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ABC 27's Scholar Athlete of the Week: Rickards' Betrice Drayton

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Posted at 6:50 PM, Jan 25, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-25 18:50:46-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Postseason play begins Thursday for the Rickards High School girls soccer team, when they face Ridgeview in the quarterfinals of the district tournament. To get to where they want to be, they'll rely on senior Betrice Drayton, who is the true definition of an impact player.

"I originally was a defender, for a long time, and then I started to put speed to use up top and just worked on my skills," said Drayton.

Defense is what's she's done the most. Offense is what she's really good at.

"I told her, this is your year," said head coach Jeff Rauschenberg. "I told her at the very beginning."

Words Drayton has lived up to. Rickards has 52 total goals this season, 40 of them belong to Drayton, and she has the assist on ten others.

"It's amazing to score and see my teammates faces when we get a goal and it really motivates them more to tackle harder and to make passes and communicate with each other."

"She's creating her own scoring opportunities and that takes a lot more work running up and down the field," added Rauschenberg. "She's scoring these goals from the midfield. amd a few, maybe ten of them, from at front."

Those forty goals? Good for 14th in the entire state of Florida, and 20th nationwide for winter soccer.

"It's incredible," said Drayton of her accomplishment.

Also incredible? As a student in the IB program at Rickards, she has a 4.3 GPA.

"There's not too many better students here, or better people," said Rauschenberg. "I just try to stay out of her way and promote, give her a situation she can excel from."

"It was hard, but once I got into the high school routine it was a lot easier and I've just been doing it ever since," said Drayton.

Just like she's been getting it done for the Raiders this season.

"She is the team. She's the heart and the soul of the team," said Rauschenberg. "There's nobody that doesn't know her."

With the stats Drayton has both on and off the field, how could you not. Drayton said she wants to play at the next level, and she's working towards that goal now. She said she plans to study to become an athletic trainer.