MaxPreps is pleased to announce that the Loyola Academy (IL)
Ramblers have officially been named to the 11th Annual MaxPreps Tour of Champions presented by the Army National Guard, which is in its 11th year honoring football.
This is one of the most prestigious team awards in all of high school sports and it is an exclusive honor reserved for the top 100 teams nationwide. In order to be eligible, a team must win a state championship and be highly ranked in the MaxPreps National Rankings. For football, only 50 of the country's best are invited and with nearly 17,000 competing varsity teams. This puts the Ramblers ahead of 99.9 percent of their opponents!
The No. 1 seeded Ramblers started their 2015 IHSA Class 8A
playoff run with two shutout wins against West Aurora (31-0) and Stevenson (49-0) to set up the quarterfinal matchup against preseason No. 1 Homewood-Flossmoor. After multiple lead changes in the highly anticipated and arguably the biggest game of the year, Loyola Academy came up with a huge 34-28 win over the Vikings.
In the semifinal game against Palatine, Loyola found themselves down early but they battled back and scored 24 unanswered points to secure a 24-22 win to earn a spot in the state championship game.
Loyola Academy completed its perfect season with a 41-0 shutout win over the Marist RedHawks and the IHSA Class 8A state championship. This is the program's second state title and first since 1993.
Although the Ramblers displayed their dominance on offense as they scored over 40 points for the seventh time this season against an Illinois opponent, defense was the key to their win over Marist. The RedHawks went into the state finals averaging 38 points per game and Loyola's defense held them to a mere 174 yards of total offense to secure its sixth shutout of the season. As a team, the Ramblers out gained the RedHawks 403-174.
Head coach John Holecek led the Ramblers (14-0) to their program's fourth undefeated season and first since 1969. Their 14 wins also set a school record for total wins in a season. To add to the team's historic year, Coach Holecek tallied his 100th career win as a head coach, another conference title and most importantly a state title.
By the end of the season, Loyola finished ranked No. 28 in the nation, No. 1 in Illinois, No. 1 in Class 8A, No. 18
in the MaxPreps Xcellent 25 and No. 6
in the MaxPreps Midwest region.
These incredible season achievements have earned the Loyola Academy Ramblers an invitation to the 11th Annual Tour of Champions.
Please join us as we celebrate with the football team, head coach John Holecek, students and fans on Friday, Jan. 22 at 7 p.m. during halftime of the boys basketball game in the gym.
For more information about the Tour of Champions, please visit the MaxPreps Tour of Champions site
Video Shot and Edited by Jackson Deaver, Produced by Embrace Visual