Maine South storms past Lockport

Friday's opening round of the IHSA football playoffs couldn't have come any sooner for teams that either reached the required six-win mark or secured the automatic berth from their respective conference over the past four weeks of the regular season.

As a matter of fact, an argument could have been made for Central Suburban South champion Maine South, which took an eight-game winning streak into the playoffs.

Maine South drew the team they played two years ago at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb for the Class 8A State Championship - Lockport. The same school that denied the Hawks a state title on the turf of Brigham Field at Huskie Stadium.

No. 6 Maine South advanced to the second round of Class 8A with Friday night's 35-0 win over the No. 27 Porters. The Hawks will play No. 11 Belleville East (8-2), a 70-0 home winner over East Aurora (6-4).

"Our first goal was to win the (division). We took care of that and had to forget about that and move on to the new campaign which is the playoffs and (approaching it) one game at a time," Inserra said after winning his 55th career postseason game in 71 contests.

"It was a special feeling going to bed on Thursday night because you got a little bit more (energy) waking up (on Friday)," he said. "The kids had a great mindset. (It's) really enjoyable. Hats off to (our) scout teams both offensively and defensively. It's about preparation. It's about (them) knowing what to do. I was really happy with the coaches and their preparation and the kids executing and carrying it out."

The Hawks (9-1) established control from the onset by scoring on their first two possessions, both courtesy of TD tosses from junior QB Constantine Coines (17 of 23 300 yards). First he first connected with Evan Agosto (8 receptions, 103 yards) on a 12 yard scoring pass followed by a 74 yard flanker screen to Julian Turner to put Maine South up 14-0.

The first of two TD runs by Coines (33 yards) expanded the lead to 21-0 early in the second quarter. His second TD run from 3 yards out with 3:10 left in the third made it a 28-0 Hawk advantage. The junior finished with 52 rushing yards on 9 attempts.

The Coines-to-Agosto gridiron battery wrapped up the night's scoring when they hooked up for an 18 yard touchdown connection.

Agosto spoke of the proverbial chip on the shoulder his team had from that championship game two Novembers ago.

"We were waiting for them. We were ready (in) making sure that we were prepared. We all just (played) as a team together."

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