Week 9, West Suburban: Willowbrook focuses on one more 'W'
Willowbrook (5-3, 4-1) at Leyden (3-5, 2-3)
West Suburban Gold
Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday
Last week: Willowbrook 23, Downers Grove South 22; Morton 15, Leyden 14.
Last year: Willowbrook 42, Leyden 21.
Outlook: The playoff scenario for Willowbrook is simple on one hand and complicated on the other. A victory clinches a berth, both as a six-win team and as the Gold's conference representative as a champion. If the Warriors lose, they won't have enough playoff points to qualify as a five-win team unless Hinsdale South also loses. In that scenario Willowbrook qualifies as the Gold's representative because of its tiebreaking win over the Hornets. The Warriors have won three straight -- all in the Gold -- to put themselves in this position. Last week quarterback Billy Degnan needed only 9 completions to throw for nearly 200 yards, including a game-winning 66-yard pass to Ron Reitz. Willowbrook gets an added boost from running back Jack Jessen, who scored the team's first touchdown last week. Leyden was in the hunt for the Gold title until the last two weeks when the Eagles lost to Hinsdale South and Morton. Four of Leyden's losses have been by a combined 12 points.
Glenbard West (8-0) at Addison Trail (4-4)
Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Last week: Glenbard West 42, Proviso West 0; Addison Trail 43, Proviso East 6.
Last year: Glenbard West 33, Addison Trail 15.
Outlook: With the WSC Silver title in hand for an eighth straight year, Glenbard West seeks a No. 1 playoff seed and its sixth unbeaten regular season in eight years. The Hilltoppers come in a little banged up after running back Dom Ficarella broke his collarbone last week and safety Mike Brewer also was injured. The backfield remains a strength, though, with Vanderbilt-bound Sam Brodner and Isaiah Skinner. Dionte Moorehead will take Ficarella's place. Last week marked the Hilltoppers' third shutout of the season and their fifth time allowing a touchdown or less. Addison Trail needs a win to qualify, and the Blazers need their best effort to stay close to the Hilltoppers. Starting quarterback Ryan Zygowicz is out with an injury, but last week junior Bobby Daniels came up with a 45-yard touchdown pass to Darrion Conrad. With linemen Andrew Lopez and Jose Acencion back in the lineup, the Blazers want to control the ball with running backs Mike Hundley and Nick D'Ambrose.
Downers Grove North (4-4, 1-4) at Proviso West (1-7, 0-5)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The quick hit: Quarterbacks Brandon Bancoro and Quinn McNally and running back Connor Olson are all healthy, which is the main reason why the Trojans are on the verge of a third straight win and a playoff berth. Their vaunted ground game is at full strength.
Hinsdale Central (7-1. 4-1) at Oak Park (7-1, 4-1)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The quick hit: Hinsdale Central's defense has an edge with Oak Park quarterback Jeremy Hunt out with injury. The Red Devils' offense, which last week received 236 rushing yards from Christian Bobak, will be challenged by the Huskies' quarterback pressure.
Lyons Twp. (5-3, 2-3) at York (3-5, 1-4)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The quick hit: York saw its playoff hopes end with a loss to Downers North. With quarterback Johnny DiCanio and running back Lucas Alexander in the lead, the Dukes are closing in on 1,000 passing and rushing yards. They'll need a bit of both to beat Lyons.
Morton (3-5, 3-2) at Hinsdale South (5-3, 4-1)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The quick hit: The Hornets can clinch a share of the West Suburban Gold title with a win. Last week's overtime loss to Hinsdale Central came despite a monster game from quarterback Sean McCormack, who threw for 459 yards and 4 touchdowns.
Proviso East (0-8, 0-5) at Downers Grove South (2-6, 2-3)Game time: 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The quick hit: Downers South should be in good shape to end a tough season on a high note. Defensive struggles have led to three straight losses. Encouragement for the Mustangs comes from the play of linebacker Deante Washington and receiver Charley Hlavin.