Seeking their third win in as many tries, the Fremd Vikings spoiled the Broncos homecoming weekend by cranking it up on the defensive end. The result was a 14-0 victory to move to 3-3 on the year and into a three-way tie for first at 2-0 in the MSL West.
The Vikings defense set the tone on the very first play of the game, when defensive end Devin Dinham crashed through the Barrington line and dropped Broncos running back Michael Curran for a five yard loss. As a unit, Fremd allowed just 140 yards of total offense the entire afternoon.
"After watching the game there, there is no question they played sound and physical," said Vikings head coach Lou Sponsel. "That's our style of ball."
Points were at a premium in the first half, as both defenses pitched shutouts to enter intermission in a scoreless tie.
Looking for a break in the second half, Vikings defensive back Ryan Palmer (8 tackles, Int), who was sporting the No. 2 jersey his injured teammate Ben Kurka wore, came up with a clutch interception to give the Vikings great field position at midfield.
Fremd capitalized when, after a pass interference against the Broncos moved the Vikings to the Barrington 20, sophomore quarterback Ryan Saxe (7-16-82, TD) connected with Will Ferry on a 20-yard strike to put the visitors up 7-0 with 6:34 in the third quarter.
The score remained that way until 7:27 left in the fourth when senior defensive lineman Will Josten, who along with defensive stalwart Luke Bilek (9 tackles) wreaked havoc all day long on Barrington, came up with an interception by batting the ball in the air with a club wrapped around his broken hand and catching it with his left. He then rumbled to the end zone to extend the Vikings lead to 14-0.
"That was the most unathletic looking touchdown i've ever seen," joked Sponsel. "He's a great player, he never comes out of the game, but he actually had to come off after that play to catch his breath, but he earned it."
Barrington attempted to counter and put together a nice drive, but the Vikings defense denied any last gasp by the home team when Nick Rattin plucked an errant Broncos pass to essentially ice the game.
To the Broncos credit, a banged up Barrington defensive unit, especially regarding its linebacking corps, played valiantly all afternoon to give the offense a chance to come back, allowing just 153 yard of offense to Fremd.
"Tip your cap to those guys and coach Sponsel," Broncos head coach Joe Sanchez said. "This was your typical MSL West slobberknocker…defensively, I was very proud of our kids…we had a good week of practice, prepared well, the defense kept us in the game…we just could not convert on some of our chances."