By Charlie Fitzgerald ‘20

As kids, football players grew up watching legendary games like the ‘ice bowl’ or the ‘fog bowl’. The atmosphere and adversities that come with extreme weather just puts the cherry on top of epic football matchups.

In the first round of the playoffs, our very own Crusaders got to indulge on this childhood dream. On Friday, the Crusaders played the Bartlett Hawks in a self-proclaimed “mud bowl” where it snowed and temperatures reached below freezing.

Senior defensive end Alex Roche was waiting for this game.

“I saw the forecast at the start of the week,” Roche said. “Seeing all the snow and the rain made me so excited to play in that rare environment.”

The “mud bowl” wouldn’t have been possible without the grass field at Bartlett, which made the field muddy and slippery. The Crusaders went on to win 28-8, while playing a game of old-fashioned smash mouth football.

Jack Lausch had a stellar game in his first varsity start.

“I just love adversity,” said Lausch. “When we got there and saw the field, I knew we were in for a fun time.”

Other notable performances include Jake Sullivan and Alex Roche’s interceptions. Also, Ryan Whelan added a fumble recovery to close out the game for good:  “I just saw the ball on the ground and I thought to myself ‘who wants it more’ and I tried my best and got it.”

Senior Mario Brown added a handful of tackles and lockdown defense to shut down the Hawks’ passing: “This game will go down as one of my favorites. Myself and my team were just having fun out there and it was truly special.”

Mario and the Crusaders hope to have a lot more fun this season as they face the South Elgin Storm Saturday at home.