PEORIA, IL - For the third year in a row the Peoria Chiefs will host a high school football game as Peoria Notre Dame plays Peoria Richwoods on Friday, September 29, at 7:00 p.m. in the Shamrock Classic. The Week 6 matchup will be a part of the Big Twelve schedule and also serve as Notre Dame's 2017 Homecoming game.
"We are very excited to once again host the Shamrock Classic and bring the Notre Dame/Richwoods rivalry to Dozer Park," said Chiefs President Rocky Vonachen. "The support in the area for high school football is fantastic and we look forward to building off the success of last year's game that featured an eventual state champion."
Tickets for the game will go on sale as the game approaches and be available at both schools in addition to Dozer Park. The first ever football game took place at Dozer Park on October 2, 2015 as Notre Dame came from behind to beat Normal West 56-52. Last season the Irish fell to the eventual 5A IHSA State Champion Peoria Central Lions 44-36 in a torrential downpour on September 16.
Last season the Irish went 6-4 under first year coach Sean Gillen with a 5-3 conference record and fourth-place finish. PND fell to Washington 35-14 in the first round of the IHSA playoffs. The Richwoods Knights went 2-6 last year with a 2-5 mark in Big Twelve conference play under coach Roland Brown. Notre Dame beat Richwoods as the visiting team last year 48-6. Two years ago the game was also played at Richwoods with the Irish listed as the home team in a season opening 7-0 win. The Irish have won four straight in the rivalry since the Knights prevailed 34-17 on September 21, 2012.
This game at Dozer Park will count in the Big Twelve conference standings and is a Notre Dame home game. All amenities at Dozer Park will be used including the HD Videoboard, concession stands, party areas and suites. Since opening in May 2002, Dozer Park has hosted music concerts, a MMA event in 2010, a wrestling match and multiple road races and walks.
Chiefs groundskeeper Mike Reno will handle the field work to transition Dozer Park from a baseball stadium to a football stadium. The mound will be removed with the field running down the third base line and into left-center field. Reno has plenty of football experience having worked on NFL grounds crews in Arizona, Miami and Washington D.C. In addition he works with the NFL annually at the Super Bowl and to prepare the field for the NFL London games at Wembley Stadium.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.