Joliet Catholic (7-1, 5-1) outscored Notre Dame (6-2, 3-2) 23-0 in the second half to break away from a 14-14 tie and clinch the East Suburban Catholic title.
Notre Dame mounted a 6 1/2-minute drive to open the third quarter but came up empty on a missed field goal. Joliet Catholic’s Mike Ivlow then averted disaster when he got off a 21-yard punt after chasing down a high snap. A couple of long Ivlow runs later, and the Hilltoppers were in command.
Besides his save on the high punt snap, Ivlow rushed for 299 yards in 29 carries and scored four touchdowns.
Joliet Catholic rushed for 349 yards and totaled 380. Notre Dame rushed for 197 and Quarterback Ryan Greene completed 12-of-26 passes for 153 yards.
“It was nerve-racking. I was freaking out.” — Ivlow, on what he felt when the punt snap sailed over his head.