Reece Strong has Richlands tearing through the competition
Posted September 30, 2011 12:21 am
For Richlands (Cedar Bluff, Va.) quarterback Reece Strong–this season has been a long time coming. He finally gets the opportunity to play quarterback for most of the contest instead of splitting time with Cody Lockhart. Last season he had to split game reps with Lockhart and this year he’s made the most of his opportunity to shine.
He displayed his outstanding ability as a quarterback last season in the VHSL Division III AA state championship game against Poquoson. Even though Richlands lost the game 23-17, it certainly wasn’t because of Strong’s stellar performance. The gifted signal-caller orchestrated the Blues offensive attack with a high level of efficiency in the game despite coming off the bench late in the second half.
Not only did Strong rush for a touchdown but he also recovered his own onside kick in the ensuing possession to give the Blues a final shot at victory. The next drive he completed a few dazzling passes in order to get his team deep into Poquoson territory. That was last season and the Blue Tornadoes are looking to cleanse that painful memory from their minds.
Fast forward to the 2011 campaign, where Richlands and head coach Greg Mance lost plenty of talent in the off-season.
There is plenty of youth on the Blues’ current roster but that’s where returning starters like quarterback Strong come in handy.
In addition to playing quarterback, Strong is the kicker and punter for Richlands.
He’s one of the most underrated kickers in the state of Virginia for the 2012 recruiting class and he has the stats to prove it.
So far this season in five games, the versatile kicker has nailed four of his five field goal attempts, connecting on distances of 22, 30, 36, and 48 yards. He’s also drilled all 24 of his 24 extra points this season. As a punter, he’s averaging 41.6 yards per punt.
His stellar play as a quarterback and kicker is a huge reason why the Blues are still undefeated (5-0). He nailed a game-winning kick in the closing minutes against Union, lifting his team to a heart-stopping 24-22 victory. The versatile athlete did a little bit of everything–also throwing for 219 passing yards and two touchdowns in the win. Strong is blessed with an amazing ability to stay calm in the pressurized situations and has proven that time and time again in his career with Richlands.
An excellent baseball player as well–Strong is receiving interest from Western Carolina, Hampden Sydney, and Concord (West Virginia).
No schools have currently contacted Strong regarding playing football in college.
Richlands might be undefeated but they are far from the championship level they are used to playing at year in, year out. Strong will look to help the Blues regain that championship form as they get closer and closer to the VHSL playoffs.
The Blue Tornadoes currently have two other Division I-A prospects on their roster for the 2012 recruiting class: guard Josh Hess (committed to FIU) and running back Devon Johnson (committed to Marshall). Both players are two of the top prospects in the state of Virginia for the 2012 class.
Richlands currently sits at 5-0 on the season and will look to move to 6-0 as they face Honaker (Sept. 30) at 7:30 p.m.
Check below to watch Reece Strong’s highlight tape.