Waving goodbye to the senior football Cavs


Ian Hooks

Eighteen seniors were recognized in a pregame ceremony in October.

Cabot Butts, Editor-in-Chief

Following the game at L.C. Bird on Nov. 5, Clover Hill football said goodbye to 18 members of the Class of 2023 who will graduate on May 24, 2023. After finishing the season with two wins, many of the seniors took a chance to look back on their high school careers, both on and off the field

To begin, captain Jackson Drewry played the linebacker position on the varsity team for the last two years. His time on the team has drastically influenced his feelings about the game.

“It’s made me love the game even more,” Drewry said. “One of the reasons why I actually come to school every day is to become a better football player.”

While he does not know whether football will be a part of his future, Drewry is set on attending James Madison University to pursue a degree in business. 

Jayden Anderson played football since he was five years old. He has come to love the friendships he has made and will miss the student section and the feeling of Friday nights when he graduates. To him, the feeling of a ‘second family’ within the team meant the world to him.

“It’s just a brotherhood,” Anderson said. “We’re with each other everyday, trying to get better everyday. We’re all trying to succeed with the same goal.”

Anderson looks to study either cybersecurity or chemical engineering in the future.

Also playing on both sides of the football is captain Cole Barner. Playing right guard and defensive tackle meant he has achieved a dream of playing high school football that he has had since fifth grade

“I have played football since I was in fifth grade,” Barner said. “I always dreamed of playing high school football. I’ve had an obligation as a leader of this team this year, being one of the main captains. I’ve dedicated every day of my life to this game; to do what I can to be better for myself, my team, and my coaches.”

Barner, like Anderson, will miss the feeling of playing under the lights on Friday nights with the student section right behind him. As for the future, Barner plans to learn a trade upon graduating high school.

Dylan Hopewell proved to be more of a utility player for the Cavs this year. He played wide receiver and free safety this year. He has even gone as far as stepping in to punt the football on multiple occasions. 

Hopewell, who started his high school football career in Texas, points to the fact that just finding himself on a football field on Friday nights has meant so much to him.

“This last season has meant a lot to me because I wanted to actually put in full effort and really get into the sport again,” Hopewell said. “I’m definitely a little bummed out that the season is already over.”

Hopewell will miss the family aspect of the team moving forward. As of now, Hopewell plans to pursue his studies of sports medicine. He will also go to a trade school to master the ins and outs of carpentry and plumbing.

Defensive back Kyle Evans has been out with a leg injury for most of his senior season. However, that did not stop him from describing what football meant to him throughout his high school career.

“Football has given me a way to get out of my own mind; it was stress relieving,” Evans said. “The cares of the world go away when I’m in practice mode or when playing football in general”

Evans still finds much to be grateful for even after an unfortunate end to his season. He thanks his teammates and coaches who were very supportive of him while trying to work back from his injury.

“They’ve been checking up on me, especially when I was homebound,” Evans said. “My teammates came to sit with me and talk, so it’s been good. Coaches check up on me every now and then; they still support me which is nice.”

Running back Shawn Douglas has shown his ferocity on the ground all season long. Being a senior, many of the younger football players look up to Douglas. Because of this, Douglas believes that his leadership role gave him a voice within the team. 

“A lot of my teammates look up to me, so I need to make sure [that] I’m doing the right thing so that they are doing the right thing,” Douglas said. “They kind of gave me a voice; I wasn’t really a talkative person when I was younger, but as I played and met more people, I became more social.”

Douglas hopes that he can play at the collegiate level. If possible, he would also like to play in the National Football League (NFL). 

Jaiden Bonilla works on both sides of the line for the Cavs. He has found that football helped to build his confidence.

“You feel like you’re never really enough until you get there,” Bonilla said. “You start to develop skills and you start to feel better. It definitely teaches you to work harder.”

After walking across the stage in May, Bonilla would like to study criminal justice in hopes of becoming a law enforcement officer. 

Carter Geanas plays wide receiver for the Cavs. While he was unable to compete in his senior season, Geanas hopes to continue playing football. The friendships and bonds he has created throughout his time at Clover Hill is something that he will miss the most. 

“It helps you make friends,” Geanas said. “I still talk to teammates I played with in sixth grade. There’s more that I played with last year that are in college right now that I still talk to on a daily basis. Football just creates a brotherhood.”

As well as playing football, Geanas plans to pursue a degree in business after high school. Additionally, Geanas hopes to start his own business after college. 

Middle linebacker Devon Mason finds peace in playing football for Clover Hill. He describes the atmosphere as being something he has never experienced before. In addition, he credits teammates as always being there for him and always being people he can count on.

“I really depend on them,” Devon said. “We spend a lot of time together. I would have never played football if I never met them.”

After high school, Devon would like to pursue a trade. While he did not mention football in his plans, Devon hopes to continue playing football, whether competitively or for fun. 

Football runs in the family for the Masons. Devon’s brother Damien Mason is also on the Cavalier team. He plays running back and maintains that the brotherhood created on the team is something that he has found to be an integral part of his high school career. 

“[I] met some of my closest friends playing football,” Damien said. “[It] made me a better person [and] better man. 

Mateo Quintero was an outside linebacker on the Cavs this season. He, like Evans, describes football as a way to relieve stress and frustration.

“Football has been a way for me to release a lot of stress in my life and take out a lot of anger that I have built up,” Quintero said. “There’s a lot of things going on and football is a way to escape [that].”

Quintero hopes to continue playing football after high school if he gets the opportunity. He would also like to pursue a career in business with hopes of receiving a degree in business. 

While new to competing in the sport of football, linebacker Justin Jones never took the game for granted. He points to the fact that he is very proud of the team as a whole for not giving up, even when the scoreboard was not in their favor.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity for me to play,” Jones said. “I’m proud of what we did as a team because, even though we lost, we fought a lot. Nobody ever really gave up and that shows a lot of character.”

While he currently has a scholarship offer from Christopher Newport University, Jones also applied to Virginia Tech and Penn State University in hopes of majoring in aerospace engineering.

While the result of their senior season is surely not what they were looking for, these seniors are proud of their time on the team. They will now look forward to the future.