Silver Lake football overcomes coaching setback in preseason

Local Sports

SILVER LAKE (KSNT) – The Eagles are ready to soar through a hopefully normal season.

“I’m just really grateful that I get to play this Friday,” lineman Preston Gillen said.

Silver Lake football is a little different this year. Aside from the usual seniors graduating and underclassmen coming in, head coach CJ Hamilton will be distant-coaching. A series of surgeries and blood infections are keeping him at home.

“CJ here or not, [the assistant coaches] expect the same thing from us,” running back and cornerback Brogan Renfro said.

Hamilton is the winningest football coach in Kansas. His assistant coaches are filling in the gaps under Hamilton’s discretion. One even came out of retirement to help.

“Coach Ziegler, he stepped up real big,” Gillen said. “He loves what he does. We all love him. He’s done a great job replacing CJ. It’s not easy to do.”

On the field, most of the skill-position players and defense are back.

“Our line’s, right now, probably the one that needs the most work,” Gillen said. “We lost the most from there.”

Quarterback Daigan Kruger is in that group. He was the team’s leading passer and rusher in 2020.

“We’re very talented, I would say. We have a great work ethic, and we should be able to do really good things this season,” Renfro said.

The Eagles open the season Friday at Rock Creek.

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