After his team’s tough loss to rival Deerfield one week ago, Highland Park football coach Anthony Kopp said the Giants are going to need to learn how to win close games, predicting they’d be in plenty this season.
The Giants must be quick learners, because seven days later they bested visiting Rolling Meadows by scoring two fourth-quarter touchdowns to win the shootout 42-35 on Friday, Sept. 8, at Wolters Field.
Running back Nikko Rosenbloom and quarterback David Finfer rushed for scores in the final period to give Highland Park a two-score lead. The Mustangs added a late TD but it was too little too late.
Finfer’s fourth-quarter score capped a prolific evening for the senior quarterback. Finfer completed 26 of 37 passes for more than 340 yards and two touchdowns. He ran for 140 more yards with two more scores.
Rosenbloom caught nine passes for 81 yards and a touchdown, while also scoring the rushing TD. Wide receiver Johnny Walker continued his impressive senior season with seven catches for 111 yards to go with a 99-yard kick return touchdown. Senior wideout Nick Blumer finished six catches for 74 yards and a touchdown.
Rolling Meadows (1-2) took control of the matchup early, scoring 14 unanswered to start the contest.
A Finfer-to-Rosenbloom connection got Highland Park on the board, but the Mustangs responded with another score to keep their distance — but not for long. Walker followed with his kickoff return touchdown, and Finfer found Blumer for a score before halftime, making the score 21-20 Mustangs.
The Giants took their first lead with a third-quarter safety, and added a Finfer scoring run to make it 28-21.
Rolling Meadows scored late in the third quarter to tie the ballgame, but Highland Park responded with the first two scores in the fourth quarter to put the game away.
The Giants will head on the road for Week 4, traveling to Hoffman Estates to play Conant at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14.
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