Palatine's offense was at times unstoppable Friday night against visiting Glenbrook South.
When it wasn't, the Pirates' defenders had their backs.
Stymied by some early miscues, Palatine recovered to play a solid final 2½ quarters in a 34-13 nonconference win over the Titans.
"We got off to a sloppy start, a lot of mistakes," said Pirates QB Zach Oles. "Our defense was holding them down and that kept us in the game."
Oles was a force from scrimmage right out of the box, running the ball 7 times for 43 yards on the Pirates' first 8 plays.
"We took what they gave us," said the senior.
Palatine (3-0) scored 3 times in the first half, on a 1-yard plunge by Oles, a 33-yard Oles-to-Jack Grochowski TD pass, and an 18-yard delayed-draw touchdown run by Oles.
With Palatine leading 21-7 at the half, both sides of the ball kicked it up a notch for the Pirates in the third quarter.
"We kept shutting them down, it was three and out every time," said junior defensive lineman Josh Danielson. "We were playing fast, hard, physical football."
Palatine extended the lead in the second half when halfback Joshua Turner ran one in from 3 yards out, then Grochowski caught a 12-yard strike in the corner of the end zone from Oles to close out the Pirates' scoring.
A late TD by the Titans accounted for the final score.
"We were a little sloppy in the beginning," said Palatine coach Rick Splitt, "and Glenbrook South was playing hard-nosed, physical football. They came to play.
"We did some good things early and in the third quarter, even though penalties were hurting us. We did a good job on third down -- we were face with some third-and-long situations, and (junior wide receiver) Johnny O'Shea made some clutch catches. So did Jack (Orlando) and Jack Grochowski. Our skill players did a nice job."
Turner finished with 61 yards on 8 carries, while Orlando had 2 catches for 57 yards and teammates Grochowski (2 grabs, 43 yards, both TD's) and Courtland Cornelius (2 catches for 38 yards) also excelled.
Oles, who threw for 177 yards and ran for 97 more, gave a lot of credit to his offensive line of Andrew Martino, Ryan Garner, Zach Proctor, Carson Walker and Basa Balanganayi.
"Those guys played great," said Oles. "There were a few early penalties, but they're going to come out hungry next week."