Scouting Week 4 Fox football games
Wheaton-Warrenville South (2-1) at Batavia (3-0)When: Friday, 6:30 p.m.
Notable: A marquee matchup here with Wheaton-Warrenville South, which lost 17-14 to Wheaton North last week, heading to Batavia to face the state's top-ranked Class 7A team. "Wheaton-Warrenville South is a complete team in all facets, and a very good opponent in terms of Xs and Os," Batavia coach Dennis Piron said. "Our next three opponents in that division are all very good defensively and have game-breakers on offense." Batavia has outscored opponents 116-26, while the Tigers have surrendered 36 points in their first three contests. Piron said cap tips are needed for Bulldogs' seniors Ethan Ethridge (linebacker) and Alex Faron (tight end). "I have been very impressed by Ethan and Alex just in overall play on film," he said. "These are two kids who have improved greatly over last year and are solid in everything we ask them to do." Piron also is impressed with Wheaton-Warrenville South quarterback Parker Brown, who was vocal last fall in his support of high school sports returning after being halted during the pandemic, as well as a return of in-person learning. "I personally feel the investment and effort Parker and many teammates and families in that community put into fighting for kids all over Illinois should be commended," Piron said. "Not many people have been willing to speak out for student-athletes, and he and many in that community did, and for that I am personally grateful." According to IHSA records, Piron, who took over the program in 2011, is 3 wins shy of 100 at Batavia (5 seasons of 10 or more wins), which would be plausible to achieve this season still. He's 97-15. Batavia has won the last two meetings (42-21 and 41-20). The Tigers' Eddie Robinson has rushed for 344 yards and is averaging 8.2 yards per carry.
-- Joshua Welge, Shaw Media Illinois, contributed
Wheaton North (3-0, 3-0) at St. Charles North (2-1, 2-1)When: Friday, 6:30 p.m.
Notable: The Falcons are coming off an emotional victory after beating rival Wheaton Warrenville South. The midseason DuKane Conference clash pits two teams that have high-quality coaches and thoughts of winning the conference. The North Stars' lone blemish is a 21-19 defeat to Batavia in Week 2, but they rebounded with an impressive 34-0 triumph over St. Charles East. How each team reacts to beating their neighborhood rival is a key area to watch. The Falcons have been a feel-good story following back-to-back 4-5 seasons, with their defense sparking the turnaround. In three games, Wheaton North has given up 21 points.
Aurora Christian (1-2) at Aurora Central Catholic (2-1)When: Friday, 6 p.m.
Notable: Aurora Christian has been paced by quarterback Tyler Brueckner, who has completed 68% of his passes and rushed for 217 yards. Cam Ajazi has 224 rushing yards, 83 receiving yards and 4 total touchdowns. Coach David Beebe also has been pleased with left tackle Nathan Henry. Beebe said the Eagles have to win the turnover battle (-4 through 3 games) and need its corners and safeties (Tyron Ferguson, Trey Beebe, Cam Colquitt and Than Lindoo) to play big roles. "We must win the turnover battle and limit ACC's big plays," he said. ACC will look to quarterback Bobby Scianna and Ty Hopp to move the chains offensively. "Aurora Christian has handled us pretty well the past three years and we expect to see another well-coached group with a very good skilled group," ACC interim coach Dan Lee said. "We will need to focus on not giving up the big play on defense and playing mistake-free on offense to be able to compete." ACC Is 2-1 for the first time in four years, "so our kids are looking at this game as a big opportunity, especially on senior night," Lee added.
Crystal Lake South (1-2) at Hampshire (2-0)When: Friday, 7 p.m.
