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Boyz to Kings Lions football team celebrates

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The Boyz to Kings Lions football team recently completed an impressive 10-1 season. Pictured on the front row, from left to right, are: Head Coach Merv Mattair, Malik Weatherspoon, Kentaviouse Craddock, Amarion Choice Moore, Jordan Capi, Brian Hill, Jr., Ja’veyonne Roberson, Jordan Davis and Coach Robert Demps. On the second row, from left to right, are: Ezekiel Ghent, Vincent Sanders, Leo Ramirez, Travis Arnold, Marvin “TJ” Mattair, Quenterrius Smith, Keyan McCray, Robert “3D” Demps and Na' Quez Christian. On the third row, from left to right, are: Dre Davis, Javon Christian, Dayvon Gallon, Detrez Lamar and Tyrek Tillman. On the back row, from left to right, are: Chaplain Chris McFarland, Coach Jake Siplin, Coach Tye Washington, Coordinator Shirley Mattair and Coach Curtis Mattair.
Greene Publishing, Inc. Photo by Rick Patrick, November 16, 2017
One of the most important aspects of the Boyz to Kings Lions football team is academics. Those members of the team who had attained the A&B Honor Roll were recognized at the team banquet on Thursday, Nov. 16. Pictured, from left to right, are: Ja'veyonne Roberson, Marvin “TJ” Mattair, Vincent Sanders, Tyrek Tillman, Sean Williams, Detrez Lamar, Robert “3D” Demps and Dayvon Gallon.
Greene Publishing, Inc. Photo by Rick Patrick, November 16, 2017
The Boyz to Kings Lions football program also featured a cheerleading program for young girls. Pictured, from left to right, are: Head Coach Shirley Mattair, Coach Tamara Johnson, Assistant Coach Ca' Shiya Gallon, ReTonya Bright, KaNyshia Davis, Tomeace Straughter, Malia Roberson, Ja' Nya Gallon, Saige Haggins, Kei' Niya Phillips and Arianna Davis. Not pictured are: Lamarya Roberson, A' myah Ingram and Ta' miyah Adams.

Rick Patrick: Greene Publishing, Inc.

On Thursday, Nov. 16, the Boyz to Kings Lions 10 and under football team celebrated their season with a banquet at the Pinetta Community Center. It was an opportunity to allow these young men to have a moment in the spotlight and to pay tribute to their successful season. The Lions ended their season with an impressive 10-1 record. The team grew out of the efforts begun by Merv Mattair, founder of the Boyz to Kings organization. “Boyz to Kings started in 2010 and last year we decided to start a travel football team in order to expand and continue to empower youth,” said Mattair.

Mattair uses the sport of football as a vehicle for teaching valuable lessons beyond the grid-iron. Mattair said the focus is on the student-athlete, so academics and behavior is paramount. The coaches maintain a close partnership with the schools and teachers. “If a kid is not performing as they should in school, they do not play in the games,” said Mattair. This attention to behavior and detail was evident, even as the youngsters received their awards. As they came forward to shake his hand, Mattair insisted they look him in the eye and give a firm hand-shake. Once learned, these lessons will serve these youngsters well for many years to come.

Mattair said his plan is to expand the football program to a 13 and under team next year. He also plans to add a track program that would also include female athletes.

A special thanks goes to the sponsors for their support of youth football. Royal Sponsors are: Rod and Jada Williams, Reggie Daniels, Rick Davis, Michelle Pride, Kevin Turner, Toppies Hair Salon, Bobby and Tarnisha Thompkins, Curtis and Lynn Mattair, Choya and Keyania Wise and Rosetta of Rosi's Hair Store of Perry. The Royal Plus Sponsors are: Alston Kelley, Octavious Tooks and the Revelation Church family, Mrs. Cooks of Cooks and Cooper Funeral Home and Doug and Lynne Brown.

More information about the Boyz to Kings program can be found at

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