Willowbrook's journey ends in semifinals

  • Willowbrook's Mohammad Ayesh (9) runs after intercepting a pass by Mt.Carmel's Justin Lynch (1) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Mohammad Ayesh (9) runs after intercepting a pass by Mt.Carmel's Justin Lynch (1) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's head coach Nick Hildreth talks to his team after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel after a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's head coach Nick Hildreth talks to his team after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel after a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's head coach Nick Hildreth talks to his team after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel after a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's head coach Nick Hildreth talks to his team after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel after a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook breaks their last huddle of the season after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel in a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook breaks their last huddle of the season after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel in a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook players console one another after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel in a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook players console one another after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel in a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Nick Mabutas (7) tackles Mt.Carmel's Kenenna Odeluga (36) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Nick Mabutas (7) tackles Mt.Carmel's Kenenna Odeluga (36) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Mt.Carmel's Kenenna Odeluga (36) tackles Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) for a loss during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Mt.Carmel's Kenenna Odeluga (36) tackles Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) for a loss during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Izabelle Manning (96) attempts to kick a point after against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Izabelle Manning (96) attempts to kick a point after against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) reacts after scoring a touchdown against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) reacts after scoring a touchdown against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper and leaps into the end zone for a touchdown against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper and leaps into the end zone for a touchdown against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Enrique Cruz (70) and Brian Dilger (66) attempt to block a field goal attempt by Mt.Carmel's Julian Patino (17) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Enrique Cruz (70) and Brian Dilger (66) attempt to block a field goal attempt by Mt.Carmel's Julian Patino (17) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Deandre Holliday (1) attempts to catch a pass which was deflected by Mt.Carmel's Thanasi Chioros (12) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Deandre Holliday (1) attempts to catch a pass which was deflected by Mt.Carmel's Thanasi Chioros (12) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Everett Stubblefield (3) runs after the catch against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Everett Stubblefield (3) runs after the catch against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Mt.Carmel's defensive line battles Willowbrook's offensive line during a goal line play in a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Mt.Carmel's defensive line battles Willowbrook's offensive line during a goal line play in a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) throws a pass against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) throws a pass against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) stands in the pocket against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) stands in the pocket against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) carries the ball on a keeper against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook fans cheer on their team during a 7A semifinal football game against Mt.Carmel at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook fans cheer on their team during a 7A semifinal football game against Mt.Carmel at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

  • Willowbrook's Alessio Battaglia (4) runs after the catch against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019

    Willowbrook's Alessio Battaglia (4) runs after the catch against Mt.Carmel during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 Sean King for the Daily Herald

 
 
Updated 11/23/2019 6:53 PM

Hand bloodied, body battered.

Sam Tumilty zigged and he zagged, but everywhere he found a Mt. Carmel defender.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

In front of an overflow crowd in Villa Park, Willowbrook couldn't get its vaunted offense going and fell 27-6 to the Caravan in Saturday's Class 7A semifinal football game.

While the No. 5 Warriors (12-1) saw their best season since 1975 come to an end, the top-seeded Caravan (13-0) advanced to next week's title game to face No. 2 Nazareth (13-0), a winner over Rolling Meadows.

"Our guys battled out there and we didn't accomplish our goals," Tumilty said. "But it's the journey, not the destination. It was a great game. Our team has been grinding since summer and we all believed in each other."

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Willowbrook's senior quarterback managed 75 rushing yards and 151 passing yards, scoring his team's lone touchdown to narrow the margin to 13-6 early in the second quarter. But Tumilty was also sacked five times and the Caravan defense intercepted him twice in the second half.

With Mt. Carmel leading 13-6 at halftime, a pair of third-quarter touchdowns put the game out of reach. Caravan running back Kenenna Odeluga, who carried the ball 27 times for 147 yards, scored his second touchdown from 18 yards out with under a minute to play in the third quarter to make it a three-score game.

"In the third quarter I was getting 5, 6, 7 yards," Odeluga said. "We were really wearing them down, but kudos to them. They're a tough team."

Willowbrook's Kartier Perry (14) consoles  Mohammad Ayesh (9) after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel in a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019
Willowbrook's Kartier Perry (14) consoles Mohammad Ayesh (9) after a season ending loss to Mt.Carmel in a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 - Sean King for the Daily Herald
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

A monstrous swing occurred on the first two series of the game. The Warriors were stuffed on fourth-and-goal at the 1, and on the very next play Caravan quarterback Justin Lynch found Jaali Parker, who broke an initial tackle, for a 99-yard touchdown.

It didn't get any better for the Warriors after Odeluga burst in from 3 yards out to boost the Caravan lead to 13-0 on the first play of the second quarter.

The Warriors kept fighting, scoring on their next possession. The drive was keyed by a 51-yard pass from Tumilty to Everett Stubblefield and capped by Tumilty's 7-yard dash to the end zone.

Willowbrook barely had the ball in the third quarter, though, and the deficit grew. Two more red-zone trips yielded no points for the Warriors.

"We all played hard and to the best of our ability," said Stubblefield, who had 5 catches for 68 yards. "We just couldn't pull it through. It's been a good journey. We got over that hump and made it to the semifinals."

Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) upends Mt.Carmel's Justin Lynch (1) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019
Willowbrook's Sam Tumilty (6) upends Mt.Carmel's Justin Lynch (1) during a 7A semifinal football game at Willowbrook High School in Villa Park, IL on Saturday, November 23, 2019 - Sean King for the Daily Herald

Lynch, who ran for 55 yards and threw for 208, scored on a 1-yard third-quarter run to push the Caravan lead to 20-6.

"We didn't meet expectation, and that's playing in a state championship game," said Warriors coach Nick Hildreth, whose team advanced to the semifinals for the first time in 44 years. "That's different from what it was when (the seniors) were freshmen. They've created a situation where this is what the expectation is, and it wasn't like that when they came in here. They've managed to change that."

Twitter: @kevin_schmit

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