Cary-Grove's 22-21 overtime victory at previously unbeaten Prairie Ridge Friday wasn't an upset in the minds of the Trojans.
Prairie Ridge entered the game ranked No. 2 in Class 6A and Cary-Grove was ranked 10th, but the Trojans' two losses were both close calls. Cary-Grove (7-2) lost to Crystal Lake South (8-1) on a 51-yard field goal in the final seconds, and an inspired team from Jacobs (7-2) beat the Trojans by 8 points.
"We talked before the game about how we were not underdogs," Cary-Grove first-year coach Brad Seaburg said. "We really emphasized that even though we had two losses and the scores versus common opponents didn't favor us, we didn't feel by any means that we were underdogs in the game.
"And our kids really played that way, especially our defense. Our defense was very aggressive and really got after it."
The Trojans practiced a new offensive play during the week in which defensive back Zach Marszal plays receiver. The new play worked to perfection in the clutch. Trailing by 7 points on fourth-and-11 in overtime, Marszal crossed the field and made a sliding catch in the end zone.
Was the play designed for a desperate situation?
"We felt we were going to run the play at some point in the game," Seaburg said. "I did not think it would be fourth-and-11 in overtime."