KENOSHA — I started working at the Kenosha News in June of 1995.
Three months later, I covered my first Carthage football game, which just so happened to be the first game with first-year coach Tim Rucks on the sideline for the Red Men.
Former Carthage College football coach Tim Rucks, the second-winningest coach in school history, died Tuesday afternoon. He was 54.
The Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department reported a man was found unconscious in his vehicle in the 300 block of 13th Avenue. Emergency crews responded at 1:24 p.m. Authorities were unsuccessful with live-saving measures. The Sheriff’s Department said the man’s death was believed to be medical related.
After an 11-day break and prior to a huge home showdown against second-ranked Augustana, the Carthage men’s basketball team had an opportunity for a feel-good win on Wednesday afternoon at UW-Oshkosh.
Instead, the Red Men left the Kolf Sports Center feeling sour.
KENOSHA — The Carthage football team kept it close, but couldn’t deny ninth-ranked Wheaton an undefeated regular season.
Johnny Peltz tossed three touchdown passes — two in the second half — in leading the CCIW champion Thunder to a 21-2 victory over the Red Men in Saturday afternoon’s chilly season finale at Art Keller Field. In the last four meetings with Wheaton, the Red Men have scored only two touchdowns.
When: 1 p.m. Saturday
Where: Art Keller Field
KENOSHA — Closing out the season with a colossal upset would do wonders for the Carthage football program.
That is the objective when the Red Men entertain undefeated and nationally ranked Wheaton in the season finale 1 p.m. Saturday at Art Keller Field.
The Carthage football team scored a touchdown just 2 minutes, 36 seconds into the game and added another with 2:43 remaining.
In between, North Park rolled up 36 consecutive points in a surprisingly easy 36-14 CCIW victory over the Red Men on Saturday afternoon at the Holmgren Athletic Complex in Chicago.
When: 1 p.m. Saturday
Where: Hedstrand Field (Holmgren Athletic Complex, Chicago)
It would be understandable if payback was preached in practice this week as the Carthage football team prepared to face North Park.
After all, the Vikings snapped an 89-game College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin losing streak with a 22-20 victory over the visiting Red Men in last year’s meeting.
The Carthage football team scored 21 unanswered points and shut down Millikin in the second half in a 28-22 come-from-behind victory over the Big Blue on Saturday afternoon at Frank M. Lindsay Field in Decatur, Ill.
“Our guys just keep playing,” Carthage coach Mike Yeager said on the postgame show on WLIP-AM 1050. “Sometimes you call them young and dumb. It’s also good in a way because they never know when they’re out of it and we’re not ever out of it.
When: 1 p.m. Saturday
Where: Frank M. Lindsay Field (Decatur, Ill.)
Two years ago, the Carthage football program changed from a spread offense to a pro-style system.
After not having any tight ends or fullbacks on the roster in 2012, the Red Men are starting to get production out of those positions and hope it continues when they play at Millikin in a CCIW matchup 1 p.m. Saturday in Decatur, Ill.
The Carthage football team staged a furious fourth-quarter rally against Augustana in a College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin game on Saturday afternoon at Art Keller Field.
Unfortunately, the hole the Red Men dug themselves in the first three quarters was too big.
When: 1 p.m. Saturday
Where: Art Keller Field
KENOSHA — The Carthage football team will host one of the stingiest teams in the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin when it entertains Augustana 1 p.m. Saturday at Art Keller Field.
The Vikings are coming off a 7-2 victory at Illinois Wesleyan after giving up a combined 37 points in back-to-back losses to Elmhurst (17-10) and 18th-ranked Wheaton (20-13).
Five turnovers didn’t do the Carthage football team any favors in a 53-23 College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin loss to North Central during the Cardinals’ Homecoming on Saturday afternoon at Benedetti-Wherli Stadium in Naperville, Ill.
The Red Men fell to 2-4 overall and 1-2 in the CCIW, while North Central — ranked 12th in the latest NCAA Division III poll — improved to 5-1 and 3-0.
The Carthage football team did not throw away the film from last year’s meeting with North Central.
KENOSHA — A commendable second-half comeback turned into a minor footnote for the Carthage football team on Saturday afternoon.
Overcoming a 21-point halftime deficit, the Red Men had too many miscues after regulation in a deflating 49-42 double-overtime loss to Elmhurst before a Homecoming crowd of 1,950 at Art Keller Field.
When: 1 p.m. Saturday
Where: Art Keller Field
KENOSHA — Except for an untimely injury that briefly kept him off the field, Shawntrel Garner has had an eventful start to his college football career.
