Jeff Sanders Title Game Journal

Sacred Heart Griffin tight end and future Hoosier Jeff Sanders previews his team's matchup with Rock Island Alleman in the Illinois State Championship game. SHG is going for the school's first-ever state championship Saturday.

Dear Hoosier Nation,

In a week of lasts - our last Monday practice, our last Tuesday films session, our last Wednesday of dressing in the locker room, our last Thursday prayer, and our last Friday dinner with the moms - we plan to end the year with a first. Tomorrow we plan to bring home the first state championship for Coach Leonard and Sacred Heart-Griffin High School.

Last week during the most exciting football game I have ever been apart of, we came out victorious 29-19 versus a very athletic North Chicago team. This team had the closing speed of a Big Ten linebacker which I will experience in the upcoming years. The Warhawks stalled our offense on a couple of drives, scoring only once in the first half. The second half was a game of field position and when our offense could not score Mike Edwards, our kicker/linebacker/tight end/utility man, made two game winning field goals.

This past week has been the best week of my senior year thus far. Practice this week was hard work as usual, but we had our goal insight. We were not just working so we could play for our goal but we were actually working towards our goal to be state Champions. This week my sister came home from Florida to celebrate Thanksgiving as well as her fiancé's birthday along with my grandma's birthday. On Thursday, Thanksgiving morning, on our way up to practice at a local college we stopped at a radio show/food drive as each of us brought a canned food item to donate to the less fortunate.

At practice, we had a great time but got our work done and got our legs used to the astro-play, the same surface we will be playing on in the chmampionship game. After a great meal with my family in Chicago Thursday night, we came back for mass on Friday mourning. Tonight at lock-inn we had an open mike night. During this comedy stint we made fun of all of the stupid things we had done this year, all of the impressions that we had picked up from the players and coaches throughout the year, including our own rendition of being firefighters. We even had a close fan and personal friend do some magic tricks playing on some of the jokes within the team.

This past week we decided that we are going to the biggest bunch of weirdos to win state! This week has been one of the best of my life.

On a more serious note the Pioneers from Rock Island are worthy opponent. They lost their first game of the year and have gone 12-0 since. So they must be doing something right. They are a run heavy team and if our defense keeps up the outstanding job they are doing against serious runners we should make it a good game! This year we have a chance to end our season on our terms, not crying, not losing, and not going home disappointed. We have the chance to end the thus-far-perfect season with a win and I believe that we have put in the work in order to do so!

I think John Decker will let me write one more journal to tell you how it goes so check back on Tuesday!

Wish me luck!


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