Lake Zurich stuns previously unbeaten Warren

By Bill McLean
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 9/23/2022 11:18 PM

Tyler Erkman doesn't wrestle in the winter.

The Lake Zurich senior does that in the fall -- on the football field.


The splendid wideout came down with a huge reception in the second quarter Friday night in Gurnee, wrestling a pass away from a Blue Devils defensive back to keep a drive alive in LZ's stunning 23-14 defeat of Warren on Warren's homecoming.

Two plays after that 25-yard grab in the North Suburban Conference game, Erkman caught a 54-yard TD pass from senior quarterback Ashton Gondeck, putting the Bears (4-1, 3-0) up 16-0.

"We listened to our coaches and believed in each other," said Erkman, who caught another TD -- this one for 30 yards, with 1:56 left in the fourth quarter -- and finished with 3 receptions for 109 yards.

Warren (4-1, 2-1), which routed LZ 42-0 last fall, trailed 17-0 at the half but scored 14 unanswered points and had the ball at the Bears' 37 with 3:40 left in regulation.

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Enter LZ junior linebacker Lincoln Adams, who strip-sackef Warren QB Adam Behrens; LZ senior lineman Collin Byrne recovered the fumble and the Bears took over at the Warren 35.

"Our kids continue to get better every week," said LZ coach Ron Planz, who thinks he suffered a broken ankle while celebrating Erkman's first TD.

The victors also got points from rugged running back Chris Pirrone (1-yard TD run; 27 carries, 80 yards) and senior kicker Danny Vuckovic (49-ysrd FG).

Warren got on the board via a 2-ysrd TD run from junior Donovan McNeal and a 1-yard keeper from Behrens (6-of-13 passing, 83 yards).

Gondeck passed for 115 yards on 4-of-7 tosses and rushed 8 times for 42 yards.

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