Offensive line helps Hersey down Wheeling
Illinois State commit Ryan Gudaitis, one of the top offensive linemen in the state, said it's really fun seeing the guys behind him having a lot of success.
Thanks to Gudaitis, Alex Jelaca, Ryan Dempsey, Justin Pflomm and Gus Arvanitis, it was nonstop fun for the Hersey offensive line in the first half of Friday night's Mid-Suburban East football game in Arlington Heights against Wheeling.
The Huskies' scored on all six of their possessions en route to a 41-0 lead at intermission.
With a running clock in the second half, the Huskies finished off a 41-20 triumph to go 2-0 while Wheeling dropped to 0-2.
"It's really fun to put up points like that, especially after not having played for so long," Gudaitis said. "Josh (Bontje) and (Ben) Clawson had great games as well as (quarterback Jimmy) Makuh."
Playing at tailback for his second varsity game, Bontje rushed for 99 yards and the first 3 touchdowns of his career (10, 14 and 10 yards).
"We didn't have a very good running attack last week and our coaches were preaching that we had to get that going this week," said Bontje, a junior who only played defense (safety) last season. "Our linemen did a great job. I was barely touched "
Clawson caught TD passes of 1 and 5 yards from Makuh (16-of-19, 200 yards), who also tossed a 21-yard TD strike to Ben Randall, who made a nifty leaping grab in the back of the end zone.
"It's been such an odd year so far so just to see them come out and execute I think was pretty impressive," said Hersey coach Joe Pardun. "Josh was incredible. He's one of the hardest working and most respected teammates here so to see him have a big night was pretty exciting. Our offensive line was phenomenal and obviously Ryan (Gudaitis) has been leading many times."
Pardun also liked what he saw defensively.
"Josh Cataldo, playing only his second game as a junior at end, has been playing real good defense for us," he said. "Our whole defensive line is fairly young. And our senior linebackers (Max McCall, Charlie Snyder and Anthony Morris) shut them out in the first half and I was really impressed by some of their stops because Wheeling has a lot of really good athletes
Wheeling's 3 touchdowns were a 6-yard run by quarterback Solomon Hudson, a 26-yard pass from Hudson to Isaiah Romano and a 5-yard toss to Joe Mitrol.
"I thought Isaiah Romano, who played both ways as a junior, really stepped up for us," said Wheeling coach Brian Hauck. "And Sol is getting comfortable at quarterback. "I thought we battled in the second half and played with pride. I also thought we battled in the very beginning. We came ready to play, We were just a little off with our sharpness. We are still making mistakes that are hurting us. But he (Pardun) has a good team over there. I'm proud of the improvement my team has made and they keep fighting. I believe in them and we will get better."