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Undefeated Wilmington runs past Streator, 45-13

If anyone had questions about whether or not Wilmington earned its No. 1 ranking among Class 3A teams, their 45-13 victory over Streator provided the answer.

Forty-five doesn’t seem like that high of a number in a rout, but the Wildcats threw the ball a total of one time, and that one time was the first time junior quarterback Ryder Meents threw a pass all season. It was a 14-yard strike in the second quarter to junior running back Colin James.

James also ran for 75 yards and two touchdowns before being pulled from the game in the second quarter with the Wildcats leading by 35 points.

The Wildcats’ rushing attack featured another 75 yards and two touchdowns from senior running back Jacob Friddle, who also had an interception on the first throw of the game from Streator sophomore quarterback Christian Benning. Benning was 5-of-22 passing for 26 yards, and senior Cade Stevens grabbed three receptions.

Senior running back Darryl Gullens threw the other interception on an early-game flea-flicker call, but he contributed heavily to the running game with a team-high 11 carries for 83 yards.

SHS senior running back Seth Miles came in the game late and added some angry running to the Streator offense, rushing for 36 yards in the fourth quarter. Gullens also had a 58-yard touchdown run in the third quarter that was followed by a 45-yard touchdown run by junior wide receiver Aneefy Ford.

The second quarter saw Wilmington’s second round of running backs jump into the game, with senior Kris Lamaster carrying much of the load, running the ball six times for 27 yards in the second quarter before giving way to junior running back JT Mandac. Mandac added 24 yards, and junior Drew Walsh, who also entered the game in the second quarter, added 26 yards.

The Wildcats ran for a total of 278 yards by eight ballcarriers.

The loss – the Bulldogs’ fifth in a row – drops Streator’s record to 3-5 and 1-5 in conference play. They weren’t able to depend on big plays for a second straight week. The Bulldogs will close out the season Friday at Coal City.

The Wildcats are 8-0 and lived up to their reputation as a run-heavy team with a stout defense that doesn’t give up much. Wilmington visits Manteno in Week 9.