Class 3A title game: Aurora Christian rolls
Aurora Christian 34, Mount Carmel 7
CHAMPAIGN (AP) — After throwing for 50 touchdowns this season, Aurora Christian's Anthony Maddie used his legs more than his arm in leading the Eagles to a 34-7 win against Mount Carmel on Friday.
Maddie rushed for 192 yards and three touchdowns, as he repeatedly broke for chunks of yards as the defense steeled for a pass. He started the scoring with a 72-yard touchdown run and added runs of 16, 22, 28 and 29 yards. He also threw for 92 yards and two scores, including a 6-yard strike to Cory Windle and a 29-yard completion to Noah Roberts.
"I just tried to take what the defense was giving," he said. "If they play up, we throw. If they play back, we run. The line gave me a lot of time to do both."
Brandon Mayes added 62 yards rushing, with Ryan Suttle gaining 44 yards for the Eagles in the first state title for any Aurora school.
"People asked me what is better, winning a Super Bowl or winning a high school football state championship?" said Aurora Christian coach Don Beebe, who won an NFL title while playing receiver for the Packers. "This is more gratifying because I'm working with kids and watching them achieve what they can achieve.
"The city really wanted this, and fortunately we were able to give it to them."
Nathaniel Wagne rushed for 75 yards and a touchdown, and quarterback Sheldon Hannah had 89 passing yards for the Golden Aces (12-2), along with three interceptions.
Mount Carmel had two opportunities deep in Aurora Christian's territory, including a first and goal at the 5-yard line in the first half, only to be turned away both times.
"It came down to those two scores," Mount Carmel coach Darren Peach said. "We should have been able to punch those in. It makes it a different game if we do, but they did a good job of stopping us.
"We just needed to punch those in."