C-G tackles Ignatius, preps for PR rematch

If not for one huge factor, this game could have easily been the farthest thing possible from a home game feel. Two hours from the halls of CG, the usual corn and trees surrounding the d155 fields now replaced by the Sears (Willis) Tower and it’s other tall buddies. Not to mention, St. Ignatius College Prep School looked like something out of Harry Potter.

But the keyword is could. It COULD have been farthest possibility from a home game.

But it wasn’t. Why?

The fans. Two full fan buses, carpoolers, and those who opted to take the train met behind one end zone, and despite the freezing weather, excited as ever while they yelled and hollered pre-game.

Every single C-G fan was ready for kick off, especially after they saw the St. Ignatius “superfan section.” It’s not an exaggeration to say it was less than twice the size of the visiting team’s, which traveled two hours. It was like the Trojans had won the game before kickoff, the daunting buildings and unfamiliarity of this Ivy League-like school forgotten and replaced by the noise and excitement of about a hundred hyped-up Trojan superfans.

This early edge proved to be not just great for morale, but also the scoreboard as the Trojans started at full speed and never slowed down, taking a a 35-0 lead at half. 35-0! This is the playoffs, and we were the nine seed to their eight, so the Trojans were technically “upsetting” this St. Ignatius Wolfpack thirty-five to zero!

This allowed Coach Seaburg and staff to put in some of the second team. That’s usually an unlikely event for a playoff game, but it was possible Friday due to the score getting higher and higher.

C-G ended up taking this game 42-14, a huge win to start the first round of the 6A playoffs.

All that was left to do was celebrate on the bus home, and then look forward to round two. Unlike St. Ignatius, two teams the Trojans know very well were set to play that Saturday afternoon, the winning team the opponent for this upcoming week.

Crystal Lake Central (16th seed, 5-4) traveled across town to Prairie Ridge (1st seed, 9-0). As expected, the undefeated Wolves absolutely destroyed the Tigers from the very first play. The final score was Prairie Ridge 61, Crystal Lake Central 24.

Prairie Ridge is good. Really good. There’s no question there.

However, confidence should be as high as ever this week for the Trojans and their fans. Think about it. Let’s go back to the very first game of this season. The defending champion Prairie Ridge Wolves were predicted by most every professional to win, and win by a huge margin over the Trojans.

For those of you that were not there or do not remember, the final score to that game was 7-6, PR. Though it was a loss in the record, it’s a win looking back, in some ways. The Trojans defense held the wolves offense, one of the very best in state, to only seven points. Not to mention, this game was at Prairie Ridge!

The Trojans went into that game with the classic first game of the year motivation, but they also saw a brand-new sign on the Wolves’ scoreboard that read “2016 6A Champs.” That gave the Trojans even more motivation. Aside from a few first game of the year mistakes, they played awesome that game, especially the defense.


Now, you add three even larger factors; rivalry, playoff motivation, and home field advantage. This time it’s a home game for the Trojans, and with all these factors, it’s safe to assume the Trojans fans and players cannot wait for kickoff.

“We won’t do anything differently,” coach Seaburg said of practice this week, “We will continue to prepare and work our hardest.”

One more reason for fans to stay confident? Coach Seaburg and the players have more than ever this week. Talking to him and the players throughout the early days of this week, they all feel one thing: a high confidence and excitement for this upcoming Saturday.

This team, this school, and these fans have wanted something for the last couple of years; a playoff matchup against Prairie Ridge. A chance to pull off a win for the ages. The 2016 home opener came down to the wire, PR winning it by a small margin. Then, the Trojans got one game away from a playoff semi-final against the Wolves, but fell to Dekalb.

The 7-6 game makes this an even bigger matchup and makes us want a playoff chance at a great football team in the Prairie Ridge Wolves.

Well, the chance is here. You better believe the Trojans are not going to waste it.