Scouting Week 6 Fox football games

and JOe Stevenson
Shaw Local News Network
Updated 9/28/2023 9:31 PM

Glenbard South (5-0, 5-0) at South Elgin (5-0, 5-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday


Last matchup: South Elgin won, 49-27, last year

About the Raiders: Winless in 5 tries against 4-time defending Upstate Eight Conference champion South Elgin since 2018, the Raiders get another crack at the Storm Friday night. Led by electrifying receiver/kick returner Cam Williams,[ running back Drake London, and senior veteran quarterback Michael Champagne, the Raiders are loaded with explosiveness. "Glenbard South has won four of the last six conference Player of the Year awards, so we're very aware that they are, by far, the most talented team in the Upstate Eight annually," said Storm coach Dragan Teonic. "Their QB is seasoned and has had good moments against us in the past, and they have one of the best all-around athletes in Illinois (Notre Dame-bound Williams), so that is a great challenge for us. The challenge for every team that plays Glenbard South is keeping Cam's success to a minimum -- obviously, that's much easier said than done." The Raiders scored 63 points in their 42-point win over Bartlett last week. That game was tied 7-all after 1 quarter, so the Raiders will be looking for a faster start Friday night.

About the Storm: A week ago, South Elgin earned a 49-21 victory over East Aurora behind the play of quarterback Jack Ginnan and tight end/wide receiver Ishmael George, who has been a matchup problem for opponents. "We established the line of scrimmage and executed at a high level," Teonic said of last weekend's victory. "We're close to being a really good team and need to work on consistency moving forward. We've yet to give up a point in the second half in all five games. Obviously, we need to start games with the same attitude and effort." In recent years, South Elgin has beaten the Raiders on the ground. "We've averaged over 400 yards rushing against them over the last 5 seasons and that has kept their great, explosive offensive talent on the sideline," said the coach. "That's a big key to beating teams that are consistently more talented." What will it take to win Friday night? "We need to be exceptional with ball security because extra possessions only help the Raiders," said Teonic. "We must run the ball effectively. Staying ahead of the chains and establishing control of the line of scrimmage is paramount. We must limit the explosive plays Cam Williams and Michael Champagne have because they are exceptional talents and pose major issues for us. We also must win the special teams battle, and that has been a huge component of our success against Glenbard South in the past."

East Aurora (2-3, 2-3) at Larkin (2-3, 2-3)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Larkin won, 29-21, last year

About the Tomcats: Larkin coach Vincent Ray realizes the Tomcats have plenty of explosive-type players to keep an eye on. "Number 4 (Kenneth Cooley), the wide receiver/defensive back, and number 2 (Jeremiah Brown), the nickel/outside linebacker, are some players that caught my eye," said Ray. "It's going to be exciting to watch talent versus talent Friday night."

About the Royals: Both teams enter with 2-3 records, so this is a big one for their playoff aspirations. Larkin looks to win back-to-back games for the first time this season, following last week's 24-14 victory over Fenton. Prior to that, the Royals suffered losses to Upstate Eight Conference co-leaders Glenbard South and South Elgin. "We were in both of those games up to halftime," said the coach. "We must learn how to finish. With respect to the talent Glenbard South has, we held them to 7 points going into the third quarter. We started a sophomore quarterback with two practices against South Elgin and hung tough until half. We can play -- it's learning to win." Against Fenton, the Royals displayed their own big-play ability. "None bigger than Damani Cannon's 103-yard interception for a touchdown," said Ray. "He added another interception in the game. The combo of Jalen Miller, Kevin Malone, and Aden Mora methodically ran the ball, and we had two 40-plus touchdown receptions for touchdowns by Erick Myrick and TJ Boone. We also left some huge plays on the field -- Erick Myrick had an 84-yard punt return and 87-yard touchdown reception (called back due to penalties)."

