Like most teams that face the Patriots, New Trier chose to focus on seniorreceiver Cameron Greenduring Saturdays Class 8A quarterfinal game at Stevenson. And while the plan worked for the Trevians early on, it wasn’t quite good enough.
The Northwestern-bound Green tallied seven first-half catches for 99 yards and finished with nine catches for 103 yards and a pair of scores to lift Stevenson into the state semi-finals for the second consecutive year with a 38-10 win over New Trier.
Top-seeded Stevenson (12-0) will travel to No. 2 Glenbard West, a 28-21 winner over Barrington, in the state semi-finals next Saturday.
“This is something that our kids have worked for all year,” said Stevenson coach Bill McNamara. “Glenbard West is a state champion quality football team and we believe we are too – should be fun next week, but we will enjoy this one first.”
Stevenson wasn’t enjoying much of anything early as turnovers and penalties plagued the Patriots throughout much of the first quarter. The most costly was an interception return from New Trier senior Nick Krauskopf that set up a 23 yard Nick Endre field goal for an early 3-0 Trevian lead.
“We felt like we started out fine, but New Trier came out hard and hit us good and you have to give them credit,” Green said.
The Patriots finally got things rolling when they capitalized on one of two interceptions by James Mahoney. This pick set up Stevenson at the New Trier 30 and five plays later Bourbon hit Green for the first of two first half touchdowns.
“They were able to strike quickly after the turnovers and you have to eliminate those in a game like this,” New Trier coach Brian Doll said.
Mahoney’s second interception led to a Bourbon 7-yard run and Stevenson had a 21-3 halftime advantage.
Even when the offense was stalling, the Patriot defense shut down the power running game of New Trier. The Trevians (10-2) managed just 74 yards rushing while turning it over five times.
Stevenson closed the scoring on a 41-yard fumble return touchdown.