Zardzin's 4 TDs help Prospect cruise past Rolling Meadows
After missing the final three quarters of last week's game when his Prospect football team defeated Hersey for the first time since 2012, Luke Zardzin was back on the field Friday and helped his team end another lengthy losing streak.
For the first time since 2015, Prospect pulled out a win over Rolling Meadows to stay perfect in the Mid-Suburban East at 4-0 heading into next week's first-place showdown at Buffalo Grove (4-0).
Zardzin scored 4 of his team's 6 touchdowns as the Knights built a 41-0 cushion at intermission en route to a 48-14 triumph over the host Mustangs (1-3) at Robert A. Hoese Stadium.
"I got a concussion in our game last Thursday so that was really scary," said Zardzin, a Northern Illinois recruit who gained 152 yards in 11 carries with TD runs of 52, 1 and 1 yards (he also caught an 12-yard TD pass). "I was just really happy I could be out here and feel like I'm helping my team win.
"It feels great to beat them (RM). The last time we were on this field, it was a playoff loss to them (2019). I have a lot of respect for their program. They have pretty much been controlling the East for the last decade."
The Knights have been controlling their opponents this season, and did nothing to harm their average of 45 points per game.
Prospect also reached the end zone in the first half on Gary Moeller's 35-yard TD pass to Frank Covey and a 1-yard run by Moeller.
"We had some adversity again this week with some kids who weren't able to play and I'm super proud of this team and how its faced every bump in the road," said Prospect coach Dan DeBoeuf. "They're just having a blast together and that's our biggest thing. We want to make sure the kids are having a blast with the season."
The defense produced some big blasts in the Meadows' backfield. With under three minutes in the first half, Jacob Grzesiak, Charlie Carroll and Decker Anderson had consecutive sacks on three straight downs. Other key plays by the defense were a big sack by Kris Bohnen, a fumble recovery by Gino Paredes and a 51-yard interception return by Peyton Burgh.
"Our defensive coordinator Brock Collins has been doing a phenomenal job rallying this group and they've played real well the last few weeks," DeBoeuf said. "It was pretty cool to see Peyton Burgh's interception and our seniors like Jake Winski and Wes Neumann were doing a real nice job in the defensive secondary,"
Sophomore Brad Viernessal tossed a 19-yard pass to Matt Raitano for Prospect's final TD in the fourth quarter.
Meadows' two scores came on Michael Radon's 11-yard strike to Daniel Sobkowicz and Wade Sluga's 70-yard pass to Ethan Kakavetsis.
"I thought Dan made a phenomenal catch there at the end," said Meadows coach Sam Baker. "And I'm so happy for Wade Sluga. Being backup quarterback, especially as a senior, is one of the worst positions to be in on the team. But every week, every game, every practice, he is the guy most into it. He is going to be a future coach one day and he even called a couple of his own plays. So to see him get that touchdown, I'm very happy for that young man."