BRAIDWOOD – A 55-minute lightning delay forced fans into the Reed-Custer fieldhouse in the middle of the first quarter as the Coal City Coalers kicked their season off against the Comets.
Before the actual lightning slowed things down, it was Coal City making sparks fly in the early going. The Coalers forced a turnover on the first play from scrimmage, and five plays later senior running back Jack Dibble scored to put the Coalers up 7-0.
Reed-Custer responded on the next drive when quarterback Mason Dransfeldt scored on a keeper from 65 yards out to tie the game.
Lightning forced both teams off the field with 6:14 left in the first quarter.
When play resumed, Coal City finished a 14-play 63-yard drive with a five-yard Brad Churnovic TD run that gave them a 13-7 lead.
Two drives later, a Dibble TD made it 20-7 Coalers. However, Reed-Custer would capitalize on a Coaler turnover two drives later and score on a five-yard TD pass from Dransfeldt to running back Austin Hauck to cut the lead to 20-13.
In the second half, the Comets seemed to have momentum stemming from their rallying touchdown late in the first half. They held the Coalers at bay defensively and put several solid drives together. However, any chances of Reed-Custer pulling even were derailed by costly penalties.
With the third quarter ending the same as the second, Coal City seemed determined to put some distance between themselves and their opponent early in the fourth quarter. They rode tailback Jack Dibble to the tune of six carries for 68 yards and capped their nine-play, 77-yard scoring drive with a 37-yard Dibble TD.
It was Dibble's third TD, and that one would prove fatal for Reed-Custer's chance at an upset.
Coal City would go on to win the game by a final score of 27-13, improving to 1-0 on the season.