Regina Seniors Cook, Wick Put Finishing Touches on Stellar Careers With Impressive Title Game Performances
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CEDAR FALLS – Regina returned to the top of the prep football world in resounding fashion on Thursday with its first state title since 2015.
For seniors Ashton Cook and Alec Wick the 52-28 win over top-ranked Grundy Center in the Class A title game provided a perfecting end to a pair of impressive prep careers.
Both four-year varsity performers, Cook and Wick have been among the best in Regina history at their respective positions.
On Thursday the duo added a state title to their list of career achievements after falling in the 2017 title game as a freshman.
“It’s gone really fast since my freshman year,” Cook said. “Being able to play with this group of seniors it’s amazing. I think we deserve this a lot, we’ve worked really hard.”
Wick and Cook have been key leaders within a Regina program that went from 5-4 in 2018 to 9-3 and the semifinals last season before capping an 11-1 season with the eighth state title in school history on Thursday.
“Each team is unique, each group of seniors it is there class and their team,” Regina coach Marv Cook said. “I have coached this group since kindergarten in all the different spots and I’ve watched them compete and I think for them they have worked really, really hard and we are just blessed that we’ve been able to play this many games and to be playing our best football at the end is exciting.”
In their final game in Regina uniforms Wick and Cook turned Thursday’s title game into their own personal highlight reels.
Cook completed 17-of-24 for 325 yards and two touchdowns with Wick catching nine passes for a 226 yards, the most receiving yards ever in a Class A title game.
“We were rolling at the right time,” Wick said. “You want to play your best football at the end of the season and that’s what we did. We came out and executed.”
A four-year starter Wick seemed to take his game to another level in his final prep game.
He hauled in a beautiful 30-yard reception on the sideline in the second quarter tapping his toes inbounds before falling out of bounds.
“We had the right play called, we saw it earlier and we ran it again and we took advantage of it,” Wick said. “I didn’t run a great route but it was there, it was a great ball by Ashton.”
That was one of several impressive plays from Wick that drew a gasp from the limited crowd.
The 6-foot-1, 180-pound senior made his usual assortment of diving receptions in a record-breaking performance.
With nine receptions Wick surpassed former West High standout Oliver Martin as the top pass catcher in state history.
Wick finishes his career with 242 receptions, the most ever in Iowa in 11-player football.
His 3,655 receiving yards rank third all time while his 38 career touchdown receptions are tied for sixth most in state history.
“He’s amazing, he’s like a cat, his instincts are amazing,” Ashton Cook said of Wick. “He can make any catch.”
Career catch number 242 was the perfect exclamation point on a brilliant career for Wick and came on a perfect play from his longtime friend and quarterback.
On a broken play Cook rolled out to his left where he found Wick along the side line.
“We actually had a miscommunication, Alec ran an out and he was supposed to run another route,” Cook said. “I saw the corner’s position and Alec was looking at me so I threw it where only he could get it and sure enough here he comes running down the ball. He definitely knows how to adjust to where I am throwing it. He’s been amazing.”
Cook lofted a perfect pass over the head of the corner back right as Wick broke off his route and cut behind the defender.
“That’s a go-to for us, it’s been there all season,” Wick said. “You can look back and we’ve done that all season it’s always there.”
The result was an 88-yard touchdown pass that put Regina up 52-14 with 8:08 left.
“Ashton put the ball in the right spot where only one guy can get it and that guy is Alec Wick,” Marv Cook said. “He is able to make great plays for us.”
Cook closed the season with 2,862 passing yards and 25 touchdowns while Wick caught 75 passes for 1,401 yards and 16 touchdowns in his final prep season.