Interlake Saints football players participate in a tackling drill during a spring football practice session on June 19 in Bellevue. Shaun Scott/staff photo

Interlake Saints football players participate in a tackling drill during a spring football practice session on June 19 in Bellevue. Shaun Scott/staff photo

Building for a promising future on the football field

Saints are striving for improvement in all facets of the game.

Flashback to 32 months ago: The Interlake Saints football program hosted a playoff game against the Gig Harbor Tides in Bellevue.

The Saints lost, 14-13, in a winner-to-state, loser-out playoff game in November of 2016 on their home field. The past two seasons the Saints missed the playoffs and didn’t garner a winning record.

Interlake Saints senior wide receiver/defensive back Tyler Zumek is determined to see the program turn a corner this fall.

“I just want to see us come together as a team. We haven’t really had that the past few years. I just want us to bring it all together again and get some big wins,” Zumek said.

The Saints, who had an overall record of 2-7 during the 2018 season, captured victories against the Sammamish Totems (Crossroads Cup) and Lynnwood Royals in the season finale. Interlake Saints head football coach Shawn Hartline, who will be in his second season leading the football program this fall, is adamant about seeing his squad blossom into a contender.

“Building the program is the No. 1 priority. We want to bring football back to the community and make it fun. We’re at almost 50 players in our program (all four grades). Our target is 60 players,” Hartline said.

The Saints return a plentiful amount of talented athletes to the starting lineup this fall. Hartline said Jack Hirsch (defensive end/tackle), Grady Fleming (running back/linebacker), Luke Hirsch (wide receiver/free safety) and Zumek will make significant contributions on both sides of the ball.

One of the things the Saints football program has always been known for is its grit. That reputation gives Hartline an immense amount of pride.

“It is one of the greatest things about our team. Even if we’re down by a lot of points at halftime and it doesn’t seem like we have a fighting chance, we come out and win the second half of games over and over again,” Hartline said with a smile. “Every quarter is a building opportunity for us. Our freshmen and sophomores get a lot of playing time on Friday nights.”

Luke Hirsch, who roams the secondary with passion at his safety position, is optimistic about the 2019 campaign.

“We’ve been lifting (weights) a lot during the offseason. We’re getting bigger, stronger, faster and more conditioned. I love playing safety, I’m back there patrolling the passes and I’m the last person (on defense) if someone breaks out a long run,” Hirsch said.


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@bellevuereporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.bellevuereporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in Sports

The WIAA announced Wednesday that if schools reopen at the conclusion of the six-week statewide shutdown ordered last week by Gov. Jay Inslee, then the state championships will go on as planned. (WIAA photo)
WIAA still hoping to hold state championships in May

But if the school shutdown extends past April 24, those championships could be in jeopardy.

Vikings earn all-league honors on the basketball court

Both boys and girls Bellevue Christian basketball teams were well represented on… Continue reading

Vikings end season at the SunDome

The Bellevue Christian boys lose to Meridian in the 1A state basketball tournament in Yakima.

Games are being postponed in response to coronavirus outbreak

In response to the recent coronavirus outbreak, Eastside schools are taking precautions… Continue reading

Hardwood Classic tips off after coronavirus outbreak

By Benjamin Olson and Andy Nystrom Basketball players took to the court… Continue reading

Relay teams guide Sammamish to boys swim and dive state title

The Totems won the 2A state title for the first time in program history.

Reporter file photo
No changes to state basketball tournament schedules after coronavirus outbreak

State boys and girls basketball Hardwood Classic tournaments in Tacoma, Yakima and… Continue reading

Most school events, including sports practices, on schedule after coronavirus outbreak

All the school districts in the Reporter’s coverage areas — Northshore, Lake… Continue reading

Griswold gives one last performance at state

Sammamish gymnast Sydney Griswold competed at state for the fourth and final time.

Vikings ready to tip off at the SunDome

The Bellevue Christian boys basketball team is competing at the 1A state tournament in Yakima.

Bellevue girls soccer trio named to All-State first team

Bellevue girls soccer standouts Paige Satterlee (senior midfielder), Courtney Serres (senior midfielder)… Continue reading

Wolverines’ postseason run ended by Panthers

The Bellevue boys basketball team lost 54-45 to Seattle Prep in a district tournament game.