Bolingbrook rolls past Hinsdale Central
Bolingbrook ran its way through the first round of the Class 8A playoffs at Hinsdale Central, piling up 384 yards and 6 touchdowns on the ground during a 42-13 victory over the Red Devils on Saturday night.
The Raiders offense featured a trio of talented ball carriers who gave the Red Devils defense fits all evening long. The Bolingbrook rushing attack averaged over 7 yards a carry and set the tone throughout.
The three-headed backfield of Justin Lynch, Jaquan Howard and Antonio King each found the end zone for Bolingbrook and kept the Hinsdale Central defense off balance. They slashed and darted all over the field in two- and three-back formations that heavily focused on misdirection and counter schemes, leaving the 12th-seeded Red Devils (8-2) guessing.
The dominating nature of their triumph sends a message that after consecutive losses to finish the regular season, the No. 21 Raiders (7-3) are back to their winning ways.
"We've had some injuries the last few weeks," said Bolingbrook coach John Ivlow. "We've got everybody back healthy and they're all capable."
"That's the thing," Ivlow added. "That's why we like to use a lot of three-back sets. The fact that we do have that luxury, that's why we run the ball. We have a nice offensive line, led by the senior John Williams … . (Running the ball), that's what you should do."
King agreed, mentioning that the line up front led the way for their offense and brought a burst to the entire team.
"Offensive line and energy," King said. "The defense gave us a lot of energy, so we came out and offensive line did what we had to do, so I'm pretty proud of (them) today."
"Coach kept saying, 'Play physical, we're gonna win this game,'" King added. "Defense played a big part in playing physical and stopped (the Red Devils)."
As for Hinsdale Central, things just never seemed to click for their offense. They struggled early on, providing the Raiders with favorable field position on multiple occasions.
The Red Devils opened the ballgame with a three-and-out possession that led to a short punt. That gave the Raiders the football at the Hinsdale Central 32-yard line. The Red Devils' second possession ended with a fumble at their own 11-yard line.
"I think it was a full on, full team lack of execution," said Red Devils coach Brian Griffin. "I mean, we struggled to execute on a consistent basis. When you do that against a great football team, you get your butt kicked."
Despite falling behind quickly the Red Devils continued to battle, culminating in one final scoring drive that found the end zone for Hinsdale Central with 18 seconds remaining.
"This is a group of fighters," said Griffin, reflecting on his team's season. "Even today, we got ourselves into a bit of a jam and they still fought. And they fought and finished. And I'm really, really proud of them."
Bolingbrook will host No. 5 Oswego in the second round at 6 p.m. next Saturday.