Monday, 11 October 2021 18:31

Billy West: The Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week

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Freshman Billy West has been named the Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week. Freshman Billy West has been named the Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week. Kyle Pillar — Sports Editor.

ROCKINGHAM — Freshman football player Billy West has been named the Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week presented by HWY 55.


The Richmond Observer will spotlight one male and one female student-athlete from Richmond Senior High School each week based on his and her respective performance to help their team.

Making his varsity debut last Wednesday against Union Pines High School, West kicked his way into the Richmond record book by tying the program record for the most point-after attempts made in a single game.

This is West’s first career recognition as the Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week.

Athletic Profile

Age: 14

Birthday: Oct. 16, 2006

Year: Freshman

Fall Sports: Football

Position: Kicker

Years on Varsity: 1 year

Height & Weight: 5-6, 115 pounds

Experience: 4 years

BETWEEN THE POSTS WITH BILLY WEST

A rare Wednesday night football game presented West with the opportunity to kick extra points for the Raiders against Union Pines when senior kicker Alex Medina traveled with the soccer team. 

Answering the call, West made 9-of-10 PATs in a 69-6 rout of the Vikings, helping the Raiders improve to 6-1 overall and 3-0 against Sandhills Athletic Conference play. 

His nine extra points tied him with Wesley Jackson (1998) and Cody Threadgill (2008) for the most in a single game in program history.

West missed his first PAT after teammate Javares Stanback returned the opening kickoff back 70 yards, sending the kick just under the crossbar. But on the following nine scores, West was true with senior quarterback Kellan Hood acting as the holder.

Following a 44-yard passing touchdown from Hood to Stanback on Richmond’s first play from scrimmage, West lined up and split the uprights for the first time of his varsity career with 9:36 remaining in the first quarter.

Prior to getting the call up to varsity, West had acted as the junior varsity team’s kicker. 

Behind a running clock in the fourth quarter, West tied the record with just over six minutes remaining after senior running back Nasir Crumpton scored his third and final rushing touchdown.

Billy West (86) prepares to kick his first successful PAT during the first quarter of Wednesday’s win.  (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

RAPID RESPONSES WITH BILLY WEST

ROSports: Describe what it was like making your varsity debut on Wednesday and how it felt to tie the all-time PAT record as a freshman.

West: “There were some nerves, and Alex (Medina) has been a good kicker so far, and that was a high standard to match. But after the first kick, it got easier for me to get out there.

“It’s an honor to tie the record, and it means a lot to me to do it in my first game. There have been a lot of good kickers at Richmond, and it was really special that my brother Mack was there and that I’m following in his footsteps.”

ROSports: What goes through your mind when you are kicking a PAT and what is the most important part about remaining consistent?

West: “I’m mainly focused on my contact and follow through on the ball. I also have to be focused on my approach and how I take my steps and swing my leg. Following through down field and giving it 110 percent also helps.

“I do a lot of practice to remain consistent, and I stay after practice to kick 10 or 12 extra points. I’ve been doing it all season, and when I treat it like a game scenario, it definitely helps me stay focused.”

ROSports: Your older brother Mack West kicked at Richmond and now kicks at Coastal Carolina. How has he helped you in your progression as a kicker?

West: “He’s helped me in a lot of ways, especially how to kick the ball. Mack taught me the correct form, different ways to kick the ball, and how to follow through from certain angles. He’s also taught me how to punt and do kickoffs.

“Mack told me that distance will come with strength, and that my focus should be on accuracy and good height. I look up to him and have been inspired by his perfect PAT record as a 10th grader and having the highest punt average his senior year.”

ROSports: If you could only eat one type of food for the rest of your life, which would it be and why?

West: “It would have to be orange chicken and white rice because it’s really good, and it’s the best thing Panda Express has.”

ROSports: What are some goals you hope to achieve during the next couple of years in high school?

West: “I want to maintain my status in Beta Club, keep getting straight As and I also want to have the highest GPA on the football team.

“I’d also like to break the PAT record, or one of Mack’s records, or Trevor (Moss’)  touchback record.”

The Richmond Observer will publish two more Official Richmond County Athletes of the Week next week.

Last modified on Monday, 11 October 2021 18:35
Kyle Pillar

Nine-time N.C. Press Association award-winning sports editor. Indiana University of Pennsylvania communications media and journalism alumni. English teacher, Ninth Grade Academy.

Submit local sports scores to: kpillar@richmondobserver.com

Twitter: ROSports_