Carrying the Indians’ Tradition: Josh Loyd exemplifies the traits and spirit of Tioga football

Carrying the Indians’ Tradition: Josh Loyd exemplifies the traits and spirit of Tioga football
Published: Nov. 9, 2023 at 7:31 PM CST
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BALL La. (KALB) - The Tioga tradition of wearing the #17 began almost nine years ago with former Indian Corbin Malone.

The specific number at the Reservation exemplifies the traits and sprit of what it means to wear the Red and Black.

Malone is the brother of Tioga’s current quarterback Cace Malone.

“Cace’s brother was a utility knife and came to practice everyday with a great attitude,” said Tioga head coach Kevin Cook. “He smiled all day every day. When he was in school, he was the model citizen on and off the field.”

Each season, a senior on the football team is rewarded with wearing the jersey. This season, senior receiver and defensive back Josh Loyd was given the opportunity to wear #17.

“I always have to go out and play my game, set the tone,” said Loyd. “They are always calling me #17, and Coach Cook always tells us to be like Zacchaeus. They are always calling me Zacchaeus.”

“They play the exact same,” said Indians’ quarterback Cace Malone. “When my brother played, he played aggressive and that is exactly how Josh is. He is an all-around player just like my brother was.”

On Friday nights, Loyd is in on every play. The past 10 weeks of the regular season, Loyd had 311 yards, six touchdowns, 24 tackles, two interceptions and a pick-6.

“Josh produces,” said Cook. “He is one of our best tacklers year in and year out. He produces on offense and as a sophomore, he had to step in wen we lost our quarterback in the last game of the season.”

Josh’s impact throughout his four years as an Indian has touched more than just his teammates.

“Whenever I mess up or miss a tackle or pass, he will pick me up,” said Loyd’s brother Karlinsky Loyd. “I really copy my brother a lot.”

Indians’ quarterback Cace Malone earned the starting job for the first time on varsity this season, and he said Loyd is the one he goes to for encouragement.

“He helped me through some of the difficult times,” said Malone. “He told me to relax and that I got this.”

Even though Loyd’s time putting on the #17 has almost come to a close, he said his mindset will never fade.

“You do not have to be this big five star athlete to perform on Friday night and do well,” said Loyd. “It is just what you have in your heart and your mentality, and you will do great.”

For his selflessness and ability to set the example on and off the field, Josh Loyd earns ACA Athlete of Week.

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