Luke Lindsay threw three touchdown passes and the St. Vincent-St. Mary Fighting Irish overcame a slow start to defeat the Woodridge Bulldogs 27-17 in a Division III Region 9 quarterfinal playoff contest Friday night at Woodridge.
The No. 3-seeded Bulldogs came out with a bite to start the game, holding the sixth-seeded Fighting Irish to just five total yards of offense in the opening 12 minutes.
But after taking a 3-0 lead on their first possession, the Bulldogs (9-2), who saw their nine-game winning streak halted, shot themselves in the foot repeatedly the rest of the way and could never recover.
Woodridge turned the ball over four times — three interceptions, one fumble — surrendered the ball on downs late in the first half at the Fighting Irish 20, had a long touchdown pass negated by an offensive pass interference call and had at least six dropped passes.
With the Bulldogs unable to build on their early lead, SVSM started to get things rolling in the second stanza with Lindsay throwing TD strikes to Scott Walter and Jalen Ross to put the visitors ahead 14-3 at the half.
Then, five minutes into the second half, Lindsay hit Zach Olson on a 77-yard scoring pass to break the game open at 21-3.
However, Woodridge quarterback Mason Lydic, who saw his fine career come to an end, rallied his squad by hitting D.J. Snyder with an 18-yard TD pass three minutes later to make it 21-10.
Lydic finished the night 21-of-44 for 320 yards with two TD passes and three interceptions. He nearly had a third TD pass early in fourth period, but a 67-yard scoring pass to Brandon Albright was called back due to offensive pass interference. That would have made it a one-score game with still eight minutes to play.
With a two-score lead from late in the second quarter on, the Fighting Irish (8-3) turned to sophomore tailback Terrance Keyes to churn some clock and that’s what the 190-pound back did. Carrying 32 times on the night, Keyes piled up 122 hard-earned yards on the ground. Lindsay, who left the game for a short time late in the third quarter before returning, added 95 yards himself, including three or four crucial scrambles on third down that extended drives.
Keyes’ six-yard run with five minutes left put the Fighting Irish ahead 27-10.
King Alcardon Sanders’ answered one minute later with a 14-yard TD rush, but a subsequent onside kick was recovered by SVSM’s Erik Taggert sealing the issue.