Waubonsie Valley outlasts Metea Valley to end skid
To listen to Waubonsie Valley football coach Paul Murphy discuss Friday night's 49-38 defeat of Metea Valley that gave him his 100th victory at the school, you'd think he was suggesting the feat deserved an asterisk.
"I didn't win a single game, it was the players who did it," said Murphy, who now has 194 total wins. "To be able to get 100 wins in less than 15 years, that means we had a lot of great players."
One of those current great players, senior running back and three-year starter Bryce Logan, tallied 3 touchdowns to pace the Warriors' offense and afterward laid bouquets at his coach's feet.
"It feels amazing," Logan said. "Playing for him for the last three years has been great. He's a role model for me and the team, and it's great to get him to triple digits."
Maybe more importantly, the victory snapped a five-game losing streak for the Warriors (3-5, 1-4 DuPage Valley Conference) and helped re-establish their identity with one week left in the season.
"We finally got back to playing Warrior football," Murphy said. "We hadn't run the ball well since the Libertyville game (in Week 2). Since we were able to do that tonight. It opened up the passing game."
The Warriors never trailed in the game, though they traded touchdowns with the Mustangs (1-7, 0-5) through the game's first 16 minutes with the score knotted at 14. Two defensive stops from that point by Waubonsie set the stage for Ethan Nelson's 44-yard TD pass to Elijah Lee and Logan's 5-yard scoring run in the half's final three minutes as the Warriors led 28-14 at the break.
Metea had its own standout in the game. C.J. Wilcox finished the night with 221 yards rushing, 41 receiving and 4 rushing scores. The only mistake he made was a fumble at his own 3 early in the first quarter that Waubonsie's Josh Stevens scooped up and returned for a touchdown three minutes into the contest. Wilcox had scoring runs of 7 and 1 yard in the first half and 7 and 12 in the second. His effort epitomized the never-say-die attitude of the Mustangs as a whole as they fought back from a 35-14 deficit with 3 fourth-quarter touchdowns, with Elijah Wright's 5-yard run closing the scoring.
"The last five or six weeks we've been there to win the game," said Metea coach John Parpet. "It's a process, we have to get competitive first before we can talk about the next step. I'm really proud of the way our kids kept competing, kept fighting. As an educator, how can I be anything but proud about that."
With the Mustangs attempting to mount a comeback it was Logan, fittingly, who sealed the historic win for Murphy with 39- and 2-yard TD runs in the game's final 10 minutes.