By Nate Dugener

FRUITPORT–Hayden Harper, a defensive tackle from Fruitport High School, has decided to continue his football career after missing four games last season due to a broken collarbone. Harper has officially signed his national letter of intent to play football at Alma College.

Fruitport finished the football season 4-6 overall including a district semifinal loss to the eventual district champions, Cadillac. The Trojans also finished 3-4 in OK Blue, good enough for 5th in the conference.

Alma College is a member of the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association. The Scots finished last season with an overall record of 5-5 and a conference record of 1-5. Hayden hopes to be an integral part of the Scots that turns that record around.

Although Hayden missed four of the 10 games on the season, he was still extremely productive on the defensive line. He disrupted the opposing team’s offense with 20 tackles and two tackles for loss.

Head Coach Nate Smith had this to say about Hayden, “He loves being in the weight room and is a great teammate. He plays with passion and absolutely loves to play the game of football. Harp is a natural leader and will do great things at Alma College.”

Hayden also thrived beyond the field winning an award at Fruitport for his leadership.

“Harp has been a huge part of the football program at Fruitport. He served on our Hektor (Leadership Team) and won the INVEST award this past season for being an incredible role model and mentor to our younger players. Harp hopes to return to Trojan nation as a coach and teacher following his time at Alma College,” said Coach Smith about Hayden’s leadership.

Harper intends to major in Secondary Education at Alma. Hayden is the son of Matt and Meghan Harper.