Photos and Story by Grace Baldino, Executive Broadcasting Editor
For the first time this season, the Prospect Knights opened a game trailing 7-0 to the Elk Grove Grenadiers. After a hard drive by the Grens and Ian Ridge, the Knights trailed for most of the first quarter until junior Noah Marx received a 44-yard pass from junior Quarterback Alex “Gary” Moeller to bring the score to 7-6.
“That was about as bad a game as you can start,” Head Coach Dan DeBeouf said, “We talked all about energy and I thought our energy was fine, but that mistake hurt us.”
After a disappointing first, DeBeouf and the Knights had to regroup in order to comeback in the second quarter. With die-hard U fans providing the cheer, senior Luke Zardzin helped to lead the Knights back in the second quarter, scoring twice with a 13 yard run, and two point conversion, as well as a 10 yard run to gain a lead of 21-7 for the first half.
“We knew we had to overcome adversity because this [game] wasn’t ideal, so we had to really focus up,” Zardzin said.
“Luke is a tough kid and he has worked really hard to be where he is, so we’re proud of him,” DeBeouf said.
Prospect made its comeback in the second half, with senior Justin Carreon scoring a 32-yard run on a blocked punt pass for a lead of 28-7 with 9:16 left in the third. However, senior Adam Mekky, who blocked the punt for Carreon to return, was downed after locking shins with the kicker for Elk Grove.
“That was a huge emotional loss and hopefully it is nothing major,” DeBeouf said “ He is one of our leaders, but it was something we had to battle through.”
The team did just that, finishing with a strong fourth quarter. Moeller scored twice with a 1-yard run and a 9-yard run. Both extra points were kicked by Ben Sahakian.
After a dominating second half, the game finished with the Knights winning, 42-7, and qualifying for the Playoffs for the second year in a row.
“Last year, we didn’t qualify until week nine, so it’s pretty awesome to qualify after five games,” Zardzin said.
Prospect travels to Hersey (5 – 0) next week for the second Mid Suburban League game.