|Forester Fan's Celebrate The Final Buzzer|
The Lake Forest College Football team defeated visiting Ripon College on Saturday 17-7. This was the first time that the Foresters had defeated Ripon since 2004. With the victory, the Foresters have guaranteed themselves at least a share of the 2012 Midwest Conference Championship.
"That was a great win. We had to make plays in all three phases in order to win that game. There are some plays that will stand out to us when we watch film, but it was a total team effort. There were two plays that I felt were the ultimate momentum changes for us. The blocked field goal by Nick Waters and the fourth down stop on the first possession of the second half really made the game change. It forced Ripon to make very specific decisions in the fourth quarter because of what happened on those plays," said a beaming Head Football Coach Jim Catanzaro.
The first six minutes did not look positive for the Foresters. Despite marching 41 yards, the Foresters would turn the ball over on an interception at the five yard line. On the very next play, Ripon would run a counter play, and it would go 95-yards for a touchdown.
"When that first play busted, I was nervous that things were happening faster on the field than we had been able to practice all week. That is usually the case. Ripon's offense is so unique, that it is very difficult for our scout team to simulate it. In reality, the only reason that play goes for a touchdown is that two of our players were actually playing TOO FAST and had overscraped the counter action. For that to be the only points of the game is nothing short of amazing to me," commented Catanzaro.
The Foresters would immediately respond with an eight play drive that covered 61 yards and took 5:40 off the play clock. The drive culminated with a one yard run by Running Back Alec HoweThe defense would force an interception on Ripon's next possession as Senior Safety Dom Campagna deflected a pass that ended up in the hands of Cornerback Eddie Dobernig at the Foresters 3-yard line.
Al Mitchell would plunge in from 3 yards out. On the drive, the Foresters used six passing plays and eight rushing plays.
"That drive was a testament to our ability to implement both run and pass plays with equal effectiveness.The play calling and the execution of the players was outstanding. Coach Kerr called a great drive, and our players believed in each play that was signaled in," said Catanzaro.
The Forester defense would become more stingy as they would only allow 247 yards and 0 points the rest of the game. The seven points that the Foresters gave up were their lowest since week three when they gave up seven to Grinnell College.
The Foresters would tack on their first offensive possession of the second half, and the Redhawks would be unable to close the gap. The Forester offense recorded both a 100+ yard receiver and rusher, as Mitchell rushed for 111 yards on 16 carries, and Senior Austin Sobey caught seven balls for 105 yards.
"I am thrilled that we have clinched a share of the MWC title. Leading the league has been something on our radar since I took over as head coach. Now our goal is to go 1-0 next week when we play St. Norbert and keep the championship all to ourselves," said Coach Catanzaro.
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK:
OPOTW: SR. Wide Receiver, Austin Sobey (Mt. Prospect HS), Mount Prospect, IL. 7 rec. 105 yards. 5 of his 7 catches went for first downs.
DPOTW: SR. Defensive End, Jake Rotkvich (St. Laurence HS), Chicago, IL. 8 Tackles, 1 Sack.
LINEMAN OF THE WEEK: JR. Center, Tommy Mitchell (Marist High School), Chicago, IL. Graded out at 92%.
SPECIAL TEAMS POTW: FR. Kicker, Jon Gurchak (Grayslake Central), Grayslake, IL 2-2 Extra Points, 1-1 on FGs (33 yards), averaged 56 yards per kickoff, including one touch back.
SCOUT POTW: FR. Linebacker, Mike Letizia