October 8, 2010
BY BILL STONE email@example.com
Hinsdale Central senior John Skokna battled muscle cramps throughout Friday’s game at Downers Grove North, but he wasn’t coming out.
Skokna scored two touchdowns in the second half, including the game winner on the final play of the third quarter that gave the Red Devils a wild 37-33 West Suburban Conference Silver Division victory after the Trojans scored on their first four possessions to lead 26-7 in the second quarter.
The victory also allowed the Red Devils (4-3, 2-2 in Silver) to retain possession of the Old Oaken Bucket traveling trophy presented to the game’s annual winner for the fourth year in a row.
“It was one of the best games I’ve ever played on to be honest, probably the best,” Skokna said. “It was just a huge game. We needed the win. We got the bucket. It was a great game, a great victory.”
Skokna’s second touchdown, a 15-yard run, put the Red Devils ahead for good because the Trojans (1-6, 0-4) were stopped on their ensuing drive when Pat Foley recovered a fumble at the Hinsdale Central 25-yard line. Downers North had one more possession but was pinned at its 6 after a 47–yard punt by Tom Garvin and, after a three-and-out, punted with three minutes left.
“I just wanted to get back in. (Trainers) were saying, ‘No, rest,’ but I was like, ‘I’ve got to get back in. They need me,’ ” Skokna said. “It was kind of hard, but we got it done and I was fine, just some bad cramping.”
The Red Devils closed to 26-17 by halftime and then scored on their first two possessions of the third quarter — a 17-yard TD run by Skokna and 41-yard TD pass from quarterback Alex Hodakowski to Nick Sellinger — to take their first lead at 30-26.
The Trojans answered on their next play from scrimmage on a 65-yard TD run by reserve quarterback Cody Pooler, but the Red Devils then had the clinching 58-yard scoring drive. A key face-mask penalty advanced the ball to the 15 after Hodakowski was thrown for a 2-yard loss on third-and-3 from the 28.
Skokna rushed for 72 yards on nine carries and caught three passes for 34 yards while Sellinger had 82 reception and 32 rushing yards. Hodakowski was 12-for-23 passing for 184 yards and two TDs and rushed for 136 on 24 carries, including a 14-yard TD run for the Red Devils’ first score.
Downers North’s Tony Rada rushed for 113 yards and Fred Palma rushed for 46 and a 2-yard TD. Connor Cummings scored on a 1-yard run, his first rush this season. Starting quarterback Riley McGinnis threw a 47-yard TD pass for Ryan Henry to open the 26-7 lead but left the game in the third quarter after being shaken up during a scramble for a fumble.
The Red Devils scored on their last two possessions of the second half — a great 10-yard TD catch in the corner of the end zone by Garvin and a 20-yard Mike Kaesler field goal.
The Trojans have lost their last four games by a combined 19 combined points.
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