Irish Shut Out Trojans; O'Neil Sets Record for TD Passes
Class 6A third-ranked Cathedral shut out Class 3A top-rated Bishop Chatard, 38-0, in high school football Friday night in a game that was played with a running clock in the second half. Irish quarterback Danny O’Neil threw three touchdown passes in the victory to claim the school record for most career TD passes with 49. He also became just the third player in Cathedral history to pass for more than 4,000 career yards.
The Fighting Irish received the opening kickoff and drove 60 yards in six plays, ending with O’Neil throwing a 29-yard scoring pass to Brennan Wooten. On the next possession, O’Neil concluded a six-play, 52-yard drive with a 2-yard rushing touchdown to give Cathedral a 14-0 lead midway through the first quarter.
O’Neil completed his first seven passes before throwing an interception for the first time in 211 attempts dating back to the first quarter of week nine of the 2021 regular season. Chatard threatened to turn the miscue into points, advancing to have a first down and goal-to-go at the Irish 10-yard line. Cathedral’s Will McCormick sacked Trojan quarterback Drew Van Vleet for a 10-yard loss on fourth down at the 22-yard line to preserve the shut out.
O’Neil immediately marched the Irish down the field, completing passes of 30 yards to David Ayers and 39 yards to Devaughn Slaughter before Wooten caught a 1-yard scoring pass to make the margin 21-0. Midway through the second quarter, O’Neil found Ayers for a 54-yard scoring strike down the left sideline.
Kyuss Gargett intercepted a Van Vleet pass with less than a minute to play in the first half and returned it 55 yards for a touchdown making the halftime score 35-0. Under the Indiana High School Athletic Association’s Mercy Rule, once the point differential between the two teams reached 35 points in the second half the game clock was required to become a running clock. Cathedral’s Ayden Fahey kicked a 28-yard field goal in the fourth quarter to conclude the scoring.
O’Neil finished the game 13 of 17 passing for 215 yards. Ayers caught five passes for a career-high 156 yards. The Irish defense limited Chatard to just 58 yards rushing and held the Trojans scoreless for the first time since they lost to Lawrence Central in 2016 when the Bears were led by current Irish coach Bill Peebles.
The Fighting Irish have now won 16 of the last 18 meetings between the two schools to lead the all-time series 29-19. Cathedral, now 3-1, has an open week in its schedule before returning to play at Hammond Morton on September 23rd. The Governors are 0-4 this season having been outscored by opponents 153-39. The Irish defeated Morton last season 51-0.