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Fenton (0-5, 0-5) at Bartlett (2-3, 2-3)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Bartlett won, 52-29, last year

About the Bison: Junior quarterback Nathan Stewart and 6-foot-3, 250-pound tight end/defensive end Jordan Wilson look to lead Fenton to its first victory. "Their record doesn't matter -- Fenton has some dudes," Bartlett coach Milan Vuckovich said of the Bison. "They've got a solid line on both sides of the ball, and their quarterback (Stewart) can make plays with both his arm and legs. We'll need to be sound on defense and pursue the ball with relentless effort."

About the Hawks: Against Glenbard South (63-21 loss) last week, the Hawks opened the game with a 10-plus minute drive and tied the game at 7-all after one quarter. Quarterback Vincent Yario connected with Nick Carlos for a 44-yard touchdown pass. Then, the Raiders scored 42 second-quarter points to put the game away. "It's an absolute must to start strong against Fenton," said Vuckovich. "We know they are going to come out ready to play, so we need to play our game and execute efficiently." How do you recover after allowing 63 points to Glenbard South? "We talked about how well we played on our first offensive and defensive possessions," said Vuckovich. "We showed grit and confidence when we went for it on fourth down a couple times during that first drive, and then hit the home run with our play action. We were able to make them punt on their first possession. Then, we made a couple mistakes offensively that put our defense in bad spots and a good team will take advantage of that every time. There's a lot to learn from a game like that and, on the flip side, we kept fighting in the second half -- that's what we love about this team."

Elgin (1-4, 1-4) at Glenbard East (4-1, 4-1)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Glenbard East won, 28-0, last year

About the Maroons: Held to 62 yards rushing last week in a 28-6 loss to West Chicago, the Maroons' highlight was provided by Lamyni Spates, who caught a 40-yard touchdown pass from Darin Ward in the final minutes of the game. "Lamyni is a positive point on our team right now," said Elgin coach Anthony Mason. "It's the first time in his high school career being put at running back, and he had more than 150 total yards and scored our only touchdown. We had two starting running backs out with injuries, and he (Spates) never missed a beat to step up and do what is needed for this team -- the definition of a true commander." Mason remains positive despite his team's record. "Realizing that we are blessed to play this game, we get to spend time with each other on a day-to-day basis," said the coach. "We get the opportunity to improve by doing things correctly and keeping positive reactions to the negative events that surround us. We have dealt with a lot outside of football this year, and this has been our focus from the start. We know our priorities." This week, the Maroons face one of the conference's strongest defensive units. "They are always good," said Mason. "I never focus on the opponent outside of scouting purposes. I try to control what we can control and put the best showing out on the field -- compete and execute at a high level. I feel if you have a team that can do that, you can play with anyone in high school ball to some extent."

About the Rams: Defensively, the Rams may have the strongest unit in the Upstate Eight. Through 5 games, the Rams have allowed just 36 points -- an average of 7 points per contest. "Our defense has been pretty solid over the last few years," said Rams coach John Walters. "Again, it's a culture here -- defense and being a defensive player." Last week, defensive linemen Dan Zlatanov, Nick Dillon, Cooper Conliss, and Dakota Smith helped limit Streamwood to just 65 yards of total offense. Meanwhile, quarterback Blake Salvino completed 7 of 11 passes for 156 yards and 2 TDs, while tailback Matt Larson rushed for 122 yards on 9 carries with 3 TDs against Streamwood. Led by offensive linemen Josh Kelly, Jesus Vasquez, Chris Monk, Nate Schram, and Elias Morales, the Rams tallied 4 second-quarter touchdowns last weekend. Walters will have his team prepared for the Maroons. "Elgin is a very skilled team," said the coach. "They have some game breakers. We need to make sure we keep them in check. We've been good in three phases all year. That will be our emphasis Friday night."


