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CAK runs past Rockwood; at G-P as No. 3 seed

After three weeks of must-win football games, Christian Academy of Knoxville’s playoff bid is now secure.

The Warriors both earned their spot and knocked Rockwood High School out of playoff contention when they overpowered the Tigers at RHS 23-7 Friday, Oct. 31.

While opponents collectively have only 926 passing yards during the regular season against CAK, quarterback Michael Fromke passed for 2,201 yards, resulting in 16 touchdowns.

Against the Tigers, though, CAK gained 251 yards rushing and only 146 yards passing.

When asked about his 198 rushing yards, senior Keenan Kolinsky said, “We trusted our offensive line and they did great. It’s worked for us, and Michael’s done a great job of throwing the ball to open it up even more. ... I’m looking forward to seeing how it helps us out in the playoffs.”

Responsible for most of the other CAK rushing yards, Andrew Castro agreed: “The past two weeks we’ve been a dual-threat kind of team ... I think it’s going to work for us in the playoffs.”

All three CAK touchdowns were scored on the run. Castro scored with 5:22 left in the first half.

CAK, now 6-4 overall while ending 4-2 in the region, went to the locker room at halftime with 10 points thanks to an earlier field goal by Matt Warren.

During the Warriors’ first drive of the second half, Kolinsky, who leads the team with 10 regular season touchdowns, ran 47 yards to score a second touchdown.

Finally, Castro, who also had an interception and four tackles, scored the final touchdown of the night, running 41 of the drive’s 57 yards late in the fourth quarter.

The Tigers are the only team to earn more passing yards than CAK in a game since Rusty Bradley became head coach in 2007. Still, CAK held RHS to 227 passing yards, and Bradley said his team handled the change well.

“Our defense did a great job of stepping up, making plays and getting us the ball back. They created turnovers in critical situations, and I’m proud of these guys. They found a way to win,” Bradley said.

Ethan Poe, who had 17 tackles in the game, 126 in the regular season, said, “We hadn’t worked that much in practice for it, so it kind of surprised us. We made some adjustments, and it worked for us.

“We were even able to get three [interceptions]. J.D. [Arnett] had two, and Castro had one.”

The defense also had five sacks: one each for Jacob Duncan, Tyler Eichholtz, Chris Jaeger, Kirk Allen, and two for Matthew Smith.

The Warriors face their first playoff opponent at Gatlinburg-Pittman (9-1). Opening kickoff is 7 p.m., Friday, Nov. 7. “It [will] be nice playing against Gatlinburg-Pittman, play a ball game at a place we’ve never played before,” said Poe, a senior linebacker.


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