As fall sports wind down their seasons, one sport is just beginning: football. Junior football standout Manny Deshields-Sanabria has started to make his mark on the Ledyard team. Sanabria was chosen for the Backus and Windham Hospital Athlete of the Week on Oct. 5 and has continued to be a key player for the Colonels.
“Football is important to me because it gets me away from anything that I’m going through in my life and it’s one place that keeps me at peace,” Sanabria said. “Also because my dad and uncles have played before me… I have to keep the tradition going.”
Sanabria started to shine when Ledyard took on the New London Whalers and led the team to a 35-6 victory. He ran for 291 yards and three scores on 34 carries. Ledyard’s linemen and receivers were able to block efficiently, which allowed for Sanabria to run the ball throughout the night. His work on the field led him to receive the Athlete of the Week honor.
“It is a huge honor to receive this award because it shows me that my hard work is paying off,” he said. “I’m thrilled because I’ve never been awarded like this for my hard work.”
It’s been three weeks since the game and Sanabria has continued to lead his team. On Friday, Oct. 23, he had 12 carries for 183 yards and scored one touchdown. The Colonels defeated Montville that night 49-13.
Football isn’t just a sport to Sanabria, it’s something that has given him valuable life skills. “Playing a sport has taught me to be a leader on and off the field and has also helped me have a strong work ethic in anything that I do,” he said.
Sanabria still has another year to be part of the Ledyard football program and hopes to continue after high school.
“I definitely hope to play football in the next level,” Sanabria said. “The passion that I have for the game is too strong just to let go at the end of my senior year.”
Megan Brawner, Editor in Chief
Senior Megan Brawner is the Editor-in-Chief of the 2015-2016 Colonel. She is the captain of the cross country team and runs Indoor and Outdoor Track. She participates in Youth United for Global Action and Awareness (YUGA) Club and is the secretary of the Senior Class. She is the Editor of Key Club.