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After 60 years, Rams reclaim title

Central Catholic wraps up dominant season with victory over rival Crusaders

by: TRIBUNE PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Central Catholic High quarterback Aidan Wilder and the state championship trophy go for a ride after the Rams 38-28 finals victory over Jesuit.For the first time in 60 years, Central Catholic stands atop prep football in Oregon.

The Rams outlasted Jesuit 38-28 to claim the Oregon School Activities Association Class 6A championship. It was the first appearance for the Rams since they won back-to-back titles in 1952 and 1953.

“It’s unbelievable to think that it’s been 60 years since our school and our community had this opportunity,” Rams coach Steve Pyne said. “It was our hardest fought battle of the year, for sure.”

Central Catholic’s Ryan Nall ran for 196 yards and three touchdowns in Saturday’s final at Jeld-Wen Field. “To do something that people haven’t done in 60 years ... it’s amazing,” he said.

Central Catholic (14-0) averaged 54.6 points per game while allowing 18.5.

The Crusaders (11-3) also lost to the Rams 45-31 on Sept. 20. And Jesuit lost its best player, running back/linebacker Joey Alfieri, to a knee injury in the Oct. 18 game against Aloha.

Jesuit’s Chase Morrison ran for 217 yards and three touchdowns in the title game, before an announced crowd of 6,158.

Jesuit led 21-10 at halftime.

“It was a great group of kids who had great chemistry,” Crusaders coach Ken Potter said. “We played a great championship game. We just didn’t quite have enough there at the end.”