GALESBURG, Illinois - The Knox Prairie Fire football team was defeated at home today by the Lake Forest Foresters, losing by a final score of 41-10. After today’s loss, Knox’s record stands at 0-2, with both losses coming in conference play.
The first half got off to a rather inauspicious start for the Prairie Fire, with a long, steady march down the field that was powered by a series of short runs culminating in an unfortunate interception by Knox. Given excellent field position on the return, the Foresters cashed in and scored another quick first quarter touchdown, setting them on a high-scoring path. After punting, Knox’s defense stopped Lake Forest on 4th down, only to fumble the ball on their own 3 yard line, allowing the Foresters to quickly score again. Another interception by Knox resulted in yet another touchdown by Lake Forest in the first quarter, and only a field goal in the second quarter by Preston Lade prevented Knox from entering halftime scoreless. Knox’s defense came out of halftime with a newfound intensity, stymying the Lake Forest offense while flying all over the field to make tackles. Forced fumbles by both Daniel Rodriguez and Kendall Ballman gave the Prairie Fire both momentum and excellent field position, as well. The Prairie Fire offense, however, struggled to effectively move the ball against the Foresters, with no points coming in the third quarter. A long drive, both facilitated and finished by Derrick Jackson, gave Knox their first touchdown of the day, but it was not enough to overcome the large lead enjoyed by Lake Forest.
"No one enjoys losing, but talking to our team we have to disengage from the result, learn from it, and put ourselves back into the process," said head coach Aaron Willits. "We are growing on a daily basis. With every day comes new teachable moments. We have to continue to take steps to eliminate the bad football and maximize the quality execution. Lake Forest is a good football program and the margin for error shrinks against them."
The Prairie Fire look to earn their first win of the season on October 2 when they travel to play the University of Chicago at 2:00 p.m.