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Illinois High School Football: Late TD Lifts Wheaton North Falcons Into Quarterfinals

Andy Schmidt

In the game of football, breaks happen all the time with positive and negative efforts. A break in the fourth quarter led to the opportunity that the Wheaton North Falcons needed in their Illinois Class 7A second round playoff game against the Prospect Knights.

After Prospect fell inches short on fourth down, North used an 86-yard drive to score the winning touchdown with five minutes to play to give the Falcons a 14-7 win and a berth in next week’s quarterfinals against either Glenbard West or Libertyville. The fifth-seeded Falcons (10-1) scored first in the opening quarter on a one-yard run by Dom Garza but missed the extra point to lead 6-0. The Knights, playing at home as the No. 13 seed, took the lead shortly before halftime on a 27-yard touchdown run by Stevan Isteffanos with 1:42 left in the half for a 7-6 lead.

That is where the game would stay until the final seven minutes. With Prospect driving deep in Wheaton North territory, a fourth-down pass completion from Devin O’Hara to Joe Gleason came up just short of a first down which gave the ball back to the Falcons. John Peltz would then lead North down the field with short completions before hitting Matt Biegalski with 5:03 to play on a five-yard touchdown for a 12-7 lead. North went for the two-point conversation where Peltz ran around and found Biegalski again wide open in the back of the end zone to increase the lead to 14-7.

Prospect had chances to tie the game but O’Hara’s pass with a little over a minute to play was intercepted by Jaylen Howze and North was able to take a knee to finish the game off. The Knights were outgained by North 295-258 as Prospect ends the 2012 season with a 7-4 record.