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Tigers glad to have Martin back in fold to provide leadership as midfielder

OZARK'S JASON MARTIN prepares to receive a pass.
OZARK'S JASON MARTIN prepares to receive a pass.

Ozark’s Jason Martin has his sights set on a career in dentistry, but gained experience in the restaurant industry this summer.

Martin’s family took over ownership and management duties earlier this year at Pop A Dogs on the Branson Strip. Jason works alongside his brother, Taylor (a 2017 Ozark grad) and their father, Jeff.  

My Dad thought it was a great opportunity for me to learn how to manage and deal with employees,” Jason said. “I love it, especially with my brother being there. It's fun to work with him. It's been fun to work and gain the experience of how to run a business.”

Martin’s dues at Pop A Dogs initially were thought to be enough to override his senior season as a midfielder for Ozark’s soccer team. In fact, during summer workouts in July the Tigers were preparing to defend their COC championship from last season without him.

Ultimately, things worked out to enable Martin to re-join his teammates. He and the Tigers will make their home debut tonight as Ozark plays host to Willard.

“I missed the game,” Martin said. “It's nice to be back out here and be back together with the boys trying to prove something. I want to get together with my brothers and show we're able to make it as far as we want to go.”

Coach Zack Owns welcomed Martin with open arms and values his presence.

“He was one of the biggest holes we were trying to fill,” Owens said. “We have people who could have filled that role who are younger. But right now at their current age and current role, they aren't Jason.”

Martin takes his leadership role as seriously as any of the Tigers. He’s absolutely all-business on the field and repeatedly speaks up to challenge his teammates to put forth their best effort physically and mentally.

Martin isn’t simply wanting Ozark to add to its list of COC and District championships, he’s eyeing a trip to State.

"Some of the boys haven't found their drive yet,” he said. “We’re at the point, if we want to make the Final Four, we can't just be out here to have fun.”