The Aurora Central Catholic football team exited opening week injury-free and with a 1-0 record.
Ordinarily that would be cause for smiles and fist bumps, but the Chargers haven’t been in an especially cheerful mood the past few days. Even word Tuesday that the IHSA was granting ACC a forfeit win against Oostburg (Wis.) provided only a small measure of solace for ACC coach Brian Casey’s team.
“Obviously, I don’t think any coach would tell you a forfeit win, hey, it was awesome,” Casey said. “No, it’s not. It’s a total non-ideal situation, but unfortunately, that’s the hand we’re dealt so we have to find a way to make the best of the situation.”
Like all the other games around here that were supposed to be played Friday night, ACC’s game against visiting Oostburg was postponed by lightning. But unlike the rest of those games, a makeup date could not be negotiated.
Oostburg hailing from north of the border obviously complicated a potential reschedule, but Casey said ACC offered to reimburse the school hotel expenses to stay overnight or travel expenses to make a return trip Saturday, Sunday or Monday. Oostburg nixed that offer, Casey said. A phone message left with Oostburg’s athletic department Tuesday was not returned.
“I feel like they did a disservice to our kids, no doubt, but I personally feel it was a disservice to theirs as well,” Casey said.
In a text message Tuesday afternoon, Casey said the IHSA let ACC know the game could be counted as a forfeit win considering ACC did everything it could to play the game.
If the game were not counted as a win – ACC would have been favorites to beat Oostburg – it would have put the Chargers in a hole in their quest for back-to-back playoff berths. The forfeit ruling was welcome, just not a satisfying resolution in light of the months of work and anticipation that spill into a season-opener.
“We work so hard for nine guaranteed days and this takes away one of them from them, so obviously I’m disappointed for the kids that they didn’t have the chance to compete in front of their family and friends for the season opener, of all things,” Casey said.
This was the second year of a two-year series with Oostburg after the Chargers won handily as the road team last year. Casey said ACC partnered with the out-of-state school because ACC was in scramble mode a couple years back when Chicago Senn pulled out of a planned series.
A football cliche holds that teams make their biggest strides from Week 1 to Week 2, which could put the Chargers at a disadvantage Saturday when ACC finally sees game action at Chicago Bogan.
On the other hand, the Chargers will have a surplus of pent-up aggression which they’re prepared to unload, Casey said.
“By the time it’s time to open up that cage door on Saturday afternoon, we’ll be ready to go bananas,” Casey said.
Upon further review: Batavia senior Michael Moffatt’s 45-yard touchdown grab Saturday against Glenbard North looked slick in real time.
It apparently looked even better on film to Bulldogs coach Dennis Piron, who Tuesday called Moffatt’s grab “one of the most amazing catches I’ve ever seen.”
Moffatt pinned the football to Glenbard North defensive back Robert Collier’s shoulder pad before reeling the ball in for a TD reception from quarterback Micah Coffey in the third quarter of the Bulldogs’ eventual 29-26 win over the Panthers.
• Jay Schwab is sports editor of the Kane County Chronicle. He can be reached at 630-845-5382 or firstname.lastname@example.org.