Prairie Ridge rallies, beats Cary-Grove
Prairie Ridge's offense was well aware at halftime, trailing rival Cary-Grove by two points, what needed to be done to start the third quarter.
"We had to be sure we got the ball (to start the third) and go down and score to put pressure on them," Vasey said. "To give us the lead, obviously, and get us a little more momentum for defense and overall in the game."
The Wolves grinded out a 12-play drive that took up half the quarter and culminted with fullback Nathan Greetham's 5-yard touchdown run.
That drive sparked the defense as Prairie Ridge shut down C-G in the second half for a 27-16 victory Friday night in their Fox Valley Conference game.
"It set the tone for the rest of the second half," Wolves coach Chris Schremp said. "Being able to grind out yardarge was huge for us. We felt pretty confident we were going to be able to successfully run the ball in the second half. It was a matter of doing it and holding onto the football."
Prairie Ridge (4-1, 4-1 FVC) came up with a defensive stop on the Trojans' next drive, then put together another scoring drive with Vasey scoring from a yard out with 7:50 to go in the fourth quarter.
Linebacker Landon Severson said the defense felt the boost from the offense's first drive of the second half.
"That was massive. It picked us up huge. That was a game-changer," Severson said. "In the first half we came out strong, but definitely had room to improve.
"In the second half, we came out with a different mentality. We locked in. we got our heads in. We came down to this field and balled out."
C-G scored on the game's first possession after running back Andrew Prio's 60-yard run. The Trojans missed three extra-point kicks in their 18-0 win over McHenry last week, so they went for two-point conversions and made both. Quarterback Peyton Seaburg hit running back Alex Schuppe for a 17-yard touchdown.
Prairie Ridge answered with a drive and Greetham's first of three touchdowns. Wolves defensive back Logan Harlow made a diving interception to stop a Trojans' drive and Prairie Ridge drove to take the lead.
"We played well. We didn't get that many plays, but we executed when we needed to," Trojans coach Brad Seaburg said. "Throwing the interception on second possession kind of put us behind possessions. But overall we executed pretty well in the first half."
C-G (3-2, 3-2) drove 75 yards with Peyton Seaburg running it in from 8 yards with 1:43 remaining in the second quarter. Mykal Kanellakis ran in the two-point conversion for a 16-14 halftime lead.
Vasey finished with 33 carries for 234 yards, while Greetham had 17 attempts for 94 yards.
"We knew we were getting the ball (in the third quarter)," Vasey said. "We had two solid drives, we were grinding, how offense should be played. Cary-Grove did the same thing. They had a pretty good offensive game as well."
Schremp was pleased with the defense's performance, especially with Dom Creatore (wrist) and John Fallow, two key players, missing with injuries.
"The scheme we were running we don't run much against any other team (option)," Schremp said. "We got used to that. We had a lot of new faces on defense. We had several injuries."
There were only five possessions in the second half. Prairie Ridge scored on its first two, then ran out the clock with its last.
"We didn't get the ball enough. We had two possessions in the second half," Brad Seaburg said. "We had some guys making some great plays and we just had some breakdowns.
"We never stopped them (in the second half). They're tough. Their quarterback's good. Their offensive line comes off the ball. their fullback ran well and they played a good game."