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Versatile senior played soccer first

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SEYMOUR — Dustin Nichols played soccer his first three years at Trinity Lutheran; but when the Cougars started a football program this season, he knew what sport he’d be playing in the fall.

“Ever since I started playing football, I always loved the sport,” Nichols said. “When I heard there was football, I knew I wanted to play it.”

Nichols played it well, earning The Republic’s Trinity Lutheran Player of the Year honors for the Cougars, who went 2-3 against varsity teams.

The 5-foot-7, 170-pound senior free safety/wide receiver caught 24 passes for 365 yards and seven touchdowns and added 59 tackles, an interception, two fumble recoveries and two blocked kicks in those five games.

“For the beginning season, I thought it was pretty good,” Nichols said. “All of us went in blind, not knowing what to expect, and I thought we did pretty well. I like our passing offense, and being a receiver is a lot of fun.”

“He was a money player,” Trinity coach Anthony Levy said. “He kind of exemplified that senior leadership. He was one of the few players on the team that had played before.”

After attending Immanuel Lutheran, Nichols played football at Seymour Middle School. He played tennis as a freshman and soccer and baseball his first three years at Trinity.

“He’s very athletic, a hard-nosed kid, very dependable,” Levy said. “He volunteers a lot around school. He’s a kid that put his faith in front of his football. He came here anyway, even though we didn’t have football. He had his priorities right.”

Nichols, who carries a 3.3 grade-point average and plans to attend Purdue and major in engineering.

“He’s a good kid,” Levy said. “He’s the kind of kid we hope our kids all grow up to be like.”

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