Minooka ends down year on high note
By Dennis Nelson For Sun-Times Media October 20, 2012 1:32AM
Mitchell McCoy, Minooka.
Player of the Game
Minooka linebacker Mitchell McCoy recovered a fumble and returned an interception 52 yards for a touchdown.
Updated: November 22, 2012 6:36AM
Opposition aside, the most difficult game on the schedule is the last when you have been eliminated from playoff consideration.
Enter Minooka and Romeoville, who squared off in the final game of the season for both teams Friday in Romeoville.
While the game did not have playoff implications, it was important for both teams to end disappointing seasons on a positive note.
Minooka did just that by posting a 40-15 Southwest Prairie Conference victory. The Indians finished the season 4-5 overall and 4-3 in the conference.
“We ended the season on a high note and that’s all we could do,” Minooka coach Paul Forsythe said. “We lost a tough one last week against Plainfield North (28-20). That was a tough one to take. But we ended the season on a positive and that’s what we wanted to do.”
Losses to Plainfield South (14-10) and Plainfield North dashed the Indians’ playoff chances.
“We came off a big loss last week and didn’t handle that as well as we would have liked to,” Minooka’s Luke Stovall said. “We fought back this week, came together as a family this week and it worked out for us.”
Stovall put an exclamation point on the game by returning a kickoff 87 yards for a touchdown with 2.4 seconds to play.
“I give a lot of that to the kick return team because we’ve been working on that for a while,” Stovall said.
It took a while for Minooka to get going Friday. A 43-yard field goal by Jacob Stytz and a 17-yard run by Mitch Brozovich gave the visitors a 10-0 lead after a quarter. Stytz split the uprights from 30 yards away and Brozovich caught an 18-yard touchdown from Joe Carnagio to bump the lead to 20-0 at the half.
A 1-yard run by Carnagio with 10:18 left in the third quarter gave the Indians a 27-0 lead. Player of the game Mitchell McCoy returned an interception 52 yards to pay dirt to push the lead to 34-0 at the end of the third.
McCoy also recovered a fumble in the first half that led to a field goal.
Anthony Love caught a 12-yard touchdown pass from Mark Hammond and Miguel Ford ran five yards for a touchdown for Romeoville, which finished 0-9 for the first time since 2004.
Ford led all rushers with 146 yards on 27 carries. Hammond carried eight times for 47 yards.
Minooka ran for 229 yards as a team. Brozovich had 96 yards on eight carries and Nathan Gunn rushed 13 times for 69 yards.
Despite winning four of its last six games, Minooka did not advance to the state playoffs for the first time since 2008.
“I knew what I didn’t know,” Forsythe said of his first season as head coach of the Indians. “It’s like being a dad. There is no manual. Hopefully, this is a springboard for the kids and the coaching staff for next year.”