Pepsi-Cola Student Athlete of the Week: Noah Smiley

Published: Dec. 23, 2021 at 11:56 AM EST
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Noah Smiley is an exceptional senior at Riverheads High School.

Smiley excels on the football and outdoor track teams. One week ago, Smiley and his teammates captured their sixth consecutive VHSL Class 1 State Championship. With this victory, the Gladiators broke the record for the longest winning streak in the nation.

“I have been playing with my teammates for my whole life,” said Smiley. “They’re more than teammates, they’re my brothers.”

As a leader on and off the football field, Smiley has served an important role in the Gladiators’ ongoing success.

“Noah is a great football player and an even better person. He shows the team how to work hard in the weight room and on the practice field. A lot of people can win football games with a kid like him,” said assistant football coach Dillon Norcross.

This season, Smiley switched positions from fullback to tight end. This change took him out of the spotlight in his final high school season. Still, he maintained a positive attitude and showed his teammates what it means to be selfless.

“Most kids I know would not have wanted to block during their senior year. But Noah embraced this new role and did everything possible for the success of the team,” added Norcross.

Smiley will be rewarded for his stellar career as a Gladiator as he heads to Ferrum College in January to play football and study business.

“Noah is an excellent student. He brings a lot of humor and energy to the classroom. He is willing to help others and is a positive force in class,” said Latin teacher Bethany Rhodenizer.

Noah will soon be joining his older brother, Zach, on the football team at Ferrum College.

“Noah can achieve anything he puts his mind to. I can’t wait to see the Smiley boys take the field on Saturdays,” said Norcross.

The local community will continue to follow Smiley as he shines on and off the field during his final year at Riverheads High School.

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