Daily Herald's 2017 Season Coverage
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updated: 10/1/2016 11:31 PM

Bushka's big plays lift Glenbard East

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Glenbard East's football team found a way to win Saturday night.

Sophomore quarterback Bret Bushka scored on a 27-yard touchdown run with 3:37 remaining in regulation to help lift the Rams (1-5, 1-2) to a 14-7 Upstate Eight Conference Valley Division victory over East Aurora (1-5, 0-3) at Aurora Christian.

Bushka, who accounted for 267 of the Rams' 350 total yards, engineered the game-winning, 4-play, 73-yard scoring drive that followed junior defensive back Jared Rech's interception.

"It felt pretty good," said Bushka, who earned his first victory as a varsity starting quarterback. "We came up big."

Bushka began the drive by rolling out and scrambling before connecting junior receiver Keonta Nixon for a 31-yard completion.

"Keonta made a big play," said Bushka, who completed 10 of 17 passes for 172 yards. "He scrambled off his route and I was lucky enough to find him."

After a 15-yard gain by tailback Scotty Szabo (20 carries, 83 yards), Bushka took off through the middle of the field for the go-ahead touchdown.

"Bret's a special athlete," said Rams coach John Walters. "We're capable of executing and we did tonight in spurts. He just gave a snapshot of what he can do with the game on the line."

East Aurora, meanwhile, suffered its second consecutive down-to-the-wire defeat after last weekend's 20-19 loss to West Chicago.

"It came down to a couple plays," said Tomcats coach Kurt Becker. "It's usually what the game comes down to -- two or three plays -- and for the last couple weeks, those two or three plays are what have gotten us each time.

"Unfortunately, we're usually on the wrong side of those plays."

East Aurora grabbed an early 7-0 lead on junior quarterback Ziare Willams' 57-yard touchdown run midway through the first quarter.

However, the Rams answered on their ensuing possession as Bushka hit Matt Shockey for a 36-yard TD toss on a fourth-and-8 play to tie the game at 7-7 with 4:36 left in the opening period.

Another Glenbard first-half drive ended on downs with an incompletion at the Tomcats' 6-yard line. The Rams also lost 3 fumbles.

"We were hindered by turnovers," said Walters. "I don't think we fumbled and got it back all night. They (the Tomcats) played a great game but in the end we were finally able to hold on to the football and push it downfield."

Williams gained 78 yards on 17 carries for the Tomcats.

"That was probably our best defensive effort of the year," said Becker.

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