Bellevue LB Talks History

A strange thing happened to E.J. Savannah after Bellevue's historical and convincing 39-20 win over De La Salle Saturday night in Seattle, breaking the Spartans' 151-game winning streak. He couldn't get to sleep. Or rather, he didn't want to sleep. He didn't want the night - or the feeling - to end. Ever.

"Me, JR (Hasty) and a couple of other players actually stayed up all night to get the newspapers the next day," Savannah told Dawgman.com Wednesday night.

To have a school from the state of Washington be the one to topple the once seemingly invincible record established by De La Salle appeared to be a fool's errand for the Wolverines the moment the game was announced back in December. Long Beach Poly couldn't do it. Mater Dei couldn't do it. Saint Louis couldn't do it. Evangel Christian couldn't do it. So what made it even remotely possible that a 3A team - albeit a regional powerhouse in their own right - had a chance against the Spartans?

Savannah explains it. In short, it was a team effort. "Our coaches were telling us how tired they were putting us through it all," he said of the Wolverines' brutal regimen in preparation for their brush with destiny. "They were saying they need a vacation after the work they put in. Hopefully it's not the last time I play in Seahawks Stadium.

"I broke my helmet twice in that game. I think the biggest reason why I had fun is not just the winning. It was that we put eight months of hard work for 48 minutes of fun, and it really was fun. I think that was the best part, just seeing the hard work paying off."

And one highlight from their ground-breaking victory? "Hitting (Zac) McNally," said Savannah. "He was their most publicized player and it felt good to lay the wood on him. I loved it."

Cut ahead to the day after. The newspapers, radio stations and even ESPN were touting Bellevue's feat nationwide. "It was really bad the day after," Savannah said of the media deluge he encountered. "Seriously, every 15 minutes there was a phone call, either someone calling to congratulate me or a coach calling.

"And Sportscenter? That's just crazy to be on Sportscenter. It was great."

Savannah said he's been averaging 'at least four calls a night' from college coaches, making sure he knows how impressed they were with the game he played. But there's never been a one-game season, and if schools weren't putting a red circle around the Bellevue game in their calendar before De La Salle - they are now. Savannah doesn't care, because he's already on top of the mountain. It's all downhill from there.

"I think we are really going to come out and be ready to play," he said when asked about a possible letdown Friday against South Kitsap, a proud regional football program as well, and from a bigger school. Coaches from Washington will be at the game to pay Savannah and Hasty a visit.

"I think our team understands what's going on. You don't want to beat a team like De La Salle and then lose to a team in your own state. I think we will come out with some fire. I think you'll see the same team that played De La Salle."

E.J. Savannah Scout Profile

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