Siuzdak Emerging as Playmaker for Spring Hill Christian

Photography by Alice Mary Herden

Coltin Siuzdak felt the tug to get back into football. The Spring Hill Christian Academy team is glad he did. The 5-foot-10, 140-pound junior has emerged as a playmaker, along with quarterback/running back Michael Hemstreet, in the early eight-man season for the Wildcats. “Coltin is just a lot of team speed that we have,” SHCA head coach Shawn Fisher said. “He’s very fast and just like Mike he’s a pretty good student of the game, and once we get the ball in either of their hands good things happen.”

In the Sept. 4 season-opening 20-19 win at Hernando Christian Academy, Siuzdak ran 14 times for 79 yards, and caught four passes for 81 yards. As a defensive end, he recorded three sacks, a pass defended and recovered a fumble that he returned for a touchdown. “We worked pretty hard in the offseason,” Siuzdak said. “We’re a smaller team. Our goal, even though we’re smaller, is to work the hardest and give it all we’ve got. “We played this team before (in the spring) and beat them. But we knew they’d be working very hard to get us back.”

It was the first official game with the Wildcats for Siuzdak, and also his debut at a new position. He had played tight end in the spring, but personnel changes forced him to the backfield. “I really enjoy it. It’s working out pretty good,” Siuzdak said. “I had to learn plays differently. It wasn’t just blocking. I had to learn what holes to go through. Other than that, I used the abilities God gave me, like speed, and do my best,” he stated. Fisher explained, “He’s a really good wide receiver. He has a lot of speed. But when we put him at running back, he adds more team speed… There are times when we want him back at tight end because it opens up our passing a lot. But being at running back, I think he likes it.”

Siuzdak spent his freshman year at Hudson High before coming to SHCA last school year. Though he played football at Crews Lake Middle School, he had focused on basketball the past two seasons. He was team MVP for the Wildcats last season, playing point guard. “I’ve always loved football and had a lot of friends on the team who told me I should play. I just really wanted to get back into it,” Siuzdak said. “It feels good, especially being at running back. I love having the ball and making plays to help the team win.”

Unfortunately for Siuzdak, he didn’t have that opportunity on Friday. He sat out a 38-12 loss at Oasis High in Cape Coral with a pulled hamstring. But when he does return, he wants to help the Wildcats prove they can compete in spite of their small numbers. “I’d really love to squeeze into the playoffs,” Siuzdak said. “The goal for myself is to do everything I can to help the team win. That’s all that matters in the end.”

Once he finishes playing football, he’d like to pursue songwriting. Now that he’s back on the field, when his gridiron career comes to a close, he said, is in God’s hands. “I want to play throughout high school,” Siuzdak said, “and see where it takes me.”

Coltin Siuzdak, SHCA

Coltin Siuzdak, SHCA
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