The Carthage freshman free safety has three interceptions to go along with six passes defended — both team highs. He also ranks third on the team with 19 tackles (11 solo), including 11/2 for loss.
KENOSHA — In the last 40 years, no Carthage football season compares to 2004.
The Redmen captured their first CCIW championship in more than 30 years and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division III playoffs where they lost to powerhouse Mount Union, 38-20, in a game that they trailed 24-20 early in the fourth quarter.
For the second week in a row, the Carthage College football team killed a nasty streak.
Seven days after ending an overall 11-game skid, the Red Men defeated Illinois Wesleyan 20-10 in Bloomington, Ill., on Saturday. The victory ended Carthage’s 13-game College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin losing streak in the league opener for both teams.
When: 6 p.m. Saturday
Where: Tucci Stadium (Bloomington, Ill.)
KENOSHA — The Carthage football team is hoping that its defense can continue its opportunistic ways when the Red Men begin College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin play against Illinois Wesleyan at 6 p.m. Saturday in Bloomington, Ill.
After recording only 10 interceptions in 2013, the Red Men have picked off six passes in three games, tying them with Illinois Wesleyan and Augustana for the league lead. Free safety Shawntrel Garner has two while cornerbacks Richard Motter and Marcus Hartnett, linebacker Greg Money and safety Zac Pallissard have one apiece.
