Prospect, Buffalo Grove set to meet for all the MSL East marbles
It has been close to 10 years since either Prospect or Buffalo Grove have won the Mid-Suburban East football championship.
On Friday, when the two unbeaten teams meet at Buffalo Grove at 7 p.m. the winner will go home with a trophy.
Prospect last won in 2012 when it shared the title with Elk Grove. The Knights have not won the East outright since 2010.
"Winning the East would be a great step for our program," Prospect coach Dan DeBoeuf said. "Our players have attacked this spring season and are making most of it."
Buffalo Grove head coach Jeff Vlk was in junior college the last time Buffalo Grove won the East in 2002.
"It would mean the world to us," Vlk said. "With the shortened season, no playoffs, and the fact that this senior class was 2-7 as freshmen, it would just be a great story for them. To finally bring one home would be huge for our school as well. "
As the season progressed both DeBoeuf and Vlk had been keeping a close watch on each other.
"Buffalo Grove is a good team in all aspects of the game," DeBoeuf said. "Offense, defense, and special teams, they have improved each week just like us."
"Really, they are a complete team," Vlk said of Prospect. "But I would say their team speed is the most impressive thing. They have so many weapons and spread the ball around real well."
Both coaches are not surprised by jumping to the top of the conference this season after watching Rolling Meadows and Hersey dominate the division the last 6 years.
"We have some very talented players," DeBoeuf said. "They took the COVID situation and made the most of it. This group of seniors has worked extremely hard to improve all off-season as well as week by week."
"I think we surprised everyone but ourselves, to be honest," Vlk said. "This has been one of the most motivated and focused groups I have coached since I have been here at Buffalo Grove. We don't have the biggest fastest or strongest guys, but these guys really believe in what we are doing and in each other."
Friday's winner will play MSL West champion Barrington next week for the overall league championship.
Maine South after CSL South title:
There will be a big showdown as well in the CSL South Friday night in a clash of unbeatens when Maine South hosts New Trier.
Maine South was won the CSL South the last three years, going 15-0 during that span. The Hawks have won the conference 18 of the last 19 seasons going 94-1. That lone loss came in 2015 to New Trier.
St. Viator to play scheduled game:
It has been a season of cancellations and rescheduling for St. Viator this season.
The Lions had their season opener canceled when St. Joseph opted to not field a team. Viator picked up a last-minute replacement in Chicago Hope, who the Lions beat 41-14.
After a regularly-scheduled game and subsequent 35-14 victory over Marian Central, St. Viator had its game with St. Patrick called off due to COVID protocols. Since the game was canceled on the Thursday before Easter, Viator could not find an opponent.
Last week, Viator was schooled to play Marmion. Again, the game was called off due to COVID protocols. After a couple of schools including Montini would not play them, Viator hosted Chicago Brooks and won handily 56-14.
Now, should all the off the field tests be negative, Viator will face its biggest test in a long time when the Lions travel to 64th and Dante in Chicago to play state power Mount Carmel Friday night.
"They are a phenomenal team," St. Viator coach Dave Archibald said. "They are big up front and they have a lot of athletes."
Archibald said his team is ready for the challenge.
"We feel like we are playing at a high level right now," Archibald said. "We feel we have a very physical football team. We are looking forward to the opportunity to play one of the state's best and we are going to throw everything we have at them for sure."
Maine West update:
After canceling its game last week with Vernon Hills due to COVID protocols, Maine West's game with Highland Park scheduled for Friday night is also canceled.
Maine West is scheduled to come off quarantine on Monday. The Warriors should know by then who their Week 6 opponent will be.