Aurora Central turns back Chicago Christian
By Eddie Burns For Sun-Times Media September 17, 2011 12:12AM
Updated: November 30, 2011 12:34AM
When it mattered most Aurora Central Catholic made the plays it had to against Chicago Christian.
The Chargers scored a 38-12 win in a Suburban Christian Conference Gold Division contest on Friday night in Aurora, but it was far from convincing in the manner in which ACC went about its business.
“At the end of the day, we are 3-1,” Chargers coach Brian Casey said. “At times, it was ugly, but the kids did execute. We’ll take it and go from here.”
It took the Chargers (3-1, 1-1) four plays on the opening possession of the second half to score and take a 20-0 lead as ACC seemed to be well on its way to an easy win, but that wasn’t the case.
The winless Knights (0-4, 0-2) cut their deficit to 20-6 when quarterback Calvin Visser found receiver Corey Bulthuis for a 72-yard touchdown pass. Then on ACC’s first play of its next possession, Bulthuis forced a fumble and the Knights recovered and scampered down to the ACC 2.
One play later, Visser scored and it was 20-12 midway through the third quarter.
The Chargers were forced to respond, and they did on the ensuing drive when quarterback Kyle Clechenko found Steve Belovich for an 18-yard score on a fourth-and-11 play. Clechenko ran in the two-point conversion to make it 28-12 with 3:32 left in the third quarter.
“We knew we were a better team than what we had showed and we had to step things up,” said Clechenko, who completed 5 of 8 passes for 62 yards with the one touchdown. “We needed to play like we know how to play and we started to do that in the third quarter.”
The Chargers defense didn’t allow the Knights another first down the rest of the way.
Chicago Christian coach Jim Bolhuis said the fourth-down play was the turning point.
“I was really proud of how the kids battled back (from down 20-0),” Bolhuis said. “We put ourselves in position to make something happen. That fourth-and-11 play we needed to make a play and we couldn’t get the job done. Who knows what happens if we come up with that stop?”
The Chargers did most of their damage on the ground behind the solid running of backs Luke Dickerson and Marcus Jefferson. Dickerson led the way with 10 carries for 151 yards, including a 40-yard touchdown run. Jefferson added eight rushes for 82, featuring a 56-yard scoring run. Clechenko also carried 18 times for 81 yards.
“We came out and played pretty well,” Dickerson said. “We could have played better. We did create a little adversity there where we were beating ourselves, but we fought back and ended up playing a pretty decent game.”
ACC also shined on special teams as the Chargers blocked a punt for their first score. Tyler Nelson blocked Jay Carr’s punt attempt and Patrick Canning picked up the ball and scampered 5 yards for a touchdown.
Outside of the 72-yard scoring play and the defense forcing three turnovers, the Knights struggled to get much of anything going as they finished with 145 yards of offense, with half coming on one play.