Knights win clash with Spartans

By on October 21, 2010

Kaneland improves to 8-0 with 30-13 win over rival

Photo: Knight Joe Camiliere (12) tries to avoid the Sycamore defense in Kaneland’s 30-13 win over the Spartans on Friday in Maple Park. Photo by Ben Draper

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—It was the biggest regular season game in quite some time for Kaneland.

The Knights played like it.

Facing a fellow undefeated squad in the visiting Sycamore Spartans, the Knights used offensive drives to the best of their ability and came up with timely defensive plays in a 30-13 win over the Spartans.

With the win, Kaneland gets a modicum of satisfaction for last year’s first-round ousting at the hands of SHS, and has the inside track at the Northern Illinois Big XII East championship at 8-0 (4-0 NIB-12). Sycamore drops to 7-1 (3-1 NIB-12), and faces Yorkville (3-5, 1-4 NIB-12) in the regular season finale.

The latest IHSA Class 5A Playoff Points standings has Kaneland fourth and Sycamore seventh.

Joe Camiliere was the field general coach Tom Fedderly’s offense requires and went 13-for-19 for 140 yards with a touchdown throw and no interceptions.

“I thought he had good time to throw,” KHS coach Tom Fedderly said. “That’s what we were concerned about. He had enough time to get the ball out of his hands and did a good job tonight.”

Taylor Andrews was the leader in the rushing category for the Knights with 70 yards on six tries, while KHS had 190 yards on the ground total.

Sycamore’s Tommy Nice was the game’s leading rusher with 94 yards.

Quinn Buschbacher was the leading receiver for KHS with six catches totaling 34 yards.

Kaneland outgained Sycamore 330-304.

The game between two playoff-caliber squads in a playoff atmosphere had its first big play when Blake Serpa fumbled on the Knights’ first drive at their own 30.

Two plays later, running back Eric Ray scored from the 10 with 8:24 to go in the first for a 7-0 Spartan lead.

Using a balanced attack, KHS calmly drove 48 yards in 11 plays highlighted by a third-and-nine catch by Tyler Callaghan. Camiliere plunged in from the one-yard line with 2:24 to go to deadlock matters at 7-7.

The next time Kaneland got the ball they drove down for another score, as Callaghan caught a lofted ball in the corner of the end zone on the first play of the second frame for a 14-7 lead.

Sycamore looked to be on its way to knotting things up, until a backward pass that landed on the grass was scooped up by Andrews for an 84-yard touchdown to the shock of Sycamore’s faithful.

“It was a backward pass and I was about to give the ball to the ref,” Andrews said. “I looked over and heard everyone say ‘go, go go’, so I just took off running.”

“We were all just screaming ‘pick it up and run!’,” Fedderly said. “We knew it was a fumble, it went backwards, what can you say? What a play.”

Sycamore did come back on a QB Ryan Bartels TD run from 12 yards out with 1:25 to go, making it 20-13.

Kaneland wasn’t done, as they drove 40-yards to the 10, where freshman kicker Matt Rodriguez hit a 27-yard field goal to make it 23-13 at halftime.

With Blake Serpa’s four-yard touchdown run coming with 7:44 left in the third, the scoring was closed at 30-13.

Now Kaneland hosts Morris on Friday, Oct. 22, at 7:30 p.m. The Redskins are playoff-bound, having lost only two games, and are coming off a dramatic 15-8 win in Rochelle on Friday.

Play of the Knight

Having already climbed back from an early deficit and nursing a 14-7 lead in the second quarter, Kaneland was trying to hold Sycamore from coming into their end zone again on Friday. They not only did that on a wild play, they took it to the other end zone with a heads-up play from Taylor Andrews. Sycamore was at the Kaneland 12-yard line and attempted a backward pass that fell to the ground. Andrews picked it up, and after some hesitation, was joined by several Knights on the way to an 84-yard score.

Northern Illinois Big 12 East Division

Team name Conf Wins Conf Losses Wins Losses PF PA
Kaneland High School* 4 0 8 0 329 88
Sycamore High School* 3 1 7 1 272 118
Morris Com High School* 3 1 6 2 203 115
DeKalb High School 1 3 4 4 164 196
Yorkville High School 1 3 3 5 146 187
Rochelle Twp High School 0 4 3 5 200 137

Northern Illinois Big 12 West Division

Team name Conf Wins Conf Losses Wins Losses PF PA
Sterling High School* 4 0 7 1 188 94
Geneseo High School* 3 1 7 1 277 77
Ottawa Twp High School 3 1 5 3 247 115
LaSalle-Peru High School 2 2 4 4 161 250
Dixon High School 0 4 0 8 100 373
Streator Twp High School 0 4 0 8 47 363

*Clinched playoff berth

IHSA.org Playoff Outlook

About Mike Slodki

Mike Slodki is a sports reporter for the Elburn Herald. You can reach him at MSlodki@elburnherald.com.

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