St. Viator coach Chris Kirkpatrick had been searching for a complete effort all season.
On Friday night the Lions presented one to him.
The St. Viator defense pitched a shutout and junior quarterback Mickey Macius delivered some big plays in leading the Lions to 28-0 East Suburban Catholic Conference football victory over Benet at Forest View.
"We played well and we played for four quarters," said Kirkpatrick. "We've been playing better the last four games. Defensively we played awesome and Mickey (Macius) had another good game."
Macius completed 14 of 20 passes for 239 yards, including 2 big touchdowns to John Balas (4 catches, 129 yards).
"It definitely feels a lot better," said Macius, whose team started the season 0-5 but has won two of their last three games. "I think we have a lot of momentum. Defensively we've been doing a lot better and offensively our line has not let anyone through and the receivers have been catching everything."
St. Viator's defense had been on the ropes to start the season, allowing 47.5 points a game, but the unit led by senior Cosimo Cannella, junior Marty Cukierski and junior Vince Mangiamele held Benet to 111 total yards.
"We've finally been playing to our potential," added Cannella, "We're picking it up."
Senior running back Shane Rooney rushed for 81 yards and gave Viator a 7-0 first-quarter lead on a 12-yard touchdown run.
Benet (1-7, 0-7) took over at the Viator 37 early in the second quarter after a bad snap on a Lions punt, but the Redwings could not capitalize as quarterback Kevin Weller fumbled on a sack.
Five plays later Macius found Balas for a 35-yard touchdown to give the Lions a 14-0 halftime lead.
"We played aggressively on defense, and we were probably a bit over-aggressive on that pass," said Benet coach Pat New. "They went deep and we got burned."
St. Viator (2-6, 1-6) kept its momentum going in the third quarter when Macius once again found Balas, this time for a 56-yard score to put the Lions in front 21-0 with 6:19 remaining in the third quarter.
St. Viator's defense kept the pressure on the Redwings all night with 4 sacks, and defensive back Kevin Rooney sealed the victory by returning an interception 80 yards for a touchdown.
"Defense wins championships, and that's what we did," added Cannella of the Lions pressure. "We played for four quarters."
Porter Ontko led Benet offensively with 81 yards on 22 carries.