WEST ORANGE, NJ - Senior captain Jean Charles of the West Orange Varsity Football team had an impressive outing against Seton Hall Prep on Friday, October 11 garnering Charles the West Orange High School Athlete of the Week title.
Charles showcased his talents offensively as a running back with six carries for 78 yards that included a 50 yard touchdown run. Defensively, Charles had 4 pass breakups and 12 total tackles. In addition, Charles had an impact on special teams with a 15 yard fake punt rush and a forced fumble on the opening kickoff.
"Jean showed his most dominant performance of the year versus Seton Hall. He set the tone from the beginning of the game with his forced fumble on kickoff team that set up the Mountaineers for a lead that they would never relinquish the entire game," said Coach James Matsakis of the Mountaineers.
As a captain, Charles loves helping his teammates in all aspects of the game, on and off the field. Individually, he prepares mentally for games the night before to ensure he is in game mode as soon as the ball is kicked off. Additionally, Charles looks for inspiration through his coaches and former coach, John Jacobs, that he can carry onto the game in order to perform to the best of his ability to help the team.
"I have to keep on inspiring my teammates because I feel like I owe that to them. Early in the game I have to make those few big plays to get my team into that zone," Charles said.
In addition to his prowess on the playing field, Charles has all the qualities as a student-athlete that coaches and teachers appreciate. His work ethic and determination are positive reflections of his personality that led to his promotion as captain of the Mountaineer football team. Charles treats his friends and teammates as an extension of his family. He loves the atmosphere that comes with the football games and enjoys seeing his family and friends cheering the Mountaineers on from the stands. Charles hopes to continue his passion for football at a college level as either a defensive back or running back.
Currently tied with Montclair High School for First Place in the Division with a 5-1 record, Charles and the Mountaineers head to Columbia High School on Friday, October 25 at 7:00 pm.