Homewood-Flossmoor ends Barrington's season
Homewood-Flossmoor's stifling defense put an end to Barrington's football season Saturday.
The Vikings (10-1) limited Barrington to just 2 first downs until late in the game and cruised to a 30-7 win over the Broncos in the second round of the Class 8A playoffs at Barrington Community Stadium.
"We knew they were a very good defensive team," Barrington coach Joe Sanchez said. "And we thought we had some things ready to go. But we just couldn't find any rhythm against them."
Barrington struggled offensively due to poor field position and a Viking defense led by defensive end Isaiah Coe, who gave the Broncos fits all day long.
Barrington (7-4) shot itself in the foot on its very first possession. Operating from their own 15, the Broncos snapped the ball over quarterback Tommy Fitzpatrick's head and the ball ended up out of the end zone for a safety.
Barrington seemed to recover from that miscue when William Hutchinson buried H-F with a superb kickoff at the Viking 13. However, four plays later, the Vikings hooked up for a 78-yard touchdown pass to make it 9-0.
The Barrington defense, led by Mark Di Iorio, Dayven Shinhoster, Lukas Van Ness, Sam Sheedy, who had an interception in the end zone and Luke Goodwin were able to slow down the Vikings enough to keep Barrington in the game.
"I thought our defense played very well," Sanchez said. "H-F just didn't make many mistakes."
The Vikings added a touchdown just before the end of the half to make it 16-0. In the third quarter they returned an interception 25 yards for a touchdown. They then had another interception deep in Barrington territory in the fourth quarter that led to another touchdown and a 30-0 lead.
Barrington was able to mount a scoring drive just before the end of the game to avert a shutout. Michael Curran capped a 9-play, 73-yard drive with a 4-yard touchdown run.
"It is always a tough way to end a season," Sanchez said, "because it ends too abruptly. But I am proud of our team and how they worked so hard."
The Broncos got off to a fantastic start to the season, winning their first three games, including a victory over perennial state power Maine South. Things then turned as the Broncos lost their next three games. They then battled back to win their final three games and made it four in a row when they beat Oswego East last week in the opening round of the playoffs.
"Take a look at the way we were able to advance this far and it is pretty remarkable," Sanchez said. "All the sacrifice and hard work paid off. We were able to put up four wins in a row and put ourselves in a position to play a very good Homewood-Flossmoor team."
Curran, who finished with 705 rushing yards this season, said he will never forget his time playing for Barrington.
"The bonds I have with these guys I will never forget," Curran said. "Coming out her on our home field and now walking off the field with them for this last time makes me so proud."
Di Iorio said that he will always remember the special times he had with his teammates.
"It was a bittersweet way to end things," Di Iorio said. "This was just not about football. These are all my brothers for life."