FINAL: Batavia Defeats Geneva 35-21
The Bulldogs put up five touchdowns, but the Vikings scored on some 80-yard runs in another high-energy game for the history books.
After 100 years, the rivalry is stronger than ever.
Batavia wowed their home crowd tonight with a 35-21 victory over Geneva to start Upstate Eight River Division conference play.
“It felt great to stay on top of the rivalry,” Batavia Coach Dennis Piron told Patch after the game. "Geneva always plays hard, they're also well-coached."
Batavia had five touchdowns, two kicks and a successful two-point conversion. Junior running backs Anthony Thielk and Anthony Scaccia each had two touchdowns, in that order. Senior wide receiver Zach Strittmatter caught for a touchdown and completed the two-point conversion after Thielk touchdown #2 in the first-half of the game.
Geneva fought through the field of Bulldogs at Batavia High School to eventually put points on the board from two 80 yard-plus touchdown runs. One of the runs was from senior Bobby Hess, the other from senior Luke Cella. Hess also ran 4 yards in the Viking's first touchdown of the night, topped off with an extra-point kick.
The game was not without its casualties. Batavia senior lineman Marquise Jenkins took down Geneva sophomore quarterback Daniel Santacaterina.
Santacaterina said in an online message after the game that he broke his collarbone.
With 10:05 left in the first quarter, Batavia scored early with a 23-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Micah Coffey to senior wide receiver Zach Strittmatter. The kick was good from senior Daniel Albrecht.
Junior Anthony Thielk then completed two touchdowns for the Dogs, followed by a two-point conversion from Strittmatter to put it at 21-0.
Then it was Geneva's turn to shine.
Vikings senior Bobby Hess ran it in, followed by a good kick. Hess later nabbed the ball on a Batavia drive and went on an 89-yard TD run. The Kevin Dunlop kick was good to inch towards Batavia 21-14.
Junior running back Anthony Scaccia completed a touchdown, topped off with another Albrecht kick to close the first half at Batavia 28-14.
Batavia had possession to start the third quarter. Scaccia took in his second touchdown from 13 yards and the kick was good.
Geneva then became shaken up during its drive with the Santacaterina hit from Jenkins. He would sit out the rest of the game with junior T.J. Miller stepping in.
Miller wouldn't throw for any TDs, but senior Luke Cella shocked the stadium with another Vikings touchdown run. This time they went 80 yards to put the score at 35-21.
“I'm disappointed about the kickoff return,” Piron said. “I thought we should have shut them out … We have to clean up a few things as time goes.”
Who'll win next year? It's anyone's guess. One thing's for sure, the Vikings and Bulldogs know how to play ball, especially against each other.
"In our youth camps, we talk to the players about the rivalry," Piron said. "From the time you're in kindergarten, you know that's the team you wanna beat. I'm very happy that we came out 3-0. Now we gotta make sure we come out every single week with the same intensity we came out with tonight."
The Bulldogs take on Streamwood next Friday, Sept. 14 for the 2012 Batavia Homecoming game. See you there!
Season So Far
Batavia (2-0) nonconference, (1-0) conference
Aug. 24 Batavia 42, Glenbard North 41
Aug. 31 Batavia 30, Plainfield East 14
Sept. 7 Batavia 35, Geneva 21