Geibel senior John Pokol is spending his senior year playing for a different team and dedicating it to someone very special in his life.
“This year is my eighth year of football,”said Pokol.”When I started the sport, I knew it was the sport for me. Once I tried it out I knew I felt at home.”
Walking on the field for any first time athlete is anything but “comfortable” especially if they have never played or experienced the sport before but for Pokol he was a little more collected.
“My first game was nerve wracking,”said Pokol.”Even though I was nervous, the feeling was still amazing.”
Under permission by the WPIAL, Pokol is one of seven Geibel students playing for Southmoreland.
While Pokol currently plays wide receiver, he wasn’t always known for that position.
“I started out playing running back,”said Pokol.”It wasn’t my choice to positions, but now that I have played both I would rather play receiver.”
Pokol began playing football in fifth grade. At 5-10, 135 pounds, he’s always been told his size has been an issue for him while playing.
“Ever since I started football I’ve always been told I’m too small especially in high school,” said Pokol.”I like taking those comments and using that to motivate me and help myself to prove the people that doubt me wrong.”
However heartbreak struck for the now senior as he got to his sophomore year of high school and his sixth year of football.
“When I was a sophomore, my grandfather passed away,” said Pokol.”Ever since I went through that, I’ve dedicated every season and every game to him.”
While he doesn’t have his grandfather in the stands watching him, Pokol knows that the rest of his family are there supporting him every game.
“All of my family is always there in the stands watching and supporting me,” said Pokol. ”Even though my grandad may not be in the stands, I know he’s watching down on me and cheering me on from up above.”
Aside from his family and grandfather supporting him, Pokol also has his coaches to thank for pushing him to the best of his ability at every practice and game.
“My coaches definitely push me the hardest,” said Pokol.” Even though I hate it I also love it, because to me it means they see more potential in me.”
This season Pokol looks to accomplish getting his “first varsity touchdown,” and after he graduates, looks to go on to the coast guard to help defend our country.
“Although I’ve never scored before, I can just tell it feels amazing to have happen,” said Pokol.” I want to contribute to wins and win all the games I can my senior year.”
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