Those familiar with the geography of Forsyth County know that North Forsyth High School, located in unincorporated Coal Mountain, preserves a quaint identity in stark contrast to the hustle and bustle of programs in the south side of the region.
Former North kicker Vince Sciorrotta took that small-town identity to heart when he moved on from lacing up the cleats for the Raiders in 2013. After leading the Raiders’ football team in scoring in his senior season and being named special teams player of the year four consecutive seasons, Sciorrotta held college offers from South Alabama and Florida Atlantic—two schools that compete in the top tier of college football in the Sun Belt and Conference USA, respectively.
Instead of heading to Mobile, Ala., or Boca Raton, Fla. (essentially north Miami), Sciorrotta decided to settle down for four years of college at Delta State University, a Division II school, in Cleveland, Miss. The town has a reported population of less than 15,000 people.
Sciorrotta doesn’t mind the small town feel. Not only is he used to it, but soon enough he’ll be traveling a lot more, and he’ll be doing it in the air.
“I chose Delta State because they have a commercial aviation program, that’s pretty much exactly what I wanted, plus I had the opportunity to play football for them. It was a perfect choice,” Sciorrotta said.
Sciorrotta’s ambitions to fly come from the fact his father, Sam, has flown as a Delta Airlines pilot.
“He’s flown C-130s and all of that,” he said. “Looking back and seeing how much he’s enjoyed it, I figured that was a path for me too. I don’t want to be working in a cubicle anywhere. I really want to go out and enjoy the world.”
One day Sciorrotta will be a world traveler, but for now he’s gutting it out for position as one of the top kickers in the Gulf South Conference—a league likely familiar to fans of local football programs Shorter, upstart West Georgia and historical D-II powerhouse Valdosta State.
In 2013, Sciorrotta’s freshman season, he was named to the All-Gulf South Conference second team after making 10-of-17 field goals, including a clutch game-winner against North Alabama.
“That was a big win. North Alabama is a big conference rival, and they’re always tough in conference. I was at their home field and their home crowd gets pretty rowdy, and I was just a freshman at the time,” Sciorrotta said.
However, as a sophomore this past season, Sciorrotta was pushed off all-conference mentions despite improving his kicking percentage, making 11-of-14, including his career-long of 47 yards.
The reason? North Alabama kicker Taylor Pontius hit a 55-yard game winner. In a small conference, one kick here or there made all of the difference. Pontius signed with the Indianapolis Colts this offseason.
“He went to the NFL, and had a big kick. He deserves it,” Sciorrotta said.
Sciorrotta’s goals for his junior season will be to “get back on that list,” as well as help lead Delta State to a conference title. The Statesmen finished with a 9-2 overall record in 2014 before losing 37-27 to West Georgia in the first round of the D-II Championship Playoff.
“The football aspect here – I really enjoy it,” Sciorotta said. “It’s a bunch of kids with one goal. We all want to win games, and just have a huge passion for it. I’ve enjoyed the winning we’ve had here.”
Sciorrotta was named the Gulf South Conference player of the week in 2014 after scoring a total of 17 points (three field goals and eight PATs) in a 73-6 win over Concordia College.
Sciorrotta has found success—a lot of it—on a scale too small for some, but his perspective has helped him enjoy every moment of it.
“We just didn’t have a lot of recognition out of high school. North wasn’t always in the running for state and stuff like that, so kicking camps and stuff with my Dad were the only way to get my name out there,” Sciorrotta said.
Overall, Sciorrotta’s lesson at Delta State has been to stay grounded, but from his own perspective, the sky’s the limit for what he can do as an upperclassman and beyond.