Football: Benet boots Crete-Monee 30-6
By Pat Disabato firstname.lastname@example.org September 20, 2013 11:08PM
Benet's No. 33 Brian Runger tries to strip the ball from Crete-Monee running back No. 24 Tommie Harris while tackling him during a game on 9/20/13. Benet led 15 to 0 at the half. | John Booz~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: October 23, 2013 6:26AM
Benet junior quarterback Jack Beneventi earns most of the headlines, and deservedly so. The 6-foot-6 strong-armed signal caller is being recruited by dozens of Division I college programs and had a visit to Notre Dame set up for Saturday.
On Friday night, however, it was kicker John Duvic who stole the spotlight.
Duvic converted field goals of 34, 37, 38, 42 and 50 yards to lead visiting Benet to a 30-6 win over defending Class 6A state champion Crete-Monee.
The Warriors (3-1) had their winning streak snapped at 17.
“He’s always been able to kick the ball,” said Beneventi who, like Duvic, resides in Glen Ellyn. “I’m glad to see him play the way he did (Friday).”
While Duvic’s kicking was a key to the win, the turning point occurred in the third quarter when Brad Sznajder returned a kick 91 yards for a score and 21-6 lead.
Just 12 seconds earlier, Crete-Monee’s Deon Benton had blocked a punt and returned it 17 yards for a touchdown. The score not only cut the Warriors’ deficit to 15-6 at 8:29 of the third quarter, it invigorated a Crete-Monee Homecoming crowd that had little to get excited about up to that point.
But Sznajder returned the ensuing kick, which swung the momentum back to the Redwings (4-0).
“That was a big play,” Benet coach Pat New said. “They got some life after that blocked punt and touchdown. Brad returning the kick like that gave us the momentum back.”
Duvic would provide Benet with some additional breathing room by converting kicks of 37 and 40 yards later in the third quarter that made it 27-6. Then with 9:53 remaining in the game, he booted a 50-yarder that had both sides of the bleachers buzzing.
“I try to stay consistent,” Duvic said. “I try to use the same motion every time. It was an exciting night.”
Not so much for Crete-Monee, which was held to 78 yards rushing and 72 yards passing. Other than two long runs by Trevon Smith, covering 38 and 44 yards, there was little for Warriors fans to cheer about.
Benet’s defense, led by Jack Mitchell, Jack Kelly, Nick Surges, Ryan Parks and Jason Blohm, had a great deal to do with that. Dave Donnantuono added an interception for the Redwings.
“I thought our defense played extremely well,” New said. “We had a conservative approach on offense, especially once we got inside their 35. John is a special kicker. The guy’s amazing.”
Beneventi finished 9-of-26 for 124 yards. His 13-yard touchdown pass to Joe Weidenbach extended the Redwings lead to 10-0 after Duvic’s PAT at 8:32 of the second quarter.
“Winning this game is really special,” Beneventi said. “Crete’s defense is the best I’ve seen in my life. To have this type of game early in the season is critical for us.”