Senior leaders Ecton and Colburn ready to lead Dutch Fork
By David Shelton
Irmo – As the defending state champions in Division I-AAAA, the Dutch Fork Silver Foxes enter the 2014 season with a target on their back.
But, that does not seem to shake the Silver Foxes’ swagger heading into the upcoming season. The team’s offensive and defensive leader – running back Matt Colburn and defensive back Lane Ecton – say Dutch Fork is ready to work even harder to win another ring.
“There is no let up at all,” says Ecton at the annual HSSR football media day. “We are even more focused because we know how hard it is to win just one. We will have one of the better defenses in the state. I think we will be better defensively than we were last year. And our offense is going to be explosive.”
Ecton recently made a verbal commitment to play college ball at Georgia Southern.
“They were my biggest offer and the coaching staff there showed me a lot of love for the entire process,” he said. “It really was a simple decision. I want to be a part of their program as they move into big-time football. It’s very exciting what they are doing and I want to be a part of it.”
Ecton finished last season as Dutch Fork’s leading tackler with 132 stops. He says head coach Tom Knotts, who is 42-14 in four seasons with two appearances in the state title game, is responsible for making him a college prospect and for turning the program into a winner.
“He has made a tremendous difference, just in giving us confidence as players that if we worked hard and did as we were coached, we would be winners,” he said.
Colburn is one of the state’s top running backs this season, having made a verbal commitment to Louisville earlier this summer. Last year, the 5-9, 195-pound back gained 2,488 yards and scored 40 touchdowns while toting the ball 328 times.
Colburn says he is having no trouble focusing on his senior season.
“I don’t want to have any regrets,” he said. “I don’t want anything less than going back and winning a state championship. That’s our mindset and I think we can do it.
“We are the hunted and people want to beat Dutch Fork now. Anything in life, you have to work hard for so I am ready to work hard for another ring.”