Barrington dumps Oswego East to move on
Barrington showed why the Broncos are the only Mid-Suburban West team still standing after the first round of the state playoffs.
Barrington parlayed a solid running game with key pass plays along with a defense that forced 4 turnovers and 7 sacks and a kicker, who nailed 3 field goals including a school-record 54-yard shot, into a 23-14 victory over host Oswego East Saturday night.
Barrington (7-3), which is seeded 20th in Class 8A, will host No. 4 seed Homewood-Flossmoor next weekend. The date and time will be announced by the IHSA on Monday.
"I am really proud of the kids," Barrington coach Joe Sanchez said. "We came up with big plays tonight when we needed them."
Running behind a rejuvenated offensive line, Barrington piled up 199 yards on the ground.
Barrington's offensive line of Ray Schmitz, Trevor Stratejcruk, Sam Butera, Matt Berry and Niko Kutrombus gave plenty of running room for quarterback Tommy Fitzpatrick (24 carries, 111 yards) and running back Michael Curran (20 carries, 90 yards.)
"I think the 3-game loss streak we had humbled us," said Fitzpatrick, who has led the Broncos to 4 consecutive wins. "The guys on the offensive line have a good bond. We would not be able to do anything without them."
After a scoreless first quarter where Barrington's William Hutchinson pushed a 51-yard field goal just wide, the Bronco offense got into a full run. Barrington drove 80 yards in 12 plays, with 10 of those running plays that used up 4:13. Fitzpatrick scored on a 9-yard run to make it 7-0.
After an outstanding interception by Lucas Kozlowski with just over 2 minutes left in the first half, Barrington's offense was back in business. The Broncos drove 65 yards to score with 11.4 seconds left in the first half on a 1-yard run by Curran to make it 14-0.
Hutchinson drilled the first of his 3 second half field goals, this one from 43 yards out and Barrington looked to be in command with a 17-0 lead with 4:15 left in the third quarter. It was set up by a fumble recovery by Kevin Meckert.
Oswego East (7-3), which had struggled to put together a scoring drive, struck quickly to get back into the game. Northern Illinois commit Justin Clark took a short screen pass and turned it into a 78-yard touchdown and it was 17-7 with 3:28 left in the third quarter.
After a Barrington drive stalled, Hutchinson came in for a 54-yard field goal attempt. The ball cleared the crossbar with a few yards to spare and Barrington was up 20-7 with 9:54 to play.
"It was just like kicking an extra point to me," Hutchinson said. "I got a good snap and hold and then just aimed for my target."
Oswego came right back and scored 5 plays later to cut the lead to 20-14 with 8:13 to play.
That's when the Barrington defense stepped up its game. Led by Lucas Van Ness, who had 3 sacks, Meckert, who picked up a sack, Mark Di Iorio and Dayven Shinhoster, the Broncos stopped Oswego on fourth down at midfield with just over 3 minutes to play.
Barrington moved down the field thanks to a pair of defensive offside plays and running by Fitzpatrick and Curran to set up Hutchinson's clinching 23-yard field goal.
"It was just a special night for our whole team tonight," Sanchez said. "Kudos to our coaching staff for how well prepared we were and to the kids for executing it."