BISMARK (WCIA) — The undefeated Bismark Henning Rossville Alvin is heading into their week 8 game against Westville. One player helping the team to their success almost didn’t even play football this season.

Liam Oxendine has played soccer his whole life, but ahead of his senior year, the striker felt compelled to trade in his cleats for a helmet.

“I didn’t know much,” Oxendine said. “I was definitely out of my place.”

Oxendine first joined the team last season just as a kicker, but a year after first putting on the pads, the football convert is now second on the team with 10 rushing touchdowns, and second on a stout defense with 48 tackles.

“You’d never guess that he’d been a lifetime soccer player the way you watch him play,” BHRA head coach Mark Dodd said. “We’re just thrilled for him.”

“I had no idea, I thought I was going to play soccer for my whole high school career and focus on that,” Oxendine said. “Then kick on the side, but this has been definitely a lot of fun and I’m glad I chose to play football.”

Oxendine isn’t the only soccer convert either, with junior Logan Hughes starting for the Blue Devils at corner and both have taken skills they used on the pitch and applied them on the turf.

“I little bit, footwork, physicality,” Logan Hughes said. “The speed of football, that’s a big difference. Reading the hips of players, that’s where they’re going.”

“Mainly the cutting, and being able to read everything, being able to cut came from soccer,” Oxendine said.

The All-Conference soccer star has been an integral part of BHRA’s undefeated campaign and continues gaining confidence with every game.

“No it doesn’t feel real,” Oxendine said. “I just got to thank all my teammates and my coaches for that. They’ve helped me so much and they’ve taught me a lot.”

With a win over Westville in the Friday Football Fever Spotlight Game of the Week, Bismarck can win a share of the Vermilion Valley for the record fifth-time in a row.