While the passing game did not exactly stand out in Rolling Meadows' opening win in Week 1 of the high school football season, playing on its own turf on Friday night was a different story.
When the book was closed in Week 2, the Mustangs and senior quarterback Asher O'Hara authored a 48-7 triumph -- with a key chapter on throwing the football.
O'Hara completed 11-of-12 passes for 178 yards and 2 TD passes. He also rushed for 2 touchdowns.
"Asher played better," said Mustangs coach Matt Mishler. "He just wasn't his usual self in our first game. He was really good in the running game (first game) but this week he really sharpened up in the passing game which is a big part of what we do."
O'Hara scored the game's first TD with a fancy 43-yard run which included a beautiful cutback about 10 yards into the rush.
O'Hara then threw a 34-yard TD pass to classmate Marco Taibi for a 14-0 lead before he ran for a 23-yard TD early in the second quarter which made it 21-0.
"The key was that we had to do what we were doing in practice," O'Hara said. "MVP goes to the line. Those guys are the base to the offense. and I love every one one of them."
That group includes William Rezny, Andrew Neville, Matt Pedraza, Thomas Larson, Jon Herring and tight end Charlie Cox.
"I was hoping that we'd look a lot better offensively and that we would maintain what we did defensively (from last week) and I thought we accomplished that," Mishler added. "We were much crisper on offense and the defense played great. That was encouraging."
And Mishler didn't forget about special teams, which earned the spotlight when Nick Delporte swept in to block a punt. He recovered the bouncing ball and raced 6 yards into the end zone, making it 27-0 with 7:50 left in the first half.
"Coach (Jeremy) Harkin runs block punt and coach (Brian) Hauck directs the points after touchdowns," Mishler said. "Those guys doing a real good job of coaching the kids up and putting them in a good position."
A 48-yard touchdown run by senior Kevin Lacosse and O'Hara's 4-yard TD pass to senior Blake Holfeld put the Mustangs in great position at half, leading 41-7.
The Cougars' touchdown came with 1:46 left in the second quarter when senior quarterback Brian Modelski found junior tight end Mason Sykes for a 15-yard strike.
The game's final touchdown initiated a running clock with 4:19 left in the third quarter when Delporte's 1-yard TD run capped an 80-yard march.
Lacosse carried on the first 6 plays of the drive, gaining 46 yards and 3 first downs. He finished the game with 145 yards rushing while O'Hara had 78.
"Rolling Meadows is a good football team," said Conant coach Bill Modelski. "They have experience and skill. We are still trying to find our way. We don't have a lot of experience and we're getting it as we go along."