Ball control, long drives and time management weren't on the schedule during the first half Friday night at Plainfield East as the hosts opened the season against Metea Valley.
But did it really matter for the Mustangs as they entered the end zone four times with mostly big plays during the first half en route to a 38-26 victory.
The win was sweet revenge for Metea as it lost 2010's season opener to the Bengals on a last-second play.
"I've been waiting for this since Day One," said Mustang senior receiver Raysean Parker, who caught 2 touchdown passes.
Stepping up due to injuries was sophomore running back Cameron Wilcox. Wilcox not only scored 2 touchdowns, he ran for 211 yards on 25 carries.
"It meant everything to me (to be the top back Friday). I stepped up and made plays and executed," he said.
The Mustangs got on the scoreboard just 1:44 into the game on a 59-yard run by Wilcox. Just over six minutes later Zach Wood nailed a 28-yard field goal to put Metea up 10-0.
In the second quarter Mustangs quarterback Jarrett House threw the first of three touchdown passes, this one a 17-yard toss to Peyton Mitchell.
Later House connected with Parker on a scoring play and Wilcox scored on a 33-yard run to put Metea up 31-13 at halftime.
The Bengals did threaten, scoring 13 points in the fourth quarter, but Metea Valley coach Ted Monken was generally pleased with what he saw on opening night.
"You never know going into the first game how it's going to go. We had a nice offense that got going early. The defense made some nice stops. We played as well as we did in practice in game-time situations," he said.
Plainfield East passed for more than 260 yards. The Mustangs kept the Bengals running game in check at 24 total yards. Preston Mitchell and Andre Lagasca intercepted passes for Metea.
The Mustangs open the home portion of their schedule next Friday against Quincy. The team wants to make this a different season. The roster now has seniors and the first-year varsity team label is now dropped. The team wants to play like it as well.
"We're a lot more hyped up. We want to show that we're here to play," Peyton Mitchell said.
"We still have work to do. We want to be better than last year," Wilcox said.