The Referees Blew Fenwick’s Chances at a State Title UPDATE: Officials Admit Fault, but Call will not be Changed.
For a recap of tonight’s game, check out the live updates we did throughout.
If you’re reading this article, I’m sure you’ve already heard of the loss Fenwick endured tonight in heartbreaking fashion. With 3 seconds remaining, Quarterback Jacob Keller tossed the ball into the Fenwick sidelines as time expired, and the stands celebrated as if Fenwick was heading to Champaign for the first time in school history.
But the officials said otherwise, and called an intentional grounding on the play. It was the correct call, but what the refereeing crew awarded Plainfield North was incorrect. The referees ruled that there was a loss of down (correct), and that Plainfield North was given the ball at the Fenwick 5 yard line for an untimed down (incorrect), which allowed them to tie the game and ultimately win it in OT. Take a look at article 4 of the IHSA rule book
The play in question was, in fact, a down in which time expired. So, looking at article 4, part b, option 3, of the IHSA rules, the intentional grounding penalty did not allow for an untimed down.
I doubt the IHSA will come in and change the ruling, but let’s hope for the best.
Inexcusable mistake made by the IHSA (shocker there), you cannot make this monumental a mistake in such a big game especially when this EXACT SAME SITUATION happened in the Oklahoma State-Central Michigan game. Regardless, hats off to the Friars for an incredible season.
UPDATE: This game’s officiating crew will allegedly be working a game in Champaign next week.