(WDBJ7)-- Isaiah Persinger touched the ball just nine times last Friday night, but the senior made the most of those touches.
Two Fridays ago, Salem's quest for an unblemished season came to a halt at the hands of the juggernaut from Martinsburg, West Virginia.
"It was really tough but we just had to get that mindset back. 'Alright, we're Salem. This is our house. Cave Spring's coming in and we just gotta' show them that we're the top dogs and we're defending our house.'"
Running back Isaiah Persinger and the rest of the Spartans proved just that in a 59-3 rout of the Knights a week later. The senior found the end zone find different times, and tallied 155 yards on the ground.
"The performance that you see on the field and on Friday nights is the work he's put in since he was a youngster in that weight room. I don't know that he's missed maybe one day, really, in four years."
Persinger's football journey began back in middle school, when he and his friends decided to try it out.
"Me and my buddies back in seventh grade, we're like, 'Alright, let's play football. Maybe we can go somewhere, go pro or something like that.' I was like, 'Alright, that sounds cool.' So I started playing seventh grade through eighth grade and I was like, 'I really like this.' So I kept playing in my high school years and now, look at me, I'm the captain of the Salem football team."
Off the field, Persinger likes to let his personality shine. "I'm pretty sure that everyone knows that I'm just one heck of a goofy person. I love to watch TV shows. My favorite TV show is Garfield."
Unlike his favorite lasagna-loving cat, Persinger and his teammates aren't sitting back, as the playoffs inch closer and closer.
"We really just have to trust each other and depend on each other to do our jobs and if we show that we do each other's jobs and just focus up on what we gotta' do, then I believe that we have a chance to go to states."
Copyright 2019 WDBJ7. All rights reserved.