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With just one play in overtime, it appeared Romeoville was on its way to celebrating Homecoming with its first win of the season while putting Plainfield South’s playoff chances in jeopardy.
Johnathan Kosirog must have missed the memo.
Kosirog took the ball straight ahead to the end zone for 10 of his career-high 261 rushing yards on the Cougars’ first play of overtime, and Matt Imburgia’s extra point gave South a 35-34 Southwest Prairie Conference victory.
The valiant effort by the Spartans (0-5, 0-3) ended with disappointment almost immediately after claiming the lead. Miguel Ford scored the go-ahead touchdown, but the extra point was moved back 15 yards following an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. The try was no good.
“We weren’t able to finish,” Spartans coach Jeff Kuna said. “We had some selfish penalties. It wasn’t just the one in overtime. There were multiple. Until we can mature within ourselves we’re gonna have trouble winning football games.”
South (2-3, 1-2) struggled itself. Playing without starting quarterback Ricky Luna, the offense fumbled five times, but Romeoville was able to recover just one, which resulted in a 30-yard return by Mark Hammond.
Kosirog picked up the slack with 261 yards on 34 carries and three scores, his play a large part in extending South’s playoff hopes.
“We knew coming into this game that it was going to be a dog fight,” South coach Ken Bublitz said. “We needed this win more than any win this year. We needed some momentum and something to believe in.”
Romeoville’s Caleb Bailey rushed eight times for 126 yards, including TD runs of a 57 and 55 yards. Bailey’s 55-yard run and Ford’s subsequent 2-point conversion — which South had three crack at, thanks to two pass-interference penalties on Romeoville — tied the game at 28.
Romeoville’s Jake Bambule connected with Mark Hammond for a 65-yard TD in the second quarter. That was Bambule’s first completion of the game.
Romeoville trailed 21-20 at halftime, but surpassed its season points total of 10 by intermission.