Only a blown fuse on the scoreboard could stop Glenbard North from scoring points.
Senior running back Justin Jackson scored 3 touchdowns and rolled up 172 ground yards in a 40-0 shutout of DuPage Valley Conference rival Glenbard East in Lombard Friday night.
"We ran the ball effectively," Panthers coach Ryan Wilkens said. "We put some pressure on them. Special teams did a nice job, and out of everything tonight, we were most happy with that."
Rams coach John Walters agreed.
"Jackson is dynamite," he said. "There's nobody stopping him. He gets a crease and he can bust through it. He's the real deal. He's gotten all of these accolades for a reason. For the most part we did a decent job against them all night. But he just makes people miss. He's exactly what he's made out to be."
The Panthers (4-1, 3-0) started out hot when quarterback Brett Gasiorowski hit receiver Kendall Holbert with a 40-yard strike. Jackson finished off the drive with a 1-yard touchdown run. Jackson notched the second score on a 13-yard scamper, giving the Panthers a 12-0 lead. After forcing the Rams to another three and out, senior Sam Kriese dashed 51 yards on a punt return for another Panthers touchdown.
Gasiorowski found Holbert again on the next drive for a 14-yard touchdown pass, increasing the lead to 26-0. Jackson tallied his third score of the game, cashing in on a 10-yard touchdown and giving the Panthers a 33-0 halftime lead.
The Rams' Dominic Wilberton had 110 yards in the first half on 15 carries, but the Rams (2-3, 1-2) struggled to score against the stingy Panthers defense. Wilberton uncorked a 78-yard run that put the Rams in scoring position, but they were unable to capitalize.
"We were own worst enemy tonight," Walters said. "We rushed the ball well tonight and our running back had a real nice night. We were in the end zone two or three times in the first half, and we just couldn't score. We let ourselves down in the end zone."
The second half's lone score was from the Panthers' freshman back Vittorio Tricase. Tricase punctuated a 108-yard night on the ground with a speedy 54-yard score that made him look like a track star.
"He runs extremely hard for a freshman," Wilkens said. "He has pretty darn good speed. He's a very good player for us."