Glenbard South exhibited some good, old-fashioned smashmouth football Friday night using an explosive second quarter to clinch the Metro Suburban Conference title and routing Ridgewood 61-20.
The visiting Raiders (5-3, 4-0) found themselves trailing 14-8 after one quarter but had a dominant second quarter, putting 30 points on the board in just over five minutes and jumping out to a 38-20 halftime lead. The Raiders used all facets of the game in the second quarter as they converted an onside kick, forced a special teams turnover, returned an interception for a touchdown and had 3 rushing touchdowns.
The turning point of the game came after a touchdown by Justin Gjerazi, which gave the Raiders a 16-14 lead. On the ensuing kickoff, Glenbard South forced a fumble and ran the ball back to the 10-yard line, which set up a 10-yard touchdown run by Wesley Sanders to start the rout.
"I can't say enough about our offense tonight," Glenbard South coach Jeremy Cordell said. "We felt we had to keep our pressure on them. We ran the ball down their throats tonight. After they came out fast in the first, we responded like champs. Our special teams did a nice job tonight. That 2011 banner is going to look pretty good and our kids feel good. I am proud of how they responded."
Sanders rushed for 159 yards and 3 touchdowns, and quarterback Tyler Padera had 113 yards on the ground on only 6 carries with a TD for the Raiders. For the game Glenbard South ran for 408 yards on 51 carries. But after the lopsided win, Sanders spoke about how this team has responded after starting the season 1-3 and becoming playoff eligible with 5 wins.
"After the start that we had this season, we knew we had to pick it up," Sanders said. "Instead of getting down on ourselves we bonded as a team. We are like a family. We have fought hard and have won four games in a row now. It feels so great to win conference after the start we had. This means a lot to all of us."
P.J. O'Connor led the Rebels (4-4, 2-1) with 115 yards rushing on 13 carries and 3 touchdowns. Quarterback Joe Jacobsen threw for 151 yards in the loss.