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Fremd put on an exhibition of power football Friday, setting school records in the process as the host Vikings evened their record at 1-1 with a 54-21 Mid-Suburban crossover win over Rolling Meadows.
The Vikings rushed for a school record 556 yards on 44 carries, including 7 plays of 20 or more yards. The previous record was 385 yards against Palatine in 2006.
Quarterback Sam Beutler led the charge. He carried 15 times for 198 yards and 4 touchdowns, including long scoring runs of 42 and 71 yards. He also opened Fremd's attack with a 60-yard scoring strike to Anthony Halvorsen.
"We've been working on that play in practice all week," Beutler said. "We knew it was going to be the first play."
He was far from being the whole show. Reserve Cody Patenaude gained 91 yards on three fourth-quarter carries. Jeff McGlade rushed 8 times for 90 yards, Jeff Gill carried twice for 70 yards, and Darius Burchette gained 69 yards on 6 carries.
"If you go back and look at the film, you'll see the holes were so big anyone could run through them," Beutler said in praise of offensive linemen Ryan Comstock (265), Brad Ruerdanz (270), Jake Plantz (250) Kyle Gregory (210), Dominic Lombard (295), Scott Hoffman (301) and Clayton Dukewich (250), and fullback Patrick McMahon (232).
That size eventually wore down the smaller Mustangs (1-1).
"We just got out-physicaled," Meadows coach Matt Mishler said. "They beat the heck out of us. They're a lot bigger, but we have to out-technique people. We didn't do that tonight.
"We didn't match their intensity and physicality."
After Fremd opened a 21-0 lead in the first quarter, Meadows quarterback Bobby Suchecki engineered scoring drives of 80 yards in 13 plays and 85 yards in 8 plays. Suchecki (15-31 for 240 yards) connected with Matt Dolan for an 8-yard TD pass and Matt Campbell from 26 yards out with 1:26 left in the half.
"We didn't have to yell at halftime, but we challenged them," Fremd coach Lou Sponsel said.
The Vikings answered the challenge on the kickoff to open the third quarter when Halvorsen raced 99 yards for a touchdown that put the Vikings ahead 27-14. The return broke the school record of 97 yards by Evan Wright in 2009 against Hersey.
On the next possession, John Magnani batted down a fourth and 3 pass by Suchecki on the Mustangs' 42. On Fremd's first play from scrimmage, Beutler scored, making it 34-14 with 10:10 left in the third.
Suchecki's 1-yard run cut the margin to 34-21 with 2:46 left in the third quarter, but Beutler's 71-yard run made it 40-21. He scored again from 11 yards out with 6:21 remaining, and Patenaude's 28-yard touchdown closed the scoring with 18.7 seconds left.
"Lake Zurich did us a favor last week," Sponsel said of the 24-0 loss to the state-ranked Bears. "They exposed our weaknesses, and we got to work on them right away."
Fremd placekicker Andrew Stark had a perfect night on kickoffs, booming all 9 into the end zone for touchbacks. He was 6-of 6 on PATs and barely missed connecting on a scoring pass on a fake field goal attempt.