Opening the football season a week earlier than the normal was a Cardinal vs. Cardinal showdown. In order to prevent two bye-weeks in the season, high school teams scheduled games a week earlier and dubbed it “Zero-Week”. On this special occasion in high school football history, Collinsville varsity suited up at East Central field.
East Central, recently suffering from the loss of their lead defensive tackler and running back, Marquise Mullins, opened with a ceremony of their deceased teammate. Beautiful sportsmanship was displayed on both sides of the field. Collinsville fans, players, and coaching staff gave their condolences to the East Central Cardinals.
The whistles sounded and Collinsville varsity received the ball for the first time this season. Both teams started out, more excited than ever to start their season with a victory. Slow to start, Collinsville showed spectacular athleticism with claiming a quick lead over East Central.
“We started a whole week earlier; it’s a whole different dynamic.” Head Coach Jones Stated shortly after the game. “Lots of mistakes were made at the start, but they were all easily correctable so I’m well pleased with their performance.”
Though there were simple errors in the beginning, Collinsville performed amazingly. OU bound Senior, Levi Draper (#10) started the season with enormous hits on defense; some in which caused the home crowd to wince in pain. The running lane towards Draper was soon not an option for the E.C Cardinals, but that did not stop #10 from claiming himself a few sacks in the backfield. Big, decisive hits also came from players Dylan Russell (#3) and Marcus Reeder (#88). The Collinsville defense completely dwindled the opponent’s rushing yards to the minimal.
The passing lanes for the adversary cardinals were never an option as they were shut down from the defensive backs, along with intense pressure from the Collinsville defensive line. E.C could not get a foothold in the game as Reeder, Russell, Draper, and Malcolm Tillman (#24) claimed back-to-back tackles for loss in the first quarter, keeping their leading score solidified at 6-0
The defensive still persisted against E.C with intense pressure, a blocked punt, minimal return yards on special teams, and even a fumble recovery in the second half. East Central became desperate as it seemed to be no getting past true cardinal defense, or stopping the sophisticated offense Collinsville obtained.
The Collinsville offense added a victorious brutality to the table. Senior captain and TU committed QB, Seth Boomer (#12) led the team to a phenomenal offensive drive. Hayden West (#33) gave the team its first momentum with a 50yrd punt return. The touchdown was then bolted in by, “The Bludger”, Logan Sieminskie (#20). Sieminskie scored a total of 4 touchdowns, 3 of which occurred in the 1st half. Sieminskie rushed 16 times, with 11 in the 1st half as well. Each time he was always pushing through the opponent’s defensive lines to scrape up the final few yards.
Carter Lowe (#25) and Haden West also both scored a touchdown. West also claimed 54 receiving yards in only two passes. And after each score, Seth Weiser (#6) kicked in nearly every single extra point, along with some phenomenal kick-offs and punts, which left E.C starting each possesion deep in their own territory. The teams departed off the field at the half, with Collinsville obtaining a stunning lead of 27-0.
“The team came out with a fire in the second half,” Seth Boomer stated. The team’s Captain led the Cards with several awe-stricking passes and a 99yrd offensive drive into a touchdown. Overall Boomer tallied up 163 passing yards.
“Here Comes the Boom-ers!” The Collinsville fans shouted as Seth Boomer threw a 46yrd pass to his sophomore brother, Grayson Boomer, placing Collinsville Cardinals deep into enemy territory. The team continued to excel in defense as well. Marcus Reeder (#88) reminded E.C of Collinsville’s defensive dominance with an incredible interception in the 4th quarter.
With a tremendous lead of 40-0 in the 4th quarter, the Collinsville coaching staff placed in their back-ups to have their time on the field. Junior QB, Nate Sinni (#16) then led the team to another final touchdown scored by Carter Lowe (#25).
Collinsville ended “Zero-Week” with a first season victory. The final score to end the night was a whomping 47-0. The Cardinals are well aware of the expectations set for them to win the 5A State Championship this season, but they remained focused. They continuously strive to work one day, one play at a time towards each individual victory.