Last year, it took till the final play for Wheaton North to beat Bartlett in its season opener.
It didn't take as long to secure the victory this year as the Falcons defeated the host Hawks 49-0 in nonconference football play Friday night at Millennium Field in Streamwood.
"We knew that they were going to be hungry because we kind of stole one last year," said Falcons' coach Joe Wardynski. "But we thought our kids prepared really well this week for them and it showed."
The young Wheaton North offense struggled on the first drive of the game as Bartlett's defense forced a three-and-out.
On the Hawks' first possession of the game, Aaron Everson broke two big runs of 17 and 27 yards, but on the fourth play from scrimmage Wheaton North's Beau Martin sacked Bartlett starting quarterback Steve Hrbacek forcing a fumble at midfield which Martin scooped up and ran back 50 yards for the game's first score two minutes into play.
"The defense scoring for us, that was huge," said Falcons' starting QB John Peltz. "Our defense came out and did a great job, and the offensive line did a great job protecting me. To put 49 points on the board in the first game, it gives us a lot of confidence."
Hrbacek broke his collar bone on the play and missed the rest of the game as sophomore Jordan Flint took over, and from there it was all Wheaton North.
Clayton Thorson caught a 53-yard touchdown pass from Peltz (7-for-11, 103 yards) as the Falcons led 14-0 after the first quarter.
Thorson had a big game with 102 rushing yards, 64 receiving yards and 32 passing yards as he took the snaps in the second and fourth quarters. Thorson threw a 16-yard TD pass to Tom Colletti in the second, and Thorson ran for a 57-yard TD in the fourth.
"He's a very talented kid," Wardynski said. "On any other team, he's probably their starting QB."
The Falcons led 35-0 at halftime with 6-yard and 2-yard TD runs by Patrick Sharp, and Colletti caught a 2-yard pass in the end zone from Peltz in the third quarter.
Bartlett's offense stuck on the ground with 128 rushing yards led by Everson's 98.
"We wanted to make sure we could run the ball," said Bartlett coach Tom Meaney. "We were happy with the running game."