Sign on the dotted line: LaGrange High sees three boys soccer players sign to play in college
Published 7:55 pm Wednesday, May 3, 2023
The LaGrange high boys soccer team saw three of its players — Jordan Bryant, Desmond Cockfield and Davis Knight — sign to play soccer at the next level on Wednesday. These three Grangers were integral to the team making a second elite eight run in the last three years in the 2023 season and will now get to enjoy the fruits of their labor at the next level.
In the fall, Bryant will be making his way to north Georgia to attend Truett McConnell University to play soccer.
“It has been a lifelong goal to play soccer at the college level,” Bryant said. “It feels good to finally make it official and sign.”
Bryant has had a large support system of the years with none as prevalent in his life as his father, Chris, who has helped coach him practically his entire life. It was not just his father, but a whole village that helped him get to this moment.
“I have had a huge support system over the years,” Bryant said. “From my parents taking me to practices and games to all my family being here today. My father has coached me from a young age, and a lot of my development as a player and as a person comes from him.”
After an injury riddled junior season, his first at LaGrange High, Bryant exploded onto the scene this year with 22 goals and nine assists. After two years spent homeschooled and playing at Lafayette Christian School, Bryant made the transition to the Grangers and has not looked back.
While Bryant served as a focal point in attack, Cockfield has been a stalwart for the Grangers at the back. He elevated his game this season as he transitioned from forward to defense. He thrived at the back and earned a scholarship to play soccer at Andrew College.
“I love the environment, and they are secluded, so there won’t be any distractions,” Cockfield said. “
The transition to defense was not always the easier part of the journey for Cockfield, but he persevered and found his role. At Andrew College, Cockfield expects to be deployed at a wing-back spot that will give him more license to get forward to join the attack.
“They still want me to play defense, but it is going to be a little more attacking,” Cockfield said. “I’m excited to be able to do both because I started out playing forward.”
Cockfield’s energy and pace in defense will be hard to replace for the Grangers in the coming seasons.
The final soccer signee was Knight, who along with Bryant, was named co-player of the year in region 4-4A. Knight has been a star for the Grangers, scoring 28 goals and contributing 17 assists in his senior campaign, which was a strong followup to his breakout season in 2022 when he scored 26 goals and provided 22 assists.
Knight will be taking his talents to Piedmont University — a decision he made some time ago, but was ecstatic to make it official at his signing day on Wednesday.
“It feels like everything I’ve been working toward my whole life was for this one purpose,” Knight said. “The atmosphere around Piedmont made it the right fit for me. Really everything, the school, the team, it feels like the right fit.”
Knight was the heartbeat of the Grangers this season and will be hard to replace. He is set to leave LaGrange as one of the most decorated soccer players in its history. For all the individual accolades he received, the run to the state quarterfinals this season as a team will be what stands out most when he looks back on his time as a Granger.
“It was a special run,” Knight said. “Not many people thought we would make it that far. Every day and every game as a team we got better, and it showed during the playoffs.”
This is the first time under head coach Shane Pulliam that three boys soccer players have signed to play college soccer from the same class and could be the first time in program history that three players signed from the same class.
“It shows how far this team and these players have come,” Knight said. “It is special to be able to sign with some of the people I grew up playing soccer with.”