JACKSONVILLE, Ill. - Illinois College outscored St. Norbert College 20-0 in a pivotal third quarter as the host Blueboys went on to defeat the Green Knights 48-34 in a Midwest Conference game at England Stadium.
St. Norbert, which had allowed just 51 points in its first five games, starts its second consecutive season at 3-3 overall and 3-2 in the MWC. Illinois College improved to 5-1, 4-1.
Illinois College jumped out to a 21-0 lead early in the second quarter. The Blueboys' freshman quarterback, Michael Bates, found Kevin Fuller on touchdown passes of 54 and 24 yards. Those scores were sandwiched around a 10-yard touchdown run on a reverse by Brock Thompson.
The Green Knights scored 21 points in the last 4 minutes 45 seconds of the first half to force a 21-21 halftime tie. Zach Klarkowski scored on a 19-yard touchdown run to finish a drive that was set by by a Josh Vanden Heuvel interception. St. Norbert forced a three-and-out and needed two plays to score again, with Mike Fabrizio finding Joe Green on a 16-yard touchdown pass.
St. Norbert's Justin Johnson then hauled in an interception at the Green Knights' 25-yard line with 1:39 left in the half. The Green Knights navigated 75 yards in nine plays, with Fabrizio hooking up with Logan Krueger on a 12-yard touchdown just 12 seconds before halftime.
Illinois College would wrest the momentum back in the third quarter, taking the opening possession 80 yards in 10 plays, with Bates finding Kevin Wallace for a 10-yard touchdown pass. Late in the third quarter, Illinois College blocked a St. Norbert punt and Bates immediately connected with Thompson for a 32-yard touchdown. The Blueboys then got a three-and-out and benefited from an 11-yard punt, and Cecil Brimmage snapped off a 61-yard touchdown run for a 41-21 lead with 1:37 left in the quarter.
Klarkowski had a pair of 1-yard touchdown runs in the fourth quarter, but Bates' 23-yard touchdown to Matt Williamson gave the host a 48-28 lead and salted the game away.
St. Norbert had 421 yards of total offense. Fabrizio completed 24 of 44 passes for 311 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions. Klarkowski finished with 15 carries for 104 yards and three touchdowns. Green caught seven passes for 127 yards and one touchdown.
Illinois College piled up 549 yards of offense. Bates completed 27 of 47 passes for 347 yards and five touchdowns with three interceptions. Brimmage finished with 125 yards on 12 carries.