South Elgin off to good start in suspended game at Glenbard South

 
By Matt Le Cren
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 10/5/2018 10:38 PM
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South Elgin senior Azxavier Salinas played mostly wide receiver and defensive back last season, so some people had doubts about whether he could play quarterback.

New South Elgin coach Dragan Teonic wasn't one of them.

"He didn't play too much quarterback the last two years because they had the great kid, Nate Gomez, who got a scholarship to Northern Michigan," Teonic said. "So Azxavier was forced to play some other positions and when I got here some of the previous coaches said I don't think he could play quarterback.

"We just believed in him and he's done a great job."

Indeed, Salinas had been splitting time with Jakob Johnson, who went down with a concussion. Johnson is expected back next week, but in the meantime the Storm is rolling with Salinas, a slippery runner when the weather is dry and nearly impossible to bring down when it is raining, which it was for part of Friday's game at Glenbard South.

Salinas carried 14 times for 111 yards and 2 touchdowns and passed for 88 yards and another score as the Storm bolted out to a 33-7 lead before the game was suspended because of a thunderstorm.

Salinas had just scored on a weaving 11-yard run when play was halted with 7:34 remaining in the third quarter.

"From the start (the position switch) was pretty rough but Coach has been helping and teaching me how he wants this new offense run because we never ran this offense before," Salinas said. "It worked out great. I couldn't be more happy."

Glenbard South's Trevor Burnett returned the opening kickoff 55 yards, setting up a 30-yard drive that quarterback Nick Plaso capped with a 1-yard touchdown run to give the Raiders a 7-0 lead.

After that, it was all South Elgin. The Storm, which will improve to 6-1 if it holds this lead, tied the game on an 11-yard touchdown run by Patrick Norwood, then scored 20 points in the second quarter.

Salinas rambled 63 yards up the right side, breaking several tackles along the way, to give the Storm a 14-7 lead. After Keshawn Smith blocked a punt, Salinas scored from 8 yards out and later tossed a 3-yard TD pass to Calin Gurau with 37 seconds left in the first half for a 27-7 lead.

"It wasn't just me; it was my line," Salinas said. "The blocking downfield just made plays happen.

"My offensive line and wide receivers did it all for me, so I just got to thank them."

Vince Clinite had an interception for the Storm, which has held the Raiders, who are on the brink of falling to 4-3, to just 62 yards of offense.

The game is scheduled to resume at 10 a.m. Saturday.

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