Larkin knocks off West Chicago

By Paul Steeno
Daily Herald Correspondent

In a 38-26 loss Friday night, West Chicago hung around in a homecoming game against Larkin, at least for one half.

With 8:10 left in the second quarter, Wildcats junior quarterback Luke Krogh found sophomore wide receiver Santiago Barbosa for a 4-yard touchdown giving the Wildcats a 14-13 lead that lasted just less than four minutes before Larkin put a touchdown on the scoreboard and gained a lead it wouldn't relinquish.

"They aren't going to quit," Larkin coach Jason Aubry said about West Chicago after the game. "It was a great game and I enjoyed it greatly."

Throughout the first half, the Wildcats offense hummed. Three wide receivers finished with 50 or more yards in the half, Krogh went 14-for-18 passing with 182 yards and two touchdowns. Sophomore running back Jordan Garcia added 34 more yards on the ground.

The problem for the Wildcats was stopping the spread offense attack of the Royals.

"At the end of the half, we just ran the ball like crazy," Aubry said. "We almost ran the same play because the defense was tired, so we were just going right at them. We didn't even throw that much at the end of the first half because we didn't have to. They were just tired. We just wore them down, kept pounding the ball."

The Royals scored on their first two possessions of the second half to extend their lead to 24 points.

But the Wildcats used two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to cut their deficit to 12 points with just under three minutes to play. Senior wideout Mike Wagner's eighth catch of the contest went for 64 yards and put the Wildcats at the 5-yard line setting up that second touchdown. The Wildcats cashed the next play in for a touchdown with a Krogh to Barbosa 5-yard connection.

"Defensively, there is some stuff that we need to work on," Aubry said. "I know Glenbard South (the Royals' opponent next week) throws the ball pretty well. They have a good quarterback, some good receivers. We're going to have to tighten up our defensive backfield. It's not that they played bad, it's just something we need to improve on."

With 1:46 left in the game, the Wildcats got the ball back down 12. But Larkin senior Jahari Stubbs intercepted, killing the rally, and sending the Wildcats home with their fourth defeat in four tries this season.

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