Footing the bill

Granite Bay kickers booting for more than just field goals
By: Nick Pecoraro, of Gold Country Media
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The difference of any given football outcome can often be decided by a field goal or extra point. Senior Granite Bay kicker Everett Hayes is looking to help make a more substantial difference in the bigger picture of life.


Last season, Hayes and then-senior Grizzly kicker Brennan Holt joined the Kick It for Cancer Foundation, which pledges money toward ending childhood cancer. Hayes and teammate, junior Elon Harmon, who kicked for the Grizzlies’ JV squad last year, are helping the cause one kick at a time.


“I thought it was a great idea and an easy way to make a difference and help out,” said Hayes, who carries a 4.40 GPA – good for 10th in his class – and has an interest in chemistry and engineering after high school.


Hayes learned of the Kick It organization through an off-season kicking camp. It was there that he heard of Alex's Lemonade, a foundation for childhood cancer research named after Alexandra “Alex" Scott, who helped raise more than a million dollars worldwide by opening a lemonade stand by the time she lost her fight with cancer at 8 years old in 2004.


Diagnosed with neuroblastoma before her first birthday, Scott set up her lemonade stand by her  fourth birthday and remarkably raised over $2,000 in one day. Word spread of her dedication to the cause, and numerous other lemonade stands around the world joined suit, donating the proceeds to Scott’s foundation. To date, Alex’s Lemonade has raised over $150 million for childhood cancer research.


Both Hayes and Harmon have family members affected by cancer, including Hayes’ grandmother, who was recently diagnosed with a rare thyroid cancer, he said.


“She’s doing good,” said Hayes, who mentioned that his grandmother still makes it out to watch his varsity games. “She just got diagnosed, so that made it extra special this year to help raise money.”


Last season, Hayes and Holt raised $3,860 for their on-field efforts. This year’s goal is to reach $5,000 in pledges, said Hayes, whose career-long field goal was from 40 yards during his JV season.


The bigger picture includes continuing this new tradition at Granite Bay, said Hayes.


“Hopefully I can try and pass it down,” said Harmon, who will be a senior during the 2019 football season.


The Granite Bay kickers are not the only local kickers to get involved. Del Oro senior Ryan Whalley announced his participation last week via Twitter.


Pledges can be made for each point Hayes or Harmon scores during the Grizzlies’ 2018 season, whether via extra point or field goal.


For more information and updates on Hayes’ and Harmon’s efforts, click here.