Smithfield Herald

Bank helps team launch football season

Mike Wooten, left, of Four Oaks Bank in Smithfield, and Chip Hewett, right, parent of senior player Matt Hewett, prepare hot dogs and hamburgers for the Princeton High School football team. Wooten’s son, Michael, second from left, and teammate Jared Pearce lend a hand.
Mike Wooten, left, of Four Oaks Bank in Smithfield, and Chip Hewett, right, parent of senior player Matt Hewett, prepare hot dogs and hamburgers for the Princeton High School football team. Wooten’s son, Michael, second from left, and teammate Jared Pearce lend a hand. FOUR OAKS BANK

Four Oaks Bank kicked off the Princeton Bulldogs’ 2014 football season with a cookout for the team and coaching staff.

Mike Wooten, a Princeton resident and the bank’s Smithfield city executive, greeted the team with a pep talk before the meal. He played football in college and professionally.

“I can’t think of a better way to give back to the community than through supporting these student athletes who will represent the entire community as a team,” Wooten said. “These players have worked for several years to build what is looking to be an outstanding season, as they are ranked eighth overall in the state and have the top-ranked running back in the state.

“Each individual player contributes to the team as a whole,” Wooten added. “It is the same with us as a community bank: Our success as a bank is built on the combined efforts of our team members. We wish the Bulldogs a healthy, successful season.”

Wooten thanked fellow Four Oaks Bank city executive Scott Booth of Holly Springs and Princeton resident Chip Hewett for helping cook the burgers and hot dogs.

Bulldogs head coach Derrick Minor thanked the bank for the dinner. “We couldn’t function without the support of our community and businesses like Four Oaks Bank,” he said. “We really appreciate the support, especially Four Oaks Bank coming out and feeding the players and speaking to them.”

The coach then talked about the upcoming season. “Our theme for the year, ‘Together We Fight,’ comes from Ecclesiastes,” he said. “We are trying to build team unity, as that will be the secret to how we finish a very promising season.

“I appreciate Mike coming out and speaking to them. To have him address the guys on personal commitment, character, teamwork and the responsibility of representing community was inspiring and draws not only from his outstanding football background, but from his professional and personal experience. We really appreciate this support.”

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