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United Bank supports local teams

United Bank and the Taylor Haugen Foundation are teaming up for a special presentation Friday night at the Battle of Murder Creek.

Presenting to both W.S. Neal and T.R. Miller High School football teams, United Bank and the foundation are funding a special sports gear to the teams for the year 2020-2021.

“We have offices in both communities, so we thought it would be a perfect time to offer this capability to the two high schools at this year’s game,” shared United Bank President Bob Jones.

The special gear is created by EvoShield, an American brand that specializes in protective gear.

The shirt is designed to brush off big hits with custom-molding “gel-to-shell” shields that protect better than traditional foam and plastic gear already used by most high school football teams.

Thanks to United Bank and the THF, every member of the TRM and WSN high school football team next season will receive a custom made shirt.

The purpose and drive behind the protective gear is rooted in an accident that occurred  in 2008 during a high school football game.

It was during that game that Taylor Haugen, a Niceville High School football player, died after suffering an abdominal injuryw. His parents, Brian and Kathy Haugen, founded the foundation soon after.

Now the foundation exists to raise awareness of abdominal injuries that can occur in high school sports. This protective sports gear is a solid way to protect against such injuries.

For more than 10 years, Brian and Kathy Haugen have used the Taylor Haugen Foundation to bring awareness to injuries, and the foundation has provided over 4,700 students across 10 states the equipment needed for full protection.

“One thing we find in all communities that we are in is that they are passionate for the youth,” said Jones.

“This community of Brewton and East Brewton is so focused on these two teams, especially with a history behind the game. It is the marquis of high school rivalries,” explained Jones.

Hoping to make a difference, Jones concluded, “Since we are both communities, it is a way for us to reach out and provide that extra protection.”

The presentation will take place before the game on Fri. night. United Bank is also hosting a community tailgate on Nov. 1 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. inside Cottrell’s Hometown Pharmacy.