Football: Loyola welcomes Ireland trip
Loyola's Peter Pujals (6) tries to get past Simeon's Darnell Cockrell (8) during the first quarter of Saturday's game. Loyola Academy beat Simeon, 20-0. | Brian O'Mahoney~for Sun-Times Media
School: Jesuit Dallas
Coach: Brandon Hickman
Last year’s record: 8-3
Key player: OL J.J. Gustafson, 6-foot-6, 270-pound, sr.
Team tidbits: The Rangers play in Class 5A, the largest classification in Texas. ... They own 16 state championships, last winning one in 1999. They won four from 1995-1999.
Updated: October 1, 2012 4:54PM
John Holecek understands that this Friday’s game against Jesuit Dallas will be unlike any other Friday or Saturday game of his career.
That’s why the Loyola coach is treating his team’s trip to Dublin, Ireland, as a welcome diversion.
“It’s high school game,” Holecek said. “This is not win at all costs, and no one’s job is at stake because of this. Our dreams won’t be crushed because we lost. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for all of us. We’re going to be doing a lot of special things over there.”
The Ramblers travel overseas with 1-0 record after beating Simeon 20-0 at home Saturday behind solid defense and rushing touchdowns from senior quarterback Peter Pujals and junior running back Julius Holley.
“I think we played well,” said senior lineman Jack Rushin, who had three of the team’s five sacks. “Zero points speaks for itself. … We didn’t play a perfect game. I think that’s what we aim for every week … to play perfect. But it was a good start for the season.”
Holecek hinted that Loyola might need to play a perfect game — and then some — to beat Jesuit Dallas, a team that features four Big 12 football recruits.
“They will be a great challenge for us,” Holecek said. “In the long haul, it’s going to good for us. If we can compete with them, we will be able to compete with anybody in Illinois.”
Loyola plays Jesuit Dallas at 10 a.m. CST Friday at Donnybrook Stadium.