November 13, 2010

Kalis focused on Tarblooders

At the start of the 2010 season, not many people would have predicted Lakewood St. Edward would have met Glenville in the playoffs, not after St. Ed's finished 4-6 the year before and the Tarblooders played in the 2009 state title game.

But, by mid-season, the Eagles were the talk of the town.

Early wins over some traditional powerhouse programs gave St. Ed's plenty of momentum moving forward and the Eagles capitalized, finishing the regular season at 10-0.

St. Ed's cruised to a first round playoff victory over Mentor to set up a regional semifinal game with the 11-0 Tarblooders.

"It's going to be a great game," said St. Ed's junior offensive lineman Kyle Kalis, an Ohio State verbal commitment. "I'm surprised we're playing this early, but we're ready."

The second round match-up is surprising considering Glenville and St. Ed's were among just three of the undefeated teams in the region. But, Solon, earned the No. 1 seed, leaving Glenville at 2 and St. Ed's at 3.

Both teams feature huge offensive and defensive lines, which should please football purists who prefer smash-mouth football.

"That's my favorite kind of game," Kalis said. "It's a war."

Despite their success this season, the Eagles know the Tarblooders expect to advance again to the state title game.

"I just know that we're coming hard and that's all we care about," Kalis said.

During last week's 35-21 win over Mentor, Kalis was excited to see two familiar faces. One was Ohio State offensive line coach Jim Bollman and the other, former St. Ed's and Ohio State offensive lineman Alex Boone, now with the San Francisco 49ers.

"He's getting huge," Kalis said of Boone. "They came to the game last weekend, so I got to talk to them for a while."

After the game Kalis had a chance to talk with Bollman.

"That's been it because I can't go to any games," said Kalis of his team's schedule conflicts with Ohio State's games. "We talked post-game for a few minutes about how well I played and how excited he is to coach me at OSU."

Kalis also talked with Boone.

"He said I had a good game and was impressed with how I finish and my nasty streak, but (joked) how I still need a lot of work to get on his level," Kalis said.

After the season, Kalis plans to make a return visit to Ohio State and he hopes to jumpstart the Buckeyes' 2012 recruiting class.

"I definitely wont go anywhere until the season's over, whenever that is, but when it is I'm definitely going to try to go up as often as I can and get familiar with the facilities, coaches and campus," he said. "I also got to focus on getting the 2012 class going."



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