Lisle bursts into Class 3A quarterfinals with win against North Boone

Lisle's Jay McGrath (17) carries the ball. Allen Cunningham/For the Sun-Times.
Lisle's Jay McGrath (17) carries the ball. Allen Cunningham/For the Sun-Times.

Jay McGrath can do it all and Friday against North Boone he did, leading host Lisle to a 37-25 win in the second round of the Class 3A state playoffs.

It’s the first trip to the quarterfinals for the Lions (10-1) since 1985.

McGrath is the quarterback, kicker and defensive back and he hurt the Vikings (8-3) in every phase of the game. He had 102 yards rushing and two touchdowns, completed 10 of 13 passes for 180 yards, grabbed an interception and kicked three field goals

What can’t he do on the field?

“Well, he kicked a couple balls out of bounds a couple of times,” Lisle coach Paul Parpet said. “[McGrath] is an awesome individual, good athlete of course, but he goes beyond that. He’s in my top five that I’ve ever coached.”

Lisle’s major pregame concern was defending North Boone quarterback Britton Morris. Morris came into the game with 2,758 passing yards for 32 touchdowns. Friday he threw for more than 200 yards but the Lions were able to slow him down in the red zone.

Lisle’s secondary had three interceptions and its line pressured Morris throughout the game.

McGrath accounted for 32 of the Lions’ points in a 38-14 win against Dwight last. Friday he accounted for 25 of the Lions’ 37 points.

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“I only came off [the field] for kickoff returns,” McGrath said. “They threw the ball a lot so I was moving a lot tonight. You get exhausted but you just fight through it. I’ve done it for 11 weeks. It’s just kind of natural to me now.”

Michael Walker was another Lion that only came off the field during kickoffs. He had 22 carries for 120 yards and two touchdowns.

Lisle faces the Byron-Princeton winner in the quarterfinals.

Byron knocked Lisle out of the playoff in 2015. McGrath can still remember how that loss felt.

“All I can say is I want to keep winning,” McGrath.

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