Bonnema brothers cherishing time together on the football field at Zeeland East

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ZEELAND, Mich -- Boone and Tag Bonnema are brothers playing next to each other at linebacker for Zeeland East this season.

As the Chix enter Friday night's district final against Zeeland West, the Bonnema's know their time together on the field is dwindling.

"I kind of just get that cool feeling when we are practicing that I can't take this for granted," freshman Tag Bonnema said.  "I gotta ask him and talk to him as much as I can about what we are doing. It's really fun. It is almost emotional, too."

Older brother Boone is a senior and could not be happier to be guiding his brother on the field this season.

"It is fun to be a mentor," Boone said.  "I had a mentor when I was his age as a freshman, so it's fun to not only be a mentor but be a mentor towards my little brother. And he has been learning a lot throughout each week, and I am excited to see his future."

Chix head coach Derek Pennington says that Boone has done a great job this season, not only leading his brother but leading the entire team.

"Playing middle linebacker as a freshman, there is a lot to learn, so Boone has been really good with his brother, next to him, pointing him in the right direction," Pennington said.  "Tag has some great physical ability that has allowed him to play and prosper out there for us. He's still learning. Boone is our veteran and coach on the field as far as our defense."

Boone is verbally committed to play football at Western Michigan University next fall. Tag recently picked up an offer from the Broncos as well.

"He has so much potential, he works so hard everyday in practice, brings a lot of energy to the team" Boone said of his brother.  "He likes to soak in things from other people, and yeah, I'm really excited for him."

While Tag plays primarily on defense, Boone is also a starter on offense. The two have had some run-ins during practice. "During the summer he used to try to put me on my butt, and he did,. A lot" Tag said.   "I kind of just get used to it and kind of learn how to block him. It's kind of fun, to be honest."

The Bonnema's are guaranteed at least one more game together on Friday night as the Chix take on Zeeland West in a Division 3 district championship game at 7 p.m..

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