Glenbard West almost seems to have to have too many go-to players on offense sometimes.
That’s a problem Hinsdale Central would like to have right now.
Saturday was Donahvon Vaughn’s turn in the spotlight for the No. 6 Hilltoppers, who warmed up for next week’s showdown with No. 19 Oak Park-River Forest by cruising past the Red Devils 37-7 in Glen Ellyn.
Vaughn, a transfer from Glenbard North, ran 17 times for 181 yards with No. 21 Hinsdale Central mostly focused on containing Scott Andrews. That strategy didn’t work so well in the red zone though, as Andrews (11 carries, 38 yards) scored on runs of five, one and seven yards.
Vaughn was content to wait his turn in a running back rotation so deep that the Hilltoppers could afford to give Devonte Toney the day off as a precautionary measure and not miss a beat.
“We always like blocking for each other,” Vaughn said. “It’s a lot different [system] than Glenbard North, which is a one-back team. But when you come together as a team and block for each other, it’s like Glenbard North — it’s one unit.”
“They tried to shut down Scotty and Donahvon did well,” Glenbard West coach Chad Hetlet said. “With that [said], our offensive line had to do pretty [well]. They were all inside-the-tackle [runs] and that means we’re getting a good push up front.”
Not that the Hilltoppers (4-1, 3-0 West Suburban Silver) didn’t open things up occasionally. After going up 7-0 on Andrews’ first touchdown at 8:34 of the first quarter, the Hilltoppers forced a three-and-out and then made it 14-0 on the next play when Drew Vogg hit Hayden Carlson in stride for a 41-yard scoring pass at 6:39.
Last year’s Class 7A champ Hilltoppers also had a vertical passing game thanks to Nathan Marcus. But Carlson said any resemblance is purely coincidental.
“He was an absolute stud,” Carlson, also a leader of Glenbard’s defense, said of Marcus.
“I just try to come in on offense and make blocks and today score a touchdown. I’m not 6-5 and going to Vanderbilt [like Marcus].”
Vogg (4-for-10, 87 yards) had completions of 18 and 23 yards on Glenbard’s next drive, which ended with Andrews’ second score, making it 20-0 a minute into the second quarter.
That kind of deficit is tough for Hinsdale Central to erase these days against anyone, let alone the Hilltoppers.
Starting quarterback Chase Hamilton has been out with a foot injury suffered against York in Week 3 and isn’t expected back till the last game of the regular season. His backup, Jacob White, got banged up last week against Proviso West and split time Saturday with Ben Stefani (17 carries, 60 yards).
All that led to a one-dimensional offense with 43 runs and just three passes (all incomplete)
“When everyone knows you’re running the ball, it’s hard to control things,” Hinsdale coach Rich Tarka said. “Hard to get anything going consistently without that passing threat.”
What hurts even more is the Red Devils have the No. 11 tight end in the Class of 2014 according to Rivals.com — Michigan commit Ian Bunting — but can’t get him any touches.
“We’re working on it,” Tarka said. “But this isn’t the week to get much going.”
The Red Devils (3-2, 2-1) did get within 20-7 on a 12-yard touchdown run by Juwan Edmond (17 carries, 49 yards) with 4:08 left in the first half. But Vaughn broke off a 65-yard run on the first offensive play of the third quarter and the Hilltoppers outscored the Devils 17-0 after the break.
Next up is Oak Park and the game that could decide the WSC Silver.
“They are very impressive,” Hetlet said. “Well-coached, playing great defense, [Jamal] Baggett’s a great running back, Simmie Cobbs is probably the best receiver in the conference and [Lloyd] Yates, the quarterback, is as good as anybody and [John] Hoerster is a great young coach. … It’s the toughest team we’ve played all year.”