By Mark Jurgena
The Kahoks are in the playoffs!
Well, actually that’s not news around town. They secured their bid on October 1st after beating Granite City 54-28 at Kahok Stadium for their sixth win of the year. But now the regular season is complete and Collinsville has an 8-1 mark.
The Kahoks earned the 10th seed in Class 7A and will play 23rd seed Geneva Saturday afternoon.
By IHSA playoff standards, conference winners and all teams with six or more wins qualify for the 256 team post-season tourney. The remainder of the playoff field consists of teams with five wins who qualify based on the records of their opponents.
One of those five-win teams is Collinsville’s first-round opponent, Geneva. The Bulldogs began the year at 4-1 then hit a three-game losing skid before beating Roselle (Lake Forest) 13-6 on October 22nd.
That victory gave them a 5-4 overall mark. They finished fifth in the DuKane Conference with a 3-4 record. Undefeated Batavia won that conference. According to the IHSA playoff system, Batavia is the overall #1 seed in any of the eight IHSA classes.
Geneva is led on offense by senior running back Carter Powelson who is right around 1,000 all-purpose yards and wide receiver Tyler Tuisl.
Geneva has a solid history of success in the playoffs. This is their 18th appearance in the postseason, they have a 31-18 record with two runner-up finishes. But the Vikings have not been to the playoffs since 2015 when they lost in the 2nd round to Bradley (Bourbonnais) 41-22.
For their part, the Kahoks have not enjoyed that same success in football. CHS is only in their fourth playoff series. They have a career record of 0-3 and have not made an appearance since 2010 when they fell to Danville 50-21 in the opening round of the Class 6A playoffs. MIke Liljegren was the Kahok head coach at the time.
Current Collinsville coach Colton Rhodes is ready to lead his team back into the playoffs Saturday.
“It’s awesome for the team, the kids, the community,” he said. “It’s been eleven years since Collinsville has been in the playoffs, so it’s exciting times for us here in Collinsville.”
The playoff game will be played at Kahok Stadium Saturday with the kickoff at 3:00 pm. According to CHS athletic director, Clay Smith gates will open at 1:30 pm Saturday. Tickets are $5.00 and can be purchased at the gate or online. As of the publication date, an online link had not been established.
The winner of Saturday’s game will square off with the winner of the Chicago (St. Rita)/Rolling Meadows game next weekend at a site to be determined.
The Class 7A state title game will be played on November 27th at Huskie Stadium on the campus of Northern Illinois University in DeKalb.