Naperville North (4-0, 3-0) at Glenbard North (2-2, 1-2)
Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Last week: Naperville North 21, Lake Park 14; Glenbard North 35, McCracken (Ky) 3.
Last year: Naperville North 21, Glenbard North 13.
Outlook: The return from injury of Huskies linebacker Ryan Marrano has invigorated a Huskies' defense that struggled early in the season. Fellow linebacker Andrew Reinhard notched a team-high 14 tackles last week. With linemen Hunter Kopperud and Thomas Kaminky on the defensive line, Naperville North has the talent to slow Glenbard North's ground game. Huskies quarterback Drake Davis and receivers Ryan Laurenzo and Nick Calcagno haven't been slowed all season. Glenbard North won handily last week despite committing 7 turnovers. That won't fly against the Huskies. When it held the ball Glenbard North gained 285 of 440 yards on the ground behind linemen Dylan Baker, Sebastiano Ciaccia, Augie Gamez, Jose Vazquez and Logan Castillo. The degree to which the Panthers can pound tailback Jayleen Fitzpatrick on time-consuming scoring drives could dictate their success. Josh Flowers and Tyrik Henderson pull double duty catching and defending passes.
Next week: Naperville North at Neuqua Valley; Glenbard North at Wheaton North.
Wheaton North (3-1, 2-1) at Lake Park (2-2, 2-1)
Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Last week: Wheaton North 36, Metea Valley 14; Naperville North 21, Lake Park 14.
Last year: Wheaton North 20, Lake Park 10.
Outlook: When Wheaton North's offense needs a spark, it comes from running back Sam Singleton. Could be a 70-yard touchdown run like last week, or it could be churning up half a dozen carries on a long drive. In four games he's rushed for 590 yards and 9 scores. Through all the injuries Lake Park's suffered on its defensive line, including playmaker Perrion Winfrey, Christian Cestone's been rock solid. Linebacker Gino Romano is a consistent leader in tackles. Lake Park's offense also has seen its unfair share of injuries, but running back Jake Carvalho came back to rush for 90 yards last week and receiver Dan Spejcher saw his first action of the season. The Lancers lean on a nice passing combination between quarterback Jackson Behles and Keonta Nixon. That feeds into the Falcons' strength on defense with safeties Jackson Gray and Trenton Hegranes. Wheaton North has flexibility at the linebacker level with Bo Neidballa and Brayden Anthony.
Next week: Glenbard North at Wheaton North; Lake Park at Metea Valley.
Thornwood (0-4) at Neuqua Valley (3-1)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The quick hit: Neuqua got big scoring plays from running backs Cameron Raupach and Will Chevalier, but what nonconference foe Thornwood must solve is a defense that allowed WW South 1.3 yards a carry. Safety Jake Wenz again showed strong run support.
Waubonsie Valley (1-3, 1-3) at Metea Valley (0-4, 0-4)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The quick hit: Waubonsie owns a 7-1 lead in the "Eola Bowl." Metea got tackle Bryce Effner back and seeks big plays like last week's Adam Nicodemus interception. Despite its loss Waubonsie's triple-option ran for 242 yards headed by Nate Ashford's 107.
WW South (0-4, 0-4) at Naperville Central (4-0, 4-0)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The quick hit: The trend of the Tigers' seven second-half three-and-outs last week must change. Defensive back Jake Healy and receiver Nick Arthurs should return from injury. Redhawks receiver Jayden Reed averages 7.5 catches, 119.3 yards and a touchdown.