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North Chicago Warhawks bag a big one in comeback fashion

Waukegan-8/25/12 Sat./Waukegan High School
Toni Myers 16 Junior Varsity Pom during game vs. North Chicago Saturday.
| Joe Shuman~For Sun-Times Media

Waukegan-8/25/12, Sat./Waukegan High School Toni Myers, 16, a Junior, Varsity Pom during game vs. North Chicago Saturday. | Joe Shuman~For Sun-Times Media

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North Chicago 12 6 6 6 — 30

Waukegan 13 13 0 0 — 26

1st Quarter

NC: 9:35 — Tazari Bryant 19-return of punt blocked by Gerard Wade. (Pass failed)

NC: 6:34 — JaVairius Amos-Mays 2-run set up by an Arnold Shead 48-yard run. (Run failed)

W: 6:18 — J.D. Parsell 82-kickoff return. (Kick wide)

W: 0:00 — Milton Shannon 10-run. (Alex Albarran kick)

2nd Quarter

W: 11:00 J.D. Parsell 44-pass from Melvin Bobo IV. (Run failed)

W: 0:59 — Deniqtrius Curry 5-run (Albarran kick)

NC: 0:20 — Arnold Shead 62- pass from Amos-Mays. (Pass failed)

3rd Quarter

NC: 9:14 — Jarrod Coleman 43-pass from Amos-Mays. (Pass failed)

4th Quarter

NC: 6:17 — Manny Nickens 49-punt return (Run failed)

Passing — NC: JaVairius Amos-Mays (11-24-202 yards, 2 TDs, 1 int.) W: Melvin Bobo IV (6-17-87 yards, 1 TD).

Rushing — NC: JaVairius Amos-Mays 7-27-1 TD, Arnold Shead 7-49, Jaime Romero 8-21. W: Melvin Bobo IV 11-3, Deniqtrius Curry 13-51-1 TD, Milton Shannon 9-33-1 TD.

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Updated: September 28, 2012 6:11AM

One win does not a football season make.

But a football team can make a heckuva statement with one win, and that’s exactly what North Chicago did with its come-from-behind 30-26 victory over host Waukegan on Saturday.

The message it sent to its excitable following was something like this: Basketball season doesn’t start until mid-November.

The town has fallen head-over-heels in love with its school’s basketball program.

But now, it also has a football team that, at the very least, it should “like” on the Facebook meter.

Actually, there was a lot to like about the play of both sides Saturday, but most noteworthy were these two things:

■ The Warhawks didn’t fold when down 26-12 in the final minute of the first half.

■ After surrendering points in bunches in the first 24 minutes, North Chicago’s defense allowed nothing after intermission, which enabled its offense and special teams to snatch the win away from the Bulldogs.

“A lot of people have said we won’t be very good defensively, but our defense was the best part of our game today (allowing just 76 total yards in the second half). I was confident that we had a better defense than some people were saying,” said North Chicago coach Glen Kozlowski. “

There were a bunch of key moments in the contest.

After a five-yard TD run by Deniqtrius Curry gave Waukegan a 26-12 lead with 59 seconds left until halftime, North Chicago QB JaVairius Amos-Mays (11-of-24 passing, 202 yards, 2 TDs, 1 pick; also 7 carries for 27 yards, 1 TD, 2 fumbles) immediately responded with a 66-yard scoring strike to Arnold Shead just 39 seconds later.

■ After Mays threw a 43-yard TD pass to Jarrod Coleman on the first possession of the third quarter to make it a 26-24 game, talented sophomore QB Melvin Bobo IV drove Waukegan to a first-and-goal situation.

It was there that the Warhawks made the first of four defensive stands that ultimately led to the victory.

■ After one of those stands, Waukegan’s punt was fielded by Manny Nickens, who took it 45 yards to the house to complete the scoring.

The Bulldogs — who play at Antioch on Friday night — had one legit chance to pull the game out, but the drive died on downs in the midfield area.

“We have some talent in the program. We’re a young team. I’m hoping that these guys take it as a lesson learned,’ said Waukegan coach Nick Browder. “We have the potential, but we have to work hard at practice every day. We can’t work hard some days and take other days off. We’re doing too many things that we’re not in a position to do, and here’s what the result is.”

The three dominant players on the field were J.D. Parsell and Trenton Charles of Waukegan, and Arnold Shead of North Chicago.

Shead had seven carries, 49 yards rushing, and four catches for 80 yards and one score.

He also anchored the team’s defense from the safety position.

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