Lakes punches its playoff ticket
High school students are ecstatic when they have a day off.
More so, football players love days off school but after the eruption in the Lakes' locker room Friday night, one can only surmise that Saturday's are just as huge for a football player to have off.
"These guys work so hard every week and we usually count on a little break around the midway point of the season," said Lakes coach Jordan Eder, whose team moved to 6-1 overall and 5-0 in the Northern Lake County Conference after Lakes rolled to a 49-0 halftime lead before lightning moved in and the skies opened up.
"We're 6-1 and made the playoffs and have a conference championship game next week (at Antioch), so we'll see you on Monday!" Eder told the delirious Eagles shortly after the game was made official.
"We came out throwing and got off to a fast start, which has been a focal point for us," Eder said.
Junior quarterback Chris Selig came out firing right off the bat.
On the opening drive, he connected with senior wideout Dylan Keilwitz on all four of the Eagles' plays, culminating with a 15-yard touchdown and 7-0 lead 1:23 into the game.
Keilwitz ended up with 5 catches for 70 yards and the TD.
Selig then recovered the ensuing onside kick and 6 plays and 49 yards later, dashed in on a keeper from 2 yards to make it 14-0 with just under 9 minutes left in the first.
The Rams had trouble again with the next kickoff, which was fumbled into the hands of senior linebacker Dylan DeAngelo. Three plays later, Selig hit senior receiver Conner Nordmeyer from 15 yards out to make it 21-0 with 7:49 left in the first.
Senior D'Lo Hardy is always going to be a factor as evident of his back-to-back TD runs of 46 and 5 yards to make it 35-0, still in the first. Hardy also added to his school record with his seventh pick of the season.
A 51-yard pass from senior QB Jeff Nielsen to senior wideout Ryan Carr then mercifully ended the first quarter with Grayslake Central a bunch behind.
The Rams (1-6, 1-4) started moving the ball in the second with senior quarterback Nick Paul completing a couple of passes and rushing for 22 yards for the half. Senior linebacker Drew Dziura recovered a fumble to thwart another Lakes drive.
Hardy finished with 127 yards on 6 carries and 2 TDs while Selig ended the night completing 8 of 10 passes for 115 yards and two scores.
Lakes held a decisive advantage in yards gained, 375-81.
Meanwhile, Antioch's game with Round Lake was suspended due to weather with Antioch leading 16-0. It will be completed on Saturday at 11 a.m.
"They're always tough and competitive games between us," said Eder, whose team fell to the Sequoits 34-31 last year in a game that featured four scores in a frenzied final quarter. "They're so balanced and well-coached. But our guys are going to be fired up for that."