Hoffman Estates storms back to beat Conant, take Mayor's Cup

 
By Bill Esbrook
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 3/26/2021 11:32 PM

The Hoffman Estates football team was down a score after just two plays were in the books Friday night at Conant.

Cougars quarterback Giuseppe Dugo staked the home team to a 7-0 lead after a long touchdown run with less than a minute gone in the game, so if the Hawks were going to take home the Mayor's Cup, they'd have to rally.

 

Hoffman did just that. The Hawks scored with seconds left in the first half to take a slim lead into intermission, then exploded in the final two quarters for a 38-28 Mid-Suburban West triumph, their initial win of the season.

The Hawks (1-1) had to hold off a determined Conant team that scored 15 points in the final quarter.

"Gotta get that first one," said Hoffman coach Tim Heyse. "The first one is always tough -- they're always tough in this conference."

Wide receiver Jashawn Johnson caught 3 touchdown passes for the winners.

"Our guys have worked hard," said Heyse. "We're just ecstatic to be playing -- it's fun every day."

The teams battled back and forth in the first half, with Hoffman taking an 18-13 lead with just 11 seconds remaining in the second quarter on a pass from Jesse Williams to Johnson.

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Then the Hawks took command after halftime, scoring three times, on a Dylan Hampton 13 yard TD run, a 6-yard rush by Mekhi Williams, then a Johnson 51-yard grab.

The Cougars (0-2) countered with a 24-yard Dugo scoring run and a Dugo 53 yard toss to Ryan Kutella, but Conant couldn't get any closer than the final score.

Mekhi Williams (6-yard pass reception) and Johnson (37-yard reception) had the other scores for the Hawks, while Dominick Minninni had a rushing touchdown for Conant.

Julian White and Mike Brown made big defensive plays in the fourth quarter for Hoffman.

"Offensively we moved the ball around," said Heyse, "and got the ball to our playmakers. They took away some things on the inside and we were hitting them on the outside, on the edges a little bit, which helped. Once we got though that first drive we settled down, and I think we scored on six straight possessions."

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