Streamwood (1-4, 1-4) at West Chicago (3-2, 3-2)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: West Chicago won, 46-24, last year

About the Sabres: Last week, the Sabres avoided being shut out when Juan Cortes scored a touchdown with 14 seconds remaining during their 41-7 loss to Glenbard East. Now, they'll focus on giving West Chicago a tough time Friday night. "West Chicago is a team similar to our own," said Streamwood coach Keith McMaster. "They run a double wing style offense and run it well. They play smashmouth football on both sides of the ball. We went through the gauntlet the last couple weeks playing the two Glenbards. We're hoping that sets us up for the rest of the season."

About the Wildcats: Senior tailback Vincent Muci rushed for 127 yards on 13 carries and scored 3 touchdowns during the Wildcats' 28-6 victory over Elgin, atoning for last year's 48-20 loss to the Maroons. "It felt really good to get the win over Elgin," said Wildcats coach Adam Chavez. "They beat us soundly last year, so to be able to go there and get a win is big for us. We wanted to play physical on offense and tough on defense. I believe we accomplished both of those goals." Chavez called last week's defensive effort "the best I've seen since I've been here." Davd Weber forced a fumble that Diego Contreras recovered to stop a potential Elgin drive. Now, they set their sights on Streamwood. "Streamwood always presents a challenge to us," said Chavez. "Like us, they run an offense (double wing) that you don't see much in today's game, so being able to replicate that in practice will be a challenge. It might be one of the fastest games on Friday night with both teams chewing up the clock and running the ball." With unbeaten Glenbard South and improved East Aurora waiting in the wings, the Wildcats need a win to bolster their postseason hopes. "Making the playoffs was one of our goals going into the season," added the coach. "We talk about it but with the mindset of focusing on each week and trying to go 1-0 every Friday."

West Aurora (5-0, 1-0) at Oswego (4-1, 0-1)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Oswego 45, West Aurora 22 (2022)

About the Blackhawks: Quietly, West Aurora is emerging as quite the success story. The Blackhawks' 17-14 win over Yorkville last Friday was the program's first SPC West victory since joining the league. West Aurora has won its first five games for the first time since the Blackhawks went 9-0 in the regular season in 2016. This game presents an opportunity for West Aurora to further open eyes. Terrence Smith, a Division I prospect in both football and basketball, is a gamebreaker. He had five catches for 165 yards with an 88-yard TD against Yorkville. West Aurora has rotated sophomore Mason Atkins and senior Reece Wagner at quarterback. Atkins completed 10 of 14 passes for 226 yards and two TDs against Yorkville, a win that made the Blackhawks playoff eligible.

About the Panthers: Oswego is coming off its first loss, 10-7 at Plainfield North, in a game that was every bit the game dominated by defenses that the final score would indicate. Mikey Claycombe, Carson Cooney and the Oswego defense was stellar all night, holding Plainfield North to zero first downs and minus four yards in the third quarter alone. That unit has been consistently strong all year, as Oswego has given up a total of 27 points over five games. Junior QB Brett Connolly was 9-for-21 for 183 yards, and Jeremiah Cain had over 100 receiving yards, but Oswego will want to reassert itself on the ground after rushing for just 46 yards against Plainfield North.

Christ the King (3-2, 1-2) at Aurora Christian (4-1, 3-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Aurora Christian won, 56-0, last year

About the Gladiators: Following a 3-0 start, the Gladiators have lost back-to-back games against Kankakee McNamara (26-12) and Marian Central Catholic (55-0).

About the Eagles: The Eagles are coming off a 51-0 victory over Bishop McNamara, as quarterback Jalen Carter completed 29 of 42 passes for 307 yards and 3 touchdowns. Drew Kegebein gained 76 yards on 13 carries with 3 TDs, while Jonan Miceli caught 9 passes for 124 yards and a touchdown. Defensively, Lamari Hall recorded 7 tackles, including 1 ½ sacks and a pass defended. Eagles coach David Beebe realizes his team has plenty of room for improvement heading into the final 4 games. "We are playing well but have a lot to work on," said Beebe. "Precision, physicality, and decision making are our constant focus. We have some tough games coming up, so we must keep getting better."

