By Kyle LoJacono
The Sunlake football team has been known for its ability to run since the program opened in 2007, and its biggest rushing performance was just turned in by Josh Zifer.
The senior quarterback ran for a program-record 210 yards, including a touchdown of 56 yards, to help the Seahawks (6-2) beat River Ridge 35-9 at home Oct. 26.
“I had no idea I had that many yards,” Zifer said. “It all kind of went into a big blur. There were a lot of great things happening out there. Our line blocked perfectly. Our wide receivers held their blocks. It’s not like I did it all myself. It’s all of us out there. … The whole team, they’re in that record too.”
Zifer has 770 rushing yards and two touchdowns this year while adding 439 yards passing and another four scores. He said it is special to have a running record at a program known for its ground game.
“Sunlake has had some quarterbacks who were good runningwise like Jacob Jackson, and it feels good to hold a record like that after all the guys who have been here,” Zifer said. “I appreciate that my team got this for me.”
Seahawks coach Bill Browning said Zifer broke the record set just this year by senior running back Eddie Burgos, who rushed for 207 yards at Hudson in the season opener Aug. 31.
The running game was a question entering this year as Sunlake lost its top four rushers to graduation, including Jerome Samuels (536 yards, six touchdowns) and Rashaud Daniels (478 yards, four touchdowns).
“Even losing the guys we did from last year, I knew we were going to be able to pick up the reins and keep things going,” Zifer said. “Raushad Daniels and the others did their thing last year and set records. It was our time. We picked it up and kept the Sunlake thing going.”
The Seahawks host Central Nov. 2 before closing the season at Gulf Nov. 9. Both games start at 7:30 p.m.
—Follow Kyle LoJacono on Twitter: @Kyle_Laker