Winslow’s Rob Clark (24) rushes for a touchdown as Nokomis’ Jayden Brooks (15) meets him head on during a recent game in Winslow. Morning Sentinel file photo by Michael G. Seamans

WINSLOW — The names of his brothers roll off Rob Clark’s tongue. He’s recited this before.

“It goes Don, Derek, Mike, Tom, Alec, Jake, me,” Clark, a junior at Winslow High School, said.

Four of Clark’s older brothers played football for the Black Raiders. Rob is a linebacker, a position at which Mike and Alec excelled. Offensively, Clark is a running back, a position he alone holds in the Clark family football history.

“I was always small when I was younger. They didn’t put me on the line, they just threw me in the backfield,” Clark said.

The final Clark to wear Winslow’s black and orange, Rob is working to make his mark on Black Raider football. Through five games this season, he’s doing just that. As a linebacker, Clark has 29 tackles, including 20 solo, and two sacks. Offensively, Clark has 363 yards on 42 carries, both team highs, and three touchdowns. Add an 85-yard kick return for a touchdown in Winslow’s win over Foxcroft Academy on September 28.

“He’s got good speed. He’s aggressive,” Winslow coach Mike Siviski said of Clark. “He has good stamina. He’s turned into a good player. He’s shifty. He’s the smallest of the crew. But he’s lightning.”

Clark and the Black Raiders (4-1) play at Maine Central Institute Friday in a game featuring the top two teams in Class C North.

The biggest of the brothers, Don was a strong two-way tackle for the Black Raiders a dozen years ago. Derek was a nose guard on the team that went to the Class B state championship game in 2006. Mike was a linebacker on the team that went to the Class C state game in 2012. Then there is Alec, who played guard and linebacker on Winslow’s back-to-back undefeated state champions in 2014 and 2015. Following his senior season, Alec won the Gaziano Award as the state’s top offensive lineman.

“I enjoyed the Clarks. (Alec) was one of the top players in the state of Maine,” Siviski said. “(Rob is) following right along…. I call him Alec all the time.”

Siviski’s occasional name slip is understandable. Clark takes any comparison to any of his brothers as a compliment.

“All my brothers graduated from Winslow. The ones that played football did well. I try to do well and follow their name,” Clark said. “There’s a lot of pressure. We’re a football family. All we think about is football. We watch it every Sunday. Alec being the last one before me, there was a lot of pressure because he did very well.”

While tenacity and toughness have been a Clark brothers staple, Rob Clark has a burst of speed that’s his alone. He displayed it in that game against Foxcroft, when he followed a block and went 85 yards untouched for a touchdown on the opening kickoff. Six of Clark’s 14 carries that day went for 10 or more yards, and he finished with 149 yards rushing in just over a half of play. Defensively, Clark had a sack, busting up the middle to drop Ponies quarterback Austin Seavey for a three yard loss early in the second quarter.

Last week, Clark was in the middle of a Winslow defense that held Oceanside to 65 total yards in a 55-0 win.

“A lot of coaches tell me I run like my brother Alec. The Foxcroft coach (Danny White), he said I run like my brother Alec,” Clark said after Wednesday’s practice. “Honestly, the mentality Alec had, I just strive for that. Every day, go 100 percent every play.”

Clark said there’s no sibling rivalry when it comes to football.

“They’re big supporters. Alec will text me almost every game, before the game, and give me some tips. Mike comes to every game. He loves football and loves watching me. They always try to help me out and give me some tips,” Clark said.

Clark’s favorite memory of watching one of his brothers play happened in Alec’s senior year. The Black Raiders and Old Town finished the regular season with identical 8-0 records, and a coin flip determined the Coyotes would be the top seed in the Class C North playoffs. Clark went to the game with his family. He loved the atmosphere of the playoff game, with a trip to the state championship at stake.

“It was a tough game and they came out on top,” Clark said. “I loved seeing that, and I just want that feeling, going to states.”

 

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM

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