Illinois High School Football: Class 3A Title Game Analysis

By Andy Schmidt

I came into the Class 3A title game figuring that the Aurora Christian Eagles would just come in and roll right through the Tolono Unity Rockets. I was far from right at that assessment for the first half of the late afternoon contest as Mitch Negangard scored twice in the first quarter of play as Tolono Unity jumped out to a quick 12-0 lead before Aurora Christian scored four seconds into the second quarter on a Brandon Mayes touchdown but this is definitely not the game I thought I would see.

The Eagles would score late in the first half and would add a 60-yard touchdown run by Joel Bouganon after a missed field goal and led Aurora Christian to their second straight Class 3A championship with a 42-12 victory. Bouganon would add a second touchdown with less than four minutes to go to seal the win along with a 76-yard interception return touchdown by Mayes. The two teams combined to go for it on eight different fourth down plays in the third quarter as both teams couldn’t move the football with just one successful try.

Tolono Unity had a real chance to win this game after having a 12-0 lead but couldn’t slow down the Aurora Christian offense when they really needed to in the third quarter when the Eagles couldn’t move the ball and after the field goal hit the upright, it seemed like that took the life out of the Rockets. They just weren’t the same the rest of the way as Aurora Christian began to run away with the game with the score not being indictive of how the game really was and ended up finishing the way I saw happening from the start.

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