Sandwich Stands Tall In Rivalry
Indians Edge Plano In Interstate Eight Action ...
By Bill Lidinsky
Northern Illinois Sports Beat Contributor
SANDWICH - Rivalries stand tall in any sport. But the one that exists between Sandwich
and Plano on the varsity gridiron is a special one indeed.
Friday night at the home of the Indians, the hosts used a stellar rushing attack along with
a staunch second-half defense to edge out its fieriest foe 23-22 during an exciting final
night of Interstate Eight Large Division play along the small stretch of U.S. Route 34 that
separates the two cities.
Sandwich (5-2, 3-2) held the Reapers to only 98 yards in total offense in the final two
periods, while countering with 276 yards rushing overall on the game that included 141
yards on 25 carries from Spencer Carlson and 104 yards on 15 totes from P.J. Crotty.
Plano (5-2, 3-2) could only muster 201 yards overall on the night, while Northwestern
University recruit Joseph Jones tallied 77 yards on 17 carries via the ground.
Overall, it was a special night for Sandwich defeating its closest football foe, while ending
a two-game losing streak.
“We watched a video before the game about rivals and the different rivalries in college
football. Rivals are a great thing. We know all those guys from Plano and they all know of
us. It’s like a civil war. But it’s great coming up big with a one-point win against our biggest
competitor,” said Sandwich coach Dusty Behringer. “The I-8 Large is a bloodbath and I’m
very proud of the guys in how they responded after losing two in a row. I’m very proud of
“Every year the rivalry between Plano and Sandwich is special. Tonight the Indians got
the best of the Reapers,” said Plano coach Jim Green. “We had our chances. But credit
Sandwich for holding us scoreless in the second half until late. They’re a very good
Plano answered the call early in the first quarter on a one-yard touchdown run at 9:42 by
Joseph Jones who came into the game battling a broken hand. Rilando Nunez’s point-
after kick was good and the Reapers were up 7-0.
The Indians then followed on its first drive as Crotty scored on a 39-yard scamper at 5:55
in the first quarter to tie the score after Matt Saitta’s point-after kick.
Crotty would add a one yard flip over the Plano defensive line at 2:14 to give the Indians a
14-7 lead during the opening stanza.
But on the ensuing kick off, Devin Ambrose rambled 85 yards to tie the ledger at 14
Sandwich would get a 27-yard field goal from Saitta to take a 17-14 lead into the locker
room at the half.
From there, the Indians went up 23-14 in the third off a 28-yard touchdown pass from
Derrick Risley to tight end Dallas Schroeder at 6:31.
Plano had its’ chances in the fourth quarter but came up short on a fourth and goal deep
in Sandwich territory.
After an Indian punt and a great return by Plano's Devin Haws, the Reapers cut the gap to
one point on a two-yard touchdown sweep by Alan Vega with 1:01 left.
Sandwich then recovered the Reaper onside kick with no time outs left for Plano. The
Indians then took a knee and prevailed in the key cross-town hook up.
“We definitely needed this win tonight,” Behringer said. “After tough losses during the last
two weeks, we were able to get a great win against our greatest rival. It doesn’t get much
better than this.”
Bill Lidinsky is a Northern Illinois Sports Beat contributor. He can be reached in care of
NISB at Northernillinoissportsbeat@yahoo.com. --- Talk about what's written on our
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Sandwich 23, Plano 22
Plano 14 0 0 8 – 22
Sandwich 14 3 6 0 – 23
P – Jones 1 run (Nunez
kick) 9:42, 7-0.
S – Crotty 39 run (Saitta
kick) 5:55, 7-0.
S – Crotty 1 run (Saitta
kick) 2:14, 14-7.
P – Ambrose 85 kickoff
return (Nunez kick) 2:13,
S – Saitta 27 field goal, 0:
S – Schroeder 28 pass
from Risley, 6:31 (kick
P – Vega 2 run (Ambrose
pass to Gann) 1:01, 23-22.
First downs 10 17
Rushes-yards 40-170 57-276
Passing yards 31 60
Total offense 201 336
Comp-Att- Int 4-10-0 2-3-0
Fumbles-lost 0-0 0-0
Penalties-yards 0-0 4-30
Rushing – Plano: Jones
17-77, Vega 10-60, Brown
7-28, Carrera 5-5, Rea 0-1.
Sandwich: Carlson 25-
141, Crotty 15-112,
McDonald 6-20, Webber 5-
12, Risley 4-0.
Passing – Plano: Rea 3-
18-0-18. Sandwich: Risley
Receiving – Plano: Brown
3-18. Sandwich: Crotty 1-
32, Schroeder 1-28.
Records – Plano 5-2 (3-2
Interstate 8 Large),
Sandwich 5-2 (3-2).
Photo by Bill Lidinsky
Sandwich football players gather for the postgame huddle in front of head coach Dusty Behringer
after beating archrival Plano 23-22 on Friday night.