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Derrian Johnson takes home MVP at banquet

LAUREN WOOD / THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — Natchez High School assistant football coach Jerry Baldwin claps senior Shedrick Green on the shoulder as he gives him his football medallion Wednesday night during the NHS fall sports awards banquet at the Steckler building.

NATCHEZ — William Broussard couldn’t tell you how many games he won and lost during his sophomore year of high school, nor his sophomore year of college.

The athletic director for Southern University was on-hand Wednesday night at the Natchez High School fall sports awards banquet. Though most like to focus on wins and losses, Broussard told the student-athletes that there was more to sports than the result of games.

“It’s not the wins and losses, but the lessons learned in those wins and losses,” Broussard said.

But winning awards are a nice bonus, and athletes from the NHS football team, as well as the boys and girls cross country teams, were presented awards for their hard work during the season.

LAUREN WOOD / THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — Natchez High School senior Derrian Johnson accepts his Team MVP award from football assistant coach Trey Woodard Wednesday night during the NHS fall sports awards banquet.

NHS head football coach Lance Reed said the banquet was a nice way to cap off a successful season, in which the Bulldogs finished 7-4.

“Sometimes it’s the last chance you have to spend a quality evening with this group, especially with the players who will be graduating,” Reed said. “It really is a special night. We just want to recognize the guys for their efforts.”

For senior Derrian Johnson, who won team most valuable player, his feelings about the banquet were mixed.

“It’s kind of exciting, and I’m happy to be the team MVP,” Johnson said. “But it’s kind of a bittersweet moment, since it’s my last one.”

Johnson also made sure to spend some time chatting with Broussard after the banquet about possibly continuing his football career at Southern in Baton Rouge.

“He was telling me about the great campus life and how they’re rebuilding,” Johnson said. “It would be nice to be close to home if I could be.”

Broussard left the student-athletes with several pieces of advice from his playing days. He said there’s no such thing as a perfect season or a winless season, since there’s always room to improve when you win and always positives to take away when you lose.

He also said that playing sports are the best days of your life, but there will also be good days to come.

In addition, Broussard said that coaches are some of the best teachers around.

“These are the lessons I learned in sports, but I was hard-headed, so they really manifested after I didn’t play again,” Broussard said.

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