Redbirds suffer painful defeat

Tom Batters
Pat Ryan

Metamora’s 49-26 loss at South Elgin Saturday was painful — in more ways than one.

Redbirds coach Pat Ryan, speaking by phone Saturday night, said the performance on the field was somewhat disappointing, but the injuries to four starters is more of a concern.

“We were beaten by a very good team,” Ryan said. “Now, we have to move forward, and correct some things. And, we have to see how long we might be without some of our key players.”

Senior linebacker/running back Bryan Love left the game in the first half after suffering an ankle injury. Love rushed for 112 yards on 10 carries prior to the injury.

“He broke free for a long run, and somebody caught him from behind and messed up his ankle,” Ryan said. “We’ll have to see how it is this week.”

Kyle Albertson, Ethan Volz, David Tracy and Andrew Jones also suffered injuries.

“Andrew tweaked his hip, and David and Kyle had knee injuries. We’re banged up right now. Those are all key players for us.”

Tracy caught a 45-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Michael Fay in the first half.

The Redbirds scored on their first three possessions and took an early lead before South Elgin scored 35 unanswered points.

Fay opened the scoring with a 44-yard touchdown run. He added a one-yard run later in the second quarter.

In the fourth quarter, he threw a 76-yard touchdown pass to Brett McKinney. Fay completed six of 11 passes for 162 yards and one interception. He also ran for 82 yards.

“We were able to move the ball early on,” Ryan said. “But, then we lost the ability to control the line of scrimmage. Even when we were ahead, I never felt like we held the momentum.”

Charlie Nowotnik ran for 63 yards on 17 carries.

South Elgin quarterback John Menken threw for 315 yards and four touchdowns. He ran for 145 yards on just five carries.

“They had some explosive players with great speed,” Ryan said. “You have to give them credit. They were the better team.”

Menken threw one interception (Chase Scott).

Ryan said the game exposed some weaknesses that will need to be corrected.

“We have work to do,” he said. “But, it’s better to have a game like this early in the season, where your weaknesses are exposed. At least we don’t have a false sense of security. A least we don’t think we’re a great team right now. The coaches and players need to get back to work and make sure we learn from this.”

Metamora plays at Canton Friday night.

Canton is 0-2 after a 49-33 loss to Lincoln Friday night. The Little Giants lost to Pontiac, 45-2, in week one.