A glance at Week 1 games, compiled by Sports Editor MATT DANIELS:
Metamora 43, Champaign Central 16
METAMORA — The visiting Maroons got off to a slow start and carried a 29-3 deficit into halftime. Quarterback Jabali Maatuka rushed for both of Central’s touchdowns in the nonconference setback.
Peoria 96, Centennial 14
CHAMPAIGN — The host Chargers never really had a chance against the Lions, with Peoria jumping out to a 24-0 lead in the game’s first four minutes before enjoying a 70-7 halftime lead in Big 12 action at Tommy Stewart Field.
Wheaton Academy 42, Urbana 6
WEST CHICAGO — The visiting Tigers fell behind 28-0 at halftime and couldn’t cut into the deficit in the second half of a nonconference defeat, with Urbana’s lone touchdown happening in the fourth quarter.
Bloomington 36, Danville 0
BLOOMINGTON — The visiting Vikings only trailed 8-0 at the end of the first quarter, but couldn’t muster any offense the rest of the night as the host Purple Raiders accounted for at least one touchdown in each quarter to pull away for the Big 12 victory. Devin Miles rushed for 214 yards to lead Danville.
Marion 34, Mahomet-Seymour 13
MAHOMET — Marion has made the playoffs 14 years in a row, and it showed why at Frank Dutton Field. In a span of 53 seconds with less than a minute left in the first half, Marion scored two touchdowns to take a 20-0 halftime lead and cruised to a nonconference win over host Mahomet-Seymour.
New M-S coach Jon Adkins’ debut was soured in large part due to the efforts of Marion senior quarterback Lucas Will and sophomore wide receiver/defensive back Venson Newsom.
Will threw for three touchdowns and also added one rushing score. Newsom hauled in one game-changing interception late in the first half and scored his first of two touchdown catches with four seconds left in the first half.
Bulldogs junior running back Clay Hubble rushed 24 times for 126 yards. His 8-yard touchdown run cut the Marion lead to 26-13, but M-S couldn’t convert a fourth-and-short opportunity early in the fourth quarter, and Marion put the finishing touches on the win with a 26-yard touchdown pass to junior Johnathan Tucker on fourth down with 7:03 left in the fourth quarter.
In his first start, M-S junior Braden Finch completed 4 of 13 passes for 42 yards with zero touchdowns and two interceptions. Finch broke a 32-yard run late in the first quarter and scored the first touchdown of the game for the Bulldogs with a 5-yard run on the Bulldogs’ first offensive possession of the second half.
Monticello 42, Olympia 32
STANFORD — What can Brown do for the Sages?
A whole lot.
Running back Chris Brown and wide receiver Spencer Brown combined for five touchdowns as Monticello started its post-state championship era with a road Illini Prairie Conference win.
Chris Brown opened scoring with a 59-yard touchdown reception — his only catch of the game — from quarterback Nic Tackels, then added a 16-yard TD run in the second quarter and an 84-yard kickoff return for a score in the third.
“I’m always looking for the overplay (by the defense),” Chris Brown said. “The cutback.”
Chris Brown finished with 63 yards on the ground.
Spencer Brown caught three passes for 107 yards, two of them for touchdowns.
Tackels went 6 of 9 for 192 yards and four total touchdowns, including one rushing, in his first start following two-year starter Braden Snyder.
“I feel really good about (Nic) being back there,” Chris Brown said. “Me and him are deadly in the backfield.”
Olympia stayed within two scores of Monticello most of the game, scoring four touchdowns and converting each two-point conversion.
“When they run the triple option like that, you have to know your assignment,” Spencer Brown said. “The hard part is finding the ball. They’re so quick with it, you can end up in one gap and they’re already 20 yards downfield.”
Chillicothe IVC 21, Unity 20
TOLONO — Jared Routh scored on a 53-yard touchdown pass from Nate Reinhart with less than two minutes left in the fourth quarter to trim Unity’s deficit to 21-20.
But the Rockets couldn’t convert the subsequent two-point conversion as Unity lost its first game on turf at Hicks Field in Illini Prairie action.
Reinhart led the Rockets with 91 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 17 carries while he completed 6 of 11 passes for 85 yards. Routh was his favorite target, compiling 64 receiving yards on three catches.
Prairie Central 42, Rantoul 20
FAIRBURY — The host Hawks pulled away from the Eagles to earn an Illini Prairie victory.
