This is one Officer you should go out of your way to salute.
Overcoming some trying circumstances growing up, William Officer is rapidly stamping himself as one of the greatest backs in David Lipscomb High football history.
Midway through his senior season, Officer has rushed for 678 yards and six touchdowns, well on track to a third straight 1,000-yard season.
With totals of 1,155 yards as a sophomore season and 1,485 as a junior, he has 3,318 career yards and 39 touchdowns. He is rapidly climbing the ladder into the top five rushers all-time at Lipscomb. Reaching 4,000, a total attained only by Matt Elrod (2004-06), is within reach.
Asked what his strong points were, Officer said, “I’d say my determination, I try to work hard. And I want to be a leader, especially my senior year.”
Not to mention his bruising running style. The 5-foot-9, 215-pound bulldozer can run over defenders as well as around them.
“I can’t say enough about my O-line, I call them my close brothers,” the soft-spoken Officer sid. “They have had some great games blocking for me. We’ve stayed together as a team after that 0-2 start.”
Officer became a full-time starter mid-way through his sophomore season when Harrison Daniel tore his ACL against Goodpasture. He’s been rolling ever since.
He is a primary reason Lipscomb (5-2) has bounced back and posted five straight victories heading into a region matchup with rival Christ Presbyterian Academy, 7 p.m. Friday at home.
Yet, Officer has had to overcome some early hardships.
When he was three, his mother died due to a heart attack. Five years later, his grandmother, who had helped raise him, passed away – also by a heart attack.
The task of raising William from elementary school on through high school fell to his older sister Tameka Officer-Czech. Ten years older, Tameka (28) is a Lipscomb security officer and a 2000 Lipscomb High grad.
“I could not have asked for William to have turned out better and become so stellar a person so far,: Tameka said Wednesday. “He has trained and worked so hard.
“It was very difficult after grandmother died and it was just me. I’ve worked at UPS, Carmax, then here (as security officer) at Lipscomb. I would average about 4-6 hours of sleep. It became almost too much. I got very few days off except Sundays. It helped when William got old enough to drive.”
“She’s helped me grow and mature through the years,” Officer said. “I’ve learned a lot of life’s hard lessons.”
“The thing I’m most proud of is when he gave his life to Christ two years ago,” says Tameka who has missed only two of his games, that coming when she had pneumonia.
“To come through all that and become the outstanding young man he’s become speaks so well of William as a person,” coach Glen McCadams said. “He is a very humble and hard-working young man. He’s a three-year starter, rushed for 1,000 yards his sophomore and junior years and someone we’ve depended heavily on offensively.
“We won two one-point games which, quite honestly, we should have lost. This team has overcome a lot and never quit. We just lost tailback Dale Babb with a torn ACL. But everyone has picked up the slack.”
The last time Lipscomb started 0-2 was 1987 and went 0-4 before getting its first win.
• Lipscomb ranked: On the basis of its fifth straight win, David Lipscomb has vaulted to No. 9 in Class 4A in the latest AP poll. The Mustangs are No. 8 in the TSSAA playoff rankings.
Maplewood (7-1) fell from No. 2 to 3 in AP after its 9-7 scare with East Lit. The Panthers remain No. 2 in the 4A playoff rankings.
• FRA gets forfeit: St. Andrews-Sewanee has forfeited its game at Franklin Road Academy which was scheduled Friday. It gives FRA (6-2) four straight wins. The Panthers’ next game is Oct. 22 at DCA.
• NCS volleyball rolls: Top seed Nashville Christian School added the District 10-A tournament volleyball championship to the regular season title it won with a three-game sweep of the event Tuesday night at NCS.
Behind tournament MVP Ashton Curtis, the Eagles beat White House Heritage in four games and wound up undefeated in district play (14-0) and the tournament (3-0). NCS beat Houston County in the opening round Monday, then stopped Jo Byrns in the semis, then Heritage in the finals Tuesday.
NCS senior Savannah Pickard was named regular season MVP. The Eagles will host the Region 5-A tournament next Tuesday.
• Lipscomb Advances: Top seed and host David Lipscomb beat Pearl-Cohn in three straight games Tuesday and advanced to the semis of the District 10-AA tournament. Pearl-Cohn beat Stratford in four games its opener.
In other quarterfinals, Hume-Fogg beat Maplewood, CPA spiked Whites Creek, and MLK toppled East Lit.
In the semis Thursday, host Lipscomb will meet MLK (4 p.m.), Hume-Fogg battles CPA (5:30 p.m.) in a key elimination game, followed by the finals at 7 p.m.
• Glencliff rolls: Perennial power Glencliff (23-2) thumped Antioch 25-11, 25-10, 15-17 in the District 12-AAA tournament at Overton and advanced to the semis.
Also, McGavock beat Cane Ridge 26-24, 25-21, 25-18, and host Overton outfought Hunters Lane 25-23, 21-25, 25-23, 25-21.
In the semis Wednesday, Glencliff will meet McGavock, and host Overton plays top seed Hillwood, both at 4 p.m. Finals follow at 5:30 p.m.
• State Golf: Hendersonville sophomore Kevin Lee shot a four-under par 68 to take the first-day lead in the boys Class AAA state golf tournament at Willowbrook Course in Manchester. Lee is one shot ahead of Ravenwood’s Brendon Caballero and two ahead of Independence ace Michael Monroe.
Vanderbilt commitment Kendall Martindale of Jefferson County took a three-stroke lead in the girls division with an opening round 69.
Brentwood is fourth in the boys team race with a 303 score, eight shots behind leader Knox Farragut (295). Ravenwood is in fifth in the girls division, seven shots behind leader Soddy-Daisy. Finals rounds are Wednesday.
Antioch at Glencliff
Hillwood at Cane Ridge
Lancaster Chr. at Ezell-Harding
Pearl-Cohn at Whites Creek
Independence at Franklin
Boyd-Buchanan at Pope JPII
Brentwood High at Hillsboro
CPA at David Lipscomb
Davidson Acad. at Mt. Juliet Chr.
DCA at Riverside Christian
Ensworth at Father Ryan
Goodapsture at McGavock
Nashville Christn. at Houston County
Overton at Hunters Lane
Page at Fairview