As the clock ticked down to zero in the primary quarter of a scoreless playoff sport, it appeared like Providence Catholic could be content material to let time run out and regroup to begin the second quarter.
Lucas Proudfoot fired a 58-yard landing cross at junior Alex Gibson in the final sport of the primary quarter. That gave the No. 13-seeded Celtics the momentum they wanted and their protection did the remaining in a 17-3 win over No. 4-seeded Wheaton Academy in a Class 4A playoff sport in the opening spherical on Friday night time.
Providence (6-4) will host Joliet Catholic Academy (8-2), a 43-6 winner over Phillips (5-5), in a second-round matchup subsequent week. The Warriors (8-2) had been eradicated in the primary spherical after having their most profitable common season in college historical past.
“I pushed the guys and told them, ‘Let’s go,'” Proudfoot stated of landing play late in the primary quarter. “I wanted to score. It was a huge momentum changer. Alex made a great adjustment to the ball and brought it in.”
That capped an 8-play drive for 96 yards that got here because the Celtics’ protection got here up with the primary of three goal-line stands. Proudfoot, a senior who completed 7 of 10 passes for 139 yards, had intercepted his first cross of the night time from sophomore Giovanni Spinelli on the Providence 35-yard line.
Wheaton Academy moved to a third-and-goal on the 1-yard line however misplaced a yard after which fumbled in fourth.
“The defense got on the clutch,” Proudfoot stated. “I knew I made a mistake (on interception) but they were there to support me.[The Warriors]were averaging over 40 points per game (they beat their opponents 384-66) and we were holding them to 3.”
This was helped by one other goal-line stand halfway via the second quarter. This time, the Celtics hit Wheaton Academy again from a first-and-goal state of affairs on the 1-yard line. The Warriors concerted a 23-yard subject aim from senior Brandon Hoekstra at 5:24 in the primary half to make it 7-3.
Some of the standouts on Providence’s protection had been seniors Billy Jones, Alex Lubinski, Mason Santiago and sophomore Jayden Mikulski. Sophomore Gavin Hagen added an interception for the Celtics.
“Our defense just does a great job flying to the ball and playing hard,” stated Tyler Plantz, Providence’s freshman coach. “It was only a nice crew effort and that is the tradition, the assumption in this crew.
“It was a good team win and I can’t be prouder of everyone in defence.”
Providence tried to prolong the lead late in the primary half however had to recall a landing run for unlawful dealing with. The Celtics settled for a 23-yard subject aim from freshman Sean Sample with 16 seconds left in the second quarter to lead 10-3 at halftime.
After a brief punt and private foul penalty on Wheaton Academy, the Celtics started their first possession of the second half on the Warriors 18. Three video games later, Proudfoot hit from the one and Providence led 17-3 with 9-18 to go in the third Quarter.
“I just trust my center, Sean Dee,” Proudfoot stated of the senior. “I’m just really proud of the boys, it’s a huge win.”
Junior working again Jamari Tribett completed with 26 carries for 146 yards for the Celtics.
“It’s always good to step on the gas on the offensive,” stated Plantz. “It was great to see how Lucas (at the end of the first quarter) made that game and how hard he worked to lead offense.”
Wheaton Academy nonetheless had a shot on the finish of the third quarter. But fourth and three from Providence’s 5-yard line, senior quarterback Belay Brummel was pressed by Jones and threw an incomplete cross. Brummel completed 14 of 25 with an interception for 175 yards.
Historically, the Warriors made their sixth playoff look, however their second straight and fifth since 2015. They went into the sport with two playoff mixture wins.
On the opposite hand, Providence made their thirty eighth postseason look, however their first since 2019. The Celtics competed with 89 playoff wins, 10 state championships and three runners-up titles.
“We’re proud to be able to come in and be in the same conversation as a famous program like Providence,” stated Jim Johanik, Wheaton Academy coach. “But we should always have scored three touchdowns. We did not take our probabilities.
“There was a size imbalance between us and them, but we stuck with them. At the end of the day there is a lot to be proud of.”
In spherical two of the playoffs, two conventional packages meet once more. The Celtics hosted JCA in a convention sport on September 16, shedding 49-41. They’ll get a second likelihood subsequent weekend.
“We’re excited,” Plantz stated of the sport towards the Hilltoppers. “The guys over there are doing a great job and it’s one of the greatest matchups in all of high school football. It will be fun.”