Oswego too much for Elgin in Maroons' return to playoffs

  • Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) throws a pass against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) throws a pass against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) is sacked for a loss by Oswego's Anthony Cikauskas (87) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) is sacked for a loss by Oswego's Anthony Cikauskas (87) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) throws a screen pass against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) throws a screen pass against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Sean King for the Daily Herald Elgin's Xavier Bonds (11) and Jaylan Chaney (13) tackle Oswego's Nikolas Hampton (8) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Sean King for the Daily Herald Elgin's Xavier Bonds (11) and Jaylan Chaney (13) tackle Oswego's Nikolas Hampton (8) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

  • Elgin's Shannon Williams (59) and Ja'Kare Watson (81) tackle Oswego's Cole Pradel (15) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Shannon Williams (59) and Ja'Kare Watson (81) tackle Oswego's Cole Pradel (15) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Alexander West (34) catches a screen pass against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Alexander West (34) catches a screen pass against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Alexander West (34) runs after the catch against Oswego's Aric Nieves (1) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Alexander West (34) runs after the catch against Oswego's Aric Nieves (1) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Kevaughn Dawkins (5) attempts to block an extra point attempt by Oswego's Aiden Avalos (29) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Kevaughn Dawkins (5) attempts to block an extra point attempt by Oswego's Aiden Avalos (29) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Giovoni Griffin (6) sits in the pocket and looks downfield against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Giovoni Griffin (6) sits in the pocket and looks downfield against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Michael Stine (50) hits Oswego's Joseph Niesman (2) after a catch during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Michael Stine (50) hits Oswego's Joseph Niesman (2) after a catch during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Xavier Bonds carries the ball against Oswego during a Class 8A playoff game Friday at Oswego.

    Elgin's Xavier Bonds carries the ball against Oswego during a Class 8A playoff game Friday at Oswego. Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Oswego's Joseph DeMarco breaks up a pass intended for Elgin's Darien Jackson.

    Oswego's Joseph DeMarco breaks up a pass intended for Elgin's Darien Jackson. Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Gino Farace (33) deflects a pass attempt by Oswego's Cole Pradel (15) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Gino Farace (33) deflects a pass attempt by Oswego's Cole Pradel (15) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Xavier Bonds (11) carries the ball against Oswego's Aric Nieves (1) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Xavier Bonds (11) carries the ball against Oswego's Aric Nieves (1) during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) carries the ball on a keeper against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) carries the ball on a keeper against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) throws a pass to Alexander West (34) against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) throws a pass to Alexander West (34) against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) throws a pass against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Jeffery Lomax (1) throws a pass against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Brian Isabell (2) is helped off the field with his team down by 34 points in the 4th quarter of play against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Brian Isabell (2) is helped off the field with his team down by 34 points in the 4th quarter of play against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Elgin's Darien Jackson (8) and Xavier Bonds (11) watch from the sideline down 34 points late in the 4th quarter of play against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019

    Elgin's Darien Jackson (8) and Xavier Bonds (11) watch from the sideline down 34 points late in the 4th quarter of play against Oswego during a 8A playoff game at Oswego High School in Oswego, IL on Friday, November 01, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

 
By Kevin McGavin
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 11/1/2019 11:27 PM

Making its first Class 8A playoff football appearance in nine years, Elgin tried a different wrinkle against Oswego in first-round action Friday night.

Unfortunately for the Maroons, Oswego quarterback Cole Pradel outplayed the three signal-callers Elgin coach Anthony Mason employed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Oswego, the fifth seed, scored on five consecutive possessions bridging the end of the first quarter through its opening possession of the second half.

The Panthers' Anthony Cikauskas fell on a fumble in the Maroons' end zone for a sixth unanswered score as Oswego cruised to a 42-8 victory over Elgin at home.

Pradel threw for three scores and ran for another -- all in the first half -- to lead the Panthers (9-1).

Xavier Bonds, the Maroons' electric threat receiving, rushing and on special teams, had a late score on a 7-yard rush to avert the shutout for Elgin.

"It didn't go as planned, but I'm proud of my team," the uncommitted Bonds said. "We came out and did the best we could. Everybody fought. Nothing slipped away. We got unfocused, we got undisciplined. (The Panthers) took advantage of it and played a great game."

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The No. 28 Maroons (5-5) had their five-game winning streak snapped.

The teams' defenses exchanged fourth-down stops to begin the game.

But the Panthers forced a punt on the Maroons' second possession.

Oswego would need only two plays to score its first touchdown and twice as many on its next possession to double ithe advantage.

Pradel found his third different receiver for a scoring reception on the Panthers' next drive; the senior then called his own number from 13 yards away to give Oswego a commanding 28-0 lead at halftime.

"We started getting it going," said Pradel, who was 8-for-9 in the first half for 135 yards. "From there, we just clicked. The passing game worked tonight."

"(Pradel) was smart," Mason said. "He didn't make the same mistakes he made last week against Minooka (the Panthers' only loss)."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Mason, meanwhile, tried a myriad of different looks behind revolving quarterbacks Jeffrey Lomax, Giovoni Griffin and Alex West.

"The rationale was, we never had a guy who really took off (in the regular season) and led this team," Mason said. "All three guys stayed pretty even the whole season."

The Panthers' physical and massive defensive line did not help matters as the Maroons' quarterbacks were sacked four times in the first half.

As a result, Elgin entered halftime with only 10 positive yards on the ground.

Elgin also lost a pair of fumbles in the opening two quarters as the field conditions only worsened after halftime.

"That's football," Bonds said.

"It's a great platform for us to get better," Mason said of the Maroons' first playoff berth since 2010.

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