Maine South started Friday night with a bang — and it’s a shame New Trier didn’t have earplugs because the noise didn’t stop all night.
The Hawks (4-1) ran up 50 points to the host’s 3 for a convincing victory Sept. 22 in Northfield.
“Early in the game, it was two big plays (from Maine South) and we couldn’t get the ball moving after the first quarter,” New Trier coach Brian Doll said. “In the first quarter, I felt like we were playing with them, competitive with them, and then it came undone pretty quickly.”
In the first half, Maine South had five plays over 20 yards, including the 80-yard halfback pass from Michael Dellumo to Douglas Semel on the game’s first play.
New Trier answered two possessions later with 54-yard drive — that included 55 yards from Jackson McCarey (a penalty and a negative gain also were part of the drive) — that concluded with a 24-yard Niki Dugandzic field goal.
Another Hawks’ house call — this time 65 yards from quarterback Constantine Coines to receiver Evan Agosto — extended the Trevians’ deficit to 13-3. And Maine South scored three more times, including twice in under 3 minutes, before halftime to take a commanding 33-3 lead into the break.
The Hawks racked up 310 yards passing in the first half, while Coines had four TD tosses, including three to Agosto (9 catches, 174 yards).
“We had guys out of position and we were overthinking,” Trevs middle linebacker Dylan Jeppe said. “It was just little mistakes — a lot of little mistakes. They were just picking us better. We have to all of us get better.”
After New Trier’s first-quarter scoring drive, the Trevians — playing their second straight game without starting quarterback Patrick Heneghan — picked up just one first down the rest of the time the starters were in the game (until the fourth quarter).
Maine South added three more scores in the third quarter — a field goal and two touchdowns — to initiate a running clock and take home a big-time league victory.
The Trevians fall to 1-4, losing their third straight amid a tough nonconference schedule. The combined record of the teams that have beaten New Trier (Hersey, Prospect, Barrington and Maine South) is 22-2. All four of the teams are ranked in the Chicago Sun-Times Super 25.
New Trier must now win out to qualify for a playoff position and travel to Evanston for a rivalry game next Friday, Sept. 29, before taking on Glenbrook North, Glenbrook South and Deerfield to finish the regular season.
“We’re pretty focused on winning these next four games and that gives us a chance to finish 5-4. It’s essentially the playoffs now,” Doll said. “We’re in the playoffs in Week 6. I haven’t been in that situation before, but that’s the reality of this. I thought we were playing pretty well and tonight was a big step backward.”
That said, both Doll and Jeppe believe the Trevians can pull it off.
But it won’t come easy.
“We’ve played one of the hardest schedules in the state. Today was not us. This is not our team,” Jeppe said. “… I think if we are able to figure out what our biggest challenges are and fix those small mistakes that tore us apart today, those teams on the schedule (the rest of the season), we can beat all of them.”