It may have been what the schedule fairy spit out for McHenry, but the Warriors picked the wrong week to visit Al Bohrer Field after Cary-Grove's 8-point loss to Jacobs last week.
Cary-Grove (4-2, 1-2) was very much raw and rabid and sought to punish McHenry (2-4,1-3) after letting one slip last week. The Trojans made it a running clock 3 minutes into the third quarter and bashed their way to a 56-13 Fox Valley Conference Valley Division win behind junior quarterback Quinn Baker, who threw for a touchdown and rushed for 5 more in Cary-Grove's first Valley win.
"The loss last week hurt," Baker said. "We took our time all week and we decided we were going to come out here, drive the ball, do what we do and we really took out our aggression and it showed."
Baker had his fingerprints all over Cary-Grove's first 5 touchdowns. He rushed for the Trojans' first 4 (runs of 41, 3, 1 and 14) and threw 1 on their next scoring drive, a 24-yard pass to running back Ryan Mahoney, who was back from injury.
Baker's touchdown in the third marked his 10th in 2 weeks. He finished with 120 yards rushing on 14 carries while also completing all 3 passes for 114 yards. After the type of production he's had since stepping into the starting role 2 weeks ago, what can Baker do for an encore next week? What can Cary-Grove's coaches expect in the weeks beyond?
"That's a good question, I haven't thought about that," Trojans coach Brad Seaburg said. "Just continue to execute what we want to do. I think we have to get crisper at all phases at what we do and continue to improve."
But even on a crisp fall night, of Cary-Grove's 6-straight scoring drives, only 1 of them, a 38-yard touchdown run by quarterback Corey Laktas had some form of Baker. Cary-Grove's first punt came with 5:43 in the second quarter. Cary-Grove amassed 346 yards rushing. Fullback Patrick O'Malley ran 10 times for 70 yards, Laktas ran for 63 yards on 12 carries.
"Every week we do drills to run hard, and that's really our team's philosophy. Run hard, pump your legs, don't let one guy take you down, Baker said. "Every time we got the ball we were saying to each other 'don't let up, break their will, put to the pedal to the medal, full throttle. That's how we do it."
Cary-Grove definitely floored it 460 to 276 in total yards as if the Trojans were racing on the Indy Circuit. McHenry quarterback Robert Tonyan converted 13 of 32 passes for 218 yards passing but the Trojan defense was a roadblock. Five Warrior running backs ran 18 times for 58 yards. Tonyan was sacked 3 times as lineman Max Kersten got him twice. The Trojans also scooped up a fumble.
"The focus was we knew they'd have a quick, fast offense every play," Kersten said. "And they'd come quick. They'd get the play from the sideline and keep going. We practiced really hard this week and we kept the pace up really fast and we knew we had a get a good pass rush and help out our coverage."