Glodz's last-second FG sends York past Lyons Twp. and into quarterfinals

Damian Glodz didn't get the chance to see his game-winning kick split the uprights Saturday night.

The teammates mobbing him let him know.

The senior's 30-yard field goal as time expired gave visiting York a 17-14 victory over Lyons Township in the second round of the Class 8A playoffs.

In winning the rematch between West Suburban Silver foes - the Dukes also prevailed 24-14 back in Week 8 - fifth-seeded York (10-1) advances to the quarterfinals, where it will host Edwardsville, a 48-14 winner over Glenbard West.

In his inaugural season of football last fall, Glodz made a game-tying kick against Downers North at the end of regulation. He can now add playoff hero to his resume.

"Same as last year, I was locked in," Glodz said. "I was frozen, I don't even remember anyone talking to me (before the kick). I trusted my snapper Seamus (Wicklow) and my holder Nico (Ruggieri). And I'm glad my coaches and my team trusted me.

"I just wanted to win it for my team. I had to make it for them, it's something bigger than myself. I didn't even see it go through. My teammates just rushed me. I couldn't even really celebrate, they tackled me. I couldn't see anything, couldn't even speak."

Glodz's kick ended the back-and-forth affair, which saw the host Lions (7-4) take a 14-7 lead into halftime. York answered with an 11-play, 80-yard drive on the opening possession of the third quarter, capped off by a 1-yard touchdown run by Jake Melion. The senior finished with 147 rushing yards on 37 carries.

The visitors' defense did the rest, holding Lyons to 42 yards of total offense over the final 24 minutes. The Dukes tallied three sacks in the second half, two by Jack Trautmann, the other by Ravi Pradhan.

"We were down at half and came back," Trautmann said. "We rallied in that locker room. Colin Cushing gave a great speech at halftime, that got us back on track. We came out in the second half and pitched a shutout, and our offense also played great. This shows we are not just a team that gets a lead and keeps it, we can also come back (from a deficit).

"I love everyone on this team. It's a special team, and now we get another week together doing what we love. It means so much to us."

York's final drive again started at its own 20 with six minutes left. The Dukes ran 17 plays, 12 of which were Melion runs. Quarterback Sean Winton also ran the ball three times for 15 yards and completed a key 14-yard pass to Chris Danko.

That pair also connected for a 36-yard touchdown to begin the scoring midway through the first quarter. Winton threw for 154 yards and ran for another 45.

Danko caught five passes for 67 yards, while Luke Mailander had seven receptions for 53 yards.

"Lyons is extremely well-coached and their kids play extremely hard," York coach Mike Fitzgerald said. "We knew going in it was going to be a battle. Unfortunately, we had to play them in the second round.

"I'm really proud of our guys and the way they battled. Just with the momentum swings and the back-and-forth, obviously our defense played great in the second half. They had a great game plan and slowed us down offensively, but we found a way to win."

Lyons coach Jon Beutjer was also extremely proud of his team, a group that had given up only 98 points coming into Saturday. The Lions scored on a pair of Ryan Jackson touchdown passes, a 40-yarder to Jack McQueeney on the final play of the first quarter and a 30-yarder to Jack Cheney late in the second.

"Ryan is a special QB," Beutjer said, "because he can run and throw the football. He's able to extend plays, and he's very accurate. He probably had more than 40 touchdowns in his career, he's a third-year starter. He's one of those kids, they don't come along often, and he got us back to the playoffs (in 2021).

"There is just no way to prepare your seniors for this. Obviously, our focus was on winning this game. And then when it's over, it's tough."

Jackson passed for 142 yards while rushing for 27. McQueeney finished with four receptions for 59 yards, and Travis Stamm had five catches for 37 yards. Dylan Rickman also ran for 47 yards, and Jack Hennessey and Luke Wehling contributed sacks on defense.

"We battled a bunch of injuries throughout the year," Jackson said. "A lot of guys stepped up. We started off the season on a bad note (a loss to Prospect), but we built off that adversity. Our coaches did a great job pushing us to get better in practice."

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