That Kirkwood is even on the field is a great story. As a freshman, he collided with former teammate Troy Smith while trying to break up a pass on the last play of the 2004 T-NT junior varsity game. The collision left Kirkwood with a broken vertebrae in his neck, endangering his football career.
He missed his entire sophomore season, but was able to play last year, when he established himself as an offensive threat. After normal kicker Mike Carson was injured last season, Kirkwood also took over those duties. In the 2006 T-NT game, Kirkwood missed a field goal that could have given Tonawanda the lead late in the fourth quarter.
Thus, perhaps more than any other member of the Warriors, Kirkwood hopes for a different outcome Friday. A win against NT would complete his season, he said.
“I’d feel good going out with a win over NT,” he said.
Contact editor Jay Skurski at 693-1000, ext. 117.