Trojans take the time to knock off Warriors
CHAMPAIGN — Cary-Grove’s offense may or may not have crushed Crete-Monee’s spirit in the third quarter of the Class 6A state title game Saturday at Memorial Stadium. It definitely devoured so much clock that the Warriors were left with little time to respond.
The unbeaten Trojans led by nine at the half and consumed most of the third quarter with an 11-minute, 20-play, 90-yard scoring drive.
Cary-Grove beat Crete-Monee 35-13 and had a 35:21-12:39 advantage in time of possession.
“With an offense as explosive as CreteMonee’s, to limit them to that number of touches and to get them off the field [is key],” Trojans coach Brad Seaburg said. “What we did today defensively, other teams in the tournament haven’t been able to do. Our guys just battled and did an outstanding job.”
Cary-Grove senior quarterback Ben McDonald was the maestro. He called the plays and made the crucial decisions in the Trojans’ triple-option attack.
“When you go through a week of preparation like we did, it’s just a matter of execution at that point,” McDonald said.
McDonald had 29 carries for 117 yards and two touchdowns. He completed 3 of 4 passes for 23 yards and two touchdowns. Both touchdown passes were on fourth down.
“I don’t know if it has really hit me yet,” Seaburg said. “This group just was able to make plays at really key times. Two fourthdown touchdowns. It’s great having guys like this that buy in and work as hard as they possibly can for the coaching staff.”
Running back Blake Skol had 26 carries for 123 yards and one touchdown, and Danny Daigle had 10 carries for 21 yards.
“It takes the whole week to prepare for a team like Crete-Monee,” Seaburg said. “Against them, we were never comfortable. We’ve seen them come back time and again in the playoffs. It’s never over until the end.”
Crete-Monee quarterback Trayvon Rudolph was 14-for-23 for 174 yards and one touchdown. He had 11 carries for 28 yards. Ronald Carroll Jr. had three carries for 71 yards and a touchdown.
“I’m proud of their efforts,” Crete-Monee coach John Konecki said. “It’s just a pleasure to be able to coach young men like these. It has been a magical year for us.”
Cary-Grove won the Class 6A title in 2009. Fox Valley Conference teams have won the last three 6A titles; all had undefeated records.
Cary-Grove quarterback Ben McDonald stiff-arms Crete-Monee’s Kavon Jones.