Wheeling's Danni Allen smashed into the finale of "The Biggest Loser" Monday night, dropping 11 pounds on a night when three of the five remaining contestants had very small weight losses.
Allen, a graduate of Mundelein High School, lost 95 pounds during the 11 weeks NBC showed. Next week's finale on Monday, March 18, will be live.
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"I believe in myself, and I believe that I can pay it forward. And I'm excited to prove to America that If I can do it, you sure as hell can do it," said an emotional Allen after the weigh-in. The victory came after trainer Jillian Michaels talked the 26-year-old down from a panic attack during her final workout.
Jeff Nichols, a Michigan pharmaceutical representative, who also lost 11 pounds, is the other contestant guaranteed a spot in the final.
Allen, an athlete who did very well on the show's challenges, came in second during this week's trial when the last five contestants pulled sleds up a snowy mountain, adding weights until each was pulling the same number of pounds they had lost during the 11-week competition.
For the third and last person to make the finals, viewers can vote between Joe Ostaszewski, a 43-year-old former college football player who is a Florida sales executive, and Jackson Carter, of Utah, a 21-year-old assistant manager of a movie theater who volunteers as coordinator of a center for young people who are gay.
Voting ends at 8 a.m. Friday, March 15, at NBC.com. Gina McDonald, a 47-year-old Alabama attorney, lost the least amount and had to leave the contest.
During the episode shown Monday, Dr. Robert Huizenga told Allen she had set a record for "The Biggest Loser" by gaining 19 pounds of muscle in three months. "The best transformation at three months that we've ever had."
While waiting the results of the weigh in, Michaels said that Allen had "worked harder than anyone the entire season."