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LaGrange back tough to tackle

By Kevin Eckleberry

kevin.eckleberry@lagrangenews.com

LAGRANGE – He’s a bruiser.

LaGrange High running back Cornell Kendrick has plenty of positive attributes, one of which is his ability to stay upright, to remain on his feet even as opposing defenders try to drag him down.

Kendrick, a senior, will be a critical player for the LaGrange Grangers this season as they look to improve on their 2-8 record from a year ago.

Kendrick and his teammates are in the midst of their first full week of preseason practice as they get ready for their season opener on Aug. 18 against Callaway.

Kendrick was a focal point of the offense a year ago, particularly in the first five games while quarterback LaPerion Perry was recovering from offseason surgery.

“Every time I get the ball, I want to score,” Kendrick said. “I want to score for the guys. We go through a lot. Every time I get the ball, I’m thankful. I love it.”

Kendrick is a difficult man to bring down in large part because of his will-power, but it also helps that he is strong.

Kendrick works diligently in the offseason, and he was one of the team’s members of the 1,000-yard club in weight-lifting.

That’s the second straight summer Kendrick was a part of that club.

“He’s the strongest guy on the team, by far,” LaGrange head coach Dialleo Burks said.

Kendrick is part of a new-look offense.

The Grangers will be running the run-oriented Veer offense, which is good news for Kendrick and his mates in the backfield since they’ll be getting their hands on the ball a lot.

Myles Johnson and Trez Delaney are two other big-play LaGrange running backs.

“We’ve got a whole rotation,” Kendrick said. “Whoever gets the ball can score anytime. I love that.”

Kendrick just wants to win, something he hasn’t experienced much of lately.

Coming off a two-win season, Kendrick knows expectations may be down for the Grangers, but the players are aiming high.

“We’ve got a chip on our shoulder,” Kendrick said. “We want to shock everybody.

OF NOTE: For much more on LaGrange’s football team including a look at how preseason practice is going, see Friday’s sports section