Daily Herald's 2016 Season Coverage
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updated: 9/12/2013 8:47 PM

Scouting this weekend's DuPage County football games

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  • Paul Michna/  Quater Back Brian Johnson took part in Thursdays practice at Willowbrook High School.

    Paul Michna/ Quater Back Brian Johnson took part in Thursdays practice at Willowbrook High School.


By Kevin Schmit and David Oberhelman

Aurora Central Catholic (2-0, 0-0) at IC Catholic Prep (1-1, 0-0)

Suburban Christian Gold

Game time: 1 p.m. Saturday, Plunkett Park, Elmhurst.

Last week: Aurora Central 42, Bogan 7; Kaneland 45, IC Catholic 14.

Last year: IC Catholic 33, Aurora Central 0.

Outlook: IC has won the last 14 meetings, by 74-0 the last two seasons. ACC's favorable crossover schedule gives them the Gold title edge, but IC doesn't want to chase. The visitors' double-wing offense sent fullback Matt Schaefer and halfbacks Julian Rios and Brian Bohr each over 62 yards rushing last week, Rios scoring on 3 runs and a 34-yard catch. The Chargers offensive line averages 277 pounds and size up front was a key for Kaneland against IC. ACC speed, though, is Knights coach Bill Krefft's concern; he looks for linebackers James Janowski and Liam Hendricks to maintain proper pursuit. Only Michael Perrone plays both ways on the IC lines, so Krefft hopes tempo can sideline ACC's no-huddle offense. A big problem is top skilled players Rashaun Epting and Clark Brinkman are both questionable with leg injuries, though quarterback Jack Copher comes off a solid game against Kaneland, 11-of-17 passing for 143 yards. "It's a matter of who wins the war in the trenches," Krefft said.

Next week: Chicago Christian at Aurora Central; IC Catholic at St. Edward.

Glenbard West (1-1, 0-0) at Downers Grove North (2-0, 0-0) West Suburban Silver

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

Last week: Glenbard West 68, Morton 7; Downers North 28, Hinsdale South 0.

Last year: Glenbard West 26, Downers North 0.

Outlook: Sure, it's only Week 3. But regular-season games don't get much bigger than this. Downers North has struggled to compete with the Hilltoppers in recent years -- the Trojans' last win was in 2006. With a three-headed option run game of quarterback David Edwards and running backs Kyle Leto and Charles Creamer, the Trojans are in much better shape to get that elusive win. Toledo-bound receiver Richard Olekanma, who suffered a preseason ankle sprain, will see his first action. Downers North also boasts one of the area's premier defensive players in Vontae Diggs. Glenbard West had a huge bounce-back win last week behind 300 rushing yards. Expect to see plenty of running back Scott Andrews. This will be a physical game, and the Hilltoppers' defense is up to the challenge with linebackers Jordan Hassan and Grant Greeno. If special teams are a factor, Glenbard West has an elite kicker in Hayden Lekacz, committed to Stanford.

Next week: Glenbard West at Lyons Twp.; Downers North at Oak Park.

Naperville North (1-1, 0-0) at Glenbard North (1-1, 0-0)

DuPage Valley Conference

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday

Last week: Naperville North 14, Thornton 0; Glenbard North 35, Carmel 14.

Outlook: A year after running on every offensive play against Thornton, Naperville North ran it 55 times last week. Who could blame the Huskies with running backs DeSean Brown, Sharad Crosby and Leon Hardy? Glenbard North is typically tough against the run thanks to linebackers Joe Fierro and Luke Greenberg, so the Huskies need to be effective passing the ball with rotating quarterbacks Connor Johannes and Chris Gajcak. For the Panthers' offense, it's still all about Northwestern-bound running back Justin Jackson, who rushed for 175 yards last week. Jackson's also effective in the passing game with quarterback Brett Gasiorowski, who last week threw for 176 yards on 4-of-6 passing. Passing the ball, though, feeds right into Naperville North's defensive strength with Danny Schertz and cornerback Adam Milsap. Both teams improved tremendously from Week 1 to Week 2. Whichever team makes another leap this week will be in strong shape to win this DVC opener.

Next week: Naperville North at Wheaton North; Lake Park at Glenbard North.

St. Patrick (1-1, 0-0) at Benet (2-0, 0-0)

East Suburban Catholic Conference

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Benedictine University, Lisle.

Live video streaming:, followed by postgame highlights.

Last week: St. Patrick 42, Lane Tech 6; Benet 41, South Elgin 12.

Last year: Did not play.

Outlook: It was a bittersweet victory for the Redwings last week as standout running back Porter Ontko was lost for the season with a knee injury. In his place returning starter Nick McTarnaghan and Brad Sznajder, last season's sophomore team MVP, will carry the load in the backfield. Ontko's loss, however, also hurts the Redwings in their passing game as they continue to develop a new set of receivers for 6-foot-6 junior quarterback Jack Beneventi, who's completed 60 percent of his passes. St. Patrick's defense returns a top-notch defender in linebacker Cesar Almeida. Offensively, the Shamrocks return a third-year starting running back in Jeremy Molina and their quarterback, Zach Fuller. Benet's defense has been rock solid. Linemen Nick Surges, Steve Hubona and Tommy Burke have taken turns bringing heat on opposing quarterbacks. This Benet senior class has lost four times, with two losses coming to St. Patrick, a team the Redwings haven't beaten since 2007.

Next week: Marist at St. Patrick; Benet at Crete-Monee.

