Kahok football team makes history


Lillie Cuddeback, Staff Writer

The Collinsville High School football team made history at the game against Granite City by qualifying for playoffs two years in a row.

Last year the Kahoks went 8-2. They lost the second game in the playoffs against Geneva. 

“It obviously hurt at the end of last season losing that playoff game, but at the end of the day I was still super proud of the team and what they were able to accomplish last year,” said Head Coach Colton Rhodes.  

“It definitely sucked, but it was a great season so nothing was wrong with the way we ended,” said senior captain Kolby Anderson.  

That energy carried over in this season.

“The first thing we did that first practice of summer we just got right back into the weight room and began lifting weights and doing a little bit of that summer conditioning,” said Rhodes. “We just talked to them about the importance of last year being in the past. Just because we were successful last year doesn’t mean that we’re automatically going to be successful this year. We still had to work really hard to make sure that we could be just as good as last year, if not better.” 

The Kahoks have decided to do some different things this season. The team’s lineup changed this year with Kolby Anderson moving from starting quarterback to running back and wide receiver and also moved to safety as well. Junior Ethan Bagwell is the starting quarterback. Coach Rhodes also started a leadership council in the off season. Twelve members of the council would meet almost every week and discuss how the team can improve their chemistry and  what would make them click. 

“As a team, we kind of fell apart in the summer. So we all had to get back together,” said Anderson.

So far the team is 8-1. Their eight win of the season was against Centralia High School.

“Probably the most challenging thing was making sure the team realized that just because we lost the first game doesn’t mean the season is over just because you lose one game. You gotta continue to play, continue to get better, and we used that one game and we figured out what we were doing wrong and we’ve kind of been able to flip the switch a little bit. If we lose another one before playoffs, we can hopefully figure out what we did wrong, and still make sure we fix that before playoffs start,” said Coach Rhodes. 

The Kahoks lost to the Belleville East Lancers for their first game of the 2022-2023 season. As of now that is their only loss. The team is set to play Bradley Bourbonnais for their first playoff game.