Meet Kylee Harrell, a 14-year-old freshman at SCCHS. She will handle the kicking duties for the Saints this year.
Harrell has been playing soccer since the age of three, and is quick to point out that soccer is her favorite sport.
Head coach Alan Lee said he was just thrilled to have the opportunity to improve the kicking game.
“After last year, we knew going into the offseason that our kicking game was something we needed to work on,” Lee said. “I found out about Kylee playing competitive soccer. I heard she had a strong leg. I talked to her and her mom, and found out she was interested in trying to kick for us.”
Originally from Mississippi, Harrell and her family moved to Odenville when she was in the first grade. She is the daughter of Todd and Sondra Sheats of Odenville. She has two younger sisters, Kemsley Harrell, 10, and Kayden Sheats, 5.
“I was at the games last year and saw how the Saints did not have a kicking game,” Harrell said. “But it was this summer during volleyball practice that Coach Lee talked to me about being a kicker. He had found out that I played competitive soccer.”
Harrell has worked extremely hard during the summer.
Lee actually sent Harrell to a kicking camp in Piedmont back in June, and she was the only girl there.
“She did real well there,” Lee said. “She has worked hard, and she is only a freshman. She needs to work on her form a little bit. Kicking a football is just a little bit different than kicking a soccer ball, but she is doing a great job.”
The longest field goal during practice was from 40 yards out. She is consistent from 30 yards and closer.
“I feel very confident in kicking PAT’s,” Harrell said. “It makes me feel pretty good that I am the only female football player in the county. The guys have accepted me, and they are all really sweet. They haven’t tried to play any pranks on me yet, but I feel they are coming.”
Harrell works very hard at everything she does, whether it is on the field, court or in the classroom. She also plays volleyball, basketball and runs track. She makes straight A’s in the classroom and maintains a 4.0 GPA.
Her basketball coach is Justin Brandon, who also helps with the football team.
“I think this is a great thing for the school and community,” Brandon said. “It has actually brought the boys together a lot better as a team. They now have a sister they can protect and look out for. It has brought some excitement. She is actually a pure kicker, something we have not had since I have been here.”
Contact Gary Hanner at firstname.lastname@example.org