One game into the season and Worthington Kilbourne High School football team's starting quarterback Brandon Randolph was made aware of how fragile a football season can be.

One game into the season and Worthington Kilbourne High School football team's starting quarterback Brandon Randolph was made aware of how fragile a football season can be.

"We had a senior tear his ACL last week," Randolph said after practice on Sept. 1. "You have to play hard every play because you never know when it's going to be gone."

Randolph was gone in the second half of last Friday's 21-18 loss to Upper Arlington because of a left high-ankle sprain. On Sept. 10, he sustained a minor knee injury in a 31-14 loss to Dublin Scioto.

"I would say we're all trying to stay healthy and positive," Randolph said. "Having injuries (stinks), it takes away that player's ability to help you on the field. As the quarterback, I'm trying to keep everyone positive and keep this team rolling."

The injured player whom Randolph was referring to on Sept. 1 is linebacker Nate Labine, who torn his ACL. Other noteworthy injuries include, but are not limited to, defensive tackle D.W. Boyles (torn MCL), wide receiver/defensive back Jack Burian (bruised lung), linebacker Chad Ellwood (broken hand), running back Dan Eurich (deep thigh bruise), offensive lineman Ye-Joon Kim (torn ACL), offensive lineman Mike Mayberry (concussion), offensive lineman Trae Starker (broken hand) and linebacker Conor Flaherty (stinger).

"Not to mention the normal bumps and bruises we have from playing such a physical schedule," coach Vince Trombetti said. "We have some guys who look older than I do moving around and I'm the one with the metal hip. It's been weird."

Trombetti thought long and hard before coming up with a comparable season. He referenced his second-to-last season as an assistant with Groveport in 1989. During the preseason scrimmages, the Cruisers lost their starting quarterback, top wide receiver and top running back.

"We limped into the season, but I don't remember many more big injuries that year," Trombetti said. "I don't know what it is. We've just been snake bit."

Randolph received X-rays last Saturday, which were negative for a broken fibula. His status for Friday's game at home against Westland was unknown as of last Monday.

"If you're playing 100 percent and get injured, it's the luck of the draw," Randolph said on Sept. 1.

Since winning the opener 34-19 over Westerville North on Aug. 27, Kilbourne has lost four consecutive games. Its final five games include games against Hilliard Davidson on Oct. 8 and Dublin Coffman on Oct. 22. Coffman and Davidson are a combined 9-1.

Yet for every injury, Kilbourne has found players to step up. The latest example is backup quarterback Brian Miller, who played the second half against UA, completing six of seven passes for 54 yards and a touchdown and rushing for 23 yards on six carries.

The injuries to Boyles and Labine forced some lineup adjustments. The last two games, Kilbourne's top two offensive linemen, Jeremy Isenhart and Matt Skura, played defensive line, too. In two games, Isenhart has 12 tackles and Skura has nine. Linebacker Nick Porter leads the team with 73.

"I know I had to step up," Skura said. "I enjoy playing both ways and I played defense in middle school and started my high school career on defense.

"We've just got to stay positive. We can't focus on the injuries. We just have to move on, put people in the right positions and play our best."

On offense, Skura, who plays tackle, and Isenhart, who plays center, are helping to pave the way for the Wolves' running game, which despite the injuries, has continued to produce.

Kilbourne is averaging 5.7 yards per carry and and has 1,244 yards rushing and 11 touchdowns on 218 attempts. Individually, Sheldon Tillman leads the team with 674 yards and five touchdowns on 84 yards. Dan Eurich, who sat out a 21-7 loss to Hilliard Darby on Sept. 17 with a thigh bruise, has 269 yards and two touchdowns on 35 carries. Last Friday, Tillman and Eurich combined for 222 yards on 32 carries.

"(The offensive line) is a close group," Skura said. "Jeremy and I played last year and we have that bond and experience. We brought in my little brother (Chris Skura), and with Russell Gilabert and Brian Turner, we've all come together as one unit and played to the best of our abilities."

According to Trombetti, Kilbourne proved it is better than its 1-4 record indicates. Still, he is not into moral victories even though the Wolves had a chance to knock off UA last Friday.

"The kids left everything out on the field," Trombetti said. "They played their butts off and we were in a position to win at the end of the game. It didn't go our way, but we were there. I told the kids after the game I wanted their heads up and to look me in the eye. I was proud of them. There was no doubt people knew how good we were after (last) Friday night."