Sports Spotlight: East Duplin senior running back Gaby is one of the state’s highest scoring players

State hurdle champ wants to win one with his team
Sports Spotlight: Avery Gaby
Published: Nov. 8, 2022 at 6:41 PM EST
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BEULAVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - East Duplin football is having an outstanding season. The Panthers won their conference title and are led by more than a dozen seniors. One of them, running back Avery Gaby is one of the top players in the state. We feature him in this week’s Pepsi Sports Spotlight.

“My dad introduced me to football when I was young,” says East Duplin senior Avery Gaby, “I have been playing for 7-8 years now.”

East Duplin senior Avery Gaby is a fast and agile athlete. He won the state 2A 110-meter hurdles this past spring despite having a broken nose.

“It only lasts for 7 to 15 seconds. You are on the podium, you get your medal, and you have a title. It ain’t nothing special,” says Gaby, “But what is special is when you have a team state champion.”

Gaby ranks third in the state in total points on the football field this fall with 202 points.

“I, I, (you don’t know do you?) No sir,” says Gaby.

He has 31 touchdowns in 11 games.

“Being a fullback you have to rely fully on your teammates to get you to the end zone,” says Gaby, “I thank my line and I thank my other backs.”

Avery averages about 10 yards per carry for the Panthers. He averages more than 150 yards of total offense per game.

“He does a good job finding it, he runs hard,” says East Duplin head coach Battle Holley, “He does a good job for us on and off the field for us he is a high character kid.”

Even with all the yards, and the touchdowns, and the wins, for Gaby football means so much more.

“It’s seeing the boys smile after every single game. Win or lose we find enjoyment in each other instead of a win or a loss,” says Avery.

It’s made for a surreal senior season for Gaby.

“You want to stay young as long as you can, you want to have fun,” says Avery, “but unfortunately it comes to an end at some point.”

Even with no future set in stone.

“No offers or nothing yet. But that’s perfectly fine with me,” says Avery, “The lord is going to guide me to whatever college he needs me to be.”

All of the games in our WITN area have moved to Thursday this week.

We will have End Zone on Thursday night rather than Friday in our 11 PM show.

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