Wheaton North (2-0, 0-0) at Wheaton Warrenville South (2-0, 0-0)

DuPage Valley Conference

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

Last week: Wheaton North 40, Geneva 27; WW South 28, Maine South 13.

Last year: Wheaton North 23, WW South 13.

Outlook: This might be a shock to the system for cross-town fans accustomed to seeing the Wheatons meet late in the season. Instead we've got a doozy of a DuPage Valley Conference opener. Third-year WW South starter Ryan Graham committed to Northern Illinois University on Thursday, meaning this game features dualing Division I quarterbacks. Wheaton North's Clayton Thorson committed to Northwestern in the spring. They each have extremely talented receivers. While Thorson leans on Matt Biegalski, WW South has varsity newcomer Keishawn Watson, a junior. The Falcons counter with four different players who have interceptions. WW South hopes defensive back Jake Schultz is healthy enough to play. As electric as the passing games can be, both sides want to get the ground game going. WW South's Graham, Isaiah Campos and Zack Moberg combined for more than 200 yards last week. Dee Alexander and Dom Garza share the load for the Falcons.

Next week: Naperville North at Wheaton North; West Aurora at WW South.

Downers Grove South (0-2, 0-0) at Addison Trail (0-2, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

The quick hit: Downers South's strong secondary, led in part by Deandre Washington, has a tough task in slowing down talented Addison Trail receiver Jaavion Bradley. Both teams are hoping for a more consistent running game than they've seen thus far.

Glenbard East (1-1, 0-0) at West Aurora (1-1, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.*

The quick hit: Glenbard East will lean on defensive linemen Shane Santonocito and Jacob Crounk to help contain talented West Aurora quarterback Quintez Jones. The Rams need to be healthier than a week ago, especially in their depleted receiving corps.

Hinsdale Central (1-1, 0-0) at York (2-0, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.*

The quick hit: York hopes Emmett McCoy and Ted Harrold will be healthy enough to play in the WSC Silver opener. After Ben Stefani and Juwan Edmond combined for nearly 200 rushing yards last week, look for Hinsdale Central to build on the ground game.

Lake Park (1-1, 0-0) at Naperville Central (2-0, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

The quick hit: It's strength on strength between Lake Park's defense and Naperville Central's offense. Lancers secondary mates Antonio Shenault and Xavier Davis match up with potent Redhawks receivers Ben Andreas, Michael Kolzow and Emmanuel Rugamba.

Lisle (1-1, 0-0) at Seneca (2-0, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

The quick hit: A strong Lisle defensive front seven has to bring it in this Interstate Eight Small opener against Seneca's Bo Taylor, who already has run for 389 yards, 6 touchdowns. Andy Simpson's 2 interceptions last week gave Lisle 7 turnovers in 2 games.

Montini (2-0, 0-0) at Wheaton Academy (1-1, 0-0)

Game time: 7 p.m. Friday at Wheaton College.*

The quick hit: Against the No. 1 team in 5A, Taylor Johnson, Theo Selvaggio and Daniel Sedjo head a strength on Wheaton Academy's line. However, Montini defensive tackle Anthony Ferraro's team-high 9 tackles last week hint at how strong the Broncos are.

Rich East (0-2) at Glenbard South (2-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

The quick hit: For those thinking Glenbard South was built around speed and finesse, last week showed the Raiders can match teams physically. They enter Friday banged up but ready to stay on a roll. Punter Andre Steiger twice pinned down Antioch on its 1-yard line.

Rich South (1-1) at Fenton (1-1)

Game time: 7:15 p.m. Friday.

The quick hit: Between Alex Cowan, Thomas Corona and Matt Lucas, the Bison displayed a pretty powerful ground game last week. After another slow start against Walther, Fenton again will focus on coming out strong against pass-heavy Rich South.

St. Francis (2-0, 0-0) at Chicago Christian (1-1, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

The quick hit: St. Francis' James Butler hit Plainfield South with 268 yards rushing, 4 touchdowns to bring his total to 454 yards, 7 TDs. Junior linebacker John Vargyas made 13 tackles and knocked off the quarterback's helmet on a goal-line stand. Beware, Knights.

South Elgin (0-2, 0-0) at Neuqua Valley (1-1, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.*

The quick hit: Allowing Naperville Central 58 points and 515 yards both humbled and motivated Neuqua, coach Bill Ellinghaus said. The Wildcats return senior safety Andrew Fraczek to shore up the secondary play, and look for big things from receiver Ryan Kuhl.

Streamwood (0-2, 0-0) at Waubonsie Valley (1-1, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.*

The quick hit: Waubonsie harnessed its speed and improved its focus and execution way over Week 1. A 40-21 win over Oswego was the result. Making his second start at linebacker, senior Demario Webb made 12 solo tackles, 2 assists, 2 QB hurries.

West Chicago (0-2, 0-0) at Metea Valley (0-2, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.*

The quick hit: Metea will welcome the Wildcats into Upstate Eight play with the 1-2 punch of quarterback Blaise Bell and tailback Jay Parker. Allowing 412 yards rushing last week, though, plays to the strength of West Chicago's Danny Lazzerini and Jordan Lelito.

Willowbrook (1-1, 0-0) at Hinsdale South (0-2, 0-0)

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

The quick hit: Warriors quarterback Brian Johnson threw for a state-record 675 yards last week as Jeremy Barnes and Hayden Adams had more than 200 receiving yards. The Hornets' option offense and 3-5 defense caused Willowbrook trouble last year.

* Live video streaming at, followed by postgame highlights.

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