Daily Herald's 2017 Season Coverage
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updated: 10/20/2016 6:32 PM

Week 9: Scouting the Northern Lake

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Grayslake North Knights (7-1, 5-1) at Antioch Sequoits (8-0, 6-0)

When: 7:15 p.m., Friday

Last week: Grayslake North def. Grayslake Central, 47-14; Antioch def. North Chicago, 42-14.

Skinny: It comes down to this. The first Northern Lake County Conference title will be settled in the 11th hour, in a Week 9 showdown between the league's two best teams all season. Antioch is looking to run the table for an undefeated regular season, but Grayslake North, which has won five games in a row, can spoil that and Antioch's hopes for the league title…Grayslake North's only loss of the season came in Week 3 to Lakes, 31-14. Antioch defeated Lakes two weeks ago, 14-7…While Antioch boasts the best offense in the conference (38.8 ppg), Grayslake North has the stingiest defense, allowing just 13.4 ppg. On the flip side, the differences between these teams are slim as well. Grayslake North's offense is ranked second in the league in scoring at 33.6 ppg while Antioch's defense is ranked second in points allowed at 15.6 points per game…Grayslake North is coming off a balanced 385-yard offensive performance last week against Grayslake Central. Running back Griffin Gawenda rushed for 103 yards and 3 touchdowns (including a kickoff return) while quarterback Austin Martineau completed 12-of-14 passes for 158 yards and a touchdown…The Antioch defense held North Chicago to just 8 first downs last week. Meanwhile, the offense was led by running back Drew Porter, who rushed for 103 yards and 3 touchdowns.

Grant Bulldogs (2-6, 2-4) at Round Lake Panthers (0-8, 0-6)

When: 7:15 p.m., Friday

Last week: Grant lost to Wauconda, 22-0; Round Lake lost to Lakes, 65-7.

Skinny: Both of these teams desperately need a win to end frustrating seasons on somewhat of a positive note. Round Lake, of course, is still looking for its first win. The Panthers have struggled on offense all season, and have scored a total of only 20 points over the last four weeks. Round Lake averages 6.3 points per game, fewest in the Northern Lake County Conference…The Grant offense hasn't been much better. The Bulldogs are coming off a shutout loss to Wauconda (22-0) in which they weren't able to get a single first down, and totaled only 26 yards of offense. Grant, which has lost four of its last five games and has scored only 7 points over the last 2 weeks, is averaging 11.3 points per game, second fewest in the league…Quarterback Tabieas Young is a threat to run or pass the ball for Round Lake. Meanwhile, Grant spreads the rushing opportunities in its Wing-T offense between Drew Walker, Kenyon Jones and Diego Ortiz.

Wauconda Bulldogs (4-4, 3-3) at Grayslake Central Rams (1-7, 1-5)

When: 7:15 p.m., Friday

Last week: Wauconda def. Grant, 22-0; Grayslake Central lost to Grayslake North, 47-14.

Skinny: Wauconda needs a win to possibly get in. A fifth win would give Wauconda a chance to get a playoff berth on points. With 37 playoff points entering Week 9, the Bulldogs sit better than more than half of the four- and five-win teams in Class 6A. Only six of those 16 teams in Class 6A have more playoff points than Wauconda. The Bulldogs have won two straight games and are coming off of their best defensive performance of the season. Last week against Grant, Wauconda allowed no first downs and only 26 total yards. The Bulldogs also got a safety…Offensively, Wauconda was tough to stop on the ground, rushing for 251 of its 308 total yards. Tyler Stankiewicz led the way with 146 yards on 20 carries while Jacob Bicknase got 96 yards on 22 carries…Grayslake Central has lost four straight games. However, quarterback Sam Lennartz had his best game of the season, completely 18-of-26 passes for 145 yards and 2 touchdowns, both to Peter Brewster (7 catches, 78 yards). Grayslake Central was without top running back Mikey Andrews, who tore up his knee (ACL, MCL, meniscus) in a Week 7 loss to North Chicago.

North Chicago Warhawks (3-5, 2-4) at Lakes Eagles (5-3, 5-1)

When: 7:15 p.m., Friday

Last week: North Chicago lost to Antioch, 42-14; Lakes def. Round Lake, 65-7.

Skinny: Lakes really needs this win. The Eagles could qualify for the playoffs on points with five wins, but those odds don't look great. Heading into Week 9, Lakes has 35 playoff points. And of the 16 teams in Class 6A that have four or five wins, 10 of those teams currently have more playoff points than Lakes…Lakes, which relies heavily on Northwestern-bound running back Cameron Ruiz, rebounded nicely from its 0-2 start, winning five of its last six games…North Chicago has lost four of its last five games and managed only 8 first downs last week against Antioch. Quarterback Dyshawn Gales is a threat on the ground. He ran for 106 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries against Antioch.

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