Wheaton North rolls past West Aurora
By Paul Johnson For Sun-Times Media September 29, 2012 12:18AM
Updated: September 29, 2012 6:29PM
Wheaton North’s football team posted a 41-28 DuPage Valley victory over West Aurora on the Falcons’ homecoming Friday, but they were left wanting more.
The Falcons scored 41 unanswered points after West Aurora took a 7-0 lead on the game’s first possession, but settled for three field goal attempts (making two) and allowed 21 fourth-quarter points with the game already in hand.
“I don’t think we played our best game tonight,” Wheaton North quarterback John Peltz said. “We put some good drives together as an offense, but I feel like we should have finished more. We did score, but that’s too many field goals to kick. We should have punched some of those in. We’re just going to have to keep getting better.”
West Aurora (1-5, 0-4) jumped out quickly on a 24-yard touchdown pass from Quintez Jones to Cole Childs, a combination that hooked up eight times for 148 yards and three scores on the day. Isaiah Ruffin then recovered a fumble on Wheaton North’s ensuing drive.
That drive stalled, however, forcing a punt which wound up getting the Falcons (6-0, 4-0) going. Kellen Cleveland blocked the punt, setting the Falcons up on the West Aurora 1-yard line. Patrick Sharp punched it in on the next play and the Falcons never looked back.
Peltz scored on a 2-yard run and Lake Bachar kicked field goals of 37 and 43 yards to give Wheaton North a 20-7 halftime lead. Peltz connected from 11 yards out with Clayton Thorson early in the third quarter to give the Falcons some breathing room.
“I feel like the momentum did shift,” Peltz said. “We scored that first drive out of the half and that was huge.”
With the game seemingly in hand for Wheaton North, West Aurora scored three touchdowns in the final 3:39, passes of 63 and 14 yards from Jones to Childs and a 27-yard Booker Ross run.
The Blackhawks, who were knocked out of playoff contention with the loss, suffered an injury scare on the extra-point attempt after Childs’ 63-yard TD catch. Senior lineman Shaq Redman was hit in the head and was laid out on the field for several minutes before paramedics rushed him off the field.
“It was a tough night with the big guy,” West coach Nate Eimer said. “We think he’s going to be OK. He’s moving around, which is good. He squeezed my hand; he’s moving his feet, so I think he’s going to be OK.”