Notable: Turnovers are on the mind of South coach Rob Fontana. His squad has committed six of them on offense, "and probably a handful of fumbles we have been fortunate to recover," he said. "Hampshire looks big and strong. They have things clicking for them right now, and you can see they are playing with confidence on both sides of the ball. We need to get our run game going and we have to create a few turnovers as well as limit our own." Senior captain Joey Mikulec has provided a big spark for the Gators, while Brady Schroeder continues to show his versatility. He played quarterback at one point this season, starts at corner on defense, but then started last week at wideout due to South being a bit shorthanded and had 6 catches and a touchdown and also had a pick on defense. Fontana said running back Nate VanWitzenburg and senior wideout Gavin Geijda are two keys against Hampshire. "We need to get Nate going and everyone else will follow," he said. "Gavin has been able to pick up some big first downs for us." Hampshire is on the opposite side of the turnover ledger, having created seven in two games (6 fumbles and 1 interception). "I have been very pleased with our entire defense's effort and ability to create turnovers," Whips coach Jake Brosman said. Brosman also likes how his offensive line has progressed. "They have been blocking very well and opening lanes for us to run," he said. Linebacker Neil Sakolari leads Hamsphire in tackles. "This is a result of how hard he works to prepare himself," Brosman said. Jack Rummell has been huge for Hampshire at corner and receiver. "Jake is finding good success on both sides of the ball," Brosman added. As far as South is concerned? "Our offensive line will be key in the game if they can execute the blocks like they have been and open our run game for us," Brosman said. "Our DBs will be key as this will be the first time they will see a large amount of pass attempts."
Streamwood (2-1) at Elgin (2-1)When: Friday, 7 p.m.
Notable: A battle of two Elgin U-46 teams on the upswing Friday at Memorial Field in Elgin. "Elgin is dangerous with big play capabilities," Streamwood coach Keith McMaster said. "They have skilled players across their offense from their quarterback, running back to myriad wide receivers. They can stretch a team vertically and horizontally and score points in a hurry. We need to stay disciplined and keep things in front of us." The Sabres return Terrance Ray III at fullback and Benjamin Feliciano at defensive tackle this week. "Terrance gives us a big back for blocking, as well as running inside, and Ben is a strong defensive tackle who can help solidify our run defense as well as pressure the quarterback." Elgin coach Anthony Mason said this game will be decided in the trenches. "We have to be ready to win the battle up front. That is who will win this game," he said. "Streamwood is good. They run a traditional style of offense that they are running tough and hard. We must be smart and tough up front to be successful." Elgin quarterback Jeffery Lomax, an NIU recruit, has thrown for more than 200 yards in each of the first three games with multiple touchdowns. Mason is also high on two-way standouts Alex West and Noah Mack, as well as defensive lineman Matt Perez, who Mason added "is causing havoc on the interior." Mason is looking for big games from West and Tayvion Mitchell at linebacker. "Our backers have to be ready to lead the team on defense," Mason said.
Larkin (0-2) at South Elgin (3-0)When: Saturday, 4:30 p.m. (Memorial Field at Elgin High)
Notable: Storm coach Dragan Teonic said Larkin will challenge his squad with good size upfront, scheme and athleticism. "We will need to play much better on the defensive line this week," he said. That being said, Teonic said two big keys for South Elgin will be Anthony Cirrincione and Payton Dennis on the defensive line. Michael Roath and Jess Mize also have been standouts for the Storm with their physical and unselfish play, Teonic said.
Plano (1-2) at Kaneland (2-1)When: Friday, 6 p.m.
Notable: Kaneland will look to move to 3-1 against a Plano team that coach Pat Ryan says is different from 2019. "They are much improved," he said. "They play good defense and have some explosive players on offense." Kaneland's Corey Phillips had 2 rushing touchdowns last week, including a 72-yarder on the first play from scrimmage, and also had a receiving touchdown. Offensive tackle/nose tackle John Davis had 7 tackles against Rochelle. "John has been dominant on both sides of the ball," Ryan said. Kaneland welcomes back linebacker Garrison Trebolo from injury. Ryan is also looking for big things from secondary members Grant Williams, Anthony Clevenger and Jack McIntire. "They will be tested this week with Plano's spread offense," Ryan said.
Lake Park at Geneva, 6:30 p.m.
Glenbard North at St. Charles East, 6:30 p.m.
Burlington Central at Jacobs, 7 p.m.
Huntley at Dundee-Crown, 7 p.m.
Marmion Academy at St. Viator, ccd.
St. Edward at Chicago Christian, ccd.
West Aurora at Plainfield North, ccd.
West Chicago at Bartlett, 7:30 p.m.
Prairie Ridge at Cary-Grove, 1 p.m.