Fisher 57, Hoopeston/A-P 0
FISHER — The host Bunnies were dominant from start to finish in an easy nonconference win against the Cornjerkers.
It took Fisher just two plays to open up the scoring on a Will Delaney 49-yard touchdown run. Tyler Wilson led the way for the Bunnies with 240 rushing yards and five touchdowns on 21 carries, including a 30-yard score in the third quarter. Seven of the eight touchdowns by Fisher came on the ground, with Delaney accounting for the other two and finishing with 102 rushing yards on six carries. Delaney added 90 passing yards, with Cale Horsch hauling in three passes for 36 yards.
Fisher coach Jake Palmer was pleased with his team’s play in its season-opening win.
“To get out here and have another team line up across from us was great,” Palmer said. “I thought we really came out and executed well early, and I’m really proud of our young guys there late keeping the shutout.”
Tuscola 55, Villa Grove/Heritage 14
TUSCOLA — Logan Tabeling threw for 139 yards and added an additional 73 rushing yards to help carry the host Warriors in a nonconference rout.
Lucas Kresin started the scoring off for Tuscola with an 83-yard interception return for a touchdown to give the Warriors an early 7-0 lead, and Jalen Quinn got in on the big plays with a 68-yard punt return for a score. Brandon Douglas (73 receiving yards) and Quinn (40 receiving yards) each had four catches.
Kehm Shirley rushed for a game-high 99 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries to pace the Blue Devils, while Blake Smith added 60 rushing yards on nine carries.
Arcola 43, Argenta-Oreana 6
ARGENTA —In a highly-anticipated matchup between two teams with playoff aspirations, the visiting Purple Riders cruised to the season-opening victory.
Austin Hopkins rushed for 144 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries to spark Arcola, which led 31-6 at halftime. Beau Jones completed 11 of 17 passes for 71 yards and three touchdowns to complement Hopkins’ production on the ground. Ivan Franco was the main beneficiary of Jones’ accuracy with six receptions for 55 yards and two touchdowns for the Purple Riders.
Braxton Ulrey finished with four catches for 58 yards and the lone touchdown for A-O as quarterback Josh Williams struggled, completing 7 of 20 passes for 105 yards and three touchdowns.
Watseka 28, Oakwood 21
WATSEKA — A back-and-forth nonconference game saw the host Warriors prevail in the fourth quarter. Drew Wittenborn went 21 of 29 for 219 passing yards and two touchdowns, connecting often with Conner Curry (seven catches for 91 yards), Ethan LaBelle (six catches for 62 yards) and Justin Bunting (six catches for 40 yards). Wittenborn scored the game-winning touchdown on a 2-yard run with less than two minutes left. Jameson Cluver added 67 rushing yards on 19 carries for Watseka.
The passing and running of Wittenborn overshadowed a breakout game by Oakwood’s Colby Smiley, who rushed for 235 yards and two touchdowns on 30 carries. Rhett Harrison chipped in 93 passing yards for the Comets as Jack Carey contributed with a 68-yard touchdown reception.
Cerro Gordo/Bement 15, Sangamon Valley 12
NIANTIC — The visiting Broncos rallied in the fourth quarter to earn a win in their season opener. Trailing 12-7, Cody Layfield scored the game-winning touchdown on a 7-yard run. It was Layfield’s second TD of the game, with a 10-yard run in the second quarter giving CG/B an early 7-6 lead.
BHRA 71, Iroquois West 3
GILMAN — A balanced offense sparked the visiting Blue Devils to a comfortable nonconference win. Caleb Lahey rushed for 186 yards and two scores on nine carries, while Avery McConkey went 6 of 8 for 197 passing yards and five touchdowns. Eric Watson caught four passes for 139 yards and three TDs for BHRA.
Clifton Central 41, Georgetown-RF 18
GEORGETOWN — The host Buffaloes trailed 35-6 at halftime and couldn’t catch up in the second half of a nonconference loss. Gavan Shelton led G-RF with 138 rushing yards.
Central A&M 41, Westville 6
WESTVILLE — The host Tigers gave up 27 points in the second quarter, falling behind 41-0 at halftime in an eventual nonconference loss. Zion Zimmerman compiled 50 rushing yards on 12 carries and Raef Burke scored Westville’s lone touchdown on a 10-yard run in the fourth quarter.
Polo 54, Schlarman 14
POLO — The Hilltoppers, in their first 8-man football game in school history, fell behind 32-0 in the second quarter. Darion Donalson caught the first touchdown for Schlarman.