Home Sweet Home: Chargers set for top seeded Comets - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Home Sweet Home: Chargers set for top seeded Comets

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The Clifton Central Comets come into Saturday's game against Illini West with a (9-1) record. The Clifton Central Comets come into Saturday's game against Illini West with a (9-1) record.
Illini West hopes that playing at home will be an advantage against the top seeded Comets. Illini West hopes that playing at home will be an advantage against the top seeded Comets.

CARTHAGE, Ill. (WGEM) -- There are very few easy roads left in Illinois football that lead to Champaign, especially in Class 2A where Saturday's second round match-up between Illini West and Clifton Central should be a 48 minute battle.

For the Chargers, a first round playoff exit one year ago is all but a distant memory, which was put to rest last Friday with the programs first post season win since it's 2010 state title.

"Certainly happy to get the win, and happy to get back home," expressed Illini West head coach Tim Lafferty.  

"That was a big point for us, getting back home and playing at home in the second round."

Coming back to Fuzz Berges Field was never a guarantee after the Chargers suffered their second loss of the season in week nine.

"After that loss to Monmouth, that was the goal, to get back home," said senior running back Ben Gittings.

"(Last Friday) was the biggest game of my career this far, and winning that was a big weight off my shoulders."

 The key for Tim Lafferty and the Chargers has been the ability to adapt week in and week out, with depth and balance, which will play a big role against top seeded Clifton Central on Saturday.

"They're much bigger than us across the board, and they're athletic as well," Tim Lafferty told WGEM Sports.

"Defensively they haven't allowed much of anything to anybody."

"Their lines both ways are huge, and it's going to be one of the toughest tests of the year for our line," said senior quarterback Brody Gronewold.

"We've got to get a good jump off the ball up front, and we've got to take care of the ball, that's always a big priority for us."

That kind of consistent, fundamental play on both sides of the ball has been the driving force throughout for Illini West, and that simple, yet successful game plan won't change.

"As with all games, they are won at the line of scrimmage, so we have to play a physical game up front and the rest will fall into place," said Ben Gittings.

Outside of the trenches, a balanced attack should give Illini West plenty of options on offense.

"We've got any one of four guys who can have a big game if you give them an opportunity," Tim Lafferty added.

"I think you've got to be really disciplined. That's what we try to force people to do and we've been pretty successful with it."

The Chargers and Comets get underway at 3 o'clock on Saturday at Fuzz Berges Field in Carthage.


--Editors note--(Clifton Central highlights courtesy of YouTube.com//user/kfishpro)

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