Michael Bumpus, St. Francis clinch playoff bid with blowout win at Riverside-Brookfield
St. Francis two-way starter Michael Bumpus had his football family ties torn in a great way Friday at Riverside-Brookfield.
After the Spartans’ impressive 59-13 Metro Suburban Blue victory, the 6-foot-3 junior certainly was excited as the right tackle for the offensive line, which is coached by his father, Mike.
Linebacker Michael was even more elated about the defense allowing just one touchdown.
“I don’t want to get in trouble, especially because my dad’s the offensive line coach, but I think I’ve got to go with defense (tonight),” Bumpus said.
“The offense’s gotten the credit they deserve every game but I think the defense really steps up, showing that we’ve got great coaches and great players.”
The Spartans (6-1) clinched consecutive playoff berths for the first time since 2013-14 and remained tied for first in conference at 4-0 with IC Catholic Prep (7-0).
The co-leaders meet next Friday in Wheaton.
“We’re excited. It’ll be a great game,” said St. Francis head coach Bob McMillen, who played at ICCP.
“We’re a special team this year. We’re playing against a good team, a back-to-back-to-back state champion. We want to see where we are and how we compete against the best.”
The Spartans have scored at least 40 points every game. Senior receiver Jake Tangorra led Friday’s output with four TDs and senior running back Ben Radel rushed for two.
The defense allowed just one score for the fifth time to go with three shutouts. The Bulldogs (5-2, 2-2) entered Friday scoring at least 25 points every game and 26 twice.
St. Francis scored 44 unanswered points after R-B closed to 15-6 6:15 before halftime on a 10-yard halfback option TD pass from Luke Gentile to Nic Novak.
It all starts with the offensive line of center TJ McMillen, Bob’s freshman son, senior Joey Mayor and junior Ryan Holleman at guard and senior Connor Schmidt and Bumpus at tackle.
The elder Bumpus played at Boston College, missing the final season of longtime professional quarterback Doug Flutie by one year but playing with Flutie’s brother Darren.
“My dad’s a great guy to be under. He understands. He played the game,” Bumpus said. “He’s done a good job just kind of staying off my case, letting other coaches coach me. That’s helped, especially since coaching as a youth.”Tangorra had 20-, 59- and 10-yard TD receptions in the first half from junior quarterback Tommy Rittenhouse, who already has 23 passing TDs. Tangorra’s exciting 91-yard punt return TD with 9:27 left for a 52-6 lead initiated the 40-point-margin running clock.
“This is the first year I’ve ever done punt returning and that’s definitely the longest punt return I’ve had in my life,” said Tangorra, who doubled his 2019 TD total to eight.
“(Scoring 4 TDs) feels good obviously. I have to give it to my team. Anyone could have gotten those four touchdowns. All of our receivers are talented. We’re all open. It’s just who (Rittenhouse) finds first, basically.”
Radel’s TD runs of 14 and 57 yards give him a team-best 12. Junior Jackson Gerard kicked a 39-yard field goal in the third quarter, and junior Michael D’Orazio and senior quarterback Michael Baffa had and 3- and 65–yard rushing TDs in the fourth.
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