The Hersey Huskies did it all — on both sides of the ball — in their season opener, scoring 7 offensive touchdowns while intercepting 3 second-half passes on their way to a 47-7 victory at Glenbrook North on Friday night.
While the start of the game was delayed by over an hour due to severe thunderstorms in the area, the Huskies came rolling out of the gates on the offensive side of the ball, with quarterback Jack Warner scoring on a 4-yard run to cap a 6-play, 67-yard drive.
Hersey (1-0) scored on three of its first four possessions, with running back Mario Thomas (22 carries, 136 yards) scoring an 8-yard touchdown late in the first quarter to cap off a 4-play, 58-yard drive. Eddie Miklasz caught a 9-yard touchdown pass from Warner to put the Huskies ahead 21-0 with 8:59 to play in the first half.
The Huskies' defense forced the Spartans to turn the ball over on downs on consecutive possessions in the second quarter. The defense limited the Spartans to 65 total yards in the first half and just 174 total yards in the game.
"We're really proud of our defense and the way they played," Hersey coach Dragan Teonic said. "It was a good, solid effort to start the season, and we're just going to try to keep getting better."
The Spartans opened with the ball facing a 21-0 deficit in the second half, but Hersey's Joe Caputo intercepted quarterback Danny Ahern's second pass of the half to stop the drive. The Huskies immediately capitalized, as Warner (11-of-14 passing, 156 yards, 3 passing TDs, rushing TD) connected with Miklasz for his second touchdown of the night, a 16-yard touchdown to give the Huskies a 28-0 lead with 6:55 left in the third quarter.
"We came out with a pretty good game plan and the O-line played amazing tonight," Warner said.
Thomas also gave credit to his offensive line and said without them he wouldn't have been able to have the type of game he did.
Hersey's Kyle Polinski (13 carries, 131 yards), who eclipsed the 100-yard mark on the ground along with Thomas, intercepted Ahern's very next pass to give the Huskies the ball back. Two plays later, Warner found Tyndale Dahnweih for a 26-yard touchdown in the right corner of the end zone to extend the lead to 35-0.
Glenbrook North's Jack Clark (11 carries, 84 yards) scored the team's lone touchdown with a 13-yard run in the third quarter.
Thomas scored his second touchdown of the night to give push the Hersey lead to 41-7, and Sam Harvey picked off Ahern on the next possession for the Huskies' third interceptions in as many pass attempts.
Polinski, who reeled off 4 runs of 20 or more yards, scored from 1 yard out in the fourth quarter to extend the advantage.
The Huskies racked up 21 first downs to just 8 for the Spartans.
"There's much more to come. This isn't the same Hersey team from last year," Thomas said.