Benet stuns Crete-Monee, ends winning streak

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Benet junior quarterback Jack Beneventi earns most of the headlines

and deservedly so. The 6-foot-6 strong-armed signal caller is being

recruited by dozens of Division I college programs and has a visit to

Notre Dame set up for Saturday.

On Friday night, however, it was kicker John Duvic who stole the spotlight.

Duvic converted field goals of 34, 37, 38, 42 and 50 yards to lead

visiting Benet to a dominant 30-6 win over defending Class 6A state

champion Crete-Monee.

The loss snapped the Warriors (3-1) 17-game winning streak.

“He’s always been able to kick the ball,” said Beneventi, who, like

Duvic, resides in Glen Elyn. “I’m glad to see him play the way he did

tonight.”

While Duvic’s kicking was a key to the win, the turning point occurred

in the third quarter when Brad Sznajder returned a kick 91 yards for a

score and a 21-6 lead.

Just 12 seconds earlier, Crete-Monee’s Deon Benton blocked a punt

and returned it 17 yards for a touchdown. The score not only cut the

Warriors deficit to 15-6 at 8:29 of the third quarter, it invigorated

a Crete-Monee homecoming crowd that had little to get excited about up

to that point.

But Sznajder ‘s return swung the momentum back

to the Redwings (4-0).

“That was a big play,” Benet coach Pat New said. “They got some life

after that blocked punt and touchdown. Brad returning the kick like

that gave us the momentum back.”

Duvic would provide Benet with some additional breathing room by

converting kicks of 37 and 40 yards later in the third quarter that

made it 27-6. Then with 9:53 remaining in the game, he booted a

50-yarder that had both sides of the bleachers buzzing with

excitement.

“I try to stay consistent,” Duvic said. “I try to use the same motion

every time. It was an exciting night.”

Not for Crete-Monee, which was held to 78 yards rushing and 72 yards

passing. Other than a pair of lengthy runs by Trevon Smith, covering

38 and 44 yards, there was little for Warrior fans to cheer about.

Benet’s defense, led by Jack Mitchell, Jack Kelly, Nick Surges, Ryan

Parks and Jason Blohm, had a great deal to do with that. Dave

Donnantuono added an interception for the Redwings.

“I thought our defense played extremely well,” New said. “We had a

conservative approach on offense, especially once we got inside their

35. John is a special kicker. The guy’s amazing.”

Beneventi finished 9-for-26 for 124 yards. His 13-yard touchdown pass

to Joe Weidenbach extended the Redwings’ lead to 10-0 at 8:32 of the second quarter.

“Winning this game is really special,” Beneventi said. “Crete’s

defense is the best I’ve seen in my life. To have this type of game

early in the season is critical for us.”

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