LINCOLN PARK — One prominent Chicago sports team might have had its season ended Thursday night, but another advanced in the playoffs.
While the Cubs were losing to the Los Angeles Dodgers at Wrigley Field to end their season and their reign as world champions, Lincoln Park High School claimed its first conference football title with a 31-8 victory over Mather just down the road apiece at Lane Stadium, 2601 W. Addison St.
After losing its opening game to downstate powerhouse Geneseo, Lincoln Park went on to complete an undefeated, untied conference season at 7-0 with a homecoming win last Friday over Collins, also at Lane.
The Lions dominated throughout, winning by scores of 53-0 over Schurz, 48-0 over Steinmetz and 46-0 over Lake View.
Principal Michael Boraz said Mather made the Lions sweat by staying close at 14-8 through the first quarter, but Lincoln Park gradually pulled away to lead 28-8 through three quarters, then tacked on a field goal in the final frame to seal the conference title and earn coach Vince DeFrancisco a Gatorade shower.
There's your conference champs. And coach got a Gatorade shower pic.twitter.com/QgzadrEozA— LPHS Principal Boraz (@mjboraz) October 20, 2017
School parent Shannon Waterfield, who has a son on the team, credited "our amazing senior quarterback Jake Dowell," a view shared by Boraz.
Love football, but Jake Dowell is a leader, period.— LPHS Principal Boraz (@mjboraz) October 20, 2017
The 8-1 Lions are seeded sixth statewide by the Illinois High School Association in Class 7A for enrollments between 1,889 and 2,364 students, with its next opponent to be determined over the weekend.
"We looked really good last night," Boraz said Friday. "I think it was our best game in years."