St. Edward (0-5, 0-3) at Chicago Christian (2-3, 0-3)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Chicago Christian won, 35-13, last year

About the Green Wave: Smarting from a 48-0 loss to Wheaton Academy, the Green Wave search for their first victory of the season.

About the Knights: Looking to snap a 3-game losing streak, the Knights have outscored opponents by a 121-91 margin. However, you also must consider last week's 1-0 forfeit loss to Hope Academy.

Burlington Central (3-2, 3-2) at Jacobs (2-3, 2-3)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Jacobs won 35-30 in Week 6 last season

About the Rockets: Central defeated McHenry last week 17-7. ... The Rockets started sophomore Landon Arnold at quarterback last week with starter Jackson Alcorn and backup Ryder Bergemann both out with injuries. Arnold completed 13 of 21 passes for 136 yards and a clinching touchdown with 25 seconds remaining. ... RB Joey Kowall also missed last week with an injury and was among the area's top rushers before he was hurt. ... Brady Gilroy (21 receptions), Michael Person (20), LJ Kerr (16) and Caden West (11) are the Rockets' leading receivers. ... DL Bryan McGladdery (27 tackles, two sacks) and LBs Zach Adamo (26.5 tackles, three sacks) and Zach Samaan (31.5 tackles) lead the defense.

About the Golden Eagles: Jacobs won its District 300 rivalry game over Dundee-Crown 55-26 last week. ... The Eagles got a huge game from sophomore RB Caden DuMelle with 13 carries for 252 yards and four touchdowns. ... RB Tyvon Boddie returned a kickoff 86 yards for a score and ran eight times for 111 yards. ... Jacobs has played the FVC's top three teams (Prairie Ridge, Cary-Grove and Huntley), but it needs to win three of its last four to become playoff eligible.

Cary-Grove (4-1, 4-1) at Hampshire (1-4, 1-4)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Hampshire beat Cary-Gove 24-10 in Week 9 last season

About the Trojans: C-G lost to Prairie Ridge 21-20 last week. ... The Trojans battled back after Prairie Ridge took a 21-14 lead with 2:09 remaining and scored with 55 second remaining, but the extra point was wide left. ... FB Logan Abrams has rushed for 549 yards. ... RB Andrew Prio has 359 rushing yards on 27 carries with five touchdowns. He also has three receptions, two of which went for touchdowns, and averages 14.7 yards on every touch from scrimmage. ... QB Peyton Seaburg is 7-of-15 passing with six touchdowns, two of which came last week. ... The Trojans' defense has allowed 74 points for the season. ... C-G is No. 5 in The Associated Press Class 6A poll.

About the Whip-Purs: Hampshire lost to Huntley 34-7 last week. ... The Whips rely heavily on RB Cole Klawikowski, who has 520 rushing yards, despite missing most of one game. He has seven rushing touchdowns. ... QB Luke Lacke has thrown for 606 yards, and WR Ari Fivelson leads Hampshire with 13 receptions.

Crystal Lake South (2-3, 2-3) at Huntley (4-1, 4-1)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Huntley beat South 27-19 in Week 9 last season

About the Gators: South lost to Crystal Lake Central 34-0 last week. ... That was the first time the Gators had been shut out since their 35-0 loss at Deerfield in the second round of the 2019 Class 6A playoffs. ... WR Colton Hess has 24 catches with five touchdowns, RB AJ Demirov has 26 grabs. ... RB Jake Christensen has 439 yards rushing, and QB Caden Casimino has passed for 942 yards.

About the Red Raiders: Huntley beat Hampshire 34-7 last week. ... Raiders QB Braylon Bower has been on fire the past three games completing 35 of 40 passes. Against Jacobs in Week 2, he was 11 of 11; against Hampshire he was 9 of 9. His completion percentage is 78.9.

