Great Blocking for Greenfield, Gilroy Looks Good, Sacco Shines

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Great blocking downfield on the first play of the game, a sack as part of a rejuvenated performance, and a strong run in the second half all make this week’s edition of Check the Tape.

On the Cardinals’ first play from scrimmage, senior running back Ethan Greenfield ran 64 yards. It was only possible thanks to great blocking not only from the offensive line, but particularly down field from a collection of wide receivers and even quarterback Luke Lehnen.

“Any time play one can be explosive for you, you’ll take it,” said Spencer. “A big focus this week was our perimeter blocking by our receivers, especially with guys being out. And you saw Jacob Paradee and Rory Hills were doing a great job down field. Of course our offensive line did a great job in the box and a great job springing this thing, and then Ethan and his vision and ability to break tackles go this thing going. But you’ll take that on play one any time you can get it right?”

Coming off an all-conference season, it’s been a slower start to this year for senior defensive end Dan Gilroy. But he looked like his old self on Saturday, particularly on his one sack of the game where he burst around the edge and chased down the quarterback.

“Yeah Danny looked like Danny here,” Spencer said of Gilroy’s second sack of the season. “Each week we’ve been able to get him more reps, more practice time and more game time. It seems like he’s starting to play his best football when we need him to as we go down the stretch because we’re gonna need him this weekend for sure.”

Finally, Cardinals fans got a window into the future of the North Central rushing attack with a 34-yard run by Joe Sacco, who showed impressive strength for a relatively smaller running back.

“We’ve talked before about how we have a deep running back room, and Joe Sacco is part of that,” said Spencer. “Joe was a phenomenal high school player, he was the player of the year in that league and never came off the football field at St. Ed’s. He’s extremely strong for his stature, he’s one of the fastest football players we have on the field each week. But that was great to see, and he’ll certainly be somebody that down the road we’ll continue to use.”