Fremd pulls out thriller against Schaumburg to earn first win
From bad breaks to just plain bad luck, everything for Fremd in its first six games on the gridiron this fall that could go wrong has.
After seeing a pair of 17-point first-quarter leads go by wayside Friday night at Schaumburg as the hosts scored 30 unanswered points to take a 37-24 advantage nearly 90 seconds into the second half, things were not looking so bright for the Vikings.
However, this time, Fremd, which came into the contest winless, would use a little of what the program's longtime "Iron Will" slogan to stage a second-half comeback, in addition to a last-minute defensive play to pull out a 38-37 win at Gary Scholz Stadium to earn its first win of the season.
"We didn't ask these guys to come in here and focus on the win. We asked (them) to stay in the game and let our football play decide," Fremd Coach Lou Sponsel said.
"We said let's have four good practices all week and they did. These kids had their best week of practice they've had (all season)."
The home team on the scoreboard (2-5, 0-3) answered the second 17-point first-quarter deficit (24/7) with a 70-yard D.J. Wilson touchdown pass to Omarion Jones, and a pair of Takumi Fred scoring runs (67 yards and 1 yard) that had the Saxons up 29-24 at the break. A second successful scoring connection between Wilson and Jones extended the lead to 37-24 with only 82 ticks gone by in the second half.
It was at this point Fremd (1-6, 1-2) made its comeback. A 7-yard Jeremy Gearhart touchdown run (his second of the night) pulled them within 37-31 with under 5 minutes left in the quarter, setting the stage for an exciting final quarter as Caiden Suchy (14-for-22, 199 yards passing) found Bo O'Brien in the right corner of the end zone to put the Vikings on top to stay with 8:18 left.
The Saxons would get their last chance when Kevin McIntyre registered a strip sack of Suchy that gave Schaumburg the ball at their own 38 where they marched to the Fremd 12, brought back five after an illegal shift. On the next play, Wilson (9-for-17, 155 yards) passed the ball in the direction of senior Fabian Baez.
It was there that freshman Brennan Saxe stepped in and snared the ball in the end zone to preserve the win.
"I dropped back (in coverage) and saw him (Baez) cut (in front) and just (leapt) and caught it," Saxe said.
Takumi Fred gained 177 yards on 33 carries for the Saxons while Gearhart's 172 yards on 22 rushes led the Vikings on the ground.