Line no longer a concern
Glenbrook South's Paul Jones (5) celebrates with coaches after breaking up a fourth-down pass to solidify the Titans' victory over Niles West. Visit seasonpass.suntimes.com/pioneer to view a photo gallery from the game in Skokie on Friday. | Jon Durr~Fo
BOYS and GIRLS
At Loyola Acad. Regional at Harms Woods (B) 10:45 a.m.; (G) 10 a.m.
Hosts Maine South, 7:30 p.m.
At Maine South Regional, 5 p.m.
At New Trier Sectional, 7 p.m.
At Evanston, 5:30 p.m.
At Prospect State Finals, 8 a.m.
Hosts Evanston, 6 p.m.
At Lake Zurich Regional vs. Waukegan H.S., 7 p.m.
Updated: November 19, 2012 1:23PM
SKOKIE — Glenbrook South senior guard and linebacker Sean Garvey admitted the offensive line, of which he’s a member, was a major concern early in the season.
The group, which is smallish and had no returning starters, had its share of struggles as the Titans (5-3, 3-1) opened with a 1-2 record.
But the offensive line has improved in recent weeks, opening some gaping holes for junior running back Brett Laurie, who had touchdown runs of 49 and 77 yards in Friday’s 35-25 win over Niles West.
“We had our struggles early on,” Garvey said about the offensive line. “At the beginning of the season, the line was our No. 1 concern. But over these weeks, we’ve progressed immensely and gone from concern to strength. We’ve bonded and put in so much hard work, and we’ve progressed so much.”
Garvey said the offensive linemen were motivated by their fear of being the team’s weak link.
“We took it as a challenge, from coaches and from everyone else,” he said. “We wanted to make sure we got out of that reputation of being a concern, to get to that level where we are an asset instead of a concern.”
Laurie, who also rushed for 75-yard and 63-yard touchdowns the previous week against Waukegan, said the offensive front has made his job a lot easier in recent weeks.
“We’re not the biggest line around, so getting off the ball was a struggle in the beginning of the year,” Laurie said. “But they’ve gotten much better, put forth the most effort on the team and shown improvement.”
In addition to Garvey, the line includes: senior center Paul Masini, sophomore guard Mike Berg, junior tackle James Roberts, junior tackle Brennan Cascarano and senior tight end Sam Selby.
Glenbrook South coach Mike Noll said the right schemes, good form and maximum effort has helped the team overcome its lack of size up front.
“We do a lot of three-step drops and play-action passing, which is easy for a (pass-blocking) lineman,” he said. “We don’t’ have a physical presence this year, we’re not big, so we have to be good technicians and play hard all the time. That’s stuff we’ve learned to do.”