Lincoln-Way East’s Matt Judd, left, and Jackson Ritter celebrate. Allen Cunningham/For the Sun-Times.

No. 1 Lincoln-Way East dominates No. 4 Homewood-Flossmoor in statement win

The most anticipated matchup of the year, No. 1 Lincoln-Way East against No. 4 Homewood-Flossmoor, was pretty much over by halftime.

The Griffins dominated every aspect of the game and knocked off the visiting Vikings 48-6.

“I’m at a little bit of a loss,” Lincoln-Way East coach Rob Zvonar said. “It’s not only one of the best wins of the year but I think in the history of the program this one has to go right up there. To be able to finish with a score like that against such an elite squad is very satisfying.”

Griffins quarterback Jack Baltz and receiver Jackson Ritter connected for three touchdown passes. Each time Baltz found Ritter over the middle. The first was for 41 yards, then a 30-yard touchdown and a ten-yarder.

“[Ritter] knows how to get open,” Baltz said. “He’s one of my favorite receivers to throw to. We were scheming it up all week and we had a big feeling about that [play] and it worked.”

Baltz was 7-for-12 passing for 169 yards with one interception. He also threw a 36-yard touchdown pass to Matt Judd and had a one-yard touchdown run.

“An amazing win for us,” Baltz said. “We really just buckled down and started working. The defense did amazing against one of the better offenses in the state.”

Lincoln-Way East’s defensive line was dominant. H-F’s Leon Tanna, one of the best running backs in the area, had 22 carries for 77 yards but nine of his rushes were for one yard or less.

“I can’t explain that because he is a great back,” Zvonar said. “You circle a few guys on the other side and he was near the top. They want to run the ball first. It’s a credit to the kids who made up their minds to compete. Seems like every time I turned around someone stepped up and made a play in each phase of the game.”

Lincoln-Way East defensive end Adrian Wilson had two big sacks.

“The defensive tackles opened it up for me, Dylan Shelton and Jerry Dawson,” Wilson said. “It’s all about the team. Our depth is deep. We can put in second string, third string, it doesn’t matter. We can still put on a beating.”

Three running backs did damage for the Griffins. Star junior AJ Henning had eight carries for 33 yards. He also had two catches for 34 yards. Devon Williams had five carries for 73 yards and Joran Corbett had 10 carries for 50 yards and one touchdown.

H-F (5-1, 3-1 Southwest Suburban) opened the scoring with a 35-yard touchdown pass from Dominick Jones to Maurion Scott. The Griffins scored the next 48 points and the fourth quarter had a running clock.

“They have a real big defense but our offense came out and handled them with authority and then attrition set in,” Wilson said.

Jones was 8-for-19 passing for 96 yards with one touchdown and one interception.

Lincoln-Way East (6-0, 4-0) might be the area’s best team since the 2015 Loyola squad that won Class 8A. The Griffins have road games against Lockport and Thornwood the next two weeks and host Bolingbrook in Week 9.

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