Ryan Dawson was splitting reps at quarterback for Lemont less than a month ago. Fast forward to Friday night and the senior quarterback could be seen firing more touchdown passes than incompletions.
Dawson finished 19-for-24 for 253 yards and six touchdowns as Lemont buried Oak Lawn 45-0 in a South Suburban crossover.
“It happened in the Oak Forest game (Week 4),” Dawson said. “Our original plan was to keep rotating, but I came out and threw three quick scores and ended up getting into a rhythm. Since then, I’ve taken over.”
Dawson’s not only taken over the role as Lemont’s starting signal caller, he’s also helped the Indians dominate games. Dawson put up those gaudy stats in just 2 1/2 quarters. Lemont (7-0) pulled the majority of its starters with a seven-score lead over the host Spartans (2-5) midway through the third.
“He’s really starting to find his niche,” Lemont coach Bret Kooi said. “He’s making good decisions. And when you get our guys the ball out there, they’re going to make something happen.”
Dawson concluded Lemont’s opening drive with a 4-yard touchdown throw to Flynn Nagel. On the Indians’ next possession, Dawson capped a 13-play, 95-yard drive with an 11-yard pass to Jimmy Kepouros.
“It helps so much (to have those weapons),” Dawson said. “I feel so comfortable when I drop back knowing that my receivers will make a play on the ball.”
Nagel continued his ridiculous season with 138 yards on eight catches. He caught four touchdown passes and ran for 31 yards on two carries — including 14 yards on a fake punt that set up Kepouros’ scoring grab.
Nagel has 18 receiving touchdowns and two scores on punt returns. He also threw a touchdown against Bremen in Week 5. In the open field against Oak Lawn, Nagel consistently turned short pitch-and-catches into first downs.
“My screen game is a special part of my game,” Nagel said. “Being able to make moves in the open field is something I’ve worked on, but it’s also something I was blessed with. I’m hoping we can keep using screens in the open field, because that’s a big part of my game.”
Joe Robinson was a bright spot for Oak Lawn. He gained 61 yards on 15 touches. Robinson, a South Suburban Conference wrestling champion, also had an interception on a long throw from Dawson.
Dawson’s sixth touchdown throw was a two-yarder to Dimitri Giatras. That score was setup by an interception via Michael Gasienica.
Lemont kicker Marcin Orszulak went 6-for-6 on extra points and added a 27-yard field goal.