Maine South knocks out Waubonsie Valley
Maine South came to Waubonsie Valley on Saturday for a Class 8A second-round football playoff game and had all the answers, winning 41-14.
And while the 22nd-seeded Warriors (7-4) took their time leaving the Dick Kerner Stadium field for the final time this season, the big picture should be the one piece of gear left out among the others that will soon be put away.
Waubonsie was determined to forget a disappointing 2017 season that saw the Warriors fail to make the playoffs.
"It started in the off-season. They were committed to be one of the hardest-working teams we've had here," said coach Paul Murphy, who spoke of excellent attendance in off-season weightlifting sessions. "And it proved somewhat to be a challenging (game) schedule. It didn't bother them."
The Warriors beat Oak Park-River Forest and Edwardsville, which reached the second round of the playoffs. They put a scare into second-round squad Prairie Ridge before losing that contest.
Last week Waubonsie beat 11th-seeded Bolingbrook in first-round playoff action.
"The defense was amazing, the offense was great. It was something special," said Warriors senior linebacker Carson O'Donnell.
The Hawks (10-1), who will face Loyola in quarterfinal play, got the ball first and that drive was indicative of how most of the game went. The Hawks moved 80 yards in 13 plays and reached the scoreboard first on Danny Wolf's 7-yard run.
Maine South scored on every possession after that, building a 41-0 advantage.
"They put pressure on us and we were doing what we didn't want to do," said Waubonsie senior quarterback Jack Drow.
There were some bright spots late for the Warriors.
After the Hawks went up 41-0, Waubonsie's Julian Cain returned a kickoff to the Maine South 29. Five plays later, Drow connected with Brandon Guido on an 8-yard touchdown pass. Senior Cross Holmes kicked the first of two extra points.
After Maine south went three-and-out on the subsequent drive, Guido returned the punt to the Hawks' 25. Drow completed three passes to Ryan LaMoine, the third a 21-yard TD catch.
"We rose to the occasion (on those drives), we had the answers on those. We just didn't do it enough," Murphy said.