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In the air and on the ground, there was no stopping Wheaton North's Clayton Thorson.
The Northwestern-bound senior quarterback put the Falcons' football team on his shoulders in Friday's 42-17 DuPage Valley Conference victory over Lake Park in Roselle.
Thorson threw for 273 yards and 4 touchdowns while rushing for 90 yards and a fifth score. Three of those touchdowns came as part of a 28-0 run by Wheaton North (4-1, 2-1) in the game's final 20 minutes.
"I think in the second half we settled down," Thorson said. "Our O-line did a great job, our running backs did a good job protecting me, and our receivers really caught the ball well."
Lake Park (1-4, 0-3) stunned the Falcons by taking a 17-14 lead with 8:41 left in the third quarter on an 8-yard scoring run by Curtwan Evans. That capped a rally from a 14-0 deficit and seemed to give the Lancers a world of momentum.
That touchdown, however, served to wake up the Falcons. They scored just more than a minute later when Thorson hit Matt Biegalski for a 10-yard touchdown pass to put Wheaton North ahead to stay at 20-17.
The Falcons' defense allowed just 1 first down as their offense scored the next 21 points to seal the win. Six sacks and a Beau Martin interception highlighted the unit's domination.
"We sort of put a little bit more responsibility and pressure on our defense to play a little better football game tonight," said Falcons coach Joe Wardynski. "We said we may need to carry the 'O' a little bit for the first time. We had a good talk at halftime and responded."
Thorson touchdown passes to J.P. Forcucci and Biegalski spotted Wheaton North to a 14-0 first-quarter lead, but Lake Park narrowed the halftime margin to 14-10 after Doug Cavazos hit a 24-yard field goal and quarterback Bobby Accetura found Tommie Jackson on a 10-yard touchdown pass.
Sandwiched around two more Thorson touchdown strikes were scoring runs by the quarterback and Falcons running back Dom Garza.
"Thorson is who he is for a reason," said Lake Park coach Chris Roll. "I told our kids that we just have to keep getting a week better, and a week better. And I think we did that tonight."
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