St. Charles North's unveiling of its new turf field Friday marked the culmination of a lot of hard work by a lot of people, and a full house turned out to see the North Stars play their first game on it.
St. Charles North sure didn't pick an easy opponent to get started against.
Bolingbrook spoiled the North Stars' home opener and debut of the new field with a 28-20 win Friday night in St. Charles, but not before the North Stars had a chance to tie in the final minute.
"It's a good community atmosphere. We were hoping to give them a win," North Stars coach Rob Pomazak said. "It's bittersweet. At the end of the day we want to go out there and perform a little better than we did today."
St. Charles North (1-1) fell behind by two touchdowns and spent the rest of the night playing catch-up. They came close, pulling within one possession when Lucas Segobiano caught a deflected pass for a 16-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter.
The North Stars got the ball back twice with a chance to tie. The first possession ended with Pomazak deciding to punt on 4th-and-3, and Michael Hohensee hit a 54-yarder to pin the Raiders deep.
Dan Daley's sack gave the North Stars the ball back at their own 38-yard line with 1:17 to go, but on second down Hohensee was intercepted by Marques Buford to seal the game -- the North Stars' only turnover.
Bolingbrook (2-0) took a 7-0 lead when Anthony Williams scored from a yard out on the Raiders' opening drive. Quarterback Anthony Vespo delivered the key play moments earlier with a 12-yard pass to convert a 4th-and-9.
Vespo went to the air to make it 14-0 late in the first quarter on a 38-yard strike to I'Shawn Stewart.
Place-kicker Brandon Eickert put the first North Star points on the board with a 30-yard field goal.
St. Charles North caught a break when the Raiders snapped the ball well over their punter's head. The ball rolled forever on the new turf, and after a wild scramble the North Stars took over at Bolingbrook's 2-yard line.
Two plays later Hohensee found Ben Furtney on a shovel pass that brought the North Stars within 14-10.
Bolingbrook dominated the line of scrimmage all night, constantly swarming Hohensee. The Raiders ran for 167 yards to the North Stars' negative-40, and Hohensee was sacked 7 times. Hohensee completed 14 of 31 passes for 210 yards, with Tyler Nubin catching 8 for 121. St. Charles North attempted just 3 rushes.
"Our line did as well we could, they held up well, and our receivers were getting open, I just have to execute," Hohensee said. "I'll take that loss on me."
Vespo tossed his second touchdown pass, this one to Williams, to push the Raiders' lead to 21-10; Eickert brought the North Stars within 21-13 at halftime with a 29-yard field goal.
"They are so aggressive rushing six every play," Pomazak said. "Tyler Nubin had a great game. We shot ourselves in the foot with unforced turnovers. We didn't execute."