Four Washington athletes commit to play in collegePublished 1:59pm Friday, February 28, 2014
The playing careers of Washington football’s Stevie Green, Baylone Guilford and Karim Topping, along with soccer player Alana Jefferson, are far from over. On Thursday, all four seniors signed letters of intent to play their respective sport at the collegiate level this fall.
Green, a dual-sport athlete in basketball and former Washington Daily News Offensive Player of the Year in football, put the pen to paper, committing to play football at Elizabeth City State University.
“Ultimately, I have to pick a spot,” said Green. “It’ll be nice to play both, but if I had to choose one, I’d play running back. That’s what I grew up playing, and that’s what I like the most.”
At running back, Green tallied 1548 rushing and 16 touchdowns on 198 carries for the Pam Pack last season, while also recording 284 yards and three touchdowns on 10 receptions at wide receiver.
Playing alongside Green will be Riverside linebacker Iran James, who signed his letter of intent to play at ECSU on National Signing Day, as well as Washington’s Baylone Guilford. Guilford, a 6-foot-2, 305-pound defensive tackle, recorded 90 tackles and three sacks for the Pam Pack in his senior campaign.
“I love all my coaches, from offensive coordinators to defensive coordinators,” said an emotional Guilford. “With my teammates, we had our times and made it through. They’re like brothers to me. It’s a hard feeling, going on the other side of North Carolina. It’s like a dagger to the heart.”
Green and Guilford will join an ESCU team that posted a 4-6 record last season under the direction of 11-year head coach and former CIAA Coach of the Year Waverly Tillar.
Guilford’s teammate on defense, Karim Topping, an undersized 5-foot-9, 170-pound linebacker, will be heading to Methodist University on a full scholarship. Topping finished last season with 138 tackles and five sacks—a key part in head coach Sport Sawyers’ defensive scheme.
“[Methodist] gave me a chance when no other school would because of my size,” Topping said. “I’m going to show them and show everybody that size does not matter when it comes to football. I’m just ready to play.”
Methodist won the USA South Conference last season with an 8-2 record.
It was a historic day for the Washington football program, but the other college-bound athlete, Pam Pack girls soccer captain Alana Jefferson, could be the most humble and promising talent in Washington’s 2014 class.
As a center midfielder, Jefferson tallied 22 goals in 21 games for the Pam Pack in her senior season, while also leading her team in assists with 10. For Jefferson, there was little doubt where she planned on playing her collegiate soccer.
“It’s my dream to play college soccer. It’s what I’ve always wanted to do,” Jefferson said. “I pretty much decided on Queens [University], and wasn’t really interested in playing anywhere else.”
Thursday’s Pam Pack commits join Northside lineman Dale Russ as the only Beaufort County athletes intending to play at the collegiate level this fall.