Welcome to Catholic Blue Breakdown, a weekly column where I’ll be covering all the action and news in the Chicago Catholic League Blue division.
The Big Story: Loyola Academy 12 – 17 Mount Carmel
Another week, another game that went right down to the wire. Two of the highest rated teams in the state faced off Saturday afternoon in Wilmette as the Ramblers hosted the Caravan. Sure, Mount Carmel may not be in the Catholic League Blue division anymore, but that in no way lessens the rivalry between these two Chicago football powerhouses. It was a game defined by defense, turnovers and costly penalties that ended with Loyola QB Matthew Schiltz coming up just a yard short.
The game began with an early score for Schiltz, who hooked up with Rory Boos on a touchdown pass after Mount Carmel QB Rad Premovic had thrown an interception on the first play from scrimmage. The Schiltz to Boos connection accounted for a majority of the Ramblers offense, with Boos making 13 catches for 138 yards and the one touchdown. Unfortunately for Schiltz, his other favorite receiver in this game was the Caravan defense, throwing 4 interceptions.
He didn’t get a whole lot of help from the running game, which though it looked good in spurts only accumulated 79 yards, 37 of which were from Schiltz himself.
The fourth and final interception gave the Mount Carmel offense (which accumulated only 182 total yards in the game) phenomenal field position, and a short drive ended with Kieran Conjar punching it in from 2 yards out for his second rushing touchdown of the day to give the Caravan a 17-6 lead.
The Ramblers would respond with a rushing TD of their own followed by a defensive stop. However, after several consecutive completions from Schiltz, he was flushed out of the pocket on the last play of the game and was brought down by a group of Caravan defenders just inches short of the goal line.
Without question, it was the Mount Carmel defense that was the difference in this game.
“Mount Carmel is always built on defense, fundamentally sound,” head coach Jordan Lynch said after the game. “The seniors stepped up, it’s all about the seniors.”
Lynch and the Caravan will hope that leadership on defense can lead them to a CCL Green division title. As for the Ramblers, they’ll have to regroup before they begin their CCL Blue schedule next week at Brother Rice.
NOTE: Loyola starting QB Jack Fallon remains sidelined with a separated shoulder, but threw on Thursday for the first time since suffering the injury in preseason. There is no specific timetable for his return, but he is expected to play again this season.
Player of the Game
Rory Boos (LOY): 13 receptions, 138 yards, 1 TD
Around the League
Brother Rice 35 – 3 Fenwick
Montini 27 – 3 Marmion
Providence 35 – 6 St. Laurence
St. Rita 37 – 30 De La Salle
Brother Rice 3-0 (0-0)
Montini 3-0 (0-0)
Providence 3-0 (0-0)
Loyola 2-1 (0-0)
St. Rita 1-2 (0-0)
St. Rita vs. Providence
Brother Rice vs. Loyola
Montini vs. St. Joseph