LORIS, SC (WMBF) – It seems like every year, Loris looks like they're finally going to break out with a highly successful season. If this is finally that year, you'll likely have our WMBF News Athlete of the Week to thank.
"I've seen us get better each year," said Loris senior offensive and defensive lineman Ethan Grainger. "I think we should do really good this year."
Grainger is a four-year starter for the Lions on both lines. That is the least of his accomplishments.
"There's not a better kid in the program," said Loris head coach Jimmy Longerbeam. "I'm not sure there's a better kid in the school."
Grainger is at the top of his class, boasting an impressive GPA. He says he takes all honors and advanced placement classes.
Grainger also had to deal with a two tragedies most people couldn't handle. Making it worse, they happened within a year and a half of one another.
"My freshman year, my dad died from a car falling on him," said Grainger. "My team was there to support me at the funeral and everything. My sophomore year my mom died in a car accident. They were there once again to back me up on that."
Grainger says his teammates were there for him in his time of need, and his fellow Lions were impressed by the strength of their leader.
"In 18 months, he lost both of his parents," said Loris offensive lineman and linebacker Cody Stevens, one of Grainger's good friends. "I don't understand how he did it, he just came right back to practice working hard again. Maybe that was his fuel or something. Whatever he did, he used it to better him, I think."
After all that tragedy, Grainger not only dedicated himself to football, but to academics. He wants to spend the rest of his life not tackling quarterbacks, but saving lives.
"I want to go pre-med," said Grainger. "Surgeon or anesthesiologist."
Grainger and Loris face Marion Friday night at 7:30pm in our WMBF News Extra Point Game of the Week.