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Football team faces adversity with injuries

With+all+the+tackling+and+intense+plays+that+occur+each+football+game%2C+it%27s+no+surprise+that+many+Red+Devil+players+are+out+due+to+injuries.
With all the tackling and intense plays that occur each football game, it's no surprise that many Red Devil players are out due to injuries.

With all the tackling and intense plays that occur each football game, it's no surprise that many Red Devil players are out due to injuries.

Marelena Halikias

Marelena Halikias

With all the tackling and intense plays that occur each football game, it's no surprise that many Red Devil players are out due to injuries.

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The football team lost their starting quarterback Matt Rush last week after his jaw was injured during gym. To fill his position, they will now run a mix between playing with the backup quarterback and running a wildcat formation. The team debuted this new offense in their loss to Glenbard West on Saturday, Oct. 7.

Courtesy of 1footballgeek
A bird’s-eye view of the wildcat offense that the team started using.

With Rush being out, the snaps are split between seniors Connor Bauer and Garrett Oakey, as well as junior Luke Skokna. Bauer is now the starting quarterback, with Skokna and Oakey participating in the wildcat offense. A wildcat formation is when the ball is not snapped to the quarterback, but instead it is snapped to another player in the place of the quarterback position.

“When in wildcat [formation], Oakey and I switch off at quarterback. Our job is to catch the ball and simply find a hole. It’s really effective because it gives us an extra blocker and teams do not expect it,” Skokna said.

The team’s game plan is subject to change, so they will do what they think works best for each game.

“It was harder to throw since it was raining a lot and pretty muddy during the Glenbard West game, so we used the wildcat offense which gave us more of an advantage running the ball,” Bauer said. “With dry weather, we will use our traditional offense as well as using our wildcat offense here and there to mix things up.”

Marelena Halikias
The crowd witnessed the new football lineup in action Friday, Oct. 13, due to the constant switching out of quarterbacks and linemen.

In last week’s win against Lyons Township, rain was not a factor, so Bauer was given more opportunities to throw.

“I was kept in at quarterback for the majority of the game, and after we established the run game early on I was able to pass more. We were able to connect on big throws to set up scores throughout the entire game,” Bauer said.

Along with the injury of Rush, the team is missing key players Max Kuropas, senior defensive back, and Hayden Waters, junior defensive lineman.

“We definitely have a lot of inexperienced guys getting [playtime] due to injuries, so every week our team changes quite a bit,” said Matt Bobak, junior. “I think we just have to overcome adversity and develop  leaders on the field.”

The team’s next challenge is to defeat Hinsdale South on Friday, Oct. 20 on the Hornet’s turf in a district rivalry game.

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Football team faces adversity with injuries