Soccer player Dylan Spruill was named the offensive most valuable player his sophomore year at Marietta.
Spruill was on the JV team, though. While he lists it as one of his major accomplishments, it was not where he wanted to be.
The jump from one level of talent to another comes at a pretty significant price. For Spruill, that price was discipline, dedication and sacrifice.
“I would say I am very hard-working,” he said. “I’m the type of person that never took practice or games lightly.”
This hard work began to personify Spruill’s devotion to the sport, and it eventually paid major dividends.
By his junior season, not only had he made varsity, but he had garnered the Most Improved Player award. By his senior season — one cut short because of the coronavirus pandemic — his JV affiliation had long since gone, but the JV attitude still remained.
Spruill said he was struggling, so he called on his hard work, dedication and leadership. That is why when, on Marietta’s trip to a tournament at Jekyll Island, Spruill scored the game-winning goal. His teammates mobbed him and chanted his name.
Stories of success are powerful, particularly for those, like Spruill, who paved their way to success.
Marietta was sitting at 7-3 overall and third in Region 3AAAAAAA — good enough for a state playoff berth – but the Blue Devils would not have any more of those moments.
“It was confusing when they announced that school was over,” Spruill said, “but I guess we just had to accept it and move on.”
Spruill will be faced with yet another challenge as he transitions to life after soccer at Kennesaw State University. He hopes to eventually transfer into the University of Georgia’s sports marketing program to fulfill his ultimate hope of working for a professional sports team.
“I’ve had to go through certain obstacles that, maybe, others haven’t had to go through,” Spruill said. “I put more time into the sport, and it was good to see my hard work paying off. For all the work I put in, it led to the position I could be in today. I could be on the (varsity) team, and it was the best experience of my life. I am definitely grateful for that.”