Larkin's goal-line stands stop Streamwood
The stat book clearly indicated Streamwood was the winner at Memorial field on Friday night, but the Larkin bend but don't break defense said otherwise.
Despite being outgained 281 to 149 yards in total offense, the Royals came away with their first win of the season 13-12 in large part because of two huge goal-line stands at the 1-yard line.
The first came with just over 3 minutes left in the first half. The Sabres had driven 57 yards before a swarm of Royal defenders stopped them on a 4th-and-1 at the 1-yard line. At the time it kept Larkin in control with a 13-0 lead.
The Royals' second stand came with just over 7 minutes left in the game and this time the stakes were much higher. On another 4th-and-1 at the 1-yard line the Royals' Travis Farley stripped the ball and Angel Garcia recovered it. This time it stopped Streamwood from taking the lead and preserved a 13-12 Royals lead.
The Royals defense would come up big again on the Sabres' final drive stopping them at the 44-yard line on downs to seal the win.
"You have to hand it to Streamwood. They did a great job of pounding the ball on us. But when the rubber hit the road we hit the road running and stepped up big when we had to. It was just a great team effort," said Larkin assistant coach Jason Aubry. "We really needed a win to get excited about."
The Royals jumped out to a 13-0 lead early. After a muffed punt by the Sabres deep in their own territory the Royals took advantage 3 plays later on a 10-yard touchdown run by Jaxon Aubry with 9:16 left in the first quarter.
Larkin tacked on to its lead early in the second quarter with 6-play, 69-yard drive that culminated with a 21-yard touchdown run by Gonzalez.
"We got after it and attacked right from the start," Jaxon Aubry said. "It was a big improvement over last week. The defense came up really big for us. It felt real good to get that first win."
The Streamwood defense had some great moments of its own. Twice the Sabres sacked Aubry in the end zone for safeties. The Sabres also had a pair of fumble recoveries and interceptions by Anthony Garrison and Leonardo Marin. The second interception gave the Sabres the ball at the Larkin 16-yard line and led to Streamwood's only touchdown of the game, a 1-yard quarterback sneak by Omar Negron. early in the 4th quarter.
Negron finished with a game-high 128 yards rushing on 18 carries. It was his second straight 100-yard rushing game.
"We did a lot of good things tonight," Streamwood coach Don Guindon said. "I'm sure we had more yards and won the time of possession and all those things, but we didn't win where it counts on the scoreboard. But we will take the positives from this game and continue to build on them."