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Daily Herald's 2016 Season Coverage
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updated: 8/27/2016 12:13 AM

Waubonsie Valley strikes first, beats Lake Park

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  • Lake Park's Jacob Panasiuk (91) covers the edge against a Waubonsie Valley ball carrier during first half action.

      Lake Park's Jacob Panasiuk (91) covers the edge against a Waubonsie Valley ball carrier during first half action.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

 
By Scott Schmid
Daily Herald Correspondent

Friday was a night of firsts for Waubonsie Valley's Tanner Westwood and Nate Ashford.

One was making his initial start at quarterback after being a slot receiver a year ago, while the other debuted in the Warriors' backfield after transferring from Metea Valley.

Together, the offensive duo led the visitors to a 16-8 victory over Lake Park in the 2016 season and DuPage Valley Conference opener in Roselle.

Westwood found paydirt in the second quarter, rushing up the middle for an 18-yard score. He later tossed a 49-yard TD strike to Charles Robinson to make the score 16-0 early in the second half.

"I've been excited all week," said Westwood, who completed 13 of 20 passes for 198 yards. "I couldn't sleep at all last (Thursday) night. I went to bed at 9:30 and woke up at like 3:45. I was so excited. It is really just an incredible feeling to come out here and get a win."

Robinson was nearly unstoppable, hauling in 6 passes for 133 yards.

"He's a great man to have on the field," Westwood said. "He's a great target, he always makes great plays and he's a hard man to take down; it takes three or four guys to get him down."

Ashford was a workhorse for Waubonsie, finishing with 153 yards on 27 carries.

"It was a great game with my new team," said Ashford, who played on the Metea sophomore team in 2015. "We've got a great O-line, it was great blocking. It was a great first game as a Warrior."

The Lancers didn't go down without a fight, slicing the deficit in half midway through the third on a 40-yard pass from Jackson Behles to Kobe Whirl. That pairing then connected on a 2-point conversion.

Behles, also making his first varsity start, threw for 207 yards.

The home team drove down to the Warriors' 25-yard line in the final quarter before a fumble recovery on first down by Josh Dominiak sealed the game. Lake Park had other opportunities, which included a couple of drops in the end zone and a pair of missed field goals.

"We had 16 new starters on the field tonight," Lake Park coach Chris Roll said. "I don't think they knew who they were yet. As they figured out who they were, they made some big plays. I'm really proud of what we accomplished, but at the same time, to be that close to beating that good of team is hard."

Waubonsie heads to Glenbard North next week while Lake Park takes on Wheaton Warrenville South.

"You come right out of the shoot with a DVC game," Warriors coach Paul Murphy said. "Every team in the DVC is good. We just made enough plays to win."

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