ELMWOOD PARK — It might be almost two years, but Glenbard South hasn’t forgotten a mid-season loss to Elmwood Park that cost the Raiders the Metro Suburban Conference title.
With the conference expanded to two divisions, this year’s matchup won’t matter in the standings, but the Raiders still came out firing en route to a 47-7 victory Friday night in Elmwood Park.
“Every time we play Elmwood Park, coach [Jeremy Cordell] talks about that game and how Elmwood Park beat us,” said Glenbard South junior wide receiver Billy Bair. “We don’t want to let that happen ever again so we worked extra hard during the week to prepare for this game.”
Friday night’s win was big in a major way for Glenbard South (1-2). After losses to Addison Trail and Antioch to start the season, the Raiders desperately wanted a dominating victory to jump-start their season.
“We needed this one and Coach Cordell told us how we have to set the tone and come out with a big win,” said Bair, who pulled in a pair of touchdown passes from Kyle Carli. “Everyone just stepped up and did their job. We spread the ball around on offense and everyone on defense was making plays.”
The Raiders scored three defensive touchdowns in addition to two rushing and two passing TDs on offense. They also recovered a onside kick and had a kick return for a touchdown called back on a penalty.
“We focus on every part of the game and they’re all important as the others,” said linebacker Dylan Valdez, who put the Raiders up 20-0 with a 35-yard interception return. “Turnovers were a big part of it. All our drills in practice are based on getting turnovers.”
Glenbard South’s Jake Kapp scooped up a fumble and returned it 13 yards, while Andrew Wrona returned an interception 65 yards to cap the Raiders’ scoring.
“We battled and never gave up and had a lot of energy,” Elmwood Park coach John Freeman said. “I think our defense is playing great but our offense struggled. We had two young quarterbacks, playing varsity for the first year. [Glenbard South is] a very good defense and the class of our conference.”
- Elmwood Park’s lone score came in the fourth quarter when Javier Carillo carried several defenders into the end zone on a four-yard touchdown run.
- For Elmwood Park, Friday night’s lopsided loss certainly didn’t resemble the Tigers’ 20-19 victory over Glenbard South in 2012. “That was a special group, a class that came in and really had a goal and stuck together,” Freeman said. “We had a lot of four-year football players on that team and we’re struggling with that right now.”