Friday night football preview: Top 20 teams square off in three Week 6 games
Three matchups between Daily Herald Top 20 teams are among the five games to watch in Week 6 of the high school football season.
1. York (5-0, 2-0) at Downers Grove North (5-0, 3-0)
This West Suburban Silver showdown features the No. 1 Dukes vs. No. 4 Trojans. York brings a 16-game regular season winning streak into the game, including 24-17 over Downers North last year.
Dukes quarterback Sean Winton threw for 196 yards and 2 TDs last week while Jake Melion rushed for 213 yards and 3 TDs. The Trojans, 5-0 for the first time since 2003, are getting strong play from sophomore QB Owen Lansu, who threw for 2 TDs and ran for another in last week's win over Oak Park-River Forest.
2. Batavia (4-1, 3-0) at Geneva (5-0, 3-0)
No. 3 Batavia travels to No. 12 Geneva, and the Bulldogs have owned this rivalry lately. Their 33-7 win last year was the first time the Vikings have scored against them since 2016 -- ending a 5-year Batavia run of outscoring Geneva 209-0. Batavia coach Dennis Piron is 12-0 against Geneva, closing the Vikings' lead in the all-time series to 51-48-5.
Geneva QB Nate Stempowski, WR Talyn Taylor and RB Michael Rumoro are talented and a big reason the Vikings are averaging 33.2 points a game in their perfect season so far. But Batavia's defense is by far their biggest test -- the Bulldogs' only loss is by a point to Lincoln-Way East, and every team they have played has a winning record.
3. Prospect (4-1, 1-0) at Hersey (5-0, 1-0)
The third matchup between ranked teams, No. 14 Prospect and No. 2 Hersey, likely will decide the MSL East title. Hersey won last year's game 41-34, and look for similar fireworks Friday.
Led by quarterback Jake Skoog and running back Noah Easter, Prospect has scored 106 points the last two weeks. Hersey is averaging nearly 45 points per game behind QB Colton Gumino (14 TDs), Carson Grove (7 TD receptions) and Logan Farrell (5 TD catches).
4. Antioch (5-0, 3-0) at Wauconda (4-1, 3-0)
First place in the Northern Lake County Conference is on the line. Antioch coach Brian Glashagel calls it a playoff game, and he's got the kind of players you need to win those: QB James Sheehan (424 passing yards, 6 TDs), and RBs Martin Cohen (819 yards, 14 TDs) and Nick Day (523 yards, 10 TDs).
Wauconda won this game 16-14 last year. Connor Vanselow is up to 834 rushing yards and 8 TDs for the Bulldogs; Conlan Rath and Cole Porten are two members of the defense who will be tasked with slowing down Antioch. Wauconda has won or shared the last two NLCC titles. Prior to that, Antioch had won every conference title since the NLCC started in 2015.
5. Naperville North (3-2, 1-1) vs. Naperville Central (4-1, 2-0)
Last but certainly not least is the annual battle at North Central College. Naperville North won 31-3 last year; look for a much closer game.
The Redhawks have been stout defensively; they held Neuqua Valley to 7 points last week with two-way starters Maverick Ohle, Christian Kuta and Daniel Nussbaum among those coming up big. The Huskies hope to have QB Jacob Bell back; Carson Marlar filled in nicely in a win over DeKalb last week completing 12 of 15 passes for 132 yards.