Just in case folks forgot, Jordan Hassan and Glenbard West served a not-so-subtle reminder Friday.
The road to the Silver title still goes through Glen Ellyn.
The Hilltoppers, who have won at least a share of the last five West Suburban Silver championships, opened the conference season with an emphatic 21-0 win at previously unbeaten Downers Grove North.
"We wanted to make a statement," said Hassan, a senior linebacker. "We wanted to show everyone that we are a force to be dealt with. I think we showed what we're made of tonight."
Scott Andrews ran for 123 yards and a touchdown for Glenbard West (2-1, 1-0), and the Hilltoppers' "Dark Side" defense did the rest in dominating fashion. Downers Grove North (2-1, 0-1) had shut out its first two opponents. The roles were reversed Friday.
"They were calling themselves the Hitters. We're the real Hitters," Andrews said. "We took it to 'em."
Andrews keyed a drive that for all intents and purposes won it for Glenbard West.
The Hilltoppers were already leading 7-0 on Drew Vogg's 16-yard first-quarter touchdown pass to Grant Greeno, but found themselves backed up at their 4-yard line with 6:43 left in the half.
From there they went 96 yards in 14 plays, converting three third downs. Andrews leaped in from a yard out on third-and-goal for a 14-0 lead Glenbard West took into half. Andrews earlier had a 9-yard run on third down, and Devonte Toney a 14-yarder to keep the drive alive.
"That was a big momentum-builder for us," Andrews said.
The Hilltoppers then came out of the locker room in the Wildcat formation, Andrews taking the snaps. It paid off in three plays, Pernevion Sheppard scampering 47 yards for the score.
"We hadn't seen it (the Wildcat) on film, but we knew they had it in their package," Downers Grove North coach John Wander said. "We got down 21-0, you're not going to come back and score 28 points against that team."
Downers Grove North, seeking its first win over Glenbard West since 2006, managed just 142 yards of total offense.
Downers Grove North went three-and-out its first two possessions of the game, the tone set.
David Edwards ran for 26 yards and threw for 62. The Trojans' best scoring opportunity came on their first drive of the third quarter, but an Edwards' pass was tipped and intercepted by Glenbard West's Jason Balogh.
"Playing this team, I wouldn't have thought that we would be able to shut them out. I wouldn't have dreamt of it," Glenbard West coach Chad Hetlet said. "We think we're the fastest we've ever been defensively. We have some younger guys, we have five or six juniors out there, but we're really fast."
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