Despite trailing by only a touchdown at halftime, the Montini Broncos were unable to overcome the stingy Notre Dame defense, along with an injury to quarterback Deontay Bell, and dropped their second contest of the season this past Friday night in Niles. Montini received the opening kickoff but had to punt, and the Dons responded with a 15-play drive that ended with a ten-yard touchdown run by Nick Giamarusti. The game would remain scoreless until early in the second quarter, when Bell lofted a pass that Nate Muersch hauled in for a 40-yard touchdown. The Dons answered right back with a 13-play drive that took six minutes off the clock and ended in a 5-yard run by quarterback Anthony Sayles. After a Montini interception on the ensuing drive, Notre Dame attempted a 37-yard field goal as time expired in the first half. The kick missed wide right, making the halftime score 14-7 in favor of the Dons.

On the opening possession of the second half, Montini’s Jarin Edwards forced and recovered a Notre Dame fumble, but the Broncos gave the ball back to the Dons two plays later on a botched hand-off. Notre Dame responded with another long drive, this time using twelve plays to find the end zone on a 5-yard run by Julian Schurr. With Bell out of the game, the Broncos struggled offensively despite their defense playing well, and a 14-yard run by Schurr with just under three minutes to play made the final score 28-7 in favor of the Dons.

Montini’s offense managed just 170 yards of total offense, with just 66 on the ground. Muersch led the team with 43 yards receiving and a touchdown, while CJ Bufkin rushed for 46 yards on nine carries. Trevor Swier led the defense with fourteen total tackles, while Edwards added nine and a quarterback sack.

In lower-level action, the freshman Broncos were defeated 20-14, while the JV Broncos defeated the Dons 14-6. Montini returns to action this week with a CCL/ESCC crossover game against St. Joseph. Kickoff for the varsity game is set for 7:30 at Elmhurst College’s Langhorst Field. The freshman Broncos will travel to Hinsdale Central for a 9 AM kickoff on Saturday.