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Byron gets ready for another state semifinals appearance

Published: Nov. 19, 2021 at 11:22 PM CST
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BYRON, Ill. (WIFR) - Byron is back in the state semifinals for a fourth straight postseason. The Tigers haven’t been challenged often this season but when they have, they have answered the bell. Now they have to do it one more time.

Byron goes on the road this week to face IC Catholic. The Tigers are coming off a last second win against Reed-Custer in the Class 3A quarterfinals. Head coach Jeff Boyer says it’s been good for the guys to get in a couple of close four quarter games, knowing it’s going to be a battle against the Knights. IC Catholic has scored at least 31 points in each of its three postseason games including a win at Du-Pec. Even with all-state running back Chandler Binkley, they know they have their work cut out for them.

“We’re well aware of how good IC Catholic is. So the fact that they’re a six-seed, really doesn’t mean a whole lot to us,” said Boyer. “They lost a pretty close game to St. Francis in Week 9. They very easily could’ve been a one or two-seed in this bracket. We’re playing a great football team here.”

The Tigers and Knights have some postseason history with each other. IC Catholic beat Byron 7-0 in the state semifinals in 2017. But the Tigers are now looking for their third straight trip to the state championship game. A title that’s eluded the program since 1999.

“Our goal is to get back there and win the state championship. It’s coming down to the last week or two of football here at Byron for me. So, nothing feels better than getting to play this last game and get these last practices in with these group of guys.”

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