Tuesday, 19 October 2021 19:11

Frazion Steele: The Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week

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Junior middle linebacker Frazion Steele has been named the Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week presented by HWY 55. Junior middle linebacker Frazion Steele has been named the Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week presented by HWY 55. Kyle Pillar — Sports Editor.

ROCKINGHAM — Junior football player Frazion Steele has been named the Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week presented by HWY 55.

Making his first varsity start during Saturday’s win over Lee County High School, Steele continued to help the Richmond defense. In two games in four days last week, he combined for three turnovers and two scores.

This is Steele’s first career recognition as the Official Richmond County Male Athlete of the Week.

Athletic Profile

Age: 17

Birthday: Nov. 2, 2003

Year: Junior

Fall Sports: Football

Position: Middle Linebacker

Years on Varsity: 1 year

Height & Weight: 5-11, 188 pounds

Experience: 7 years


The Raiders extended their winning streak to six games with victories over Southern Lee and Lee County this past week. Richmond shut out Southern Lee 58-0 on Tuesday, and followed with a 34-7 victory over Lee County on Saturday.

Steele, who is in his first full season with the varsity team, accounted for two of Richmond’s three defensive scores during that span. He also caught two of Richmond’s six interceptions this past week.

In the final minutes of the fourth quarter against Southern Lee, Steele recovered a fumble by Cavaliers quarterback Brett Tate-Blanks at the 32-yard line. Scooping the bouncing ball off the ground, Steele raced the short field and crossed into the end zone for the final touchdown in the blowout win.

Steele added two tackles (one solo and one assist) and a quarterback sack against Southern Lee.

His performance in that game earned him the nod to start at middle linebacker against Lee County, and he didn’t disappoint. In the first quarter, Steele intercepted two pass attempts by quarterback Will Patterson, who entered the game as the Sandhills Athletic Conference’s leading passer.

Steele’s first pick was on the near sideline, which he caught at the 28-yard line and ran the length of the field into the end zone for a pick-six to make it a 14-0 lead.

Just 30 seconds later on the next defensive series, Steele made a move and picked Patterson again, this time on the other side of the field. That interception led to a rushing touchdown by senior J.D. Lampley.

Against the Yellow Jackets, Steele contributed four total tackles (three solo and one assist). Through eight games this season, he has 24 total tackles (17 solo, 7 assists) and has recorded a career-high six tackles twice (Hoke County and Union Pines).

Frazion Steele (24) runs into the end zone following his pick-six in the first quarter against Lee County on Saturday. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)


ROSports: You’ve had a lot of success on defense and scoring the last two games. What’s working well for you and allowing you these opportunities?

Steele: “The coaches have been working with me. I wasn’t a linebacker at first, and they have helped me with my progression. We’ve worked around the bad stuff to get better at the good stuff. On the interceptions, I was really just doing my assignments and covering the running back. I was at the right place at the right time.

“What’s helping me is my speed, filling the gaps and following the guard when he pulls. My first start was a big deal because I wanted to show my teammates I have what it takes to help the team win.”

ROSports: What’s it mean to you to be able to wear the green and gold on Friday nights and represent the Richmond Raiders?

Steele: “It really means a lot. Ever since I was a little kid, I watched my brother play for the Raiders and I told myself I wanted to be a Raider. Running out of the tunnel is really special.

“All of the coaches have love for us and that’s what makes it special. The highlight of the season has been my two interceptions in the last game.”

ROSports: You’re getting ready for your first Richmond-Scotland game. What’s special about the rivalry and how is the team getting ready?

Steele: “I’m really excited and ready to see what that environment is like. And I’m ready to go out there and play with my teammates and do what we’ve been doing on defense. 

“We are always pumping each other up, and our pregame lifts always help us on game day.”

ROSports: What are your biggest motivators to be successful in the classroom and on the football field?

Steele: “What motivates me to be out here is being a starter. And I’m motivated by my mom, Shawna Leak, because she works three jobs. I want her to not have to work, and I want to continue to play well so I can provide for her.

“In the classroom, I have to do my work or I won’t be successful in life. And I do that so I can also be successful with football. School has been a really enjoyable environment.”

ROSports: What’s your go-to gaming system and what games do you play the most?

Steele: “It’s definitely the PS5 because it has really good versions of the games and the graphics are better. I play a lot of Madden, 2K and MLB The Show. It’s a chance for me to unwind and I enjoy playing.”

The Richmond Observer will publish two more Official Richmond County Athletes of the Week next week.

Kyle Pillar

Nine-time N.C. Press Association award-winning sports editor. Indiana University of Pennsylvania communications media and journalism alumni. English teacher, Ninth Grade Academy.

Submit local sports scores to: kpillar@richmondobserver.com

Twitter: ROSports_