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updated: 9/20/2013 11:49 PM

Benet stops Crete-Monee streak at 17 games

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By Tim Cronin
Daily Herald Correspondent

On the strength of John Duvic's right leg and a sturdy defense, Benet ended Crete-Monee's 17-game winning streak on Friday night.

Duvic kicked five field goals, including a personal-best 50-yarder, as Benet scored a 30-6 nonconference victory over the defending Class 6A champions. The Warriors hadn't lost a regular-season game at home since 2010 and were 27-1 in their previous 28 games.

"That's exciting," coach Pat New said.

Benet (4-0) dominated Crete-Monee (3-1) from the start, even on a night when quarterback Jack Beneventi was 9 of 27, throwing for only 85 yards and 1 touchdown. When the Redwings offense stalled, Duvic was there to bail it out. The son of the Northwestern kicker from a generation ago was 5 of 6 in field-goal attempts, with the 50-yarder the capper on his night.

"I asked, 'Where are we good from?' " New said of his pregame chat with the senior.

Replied Duvic, "Thirty-five-yard line in, we're good."

"So I was pretty conservative when we got close and went to the field goals," New said. "The guy's amazing."

So was Benet's defense, clamping down on a Crete-Monee attack that, like Benet, had scored 99 points in its first three games. With a sophomore quarterback in Frank Douglas facing a seasoned defense in the Redwings, the Warriors were up against it. Their only score came on a blocked punt of Duvic by Deon Benton in the third quarter.

"It hurts bad," Crete-Monee coach John Konecki said. "We had opportunities on offense and didn't capitalize."

In contrast Benet made the most of its offense, with Brad Szajder's 91-yard kickoff return touchdown an emphatic answer to Benton's 20-yard touchdown return off his block of Duvic. What looked like a momentum swing that brought Crete within 15-6 became a mirage when Szajder raced down the left sideline to the end zone.

Szajder ran for 107 yards on 15 carries, but that was his only score.

Benet ran off to a 15-0 lead in the first half, a 13-yard touchdown pass from Beneventi to Joe Weidenbach, plus a safety, sandwiched between Duvic's first two field goals. Duvic connected from 42 and 34 yards. There was more to come.

In the second half he hit from 37, 40 and 50 yards out. He might have gotten one more chance, but Benet punted instead with the game decided in the late going.

"John is an amazing kicker," Beneventi said.

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