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Immaculate Conception captured two goals on the football field Saturday. The halftime recognition of the Knights' 2002 Class 3A state championship team reminded them the big one is still out there.
IC hit Chicago Christian for 199 first-half rushing yards with only a pair of Danny D'Angelo touchdowns to show for it. In the second half the Knights scored 28 unanswered points for a 42-6 victory at Plunkett Field in Elmhurst.
"We know that we should have played a lot better today," said Knights quarterback Demetrius Carr, who ran 3 times for 51 yards with a 38-yard touchdown. "Our coach told us after practice that we're going into the playoffs, everybody's zero-zero. We've just got to keep working hard."
IC (6-3, 4-3) forged a tri-championship in the Suburban Christian Conference Gold Division with Aurora Central Catholic and Wheaton Academy. The sixth win clinched a playoff berth.
Perhaps the 27 members of IC's 2002 team honored at halftime — and late coach Bob Cozzi — revved a motor to produce a running clock on Randy Leslie's second touchdown run of the game with 10:50 left to play.
"It brings back good memories," said Knights coach Bill Krefft, who starred on that 2002 squad. "I'm excited about making a run this year and this year's opportunity to go achieve the same thing."
Chicago Christian (2-7, 1-5) dressed 20 players. Quarterback Christian Bolhuis delivered nice form and a 31-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Campbell with 34 seconds left. Running back-linebacker Wally Findysz showed all-conference stuff and picked off a pass. But as the game wore on, the Chicago Christian Knights wore down.
"It's a great team that we're playing, but the kids came out great," said coach Jim Bolhuis, Christian's father. "It's always great when they come into Game 9 and knowing that the kids didn't cash it in."
Chicago Christian shut out IC for a quarter, but in the second quarter D'Angelo scored on a pair of 21-yard runs, the second following Cody Baker's interception in IC's end zone.
IC linebacker Sam Antes' 38-yard interception return for a third-quarter touchdown opened the floodgates. Carr and Leslie finished brief possessions with scores, and Leslie's 11-yard run made it 42-0.
Leslie and D'Angelo each ran for 103 yards, Antes added 79 and three Knights kicked extra points — Jack Copher, Adam Muellers and even left-footed lineman Adalberto Suarez.
"This gave us a good head of steam heading into the playoffs and showing our opponents what we can do," Antes said. "We've just got to focus on next week, week by week, get to state."