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Sports

February 6, 2014

Empire’s Price signs with SNU

EMPIRE — Empire runningback Stephen Price will play football at Southern Nazarene next season, SNU athletics confirmed Wednesday.

Price led the Bulldogs as a linebacker and runningback to its first playoff win since 1991. However, for most of the season he was sidelined with an injury, which made his mother worry if her son would ever get the chance to play football at the next level.

“I was like there goes that,” Billie Strutton said. “I’m just very thankful, even though he had an injury and we thought it was going to be the end of his dream to go to a Christian college, that it worked out.”

Going to a Christian school was a big selling point for Price to play at Southern Nazarene. He mentioned it to Strutton in August and is thrilled that  dream has come true.

“I wanted to go to Christian college to continue my faith and walk with Christ, to further that,” Price said. “To play football, that’s my pride and passion. I just love the school, great facilities and education.”

Price kept his hope up that his team would make the postseason so he would have the chance to suit up again after the injury. His teammates pulled through, and they were one of the first groups of people that Price thanked Wednesday.

“I’m proud of my team, that they played really hard to get us to the playoffs, so I would be able to play a couple more games,” Price said. “I’m proud that they did that and all the hard work we did together.”

Price’s father, Jeff Price, said he was proud of his son. It was “proud dad moment number five million” he hyperbolized.

“It’s all him. I just show up in the bleachers and cheer him on.”

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