Now Strictly Defensive, Levi Wagner is Shining Bright - West Virginia Daily News
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Now Strictly Defensive, Levi Wagner is Shining Bright

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Greenbrier East Spartans senior Levi Wagner has always been a threat with the ball in his hands. In fact, his first carry as a Spartan went for a 75-yard touchdown.

Fast forward a couple years later to 2021 and Wagner now is a starting cornerback for the 5-2 Spartans defense, and he has turned into one of the better ones in recent memory.

After a two-interception game — and almost a third — against Ripley, it brought his total number of picks to four, which leads the team. Wagner has not only succeeded at the position, but has embraced it as well, and gives credit to his whole team for that attitude.

“Embracing the role is extremely easy when you have a team that works so well together. I only succeed when we all play as a team,” Wagner said.

Wagner’s defensive coordinator, Aaron Baker cannot say enough good things about his senior.

“He’s been a very pleasant surprise for us in the secondary. He’s made some really crucial plays this season on some big downs,” Baker said.

Corners can be left on an island by themselves so to speak, but Wagner plays each play exactly the same to remain focused while guarding the receiver.

“When I first line up on the receiver I have to think pass first to make sure I have good coverage before stepping up and stopping a run,” Wagner said.

With just three games left and a playoff berth up for grabs, Wagner believes his team’s prowess for greatness will pay off in the end.

“Our team has a great amount of experience and athleticism. We play with everything we have. I have good hopes for the rest of our season. We have a great team and I’m looking forward to the rest of it,” he stated.

Wagner has enough memories to make a scrapbook, but some of his best are just the basic ones.

“The best memories I have as a player have to be the bus rides to away games and getting to hang out with my friends. We have a lot of fun as a team and make a lot of great memories,” Wagner said fondly.

Not all players are fortunate enough to have close-knit families, so the ones that do try not to take that for granted. The son of Todd and Lee Wagner, Levi remains thankful for the support he has behind him including his football family.

“Family is a major support. They show up to every game and make sure I’m ready when Friday night comes. Not only my family, but our Spartan family is a great boost. They show up to away games that are two to three hours away and show support,” Wagner said.

After this week’s road game at Hampshire, East will return home for its final two contests of the season. Wagner says taking one game at a time is the key to the rest of the schedule.

“We want to finish this season and play the way our team is supposed to. We play our games one game at a time and we are looking to go 1-0 this week,” Wagner concluded.

That confidence and leadership has definitely made Baker a believer as well.

“He (Wagner) got a late start to his high school career, but has made up for it with big plays, hard work and being someone we as a coaching staff have counted on all season. He is a pleasure to coach, an absolute great kid and a true team player,” Baker exclaimed.

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