If St. Laurence is going to qualify for the playoffs, it has to beat Leo on Friday.
And even that might not earn the Vikings an invititation to the postseason party.
With a Week 9 forfeit to St. Francis de Sales already logged under the win column, the Vikings need to take care of business vs. Leo to finish 5-4.
“We obviously need to win,” St. Laurence coach Harold Blackmon said. “We put ourselves in this position. We had our chances earlier in the season but we came up short.”
Blackmon was alluding to, specifically, a last-second 27-21 loss to Bishop McNamara in Week 4.
Still, with a win Friday and 31 playoff points already in the bank, St. Laurence appears in good position to qualify at 5-4.
If the prospect of qualifying for the playoffs isn’t enough motivation, the fact that Blackmon is a 1996 Leo graduate should provide additional inspiration on Friday.
“You always want to beat your alma mater,” he said. “It’s always nice to show them that you’re doing well.”
The Vikings are coming off a 31-28 win over Aurora Christian. Quarterback Alex Martinez had a strong game, passing for two touchdowns and rushing for another.
“Alex is a tough kid,” Blackmon said. “He’s going to scrap and fight to get the job done. That’s what we need to do on Friday. We’re fighting for our lives. We have to beat Leo and see where we’re at in regards to the playoffs. If we don’t beat Leo, it won’t matter.”
Bulldogs’ defense shows bite
After holding Reavis to six points on Friday, Richards coach Tony Sheehan had high praise for his defense.
“The defense played well,” said Sheehan, whose Bulldogs claimed a 32-6 win over the Rams. “They kept us in the game and bailed me out.”
Sheehan was referring to his decision in the second quarter to call for a fake punt from the Reavis 43-yard line, which was snuffed out by the Rams.
Reavis took over on its own 46 and drove to the Bulldogs’ 1-yard line.
The Rams, though, fumbled and Richards’ Maurice Williams-Coleman recovered the ball at the 8.
While the defense was shutting down the Rams, the offense found its groove, scoring 20 points in the second half.
The defense played a part in the scoring, with linebacker Ramontay Hill recovering a loose ball in the end zone to cap off the victory.
Ryan Willett registered a pair of touchdown catches and Pat Doyle, a sophomore, topped 100 yards rushing and added a touchdown for Richards.
Great start, tough finish for Reavis
As bad as the final score looks — 32-6, Reavis gave Richards a pretty good fight on Friday.
Rams coach Tim Zasada couldn’t have drawn up a better start to the game. His team found the end zone on the game’s first series — Travis Liszewski busted in from seven yards out — and then recovered an onside kick. The Rams were able to eat nearly 10 minutes off the clock before Richards’ explosive offense touched the ball.
“We kept their offense off the field, which is what we wanted to do,” Zasada said.
If the had Rams pounded the ball in the end zone from the 1-yard line instead of fumbling late in the second quarter, they probably would’ve taken a 13-12 lead into intermission.
As well as a wave of momentum.
“We played with them for two quarters and we had them rattled,” Zasada said. “We were one yard away from taking the lead and at that point, you never know what could happen.”
What did happen was Reavis was outscored 20-0 in the second half by the Bulldogs.