Daily Herald's 2017 Season Coverage
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updated: 10/6/2016 4:09 PM

Week 7: Scouting the DuPage Valley

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Lake Park (2-4, 1-4) at Glenbard North (4-2, 3-2) DuPage Valley Conference

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

Last week: Metea Valley 27, Lake Park 19; Glenbard North 34, Wheaton North 7.

Last year: Glenbard North 42, Lake Park 3.

Outlook: It's not the ideal matchup for Lake Park in the midst of a three-game losing streak, but the Lancers have no choice. They have to win to keep their playoff hopes alive. Junior quarterback Jackson Behles has been a steady presence, but missing personnel on both sides of the ball has prevented consistency. Defensive lineman Perrion Winfrey played well last week in his return to the lineup. Gino Romano and the linebacking corps must be tough against the run. Glenbard North's offensive plan is obvious. Last week tailback Vittorio Tricase ran the ball on more than 70 percent of the Panthers' plays, gaining a personal-best 314 yards and moving to 1,233 yards rushing and 24 touchdowns on the year. He needs only a gap between linemen Dylan Baker, Joe Perilli, Augie Gamez, Joe Vazquez and Logan Castillo. But Lake Park's defensive line being stouter than most, the passing game of Shane Conway to Jace James may be even more important.

Next week: Neuqua Valley at Lake Park; Glenbard North at Metea Valley.

Naperville Central (3-3, 3-2) vs. Naperville North (5-1, 4-1)

DuPage Valley Conference

Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday at North Central College in Naperville.

Last week: St. Edward (Ohio) 35, Naperville Central 14; Neuqua Valley 35, Naperville North 20.

Last year: Naperville Central 41, Naperville North 10.

Outlook: With both teams coming off losses, there's extra motivation heading into the cross-town game. Turnovers were huge for both sides, more so for the Redhawks. They clearly can't afford five turnovers again. The offensive plan is to eliminate those mistakes and let quarterback Pat Ryan and running back A.J. Deinhart keep the Huskies guessing on defense. With 10 senior starters, though, Naperville North will be ready for anything with defensive lineman Isaac Velasco, linebacker Derek Amend and an experienced secondary. The danger in Naperville North's offense is its diversity. Running backs Eric Wright and Cross Robinson are the biggest threat but Naperville Central also needs to be wary of quarterback Luke Cegles and his big receivers. The Redhawks' defense would love to return to creating turnovers with defensive back Luke Turner. Last week they bolstered the unit up front by playing Western Michigan-bound offensive lineman Trevor Campbell in spots on defense.

Wheaton Warrenville South (1-5, 1-5) at Metea Valley (2-4, 2-4)

DuPage Valley Conference

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

Last week: WW South 39, Waubonsie Valley 32; Metea Valley 27, Lake Park 19.

Last year: Metea Valley 12, WW South 6.

Outlook: WW South has been eliminated from playoff eligibility and the Mustangs are fighting for playoff survival, but look for a spirited effort from both teams. The Tigers' win last week was proof of that. Led by junior defensive backs Jake Healy, Parker Robinson and Danny Schricker, the defense is starting to generate takeaways. Another junior, running back Ryan Young, is powering the offense with quarterback Matt Dohse and receiver Cam Moore, who's been invaluable all season. Metea Valley coach Ben Kleinhans liked the Mustangs' 21 unanswered third-quarter points against Lake Park, and hopes that urgency shows up way earlier. Quarterback Payton Thorne and running back Alonzo Taylor-Jones head an up-tempo offense that has outgained opponents by 259 yards and features game-breaking receivers Jayden Reed, Ben Loutsis and Ashton Creal. Reed, also a cornerback, safety Nick LaRosa and outside linebacker Ryan Kriceri look to contain on the perimeter.

Next week: WW South at St. Mary Prep (Mich.); Glenbard North at Metea Valley.

Waubonsie Valley (3-3) at Hamilton Southeastern (Ind.) (6-1)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

The quick hit: Making its first out-of-state trip, Waubonsie visits Indiana's No. 8 rated team in its largest class, 6A. Hamilton likes to throw long and safety Quaid Gill likes to defend. Tailback Nate Ashford ran for 180 yards, 3 touchdowns last game, his third time over 100.

Wheaton North (3-3, 2-3) at Neuqua Valley (6-0, 5-0)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.

The quick hit: The Falcons can't afford a shootout with the Wildcats, which means ball control with running back Sam Singleton. Princeton offered Neuqua linebacker Jon Rhattigan after he made 13 tackles in last week's huge DVC win over Naperville North.

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