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Football: Richards overpowers Lemont 28-14

Richards wide receiver Tacari Carpenter takes off after first-half receptiduring game Lemont Friday Sept. 13 2013. Carpenter would score long

Richards wide receiver Tacari Carpenter takes off after a first-half reception during a game at Lemont, Friday, Sept. 13, 2013. Carpenter would score on the long pass play. | J.Geil/For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: October 16, 2013 6:30AM



Richards hadn’t defeated Lemont in six years leading up to Friday’s South Suburban crossover.

The Bulldogs coaching staff made sure the players were well aware of it all week in practice.

The players got the message. And it was loud and clear. Hasan Muhammad-Rogers fired three touchdown passes to guide Richards to a 28-14 win over host Lemont.

It wasn’t the Bulldogs most efficient performance — they were whistled for 14 penalties. Considering Richards (3-0) was playing without three starters and persevered against a perennial power in Lemont (1-2), it was an impressive win.

“That’s all we talked about all week,” Muhammad-Rogers said of the losing streak. “We respect Lemont, but we had to win this game.”

Lemont had ended Richards’ season in 2012, pulling out a 23-19 Class 6A second-round win.

“They took away what we had going last year,” Muhammad-Rogers said. “We had a little salt in our mouth to get them back.”

Muhammad-Rogers connected with Spencer Tears on two scores. The first, a 69-yard TD, gave the Bulldogs a 14-6 lead. Tears made a dazzling move after catching the ball, leaving at least one Indian defender in his wake.

The second strike came with 4:32 to go in the first half. Faced with a third-and-10 from the Lemont 30, Tears hauled in the pass at the 20 and eluded three defenders on his way to the end zone for a 20-7 advantage.

“I was just trying to get into the end zone,” said Tears, a junior. “I made a couple of defenders miss.”

Lemont, though, cut the lead to 21-14 at the half when Mike Larkins capped a 13-play, 73-yard drive with a 1-yard run with 23.2 seconds remaining till intermission.

The score remained that way until late in the fourth quarter. Lemont drove as deep as the Richards 28-yard line in the second half, but never any closer. The Richards defense, led by Kenny Spey, Josh Hettiger, Ramonta Hill and Romel Hill, made certain of that.

The Bulldogs finally put the game away when Muhammad-Rogers found Dedrick Shannon Jr. from 34 yards out for the score and 28-14 lead with 2:35 remaining. Muhammad-Rogers finished 9-of-18 for 235 yards.

“The effort was there,” Lemont coach Eric Michaelsen said. “We had some penalties at bad times and missed coverages. We wanted to keep the game close in the fourth quarter, and that’s what we did. Our kids are pretty resilient.”

Julio Aleman’s 1-yard TD at 9:22 of the second quarter and Marcin Orszulak’s point-after kick gave Lemont a 7-6 lead.

Quarterback Chris Thompson finished 13-of-29 for 123 yards and rushed for a team-high 64 yards on 18 carries. Lemont’s defense, led by Andrew Miller, Rob Gasienica, Josh Rogers, Jason Koepke and Drew Hayes, sacked Muhammad-Rogers five times.



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