make. I can distribute the ball very well, and score when I need to. 

Question 9: How has being involved in sports positively impacted your life?

Soccer has made a huge impact on my life. A lot of my favorite memories have come from the sport and some of my best friendships have too. 

Question 10: What has representing Grafton as a student athlete meant to you? What’s your best memory?

It’s been amazing to represent Grafton these past 4 years playing soccer. My favorite memory is receiving all the love and support from the community when sectionals/regionals come around. 

 Question 11: What is one thing you want to be remembered when you leave high school? What is the legacy you wish to leave?

I hope that my senior season is always remembered. It’s been a huge season for everyone on the team not just the seniors. Making it to states wasn’t easy, and I think this season should definitely be one for the community to remember. This team has made a name for Grafton boys’ soccer, and I hope we’ve inspired more kids to try soccer out. 

 Question 12: Are there any short-term goals you would like to accomplish in the next few months to a couple of years? What about in the future 10 years or more down the road where do you think you’ll end up?

The biggest short-term goal for me is to find a stable job after graduation that has benefits and pays well. I’d like to save up a good amount of money and be able to move out of state and rent an apartment until I’m able to buy a house and maybe start a family.


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