Fenwick offense struggles during loss to St. Francis before heading to playoffs

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BERWYN — Fenwick coach Gene Nudo is his own toughest critic, which why he’s willing to admit that his offense has taken a step back in the last two weeks of the regular season.

“I think we have,” Nudo said Saturday after a 21-14 Catholic League Green loss to St. Francis at Morton. “We are not a confident team on the offensive side of the ball. I thought we made a couple of plays though.”

Leading rusher Pat Donahue scored two touchdowns to end the regular season, but did not match St. Francis quarterback Clint Bobowski, who rushed for all three of the Spartans’ touchdowns. The win was the fifth in a row for St. Francis (7-2, 3-1), which claimed a share of the conference title with Montini (6-3, 3-1).

Bobowski scored the deciding touchdown on a 1-yard run with 3:14 remaining. Fenwick (5-4, 2-2) had one more possession, but quarterback Jack Beneventi threw his third interception of the game after driving to the Spartans’ 38-yard line.

The Iowa-bound Beneventi struggled for the second consecutive week, completing 6 of 20 passes for 51 yards. He missed his first six attempts in the second half and had more interceptions (two) than completions until he found senior Joe Buzinski along the sidelines for an eight-yard gain on Fenwick’s final drive.

In the second half, the Friars had five first downs, but two were due to St. Francis penalties.

“We’re not really in a hole,” Buzinski said. “When things go bad, things go bad. You can’t do anything about it.”

Fenwick will quickly begin preparing for its third straight postseason under Nudo.

“Let [our playoff opponent] think we’re the underdog,” Buzinski said. “We’ll be the lower seeded team, but we’ve got firepower to do it.”

For Beneventi, the upcoming week is a time to look at video and learn from previous mistakes. Nudo said Beneventi’s interceptions resulted from forcing passes into receivers.

“Anytime [losing] is frustrating,” Beneventi said. “It’s frustrating for the whole team. It’s hard to explain why [we’re losing]. We have some stuff to look at as a team. We’ll get it fixed quickly and get it consistently.”

  • Donahue was Fenwick’s leading receiver with three catches for 17 yards. He rushed 24 times for 96 yards.
  • Buzinski and senior Franklin Taylor are Fenwick’s leading wide receivers, but combined for only one catch while getting targeted nine times. The duo had three drops, including one in the end zone.
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