My father and mother are two of the hardest working and most motivated people I know and they are responsible for my drive and motivation. My dad was a quality multisport athlete in school but his passion was motocross racing. He put me on my first dirt bike at the age of 4 and I raced my first motocross race when I was 5. I got 2nd place but really wanted that big 1st place trophy! This drive and competitiveness was always present and evident in each youth sport I played and it remains the same to this day in everything I do including academics and sports.
I've always been a dominant player in soccer since the age of 5. My youth club and Academy teams were always highly ranked, securing several Regional and National titles. I stepped away from Club/Academy soccer when I was 13 to completely focus on my love of football and kicking and it had given me a great foundation for my kicking career.
My kicking career began in 7th grade football. Our coach loved having me because he didn't have to go for 2 point conversions like in the past. I missed only 1 PAT and made the only FG chance I had. My kickoffs were typically 45 yds. My 8th grade season was similar only my kickoffs increased to about 50 yds. I was 2/2 on FGs. One was from 32 yds right hash to help win the game.
I strongly focused on kicking before my 9th grade season. I began training with Kohl's and Chris Sailer Kicking. Our team struggled offensively but I contributed with 14/15 PATs and 2/3 FGs. My coach gave me a chance at a 48 yarder in the rain and into the wind. I missed it just short but what a thrill having your coach believe in you.
This year, 2018-19, I am a sophomore at Spain Park. We are a 7A school in the toughest region (Region 3) in the state. I competed and secured the kicking duties on the Varsity team as well as JV team. I should continue accordingly and finish as a 3 year Varsity starter. It was an honor being able to play with the seniors and juniors on our team and having the responsibility to help them win games. This year I was 34/36 PATs (1 blocked, 1 missed) and 2/3 FGs with average KO distance of 59.6 yds.
Through hard work and training with Chris Sailer kicking and Kohl's kicking I keep progressing. I typically attend a Regional and National showcase camp for both Kohl's and Chris Sailer and then several of the Invitation Only camps. I do very well at the competitive camps and at 15 years old, I kick 65+ yds on kickoffs and make 50+ yd FGs. Also, I am already kicking FGs and PATs with the ball off the ground like college instead of on a kicking block. I work daily on becoming better at my position both physically and mentally.
Academically, I am in the top quartile in my class. I have also scored in the top 5% for all students my age in the U.S. on the standardized ACT aspire test. This qualified me for the Duke TIPs program for gifted students. I am in the Finance Academy at my high school and will pursue a career in business/finance/marketing. I work as hard at school as I do kicking. I have begun prepping for my ACT and SAT exams next year and believe I should be able to obtain a high score according to my pretest results.
I look forward to playing for the college team that is the best fit and I will continue to make quality contributions on the field, in the classroom and in our community.
Drake Tabor............ Class of 2021