Polk’s Heider enjoys first action of football career

Published 8:00 am Wednesday, August 22, 2018

As statistics go, Ryan Heider’s debut in a Polk County uniform may not long be remembered — one reception for 5 yards, plus another catch for a 2-point conversion.

But Polk County’s 31-28 win at Chase on Friday is likely a night  the Wolverine senior will not soon forget, given that it marked the first time he had ever taken part in a live football game at any level.

A tennis standout since a young age, Heider joined Polk County’s football team earlier this year, his 6-foot-3, 245-pound frame catching the eye of Polk County head football coach Bruce Ollis. Heider has also shown the ability to catch a few passes, as his effort Friday night showed.

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“I was a little bit nervous coming out,” Heider said. “I think it went well.”

Heider snared a 5-yard pass from Polk quarterback Avery Edwards on the Wolverines’ second series of the game. That put him on the radar of the Chase secondary, who kept the tight end well-covered throughout the rest of the evening.

Following Elijah Sutton’s game-winning touchdown with 56.7 seconds left, Heider scored the first points of his career, catching Avery Edwards’ 2-point conversion attempt in the left corner of the end zone, no Chase defender nearby.

“I’m kind of a big guy, but I managed to get wide open in the corner of the end zone and catch the ball,” Heider said. “It was exciting.

“The game was a little bit different than I expected. I didn’t expect it to be that exciting. It moved faster than I expected, and was a lot of fun.”

– Submitted by PolkSports.com