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Montini senior center Frank Vosicky liked what he saw Friday against Wheaton Academy.
So did senior running back Nikko Italia.
Both were excited there was room, sometimes plenty, to carry the football.
Italia had 2 touchdowns and 80 yards on just 7 carries in the Broncos' 56-0 victory at Wheaton College in the Suburban Christian Conference crossover.
"I couldn't be more thankful for the line that I have. It was amazing," Italia said. "They started saying that our running game wasn't good enough, but I think tonight we proved that we have a running game."
The Broncos (3-0) had impressive wins over Maine South and East St. Louis primarily through tough defense as their offense matures with an entirely new line.
Against Wheaton Academy (1-2), Montini opened with a three-and-out, but after getting the ball back on downs at the 50, they had eight straight touchdown drives.
"Tonight was a big night for us. It was kind of like our breakout night," Vosicky said. "We hadn't been able to really move the ball the first two games on the ground like we wanted to, but tonight we really did."
Quarterback Alex Wills threw for 2 TDs and 136 yards and ran for another score. The defense had interceptions by Josh Belt and Caleb Stevenson and a blocked punt by Edgar Ruano.
The offensive starters came out after a 35-0 lead with 4:54 left in the half. Backup quarterback Charles Norgle opened the next series with a 26-yard TD pass to Tyler Tumpane.
"A pretty complete win for us in all phases. All of the kids played and now we get ready for a big game (against St. Francis)," Montini coach Chris Andriano said.
"We played two very good teams early and couldn't run the ball as well. Now we're starting to run the ball better. Our guys are really starting to play together. That's the key. They're playing playoff football (caliber) already."
It's not just a new offensive line of Vosicky, guards Joe Galli and A.J. Melarkey and tackles Thomas Long and Grant Branch. It's a new scheme under new line coach Kevin Worthy. Senior Anthony Ferraro, the line's only returning starter, now plays defense.
"It makes me feel good (watching Italia run tonight) because that means we're doing our job and he's getting what he deserves," Vosicky said.
Montini's first scoring drive was especially painful for the Warriors. Defensive back Nate Lopez broke up a pass to Leon Thornton from the 21 but the hit forced him to leave the game with a shoulder injury that required X-rays.
Lopez also is the Warriors' starting quarterback. Wills threw a TD pass to Matt Brachmann on the next play.
"That hurt," Wheaton Academy coach Brad Thornton said. "That was tough to have that happen in the first quarter. At least he went down with a good hit."
Leon Thornton later caught a 34-yard pass from Wills. Second-half touchdown runs came from Terrance Savain and freshman Prince Walker on an electrifying 79-yard run.
Ferraro and Tyler Quick, the leading tackler against Maine South, sat out Friday. Both passed impact tests for mild concussions and are expected to return for St. Francis.