Dundee-Crown (1-4, 1-4) at Prairie Ridge (5-0, 5-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Prairie Ridge defeated Dundee-Crown 35-14 in Week 7 last season

About the Chargers: D-C lost to Jacobs 55-26 last week. ... QB Zach Randl and WR Torrion Bell connected four times for 170 yards and two touchdowns last week. Randl has 770 passing yards for the season. ... RB Kadin Malone leads the Chargers with 372 rushing yards.

About the Wolves: Prairie Ridge defeated Cary-Grove 21-20 last week. ... The Wolves are No. 1 in Class 5A and the last unbeaten team in the FVC. ... Prairie Ridge's defense has allowed an FVC-low 60 points.

Batavia (4-1, 3-0) at Geneva (5-0, 3-0)

Time: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Batavia 33, Geneva 7 (2022)

About the Bulldogs: This is a matchup Batavia hasn't lost since 2010. Geneva's seven points scored last year were the first against the Bulldogs in several games. Batavia's offense had a pair of touchdowns called back due to penalties last week versus Wheaton North, so it could have been a wider margin of victory. The defense is largely healthy, and QB Ryan Boe has his offense running very smoothly with a fantastic spread of players to spread the ball to.

About the Vikings: Like mentioned above, this is a matchup that Geneva hasn't won in quite some time, but this could very well be the team that breaks the streak. How Geneva's offensive line holds up against a fantastic Batavia front seven is a huge area to watch, but QB Nate Stempowski, WR Talyn Taylor and RB Michael Rumoro will have their chances to put points on the board.

St. Charles North (3-2, 1-2) at St. Charles East (1-4, 1-2)

Time: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: St. Charles North 38, St. Charles East 7 (2022)

About the North Stars: St. Charles North picked up a huge conference win last week in an overtime victory over Wheaton Warrenville South. Standout TE Jake Furtney caught four TDs from QB Ethan Plumb, and Plumb's monster junior year is continuing to roll right ahead. WR Jake Mettetal also has 41 catches for 589 receiving yards and six touchdowns, so he should get the football plenty.

About the Saints: While a team that plays with pride, the Saints have simply struggled to both put points on the board and limit opposing offenses from doing the same. The Saints have gotten outscored 59-35 over the past three weeks. With St. Charles North needing to add to its win total for playoff eligibility, St. Charles East has a chance to put a dent in those hopes.

Kaneland (3-2, 2-1) at Sycamore (5-0, 2-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: The Spartans won 28-7 last year in Maple Park.

About the Knights: The Knights have had the lead in the fourth quarter of both games they've lost -- to Morris and Washington, a combined 9-1. First-year coach Michael Thorgesen said he expects the Knights to start strong, as they have all year, but they have to finish against good teams. It's also a battle between Kaneland's offense, second in the conference at 38.2 points per game, and Sycamore's defense tops in the conference, having allowed only 19 points all year. Troyer Carlson tossed four touchdowns last week in a win over Ottawa. Josh Mauthe added two touchdown runs.

About the Spartans: Sycamore goes from playing a Rochelle team last week (a 21-6 win) that runs the ball a ton to the full-on spread passing attack of the Knights. Coach Joe Ryan said run or pass, the approach is the same -- both teams can make you pay if you are undisciplined and not in the right fits. Ryan said he's liked the way his passing attack has come on, with junior quarterback Burke Gautcher settling in under center. Gautcher found York on a highlight reel catch last week, showcasing what Ryan called the explosive-at-times nature of the efficient Spartan passing attack. Gautcher has completed 60% of his passes for 412 yards and seven touchdowns. He hasn't thrown an interception. York has eight catches for 182 yards and three touchdowns, while Teague Hallahan has six catches for 107 yards and three scores. Gautcher also leads the team with 31 tackles.

Marmion (2-2, 0-1) at St. Patrick (1-4)

Time: 7 p.m. Friday

About the Cadets: Marmion has a chance to get back on track after a couple of difficult weeks being outscored 70-14. The Cadets had to rely a lot on QB Jake Sullivan last week, who was 14 for 20 passing and had 63 yards rushing.

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