Strawn leads Eagles with work ethic, respect

by Mark Oliver

In his final season with Conway Christian, fullback/linebacker Winston Strawn takes pride in being one of the Eagles’ seven senior leaders.

“One of the most important ways I can lead my team is by being friends with my teammates,” Strawn said. “Being that person that they can come talk to or look up to is a big deal. Since it’s my last time to get to play football with these guys, I want to be able to set an example for the younger kids when they move up. I want to be someone that they can look up to and help them finish out the year strong.”

Strawn was selected to this year’s 501 Football Team — 25 players representing all 11 counties of the 501. The team, sponsored by Conway Ortho and Sports Medicine, Conway Regional Health System and First Security Bank, boasts the best the 501 has to offer both on and off the field. Strawn was nominated by his head coach, Justin Kramer.

“Winston has a high work ethic and is a great leader,” Kramer wrote in his nomination. “He competes at a high level, but always has respect for his teammates and opponents and serves his school and classmates any way that he can.”

Growing up, Strawn gained inspiration from many football role models, which helped him to become a better leader on and off the field. 

“I’ve been playing the game since I was 10 years old,” Strawn said. “My dad and my uncle played football at Morrilton, and we did a lot of things together growing up. My favorite player was always Peyton Manning — I always liked his leadership. As one of the oldest quarterbacks to play, he still led his team to several championship games, which is something that I admire.” 

A one-point loss to Hector in week five has been the only blemish thus far on an otherwise great season for Strawn and the Eagles (5-1, 2-1 Class 5-2A). 
“Even though we lost to Hector, there’s still a chance for us to win the conference,” Strawn said. “Coach Kramer has pounded it into our heads that we have to practice and play the same way no matter who we’re playing against. That’s how we’re going to approach Quitman this week — by going hard in practice and using that mentality.”

With each passing week, Strawn strives to help his team reach its long-term goals. 

“Four years ago, our senior class made a goal for us to be the best class that went through Conway Christian,” Strawn said. “Whether it be in practice, in the weight room or on the field on Friday night, we put our complete work ethic into everything we do.” 

Strawn also plays catcher for Eagles baseball, is a member of Drama Club and enjoys duck hunting with his teammates. After high school, Strawn will play baseball for Rend Lake Junior College in Illinois. 

“Rend Lake is one of the top junior colleges in the northern United States,” Strawn said. “I had a chance to visit the campus and hang out with the other catchers on the team, and I know it will be a good fit for me. I’m hoping to go up there, put the work in and hopefully it will open the door to join a Division I school.” 

Conway Christian plays host to Quitman at 7 p.m. Friday.