You can't call a 4-0 start torturous, but waiting for Week 5 hasn't been easy for Glenbard South's football team.
Now that the Raiders are perfect through four games -- thanks to Saturday's 29-12 nonconference victory over Rich South in Richton Park -- they can fully focus on reclaiming the Metro Suburban Conference title.
Next week's first MSC matchup is against Elmwood Park, the team that handed Glenbard South its lone league loss and went on to win last season's title.
"Elmwood Park last year, that was the saddest game of my life," said Raiders defensive lineman Erwin Lane. "I don't want to call it a revenge game, but that's how I look at it. I'm looking forward to it."
First, though, Glenbard South (4-0) needed to take care of Rich South (1-3). The Raiders looked sharp in the first half while building a 29-6 lead at the break, but minor injuries and miscues kept them from adding to their tally in the second half.
Quarterback Alex Jeske completed 15 of 20 passes for 186 yards in the first half, throwing a 19-yard touchdown pass to Jimmy Ebbole and a 25-yard scoring strike to Connor Willis. A pair of Zach Smith touchdown runs and a brilliant 44-yard field goal by Jose Hernandez just before halftime accounted for the Raiders' 29-6 advantage.
Jeske, however, was held out as a precaution in the second half because of back discomfort. Additional mild injuries on the offensive line slowed Glenbard South the remainder of the game.
"We preach getting off to a fast start every week," said Smith, who had 18 carries for 153 yards. "We come out here and we don't want anybody to hang around. We had a good first half, but we've just got to finish better. That's the main statement."
Keontae Burnett's 9-yard touchdown run briefly narrowed Rich South's deficit to 14-6 early in the first half, but the Raiders immediately responded. The Stars added a 17-yard touchdown pass from backup quarterback Jabari Cloutier Reese to close the day's scoring.
Four sacks from four players, Lane included, helped thwart any other possible scoring chances for Rich South. The Raiders didn't score in the second half, but Raiders backup quarterback Dylan Brambora received some valuable playing time while settling into the offense.
"I think our kids have done a good job focusing each week," said Glenbard South coach Jeremy Cordell. "We just have to continue to keep our focus. It's a great start being 4-0, but this game is behind us and we have to start getting ready for Elmwood Park."
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