OSWEGO – Plainfield South ended the regular season with a 28-7 Southwest Prairie Conference loss Friday against Oswego.
Even though the Cougars missed a shot at a share of the SPC title, they left the field feeling a 5-4 record with 43 playoff points would be enough to earn a spot in the Class 8A playoffs.
“I think we’ve got a better than average chance to get in, but we’re going to find out,” Plainfield South coach Ken Bublitz said. “I just hope for these kids’ sake because they played their tails off. Now we’ll just have to see.”
South received the opening kickoff but fumbled on its first play from scrimmage to set the tone for the night. Oswego responded with its first touchdown – a 3-yard quarterback sneak from Steven Frank – and the Panthers went ahead 14-0 early in the second quarter.
The Cougars put together a 13-play drive to get on the scoreboard and came up big on a fourth-and-12 situation when quarterback Jackson Howarth found Austin Deal for a 21-yard gain to the Oswego 12. Two plays later, Howarth threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to Jake Portz. Enrique Carbajal’s extra point made it 14-7.
“We got out to a slow start, but then we responded to it,” Bublitz said. “We had enough plays to get it close at halftime, and what we needed to do in the third quarter was find a way to get control and get momentum going our way, and we just couldn’t do that.
“Credit Oswego. They made plays when they needed to, and we just didn’t make enough plays. I really liked what our kids brought to the table, and I was very impressed with how the kids prepared this week. We were prepared, but we didn’t have enough execution.”
Oswego’s Freddy Walton intercepted Howarth at the Plainfield 21, and Chad Marsh scored on the first play from scrimmage to give Oswego a 21-7 lead with 1:45 to play in the third quarter. Midway through the fourth quarter, the Panthers added on as Marsh scored on a 1-yard run.
The rain, which did not let up until the fourth quarter, created sloppy field conditions that resulted in multiple turnovers for both teams. South’s Kevin Valentine was the first to intercept Frank early in the game, and Mitchell Ganassin grabbed one just before halftime. But the Cougars also lost two fumbles and Howarth was intercepted twice in the second half.
With the help of Minooka’s win over Plainfield North, Oswego won its fifth consecutive SPC championship with a 6-1 record. South tied Plainfield North for second at 5-2.