Jack Schierholz helps bring pride to the Summit High School football program, spearheads team to historic seasons | SummitDaily.com

Jack Schierholz helps bring pride to the Summit High School football program, spearheads team to historic seasons

Summit High quarterback Jack Schierholz looks to throw during a game against the Glenwood Springs High Demons on senior night at Climax Molybdenum Field at Tiger Stadium on Oct. 21 in Breckenridge. The Tigers defeated the Demons 26-13. Over the last four years at Summit High School, Schierholz has seen the football program transform from a team that could barely manage three wins to a team that could vie for a spot in the 3A state playoffs.
Jason Connolly/For the Summit Daily News

Following the Summit High School football team’s loss to Frederick High School in the first round of the playoffs last Friday night, Nov. 11, a few individuals remained on the field long after the crowd had filtered out of the Tiger Stadium stands. One of those players was senior quarterback Jack Schierholz.

Schierholz remained on the field after the heart wrenching loss — exposed to the frigid single-digit temperatures — and had one last moment as a Summit Tigers football player. With the stadium lights glinting off his helmet and pads, Schierholz ran to the middle of the field, kneeled down on one knee and touched the Tiger logo at centerfield for the final time. 

Over the last four years at Summit High School, Schierholz has seen the football program transform from a team that could barely manage three wins to a team that could vie for a spot in the 3A state playoffs.

Schierholz was born in Frisco. Soon after his birth, he could always be seen with a ball in his hands or a ball at his feet.

“I think it’s the lifestyle that everyone has living in Summit County,” Schierholz said of getting into sports at an early age. “Everyone was always so active around me and pushing me to do sports.”

Prior to serving as QB1 for the Tigers, Schierholz started his athletic career in elementary school by playing soccer with the High Country Soccer Association, baseball with the Summit Extreme baseball team and basketball.

It was not until Schierholz moved to Missouri for fourth and fifth grade that he began his football career. Once Schierholz returned to Summit County for middle school, he truly started to blossom as a football player.

“Coach Andy Berry was a great influence on me,” Schierholz said of playing football in middle school. “He always had us in the weight room doing stuff, and by high school I was ready to go.”

Summit High School quarterback Jack Schierholz watches as his teammates play against the Frederick Golden Eagles defense during the Tiger’s home 3A state football playoff game at Climax Molybdenum Field at Tiger Stadium on Friday, Nov. 11, 2022 in Breckenridge. The Tigers fell to the Golden Eagles 41-21.
Jason Connolly/For the Summit Daily News

Schierholz entered high school alongside head coach James Wagner, who was handed the reins of the program in the fall of 2019. With Wagner at the helm, Schierholz slowly, but surely, entered the role of starting quarterback his junior season.

“He’s really put a work ethic within all 22 seniors that stuck around all four years,” Schierholz said. “It’s been amazing to see it all grow.”

The Summit football program went 3-7 Schierholz’s freshman year and 1-4 his sophomore year before the team reached the maturity level where it could not only be a competitive force in league play, but in the state as well. Last season, the Summit football team barely missed the playoffs with a record of 7-3. This season the team hosted a playoff game for the first time in over 14 years, finishing the season with a record of 9-2.

Along the way, Schierholz and the team invigorated the Summit County community and brought pride to the high school football program. The stands were packed every home game — rain, shine or snow — with fans eager to see their local football team get another win.

This community pride for the football team’s success was portrayed when a young Summit County School District student asked Schierholz to sign a football after a huge win over Palisade on Oct. 14. 

The ball marked the first Schierholz had ever signed in his football career.

“I remember idolizing the older kids and what they were doing on Friday night on the football field,” Schierholz said. “Having that come into play for me was a really surreal moment. Seeing Alan come up and ask me to sign a football was really surreal. It felt like everything that we had done was worth it.”

Jack Schierholz signs a ball for a local Summit County School District student. The moment was surreal for Schierholz and showed how much of an impact the football team’s success had on the Summit community.
Cody Jones/Summit Daily News

The win over Palisade was one of Schierholz’s favorite memories over the last four years at Summit High School. It marked the first time the football program had defeated Palisade, and the game gave the team the momentum it needed to make a final push for the playoffs.

Schierholz also looks back fondly at last season’s blackout homecoming game when the Tiger Stadium lights shut off in the second quarter.

Schierholz has thrown for 3,464 yards, completed 34 touchdown passes with 256 completions on 413 attempts over his football career while at Summit. This past season in particular, Schierholz had 1,496 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Schierholz was honest in saying that the home playoff loss to Frederick disappointed him and his fellow senior classmates. Prior to the loss, Schierholz was 10-0 while playing at home as the starting quarterback.

Following the loss, Schierholz found comfort by talking to his favorite target during the 2021 season, Aidan Collins. 

“He reminded me to be proud of everything we were able to accomplish,” Schierholz said. “Before this year and last year it was unheard of to just be in the playoffs. When we walked into this program the playoffs were untouchable.”

In true Summit fashion, Schierholz will now shift to basketball this winter before juggling baseball and track in the spring.

In the downtime he does have, Schierholz will start to focus more on the college recruitment process where he hopes to play football at the next level.

Schierholz has several offers from Division II and Division III schools, but he is currently weighing all of his options.

“I definitely want to take a chance on myself,” Schierholz said. “Maybe as a preferred walk-on at the Division I level. I am just taking it day by day.”

Schierholz will be featured in the power forward and shooting forward position throughout the basketball season. The Summit boys basketball team will begin its season on Dec. 1 when it takes on Grand Junction Central in Grand Junction. 

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