Hampshire attempted to keep up with Crystal Lake Central, but the determined Tigers had too much to play for to be denied in a 55-6 Fox Valley Conference Fox Division victory at Owen Metcalf Field in Crystal Lake on Friday night.
Hampshire senior running back Chase Lundry scored a first-quarter touchdown to pull the Whip-Purs within 7-6, however, Crystal Lake Central scored 3 more first-half touchdowns to move to a 28-6 halftime lead.
"They were too physical," Hampshire coach Dan Cavanaugh said. "We made a lot of mistakes, but they were just much more physical than we were."
Not only did the Tigers clinch a playoff berth with the victory, the win allows Crystal Lake Central (6-3, 5-1) to split the Fox Valley Conference Fox Division title three ways with Grayslake Central (7-2, 5-1) and Woodstock North (7-2, 5-1).
After Hampshire (1-8, 1-5) pulled within a point in the first quarter, the Whips made multiple costly errors. Twice Hampshire fumbled kickoffs and they allowed CL Central to return a punt for a touchdown.
"We hung with them early but then some fumbles and some special teams mistakes really cost us," Cavanaugh said. "We moved the ball pretty well, but we just could not stop them."