PREP FOOTBALL

Caravan pounds its way to state title game with 274 rushing yards

2013-11-23T20:00:00Z 2013-11-24T03:03:14Z Caravan pounds its way to state title game with 274 rushing yardsJim Inghram St. Louis Post-Dispatch nwitimes.com
November 23, 2013 8:00 pm  • 

EDWARDSVILLE | Mount Carmel probably could have let Edwardsville know it was going to run the ball on every play and it still wouldn't have mattered.

Saturday, in the Class 7A football semifinals, visiting Mount Carmel ran the ball on all 48 offensive plays, scored on five of them and rolled to a 34-7 victory against the Tigers.

"We played our style of football," Caravan senior running back Matt Domer said. "It's basic. We want to pound the ball and tonight we executed well. We felt we didn't have a good performance last week, so we wanted to make sure we did this week."

Domer carried the ball 22 times for 184 yards and three touchdowns, starting with the first time he touched the ball. Senior Jimmy Mickens ran 16 times for 68 yards and one touchdown. Junior Jaquan Buntyn had three carries for 7 yards and scored the Caravan's final touchdown with 26 seconds left in the game. The Caravan finished with 274 rushing yards.

Mount Carmel (12-1), the defending Class 8A state champions, advances to the 7A state championship game Saturday against Lake Zurich. The game is scheduled for 4 p.m. at Northern Illinois University.

Edwardsville (12-1) saw its dream season shattered fast. Junior quarterback Dan Marinko completed his first two passes to senior Isaiah Michl to earn a first down, but that was the highlight of the first half for the Tigers (12-1).

The Caravan forced a punt that was held up by the wind and gave Mount Carmel its first possession at the Edwardsville 49. Domer went up the middle untouched on the first play to put his team up 7-0 with 9:09 to go in the first quarter.

Senior Deontae Brown intercepted a Marinko pass on its next possession and returned it to the Edwardsville 32. A few plays later, it was Mickens who scored from 9 yards out with 6:30 left in the first quarter.

Mount Carmel added another first quarter score when Domer went in, again untouched, from 11 yards with 16.7 seconds left.

The rest was up to the Caravan's imposing defense.

Marinko, who passed and ran for more than a combined 300 yards in the quarterfinals, found no room to run and with the wind affecting his passing in the first and third quarters putting together a drive was especially difficult.

The Caravan defensive line and linebackers also made it tough for Marinko and the Tigers to get on track.

"We knew everything they were going to do," Caravan senior defensive tackle Steve Richardson said. "Nothing they did surprised us."

Richardson (6-0, 290) is a Minnesota commit. He was aided by junior Deandre Greer (6-0, 280) and senior Enoch Smith Jr., (6-3, 265), who is committed to Michigan State.

Linebackers Sam Connolly, Nick Johnson and junior Troy Weissenhofer, averaged 6-foot-1 and 215-pounds, and was physical and fast. It was routinely in the backfield when the Tigers tried to run the ball.

"They're a good field team," Edwardsville coach Matt Miller said. "If we want to compete at this level we have to raise the bar. We had the opportunity to see what (a state champion team) looks like. Now we have to get there."

Marinko closed out his record-setting junior year completing 14 of 38 for 135 yards, two interceptions and a touchdown. The score happened with 1:33 left in the third quarter when Marinko connected with Darius Crochrell on a 1-yard touchdown pass.

Copyright 2014 nwitimes.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Follow The Times

Fan Poll

Loading…

Which school has the area's best girls tennis team?

View Results

Follow your school

Duneland Conference

Chesterton Trojans
News
Crown Point Bulldogs
News
Lake Central Indians
News
LaPorte Slicers
News
Merrillville Pirates
News
Michigan City Wolves
News
Portage Indians
News
Valparaiso Vikings
News

Greater South Shore Conference

Bishop Noll Warriors
News
Calumet Warriors
News
Lake Station Eagles
News
Michigan City Marquette Blazers
News
North Newton Spartans
News
River Forest Ingots
News
Wheeler Bearcats
News
Whiting Oilers
News

Great Lakes Athletic Conference

Clark Pioneers
News
Gavit Gladiators
News
Hammond Wildcats
News
Morton Governors
News

Hoosier Conference

Rensselaer Bombers
News

Northwest Crossroads Conference

Andrean 59ers
News
Griffith Panthers
News
Highland Trojans
News
Hobart Brickies
News
Kankakee Valley Kougars
News
Lowell Red Devils
News
Munster Mustangs
News

Northwestern Conference

Lew Wallace Hornets
News
Roosevelt Panthers
News
West Side Cougars
News

Porter County Conference

Boone Grove Wolves
News
Hanover Central Wildcats
News
Hebron Hawks
News
Kouts Mustangs/Fillies
News
LaCrosse Tigers
News
Morgan Twp. Cherokees
News
South Central Satellites
News
Washington Twp. Senators
News
Westville Blackhawks
News

Independents

Bowman Academy Eagles
News
Calumet Christian
News
Campagna Academy
News
Covenant Christian Knights
News
E.C. Central Cardinals
News
Hammond Baptist Swordsman
News
Luther East Eagles
News

Chicago Catholic League

Mt. Carmel Caravan
News
Seton Academy Sting
News
St. Francis deSales Pioneers
News

Chicago Public League

Washington Minutemen/Minutewomen
News

East Suburban Catholic

Marian Catholic Spartans
News

Metro Suburban

Illiana Christian Vikings
News

River Valley Conference

Beecher Bobcats/Ladycats
News
Illinios Lutheran Chargers
News

South Suburban Blue

T.F. North Meteors
News
T.F. South Rebels
News

Southland Athletic Conference

Bloom Twp. Blazin' Trojans
News
Crete-Monee Warriors
News

SouthWest Suburban Blue

Homewood-Flossmoor Vikings
News

SouthWest Suburban Red

Thornridge Falcons
News
Thornton Wildcats
News
Thornwood Thunderbirds
News

Featured Businesses