No. Player Pos. Ht. Wt. Yr. Hometown
1 James Cobbs III WR 5-10 178 Fr. Urbana (Ill.)
2 Derek Bellamy RB 5-7 178 Sr. Sacramento (Calif.)
3 Marquis Hines Jr. WR 6-0 204 Jr. Green Bay
4 Marcus Harnett DB 5-6 141 Sr. Dolton (Ill.)
5 Shawntrel Garner DB 5-10 188 Fr. Milwaukee
6 Richard Motter DB 5-11 184 So. Dayton (Ohio)
7 Curt Doornbos DB 5-9 142 Fr. Hudsonville (Mich.)
8 Tristan Peterson RB 5-11 178 Fr. Crown Point (Ind.)
9 Antwan Morrison DB 6-1 181 Fr. Maywood (Ill.)
10 K.J. Simpson LB 6-0 204 So. Blue Island (Ill.)
11 Gregory Jinks DB 5-7 156 Fr. New Orleans (La.)
12 Dimetri Chatman WR 5-8 152 Fr. Elkhart (Ind.)
13 Brock Kap WR 5-10 186 So. South Ogden (Utah)
14 Nick Anzelmo QB 6-1 207 So. Schaumburg (Ill.)
15 Niko Messino WR 5-10 175 Fr. Plainfield (Ill.)
16 Ethan Olles QB 6-2 186 So. Palatine (Ill.)
17 Jamahl Wright WR 5-10 165 Jr. Brookfield
18 Andrew Miller DB 5-9 178 Sr. Sherrard (Ill.)
19 Bobby Suchecki QB 6-2 218 Fr. Rolling Meadows (Ill.)
20 Brandon Sullivan DL 5-8 216 Jr. Rockford (Ill.)
21 Stewart Cunningham LB 5-10 209 Jr. Chicago (Ill.)
22 Zac Pallissard DB 5-11 186 Sr. Bourbonnais (Ill.)
23 Thomas Brannen K/P 6-2 206 Jr. Indian Head Park (Ill.)
24 Tyler Walsh RB 5-8 181 Fr. Oswego (Ill.)
25 James Sowa DB 6-0 160 Jr. Roselle (Ill.)
26 Sam Calderaro RB 5-7 178 Jr. McHenry (Ill.)
29 Carlos Singleton Jr. WR 5-6 148 So. Chicago (Ill.)
30 Jonnie Evans Jr. RB 5-8 163 So. Kankakee (Ill.)
33 Will Fairchild LB 5-11 198 Jr. Land O’ Lakes (Fla.)
34 Terrance Allen DL 6-4 219 Jr. Woodridge (Ill.)
35 Dan Riddle DB 6-0 191 So. Palatine (Ill.)
36 Eddie Cardenas LB 5-11 217 Fr. Arlington Heights (Ill.)
38 Jesse Neely LB 6-3 188 So. Las Vegas (Nev.)
39 Billy Buhle DB 5-6 131 Fr. Wheaton (Ill.)
40 Greg Money LB 5-10 212 So. Palatine (Ill.)
41 Darquise Holman LB 5-9 177 Fr. Peoria (Ill.)
42 Rocco Zaccaro LB 5-10 184 Jr. Addison (Ill.)
43 Steve Hansen LS 5-10 181 Fr. Batavia (Ill.)
44 Mark Clark RB 5-7 227 Jr. Downers Grove (Ill.)
45 Fred McCann P 6-2 178 So. Caledonia
46 Evan Shortreed LB 6-0 234 Fr. Janesville
47 DeMarco Johnson DL 5-10 243 Fr. Downers Grove (Ill.)
48 Leo Arvanitakis LB 5-10 226 Fr. Downers Grove (Ill.)
49 Seth McDorman DT 6-1 236 So. Bourbonnais (Ill.)
51 Sean Oroni LB 5-8 198 Jr. Batavia (Ill.)
54 Michael Marek OL 5-11 245 Fr. Skokie (Ill.)
57 Pete Laughlin DL 6-1 216 Fr. Oswego (Ill.)
62 Danny Booth OL 6-1 301 Jr. Berwyn (Ill.)
64 Zak Georgitsis OL 5-11 268 Fr. Lombard (Ill.)
65 Scott Hoffmann OL 6-1 297 Fr. Hoffman Estates (Ill.)
66 Joe Godlevske OL 6-0 257 Fr. Indianapolis (Ind.)
67 Jimmy Penzel OL 6-2 244 So. Burlington
69 Dan Kish OL 6-3 272 Jr. Addison (Ill.)
70 Nick Wolf OL 6-1 320 So. Maineville (Ohio)
71 Rocco Rasnic OL 6-2 255 So. Woodridge (Ill.)
73 Ryan Belden OL 6-2 235 Fr. Avon (Ind.)
74 Jacob Alten OL 5-10 241 Jr. Loveland (Ohio)
76 Kevin Blank OL 5-11 263 Jr. Neenah
77 Gus Eisele DL 6-2 342 Fr. Poplar Grove (Ill.)
78 Jalen Reams OL 6-0 281 Fr. Downers Grove (Ill.)
79 Isaiah Trussell OL 6-3 314 Fr. Racine
81 Ethan Chester TE 6-4 210 Fr. Lemont (Ill.)
82 Malcom Levy WR 5-8 161 Fr. Montgomery (Ill.)
83 Tyndale Dahnweih WR 6-0 195 Fr. Arlington Heights (Ill.)
84 Ryan Tuma WR 5-8 156 Fr. Schaumburg (Ill.)
85 Brendan Dix TE 6-1 210 Jr. Oak Lawn (Ill.)
86 Jon Gomulka TE 6-2 230 So. Lake Villa (Ill.)
87 Robert Anderson TE 6-0 226 Sr. Chicago (Ill.)
88 Ryan Dalton WR 6-1 179 Fr. Lockport (Ill.)
89 Javier Rhoades TE 6-1 235 So. Chicago (Ill.)
90 Gus Shipp DL 6-1 200 Fr. Northbrook (Ill.)
91 Lucas Kailing LB 6-2 244 Fr. Sheboygan
92 David Gahgan DL 6-0 242 Sr. Ingleside (Ill.)
93 Alex Tinkoff P 5-11 209 So. Des Plaines (Ill.)
96 Zach Rosillo DL 5-10 245 Fr. Imlay City (Mich.)
98 Elliott Stahler K/P 6-2 179 Jr. Santa Monica (Calif.)
Cameron Ayres DB 6-0 190 Fr. Antioch (Ill.)
Agustin Bahena LB 5-10 204 Fr. Round Lake (Ill.)
Tom Benko DB 5-9 195 Fr. Racine
Tony Block Jr. WR 6-0 210 So. Willowbrook (Ill.)
Nick Boelte DL 6-0 182 Fr. Rockton (Ill.)
Colin Boie DL 6-0 257 Fr. River Forest (Ill.)
Demetrios Bralis RB 5-10 201 Fr. Plainfield (Ill.)
Diontay Brown LB 5-11 191 Fr. Joliet (Ill.)
Ryan Casey QB 6-2 191 So. Kenosha
Evan Cherney LB 6-0 194 Fr. Naperville (Ill.)
Jonathan Cochrane DB 5-9 168 Fr. Smithville (Mo.)
Camden Cotter OL 6-3 258 Fr. South Elgin (Ill.)
Gabe Cotton WR 5-10 180 So. Vernon Hills (Ill.)
Collin Cousins WR 6-0 162 Fr. Sturtevant
Isaac DeGroat TE 6-3 200 Fr. Blaine (Minn.)
