Blame it on Friday the 13th.
During a festival of turnovers (each team had five), Joliet Catholic had enough firepower to capture a 35-20 East Suburban Catholic Conference victory over St. Viator in Joliet.
Joliet Catholic’s Nick Borgra rushed for four touchdowns and Jackson Shanklin’s late interception sealed the victory.
“What did we turn it over today, four or five times?” Joliet Catholic coach Dan Sharp said. “It’s Friday the 13th, I guess. We played so well in the first two games, so we didn’t get bad in a week.”
With Joliet Catholic leading 28-20, Shanklin’s interception in the end zone with 6:06 to play allowed the Hilltoppers to run their record to 3-0, 1-0 in the ESCC. St. Viator fell to 2-1, 0-1.
“I knew there was pressure by our defensive line and I kind of baited him into that throw,” Shanklin said. “Their quarterback was tough.”
St. Viator quarterback Bobby Calmeyn completed 21 of 39 passes for 256 yards and three touchdowns. Through the first three weeks, Calmeyn has thrown for nearly 900 yards and 12 touchdowns.
“Our kids came through with big drives and plays when we needed them,” Sharp said.
During a mistake-filled first half, 34 of the 41 points came off turnovers. A fumble and interception helped pave the way for St. Viator to take a 13-0 lead after a quarter and a 20-14 lead late in the second quarter. Two of JCA’s three scores came via turnovers, the last giving the hosts a 21-20 lead at the half.
Calmeyn found Ben Dickey for a six-yard touchdown that gave St. Viator a 6-0 lead. He later hit Matthew Darling for touchdown passes of 41 and 35 yards during the first half.
Trailing 13-0 after a quarter, Joliet Catholic scored two touchdowns in three minutes and 24 seconds. Borgra’s 33-yard scamper to pay dirt cut the lead to 13-7 with 11:29 left in the second. Kevin Jensen’s interception at midfield set up a three-yard Borgra touchdown, which gave the hosts a 14-13 lead with 8:05 to play in the half.
After Calmeyn’s third touchdown of the first half gave St. Viator a 20-14 lead, Joliet Catholic marched 88 yards to take a 21-20 lead at the half. Mike Ivlow ran eight yards with 13 seconds left in the first half to give the Hilltoppers the lead and momentum heading into the second half.
Borgra’s third touchdown run of the game, this one from five yards out with 8:59 left in the third, bumped the lead to 28-20. It stayed that way until Borgra’s four-yard touchdown run with 1:27 left in the game.