Hinsdale Central handles Glenbard West
Hinsdale Central junior defensive lineman Micah McCurry raised both of his hands up in the air and starting waving them in an attempt to pump up the home crowd early in the third quarter Friday night.
After the defense played a near flawless first half against Glenbard West, McCurry wanted the crowd to bring some more energy.
A few seconds later, McCurry provided his own highlight with a key sack to energize the crowd.
All game long, the Red Devils' defense produced big play after big play to win the battle of the trenches.
Led by a dominating defensive effort, Hinsdale Central routed Glenbard West 28-7 in West Suburban Silver play in Hinsdale.
The Red Devils (5-0, 4-0) finished with three sacks, two interceptions and held Glenbard West (2-1, 1-1) to 52 yards rushing and 69 passing to end a three-game series losing streak.
"Since Saturday, we've been watching film and getting our reads and technique down for what their offense runs," Hinsdale Central junior linebacker JT Pyle said. "We had a lot of great plays today, lots of tackles for losses. Our defense has been on fire this year. All the guys are buzzing around and making hits and getting tackles."
The Red Devils had their share of defensive highlights, with David Bynan and Nyme Hussain both intercepting passes in the fourth quarter. Hussain capped the victory by ripping the ball away from a Glenbard West receiver for an interception in the final seconds.
The Hilltoppers' offense was stymied all game, managing just 63 yards in the first half. Glenbard West reserve quarterback Korey Tai rarely had time to throw, while the Red Devils' stacked the box and forced the Hilltoppers to abandon the running game.
But the Red Devils' defense relied on a collective effort, not allowing big plays by gang-tackling and wrapping up running backs. Drenched with Gatorade following postgame dumping, Hinsdale Central coach Brian Griffin pointed to his defense for leading the way.
"The (defense) is a great group of kids and they play really hard together," Griffin said. "I'm sure if we look at the stat sheet, there's a couple of kids who stood out a bit, but we had a lot of kids who made plays. We had several kids contribute."
The Hilltoppers, playing their first game in three weeks because of COVID-19 issues, repeatedly hurt any chance for a comeback by piling up penalties. Glenbard West finished with only three runs longer than six yards. They avoided the shutout by scoring a late fourth-quarter touchdown by Luke Ford, which was aided by a 75-yard kickoff return by Samson Zander.
"We didn't execute when we needed to execute," Glenbard West coach Chad Hetlet said. "We couldn't get our offense going. Obviously, we didn't have our starting quarterback, but Korey Tai stepped in and did well. It was tough. Our defense was on the field quite a bit tonight. (Hinsdale Central) played really hard on defense."
Hinsdale Central senior quarterback Michael Brescia stepped up with an outstanding two-way effort, passing for 233 yards and a touchdown. He spread the ball around to five different receivers, and ran for 42 yards and two touchdowns. Ryan Orput had three receptions for 84 yards, Charlie Sessa caught five passes for 64 yards and a touchdown and Nicholas Fahy hauled in five catches for 28 yards and added 53 rushing yards, including a 28-yard TD run in the fourth quarter to pad the lead to 28-0.
"I'm so proud of this team and everyone left everything on the field," Brescia said. "Glenbard West is a very good defense and team. Our team was so hungry and wanted this very bad."