The Importance of the O-Line

Photo by Miles Hill

Sam Lee and Andrew Velarde

The  lights of  Eagle Stadium illuminate the helmets of the opposing team. Senior Luke Sandifer positions himself on the line of scrimmage. He feels the turf on this hand, the sweat dripping down his forehead. The loud cheers from the crowd fill the air but then get silent. The heavy breathing from both teams is all they can hear. Then quarterback Sam Peterson claps and it echoes through the whole stadium. The play begins and Sandifer rushes forward against the defense intent on getting to Peterson. They do not succeed.

The football team placed 2nd in the UIL Class 4A Division 1 State Championship on Friday, December 18. This is the furthest the football team has advanced in the history of Lindale football.

“Our players have worked hard each and every week to get us here,”  varsity football coach Jacob Alford said.  “It is also a very special moment because I am able to share it with my brother Evan Alford (#8). I am thankful that I get to experience this season with him.”

The varsity starting offensive line consists of two seniors (Moses Medrano and Luke Sandifer), one junior (Yahir Soto) , and two sophomores (Will Hutchens and Trey Mazratian). They are coached by varsity coaches Matt Cochran and Jacob Alford.

 I just think this offense as one group is really gelled,” Cochran said. “There’s a certain cohesion with this group that’s been different and that’s unique.”

The offensive line consists of the center, who is responsible for snapping the ball into play, two guards who flank the center, and two offensive tackles who flank the guards. Without the offensive line, the play could not function as it is intended to.

“Being on the offensive line is a huge responsibility,”  senior Luke Sandifer said. “I’m blocking for the quarterback, running back, or just the people that carry the ball on the field.”

This year’s offensive line has been noticed every week for their excellence.  From players to coaches to community members, the offensive line stood out this season.

“My O line has been phenomenal,” senior Jordan Jenkins said.  “All of my goals and achievements is a great reflection of them. I’m glad to know them not just as players but people as well. We have created a bond that will last for the rest of our lives.”