Second-year Seneca coach Ted O’Boyle made an interesting move after last season, and it is paying dividends.
Bo Taylor, the Irish’s leading rusher when they finished 5-4 a year ago, their first season above .500 since 2001, was switched to quarterback, leaving the tailback position to Tom Lovett. Seneca is 3-0 overall and 1-0 in the Interstate Eight Small, and Taylor already has rushed for nearly 600 yards, Lovett for nearly 400.
Not that the Irish can’t throw the ball.
“So far, it’s been a lot of running,” O’Boyle said. “But we have a decent passing game package put in. To this point, we haven’t had to use it as much as we thought we would have needed to.”
The Irish already have beaten Sandwich, Peotone and Lisle. Their immediate focus is on Friday’s opponent, Westmont, but next week is the big one. That’s when Seneca will visit six-time defending I-8 Small champion Wilmington.
Joliet Catholic wingback Mike Ivlow has been stealing the headlines, and rightfully so. The area rushing leader has close to 700 yards in three games.
Perhaps overlooked is wingback Nick Borgra, who’s served notice he will make opponents pay if they concentrate too much on stopping Ivlow. Borgra rushed for 253 yards and four touchdowns in Friday’s 35-20 win over St. Viator. He’s averaging about 125 yards per game.
Plainfield South linebacker Clifton Garrett, who had a highlight-reel second half Friday as the Cougars rallied from a 34-7 deficit to beat Plainfield North 41-34 in overtime, has been selected to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in January at San Antonio, Texas. He will be presented his game jersey in a ceremony Tuesday at South.
Player of the Week
Lincoln-Way East quarterback Jordan Wirtz is the Herald-News Football Player of the Week.
Wirtz hit on 19-of-26 passes for 215 yards and rushed for 69 yards and two touchdowns as the Griffins whipped previously unbeaten Stagg 41-0.