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Rams rugged stretch ends with loss

Glenbard East skid reaches four straight against Naperville North

Glenbard East's Drake Pusateri passes the ball during the Rams' Oct. 4 game against Wheaton North. Pusateri and the Rams fell to Naperville North last Friday.
Glenbard East's Drake Pusateri passes the ball during the Rams' Oct. 4 game against Wheaton North. Pusateri and the Rams fell to Naperville North last Friday.

LOMBARD – If evidence was needed as to why Glenbard East wanted to leave the DuPage Valley Conference, simply look at the football team’s schedule.

The Rams have lost four games in a row to traditionally strong programs bound for the postseason, and have lost those games by an average of 31.5 points. East entered the rough stretch against Naperville Central, Glenbard North, Wheaton North and Naperville North with a 2-1 record.

“I don’t think many teams in the state of Illinois have to go through the gauntlet we just went through,” East coach John Walters said. “I don’t know a lot of schools that play the kind of schedule that we do and survive it.”

Walters defended the team’s work ethic and attitude during the tough run of games, but the Rams haven’t been able to put it together for 48 minutes on a Friday night.

The latest defeat came at the hands of Naperville North on homecoming. The Huskies won 40-14 after racing out to a 33-0 lead in the first half.

East junior quarterback Drake Pusateri passed for 195 yards and two touchdowns, both to sophomore Joey Moore, but the Rams turned the ball over five times, and their 337 yards of offense yielded just 14 points.

“We’re our own worst enemy,” Walters said. “There’s no margin for error playing these teams.”

Walters hopes the Rams can flip the script and win the turnover battle tonight at Lake Park. The Lancers have a 1-6 record and like the Rams have struggled in the DVC with five straight losses.

It’s just the second game on Glenbard East’s schedule against a team that does not have a winning record. Given the rugged schedule and the lack of results for the Rams, Walters could be forgiven for looking forward to joining the Upstate Eight Conference next year, but his ties to the DVC are strong.

“I’ve been in this league for 17 years,” he said. “It’s great coaches, great programs and great teams. But the Upstate Eight is a great opportunity for our program.”

Naperville North 40, Glenbard East 14

Glenbard East leaders
Passing: Drake Pusateri 15-for-30, 195 yards, 2 TDs
Rushing: Pusateri 17-44; Dominic Wilberton 9-34
Receiving: Joey Moore 6-98, 2 TDs; Alex Ciszewski 6-67

Week 8: Glenbard East at Lake Park
7:30 p.m. Friday
Where: 500 W. Bryn Mawr, Roselle
Records: Glenbard East 2-5 (1-4 DVC), Lake Park 1-6 (0-5 DVC)
Outlook: Since starting the season 2-1 the Rams have lost four in a row, but Lake Park is the first team with a losing record East has seen since West Aurora in Week 3. The Lancers are new to the DuPage Valley Conference while the Rams are in their last year so this will be the only conference meeting between the two schools.

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