St. Viator dumps Hope Academy

As you depart the Forest View Educational Center heading southbound on Goebbert Road in Arlington Heights you'll see at a glance a sign that flashes the phrase "Knowledge Is Power."

It just so happened that one the facility's occupants, the St. Viator High School football team, took advantage of the knowledge it gained from previously earned experience and put it to full use over a very young Chicago Hope unit in posting a 41-14 win Friday night in the football season opener.

"We felt like that if we could control the box we had a good chance to come away with the victory," Viator coach Dave Archibald said.

The Lions (1-0) took advantage of Hope miscues ranging from a pair of drive-killing high snaps on fourth down in half number one, two fumble recoveries, and two picks that led to 20 of their 27 first-half points.

In addition the Viator defense put the kibosh on the Eagles' running game, holding them to minus 51 yards on the ground and 125 yards total.

Ziebka (164 yards passing on just 9 completions) threw 2 touchdown tosses each to Joe Laterza (10 and 23 yards) and one to P.J. Scales (34 yards). Scales' 10-yard scoring run got the home team on the scoreboard six and a half minutes into the contest.

Senior linebacker/slot back Daniel Niesman, who had an interception and a fumble recovery plus one of fellow senior Jack Ziebka's 4 touchdown tosses (a 16-yarder in the opening stanza), gave credit to his teammates' tunnel vision that allowed them to zone in on their return to the gridiron after a 512 day absence dating back to October, 2019.

"It was great," Niesman said. "Our guys were focused on just having fun and savoring the moment. It feels great. I'm just happy to be back out there and can't wait to do the next five (games)."

Which resumes for the Lions with a return to CCL/ESCC Purple division action next Friday with a home clash with Marian Central to begin their defense of 2019's co-championship they shared with St. Patrick.

"It's a tremendous place to be out here playing football after all they've been through and grateful we can get a win certainly. That said, we need to clean things up next week as we go into division play," Archibald said.

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