COLUMBIA — The Rock Bridge Bruins football team finally clicked at the end of last season.
The Bruins finished the regular season 4-5 only to win four consecutive playoff games to make it to the Class 6 state championship game. The team lost 35-14 in that game, but head coach A.J. Ofodile says he wants the team to shift its focus to this season.
"That was a different group and a different story," Ofodile said. "This year is a different journey."
Senior quarterback Logan Twehous and senior wide receiver Alex Ofodile are coming off standout seasons. Twehous threw for 3,500 yards and 40 touchdowns last year, numbers that made him a standout quarterback in the state.
Alex Ofodile was on the receiving end of 16 of those touchdowns. He racked up just under 1,300 yards in the process — enough to catch the attention of coaches at the University of Oregon, where he verbally committed this offseason.
The two stars have played together since their freshman year, fostering a relationship reflected in their on-field chemistry.
Rock Bridge will run a spread offense this year with a healthy mix of seniors and freshmen. In addition to Twehous and Ofodile, the Bruins will look for standout performances from first team all-state offensive lineman Danny Wolf and second team all-state defensive end Hayden Johnson.
"In some positions we're extremely well prepared, and in some we're going to have to wait until the lights come on Friday night to see where we're at," A.J. Ofodile said.
The Bruins will face Rockhurst High School out of Kansas City for the fourth year in a row. The Hawklets have beat the Bruins the last four seasons.
But Rockhurst coach Tony Severino doesn't want that to affect his team's mindset going into Friday night.
"We know how good Rock Bridge is this year, so our guys need to put that aside," Severino said.
The Hawklets plan to run a balanced offense between its running and passing games. The staple of its offense is versatility, switching between gun, pistol and under-center formations. This style has proved extremely successful during Severino's career at Rockhurst, and he has no plans of changing it.
Friday's game kicks off at 7 p.m. at Rock Bridge.
Supervising editor is Raymond Howze.