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|Naperville Central Takes Home 8A Championship
|DEKALB, Ill. (AP) -- Naperville Central senior defensive back Dillon Grooss blocked Loyola Academy's fourth-quarter field goal attempt and scooped it up for an 83-yard game-winning touchdown and the 13-10 win in the Class 8A state championship game on Saturday.
It's the first title for Naperville Central (11-3) since 1999.
Grooss' stellar play on the 21-yard field goal attempt prevented the Ramblers (12-2) from pulling within one point with fewer than nine minutes remaining.
Loyola quarterback Jack Penn kept hope alive with an 8-yard touchdown pass to Fran O'Malley to cut the lead to 13-10 after a two-point conversion with 5:39 left in the game. But the Redhawks ran out the clock to seal the victory.
Both teams struggled in the first half, but Naperville Central got two field goals from two turnovers.