Three years ago, Bastrop High senior Kentreylus Hill-Pates was a promising wide receiver.
When the Rams needed his services on defense, he reluctantly agreed to switch to inside linebacker.
It was easy to see why the Rams wanted Hill-Pates on defense as he led the team in tackles with 122 as a junior.
Slowed by a shoulder injury for the majority of the 2013 season, he has amassed 45 tackles through seven games. The good news for the Rams is that Hill-Pates appears to be getting healthy. Over the past two weeks, he has recorded 23 tackles, including a season-high 12 last week vs. Franklin Parish.
Hill-Pates and the Rams are back in action Friday night, hosting top-ranked Neville at 7 p.m.
BDE: When did you start playing football?
Kentreylus Hill-Pates: I started playing flag football as soon as I was old enough. To be honest, I don't remember which team I played for.
BDE: What are some of your memories from your first season?
Hill-Pates: I didn't know anything about football — anything at all. I was just out there playing.
BDE: What are your favorite and least favorite aspects of football?
My favorite part is when everybody's on the same page; it makes practice go by quicker.
BDE: What has gone wrong for the Rams defensively this season?
Hill-Pates: We have some people not carrying out their assignments. When we give up a few touchdowns, some people give up. We've had too much arm tackling.
BDE: What's it going to take to fix the defense?
Hill-Pates: If we could just get everyone on the same page, carrying out their assignments, wrapping up and doing what coach says, I think you would see a big difference. We just need to start playing fundamentally sound football.
BDE: What challenges does Neville's offense present for the Rams' defense?
Hill-Pates: They use a lot of formations. Kavonte Turpin is real explosive and their backs run real hard.
Neville has a balanced offense. The last two teams we played, Union Parish and Franklin Parish, liked to run the ball. This week, we have to be ready for the pass, too.
BDE: Do you miss playing wide receiver?
Page 2 of 2 - Hill-Pates: I miss wide receiver so much. I would go back to wide receiver today if I could. I wish I would have never moved to linebacker, but I did it to help the team.
BDE: How is your shoulder holding up?
Hill-Pates: It pops in and it pops back out. It feels weird, but I don't let it bother me.
BDE: What are the hardest hits you have received and delivered?
Hill-Pates: The hardest I've ever been hit was when I got blindsided in the Parkway game. I had to come out of the game. I came back in the second half, but it didn't work out too well.
I can't really think of a biggest hit.
BDE: Outside of football, what is something you hope to accomplish during your senior year?
Hill-Pates: I just want to get my grades up, graduate and be successful in life.
BDE: Do you miss playing baseball?
Hill-Pates: Yes, and I'm going to play this year.
BDE: What are your future plans?
Hill-Pates: I plan on going to college and hopefully playing ball. I plan to major in mechanical engineering or maybe physical therapy. One day, I hope to own my own business.
BDE: How did you become interested in mechanical engineering?
Hill-Pates: I've always liked to design and build things. A while back, I helped build a stable at my aunt's house. I just think mechanical engineering would be a good field for me.