Triston Merz

Napoleon eighth-grader Triston Merz poses in his jersey for the NUC Sports All-American Game played in December in Savannah, Georgia. Merz had an interception during the game.

Napoleon eighth-grader Triston Merz wasn’t finished with playing football just because his season was completed.

Merz, who played football for Napoleon Middle School’s eighth-grade team, recently attended NUC (National Underclassmen Combines) Sports camp in Savannah, Georgia, Dec. 27-30 and capped his time there by playing in the NUC All-American Game for seventh, eighth and ninth graders.

“I had a lot of fun, especially since it was in the winter time,” said Merz. “I don’t usually get to play football in the winter. I learned a lot of things. I am very thankful I was able to get out there.”

“The whole reason for him going is because he hopes to play collegiately,” said Merz’ mom, Sonia Segura. “He is very disciplined. I see him give 100%, going to the weight room all summer. As a parent, I wanted to support him.”

The camp was comprised of players from all over the United States and even some from Canada.

“I met a kid from Alaska,” said Merz. “I was able to play with kids from all over. That was cool.”

During the All-American game, Merz, who played outside linebacker, made several tackles and had an interception toward the end of the game. Merz’ team won the game, 38-0.

The coaches at the camp had high praise for Merz on Twitter.

“Triston did great this past week. He did a great job at practice and showed up big time in the game,” Tweeted Tim Dycus.

“Triston had a great week for us and capped it off with a big game, had a ton of tackles and also a big interception! Tough kid with a ton of upside at Linebacker. He is also a wrestler!” Tweeted Walker Dycus.

According to its website, NUC is the longest running underclassmen event having run football camps since 2005. NUC Sports was founded by Dave Schuman, a former starting linebacker at UConn and current sports agent.

“The main thing for me was to be able to learn more and get ready for the next level,” said Merz, who plans to wrestle and play baseball along with football when he attends Napoleon High School next year as a freshman. “They were able to teach me a lot of things to help make me faster and stronger — an all-around better football player.”

Merz is the son of Sonia Segura and Jeff Merz.

E-mail comments to jeffr@northwestsignal.net.

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