Luke Durbin DL 5-11 238 Fr. Harwood Heights (Ill.)
Dan Figueroa RB 5-7 210 So. Kenosha
Darrin Funches Jr. DB 5-7 163 Fr. Merrillville (Ind.)
Nicholas Gamble DL 6-0 297 Fr. Mentone (Ind.)
Nick Ganzke DB 5-11 186 Fr. New Berlin
Brian Graham TE 6-6 226 Jr. Downers Grove (Ill.)
Alan Hall OL 5-10 262 Fr. Calumet City (Ill.)
Antonio Johnson Jr. WR 5-10 170 Fr. Dolton (Ill.)
Tyler Kirkeeng OL 6-0 259 Fr. Burlington
Evan Kurtz RB 6-1 210 Fr. South Elgin (Ill.)
Alvin Lacy WR 5-9 165 Fr. Park Forest (Ill.)
Erwin Lane DL 5-8 253 Fr. Glen Ellyn (Ill.)
Conor Lee DB 5-8 181 So. South Elgin (Ill.)
Jake Lintvelt QB 5-9 203 Fr. Oak Park (Ill.)
Ricardo Mancilla DB 5-11 165 Fr. Chicago (Ill.)
Khali Mitchell LB 6-1 205 Fr. Calumet Park (Ill.)
Kyle Muss OL 5-9 301 Jr. Park Ridge (Ill.)
Dan Olson OL 5-11 328 Fr. Lake Mills
Joey Pausa DB 5-9 143 Fr. Island Lake (Ill.)
Dan Pauscher DL 6-0 225 Fr. Elk Grove (Ill.)
A.J. Phillips DL 6-4 200 Fr. Minooka (Ill.)
Jason Piles LS 6-0 218 Fr. Chesterfield (Mo.)
Patrick Purvin DL 6-4 272 Fr. Ingleside (Ill.)
Adrian Reilly LB 5-11 170 Fr. Fitchburg
Ian Rennels DB 5-11 178 Fr. Yorkville (Ill.)
Tommy Riggin DL 5-10 263 Fr. Gurnee (Ill.)
Joey Rodgers DB 5-10 169 Fr. Arlington Heights (Ill.)
Caleb Rogers-Purham DL 5-11 277 Fr. Romeoville (Ill.)
Niko Saladino WR 5-11 161 Fr. Wyoming (Mich.)
Justin Sanchez OL 5-10 302 Fr. Schaumburg (Ill.)
Steven Sanz RB 5-8 203 Fr. Northfield (Ill.)
Gabe Schaefer-Space DB 5-11 168 Fr. Middleville (Mich.)
Kyle Stevens DL 6-0 242 Fr. Chicago (Ill.)
Jake Sutter QB 6-0 174 So. Lake Geneva
London Townsend RB 5-11 172 So. Milwaukee
Herbert Triplett WR 5-8 162 So. Joliet (Ill.)
Torrie Tyson WR 5-10 176 Fr. Kenosha
Jonathan Walker DB 5-6 144 Fr. New Orleans (La.)
Alec Weitzer OL 6-1 288 Fr. New Berlin
Denzel Wilson DL 5-11 199 Fr. Kankakee (Ill.)
Tyran Winston LB 5-8 200 Fr. Chicago (Ill.)
Anthony Woods WR 5-6 153 Fr. Plainfield (Ill.)
Head coach — Mike Yeager, second season; Assistant coaches—Jared Elliott (co-offensive coordinator/quarterbacks), Dustin Hass (specials teams coordinator/defensive backs), Joe Hensel (defensive line), Kyle Rooker (offensive coordinator/offensive line); Part-time assistant coach—Eric Kosterman (tight ends); Graduate assistant coaches—Shawn Chaffee (defensive tackles), Cory Connolly (safeties), Todd Taylor (running backs), Terrance Turner (wide receivers).
Sept. 6 — St. Norbert 25, Carthage 13
Sept. 13 — Adrian (Mich.) 40, Carthage 14
Sept. 27 — Carthage 21, Lakeland 14
Oct. 4 — Carthage 20, Illinois Wesleyan 10
Oct. 11 — Elmhurst 49, Carthage 42 (2OT)
Oct. 18 — North Central 53, Carthage 23
Oct. 25 — Augustana 31, Carthage 26
Nov. 1 — Carthage 28, Millikin 22
Nov. 8 — North Park 36, Carthage 14
Nov. 15 — Wheaton 21, Carthage 2