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Football: Red Devils Blow 21-Point Lead, Lose OT Heartbreaker to OPRF

Huskies running back Jakari Cammon ran for more than 200 yards and the game-winning score in Hinsdale Friday night.

Senior running back Jakari Cammon scored an overtime touchdown and ran in an all-or-nothing two-point conversion to give Oak Park River Forest a thrilling 42-41 road win over Hinsdale Central Friday night in a game that saw the Huskies trail 28-7 in the first quarter.

Cammon finished the game with 206 yards on 17 carries. He scored three touchdowns, but it wasn't all pretty early on for the senior back.

After a 78-yard scoring dash that tied the game at seven on the Huskies' first offensive play from scrimmage, Cammon fumbled on his next two touches—one a kick return and the other a drive-opening run play.

Hinsdale Central (5-2, 2-2) turned both fumbles into one-play touchdown drives, jumping out to a 28-7 lead only eight minutes into the game. 

"My teammates told me, 'Don't worry, we're going to come back and win this game,'" a smiley Cammon said after the game. 

OPRF (5-2, 3-2) cut the Red Devils lead to 31-20 by halftime before scoring two second-half touchdowns to take a 34-31 lead with 10:14 remaining. 

After a clutch 26-yard field goal by senior Hinsdale Central kicker John Andrews tied the game at 34 with 2:03 remaining, the Red Devils defense held down the stretch to send the game to overtime.

Running back Jack Adams ran in a four-yard touchdown on the first possession of overtime for Hinsdale Central, making the score 41-34, but Cammon answered with a 10-yard score on the Huskies' first play. 

OPRF head coach John Hoerster decided to go for a two-point conversion to win the game, and Cammon got the needed three yards on a flattened-out sweep to the left side before he was mobbed by his Huskies teammates.

Hoerster said a coach can only do so much when he decides to go for two.

"As a coach, you call the play, but the kids gotta execute," he said. "And the kids executed."

Hinsdale Central's Adams stayed on the field several minutes after head coach Rich Tarka had broken his postgame talk. 

"It's very upsetting," the senior said of the loss.

Adams, who finished 191 yards and three touchdowns of his own on 30 carries, said it wasn't that the Red Devils played poorly in the second half, it was that OPRF just played better.

"We're going to remember a game like this," he said.

Senior Hinsdale Central passer Brian Owens completed 5 of 16 passes in the game for 93 yards. He threw two touchdowns, both in the first quarter, and one interception. Owens ran for 36 yards on eight carries.

OPRF quarterback Lloyd Yates, a sophomore, completed 7 of 17 passes for 140 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception. He also ran in the go-ahead score for the Huskies in the fourth quarter and finished with 39 rushing yards on 11 carries.

It was the second straight week OPRF came from behind for a one-point win. Last week the Huskies turned a 32-20 fourth-quarter deficit against Lyons Township into a 35-34 win. 

"They did it the week before, so they knew they could do it again," Hoerster said.

Next up for Hinsdale Central is a Friday night road game at Downers Grove North. OPRF hosts Morton the same night.

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