King joins Wall of Champs

Published 12:01 am Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Trinity Episcopal running back Kent King hangs his jersey to commemorate the Saints’ 2010 MAIS Class A state championship in football. King, a senior, graduated from Trinity Sunday. (Ben Hillyer \ The Natchez Democrat)

NATCHEZ — In 2009, Trinity Episcopal running backs Kent King and R.J. Fleming provided a strong backfield tandem that helped the Saints to a state championship.

Even though Fleming graduated one year ahead of King, the two are now once again lined up together, this time on Sports Center’s Wall of Champions.

King, who helped the Saints to their second straight state title in football this past season, will represent Trinity’s 2010 team on the Wall of Champions.

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“It’s a great honor to be up there with all the greats from our area,” King said. “I haven’t talked to (Fleming) recently, but he was one of my good friends that I always looked up to.”

More recently, King and his teammates have been celebrating the school’s first state title in baseball, which Trinity won May 12 by defeating Winona Christian School in the state championship series.

In addition, Trinity’s boys basketball team got to the state title game before falling to Greenville Christian Academy Feb. 19.

“It feels amazing, winning two state titles in two different sports,” King said. “Not many people know what it feels like, playing for three state titles and winning two.”

Between the three sports, King spent his time racking up various awards and honors. He was The Natchez Democrat All-Metro co-player of the year in football last season, and was first team All-District in all three sports.

In football, King was named All-District offensive co-MVP, and was presented with the Barr Brown Memorial Scholarship Award. He was team captain for the basketball team and one of the captains for the football team.

Although King said football is his favorite sport, that didn’t take away from his desire to win in the other ones — an attitude his teammates shared.

“Football is always my love,” King said. “My goal was to win in football, but I like to compete, so of course I’d want to win one in baseball as well.

“It was the same for everyone else. We just wanted to win in everything we did. Our goal at Trinity is to win it all, and that’s why we’re so successful in each sport.”

King’s father, David King, coached his son in football and basketball. The elder King also serves as an assistant coach for the baseball team.

“He gets everything out of me,” Kent King said. “He pushes me, and he’s hard on me, but that’s the reason I do as well as I do. He never lets me settle for less.”

David King said his son’s athletic abilities stem from having two parents with athletic backgrounds.

“He didn’t really have a choice, growing up in a family of coaches,” David King said. “Sports were all he ever knew. His mother (Stephanie King) was a heck of an athlete herself, so he comes from two competitive parents.”

And David King said having his son’s jersey on the Wall of Champions is very special for him.

“I’ll be honest, all my players are sort of my sons,” David King said. “But this one is dear to me, because he is my son. He’s been a great ambassador for Trinity.

“When you coach, you always want to win, but as a parent you want your children to have much success. I’m glad to see him finish his career as well as he did.”

Kent King received the Trinity High School gamer award in baseball. He finished school with a 3.57 GPA and was a recipient of the U.S. Army Reserve’s National Scholar Athlete Award. He was also awarded a $7,600 Eagle Assistance Program Scholarship.