Perkins County football program headed in right direction
Upper classmen in the Perkins County Plainsmen football program have definitely paid their dues.
They started to reap the dividends of that sacrifice and hard work, picking up more wins this season than the two previous years combined.
First-year Head Coach Tanner Collins believes this is just the beginning of a program headed in the right direction.
The Plainsmen finished 4-4 this season, after going 1-7 in 2018 and 2-6 in 2019.
The first step for Collins will be to get all of his players thinking like he is.
He certainly wasn’t content with a 4-4 mark, knowing there were two other games the Plainsmen should have won.
It means getting his kids to understand their potential and learn what it takes to win those games, he said.
His players will face some high expectations in the off-season from the coaches, especially in the weight room.
Collins said the Plainsmen are still behind when it comes to physicality. That’s fixed in the weight room during the off-season.
Getting stronger over the summer helps kids build confidence and gets them closer to realizing their own potential, Collins said.
This year, Collins said he had a core of 10-12 players that carried the load.
Next year, he wants there to be 16-20 kids who put the time in during the off-season and are ready to step up and fill roles.
He loses just three seniors off a 22-man roster and looks to add 10-15 freshman to next year’s squad.
Based on the team’s success this season, Collins said it’s realistic, providing the kids put in the work, to go 8-0 next season. “I fully believe that’s reasonable and achievable,” he said.
Stats compiled for season
Team and individual statistics for 2020 season have been complied.
As a team, the Plainsmen averaged 152 yards in the air per game and 186 yards on the ground.
That compared to opponents who gained 96 yards in the air and 248 yards on the ground.
The Plainsmen scored 17 touchdown in the air and 27 on the ground compared to nine and 34 respectively by opponents.
Ethan Sihm, Triston Hite and Casey Hanson all finished with more than 300 yards on the ground. Hite led the way for rushing TDs with eight.
Hunter Garner was the leading receiver, finishing with 30 receptions for 638 yards and 12 TDs.
Hite was 71/149 passing for a 47% completion rate, a total of 1,106 yards and 15 passing touchdowns.
Defensively, Senior Brandon Knoles led the team in tackles with 72, including 29 solos. Jeb Kohl, Garner and Nolan Foster each finished with 52 or more tackles.
Senior Irvin Reyes handled the most kickoffs with 11 and averaged 19 yards per return.
Kohl handling the punt return duties, averaging just shy of six yards per return.
Reyes and Hite handled the punting duties with Reyes averaging 35.8 yards per punt and Hite with 33.8 yards average.
Hite also made 12 of 15 extra point attempts for the season.
A breakdown of the stats accompanies this story.