Marian Central Catholic High School may not have delivered a win to fans for homecoming, but the conference matchup didn’t disappoint when it came to excitement.
The Hurricanes fell to St. Viator of Arlington Heights, their fourth consecutive loss, at a packed George Harding Stadium Sept. 29.
A fumble recovery by senior Steven Pinter and interception by Nick Tegtman gave Marian an early boost in the game, but the Hurricanes struggled with turnovers of their own, including a fumble and four interceptions for the remainder of the game.
“Our kids fought. It wasn’t an effort thing, it wasn’t a will thing. We just have to be better,” head coach Mike Maloney said. “It’s hard to maintain a high level of execution.”
With just over five minutes left in the half, senior quarterback A.J. Golembewski connected with junior Charlie Kramer for a 74-yard reception, netting Marian its first score of the night. Going into halftime, the `Canes trailed 14-7.
St. Viator fought off scoring opportunities from the `Canes, and added to their own score through the third, but Marian found some momentum early in the fourth quarter.
Golembewski, who passed for 181 yards, threw a touchdown to senior Ryan St. Clair, bringing the `Canes within 6 points with just under 12 minutes in the game. The Lions roared back with a touchdown and two-point conversion, putting them further ahead of the Hurricanes at 28-14.
The homecoming crowd at Marian went wild for a touchdown late in the game by junior Bryce Radcliffe, but it was too little, too late. The `Canes fell 28-21.
Sophomore Patsy Ricciardi was happy to return to the field after an injury sidelined him in week three against Benet.
“They came out and played us good. We just have to get out there and execute a little bit better,” Ricciardi said. “The only person that stops us is us. We have got to just keep riding.”
If Marian can clean up the critical errors that cost them the St. Viator game, the team could still make the Class 5A playoffs.
“We’re just lacking a consistent level of high energy throughout, and I’ve got to figure it out, and I’ve got to figure it out really fast,” Maloney said.
Starting quarterback Gavin Scott, who was the driving force behind the success of Marian’s first few games, went out with a knee injury in week three, and his status is questionable for the next matchup Friday, Oct. 6, at Carmel.
The `Canes, 2-4 on the season, 0-4 in the East Suburban Catholic Conference, return home for the final two weeks of the regular season, facing Notre Dame Oct. 13 and St. Patrick Oct. 20.