High Five: Johnson plays whatever sport is in season

Published 7:15 pm Friday, November 24, 2023

Northside senior Griffin Johnson’s football career came to an abrupt end on a recent Friday night. He was on the basketball court the following Monday and will be on the baseball diamond when the hoops season ends. The Belhaven native is a National Honor Society and Beta Club member with a 4.37 GPA and holds down a part-time job at Spoon River Artworks & Market in Belhaven. Johnson is a linebacker, power forward and right fielder depending on the season.

  1. The end of a senior’s football season is always tough to deal with. As you look back, what were the highlights?

Griffin: I played one play in the state championship game as a freshman, which was an amazing overall experience.  Our incredible comeback against Pender my sophomore year was a lot of fun also. Getting the Anchor Bowl back was great this season. Everybody was so pumped up and it’s always fun to beat Southside. Gus’s (Vansant) pick six was awesome because we all tease him when he drops those kind of passes in practice. He locked in on that one and set the tone for the rest of the game.

Overall, football was so much fun because it was great going to practice with a senior group that I’ve known and played with since we were six years old. We tried to be strong leaders for the younger guys and set a positive tone every day. That’s what I will miss the most.

  1. How did jumping into the basketball season two days later help you?

Griffin: Honestly, it would be hard to choose between football and basketball if I had to pick one, so it really helped to be involved with another sport I love so quickly. I made the varsity as a sophomore and realized I could compete at the high school level. We’ve grown a lot physically and mentally since last season and I’m looking forward to a much better year. We have a lot of two and three sport athletes on the floor and we are a tall team. I’m excited to see what we can do.

  1. What do you like most about basketball?

Griffin: The feeling you get when you’ve hit a couple shots in a row and feel like you can’t miss. When the crowd is really loud and the whole team is playing well and you’re really into a flow. The cool thing about basketball is the rhythm of it and there’s nothing better when all five guys are clicking and you’re putting a scoring streak together.

  1. How does baseball stack up to the other two sports?

Griffin: I love it also. I’ve played all three sports since I was six, so it’s what I do in the spring. It’s great to be outside when the weather is warm and baseball is a mentally challenging sport. There’s. nothing better than getting on a hot streak at the plate and hitting the ball right on the nose. I love playing for Coach Boyd and hanging out with my friends at practice.

  1. What are your plans after graduation?

Griffin: I’d like to go to a smaller school to play football and major in communications or journalism. I think it would be really fun to be a sports broadcaster someday.