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Sterling Heights

Parkway Christian football team growing as season moves along

October 9, 2012

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Sterling Heights Parkway Christian senior wide receiver Johnny Kocik is a standout for the Eagles, which need to win two of their last three regular-season games to have a shot at making the state playoffs.

Even though is team is young, Sterling Heights Parkway Christian football coach Todd Francis believes the group has a shot at qualifying for the Michigan High School Athletic Association state playoffs.

The Eagles sat at 3-3, 1-2 in the Michigan Independent Athletic Conference at press time, and need to win their final three games to be a virtual lock for the postseason. Going at least 2-1 would give Parkway Christian a shot, as well.

“We’ve only got three seniors, but everybody is working extremely hard every day,” said Francis, in his fourth year with the Eagles. “We’re doing the best we can.”

The Eagles have qualified for the state playoffs three of the past five seasons.

A pivotal Oct. 5 matchup with Grosse Pointe University Liggett took place after press time. See our website for an update of where bubble teams stand with two games remaining.

Parkway Christian’s final two regular-season contests are Oct. 12 at 7 p.m. against Westland Lutheran High and at 7 p.m. Oct. 19 vs. Hamtramck High. Both games are road contests.

“We’re just going to have to go out and play our best football,” Francis said.

Parkway Christian junior quarterback Noah Allen leads the offense and is a second-year starter. He knows the team is young in spots, but can see players improving each week.

“I’m pretty sure more than half our starters are freshmen, and we’re at .500 right now, so I think we’re doing pretty good,” Allen said. “We’ve got some pretty tough games coming up, though, but I think we have a shot.”

Along with Allen, Francis touted senior wide receiver Johnny Kocik and junior wideout Phil Lapinski as team leaders.

The fourth-year coach said the passing game is the team’s strength. Francis added the run game and stopping the run remains a work in progress.

“We’re working on some things that we hope will put us in the best position to win,” Francis said.

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