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Kane County Chronicle football preview capsules for Week 9

DuKane Conference

Batavia (8-0, 6-0) at St. Charles North (4-4, 2-4)

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday

Last Matchup: Batavia 21, St. Charles North 19 (Spring 2021)

About the Bulldogs: With a win, Batavia wraps up another undefeated regular season, which it achieved in 2018, and the outright DuKane Conference title. Batavia’s defense held St. Charles East to 25 yards of total offense last week, which isn’t a great sign for a North Stars offense still looking for stability at the quarterback position. Running back Josh Dornink is healthy and figures to be used more often this week.

About the North Stars: This is crunch time for the North Stars who are playing for their playoff lives. St. Charles North is not likely to make the postseason with just four wins, according to Shaw Media’s Steve Soucie’s projections. The North Stars have used both quarterback Ethan Plumb and Will Vaske interchangeably, but it’s unclear if that will continue. Drew Surges should expect more carries than last week. In 2017, Batavia’s state title-winning season, the North Stars spoiled their undefeated regular season. Could history repeat itself?

FND pick: Batavia

— Jake Bartelson

Wheaton North (7-1, 5-1) at St. Charles East (2-6, 1-5)

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Wheaton North 24, St. Charles East 19 (2019)

About the Falcons: Wheaton North is rolling into the playoffs, winners of five straight games after beating Geneva 27-0 last Friday. The Falcons could grab a share of the DuKane Conference title with a win, but would also need a St. Charles North win over Batavia. A win here would give Wheaton North its most wins in the regular season since 2012. Jackson Moore and Kaiden Libby each had interceptions and Mark Forcucci threw three TDs and ran for one against Geneva. Wheaton North’s defense has allowed eight or fewer points in six of its eight games while its offense has been held under 20 points only once.

About the Saints: St. Charles East has had a rough go of it of late. After a big win over Geneva, the Saints have been shut out in back-to-back games by St. Charles North and Batavia by a 79-0 margin. The Saints managed just two first downs and 25 yards of total offense against Batavia. If St. Charles East is to get things going offensively, it starts with senior quarterback Nathan Hayes, a North Dakota State recruit and third-year varsity starter.

FND pick: Wheaton North

— Joshua Welge

Lake Park (1-7, 1-5) at Geneva (4-4, 2-4)

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday

Last Matchup: Lake Park 41, Geneva 2 (2019)

About the Vikings: The Vikings have cooled off with a three-game skid, but they appear well positioned to make their first postseason berth since 2015. A win over Lake Park would make the Vikings playoff eligible. At this point of the season Geneva’s strategy offensively is obvious: run Carter Powelson and let Alex Porter make some plays downfield with his arm.

About the Lancers: It’s been a tough season for the Lancers, who haven’t won since Week 3 against St. Charles East. They gave St. Charles North a scare, but were limited to 14 total points in the past two weeks against Wheaton South and Glenbard North.

FND pick: Geneva

— Jake Bartelson

Kaneland's Troyer Carlson looks for a receiver during their game Friday, Sep. 10, 2021 at Sycamore High School.

Kaneland’s Troyer Carlson looks for a receiver during their game Friday, Sep. 10, 2021 at Sycamore High School. (Mark Busch – mbusch@shawmedia.com/)

Fox Valley Conference

McHenry (1-7, 1-7) at Burlington Central (2-6, 2-6)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: McHenry beat Burlington Central, 31-22, in Week 3 of the 2019 season.

About the Warriors: McHenry lost to Crystal Lake Central, 20-17, last week. … The Warriors lost RB Brody Hallin, their leading rusher, for the final three games with a shoulder injury. … WR Kyle Kaempf has an area-best 50 receptions and seven touchdowns, along with an interception return touchdown on defense. … QB Andrew Hoffman has thrown for 1,464 yards and eight TDs.

About the Rockets: Burlington Central lost to Cary-Grove, 48-7, last week. … The Rockets started the season 2-1, but have lost five consecutive games. … RB Gavin Sarvis has rushed for 539 yards and QB Shawn Adkerson has 526 to lead Burlington’s attack.

FND pick: McHenry

— Joe Stevenson

Kishwaukee River/Interstate Eight White

LaSalle-Peru (5-3, 3-2) at Kaneland (4-4, 3-2)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: La Salle-Peru 21, Kaneland 20 (Spring 2021)

About the Knights: Kaneland needs a win to ensure the fifth straight playoff berth since coach Pat Ryan took over the program. A loss likely would keep the Knightd out of the postseason.

They’d have to do so against a playoff-bound Cavaliers team. Kaneland is 1-4 against teams that have at least a .500 record.

“We’re approaching it like any other game,” Ryan said. “Our approach has not changed during the week, and it’s no different from any of the previous eight weeks. I think that’s because we are always shooting to go 1-0 every week, that’s our approach. We don’t think about having to win to make the playoffs. We’re focused on beating La Salle-Peru which would happen if we had one win or eight wins.”

The defense had a strong showing against Ottawa, shutting down the Pirates’ run game in a 52-26 road win.

“We’ve been waiting for our defense to have a really strong game, and they played well,” Ryan said. “We limited them to 5 yards rushing, which it’s been a thorn in our side to stop the run. We’re playing a team that runs the ball effectively, and this gives us a little confidence to stop the run heading into a big game for us.”

Ryan said it was a high-energy showing for the defense.

“Some kids that were, I don’t want to say quiet all season, but I feel like they were playing at a different level Friday than they had been playing at,” Ryan said. “I don’t know if the scheme has finally clicked, but they played fast, and if that carries over it will help us out a lot.”

Troyer Carlson threw for six touchdowns against the Pirates and has completed 66.4% of his passes for 2,239 yards, 28 touchdowns and seven interceptions.

About the Cavaliers: The Cavaliers like to keep it on the ground, averaging less than 50 passing yards a game.

Matt Carrico leads the rushing attack with 691 yards on 129 carries and five scores, while quarterback Sean Whitfield has rushed for nine touchdowns and 587 yards.

FND pick: La Salle-Peru

— Eddie Carifio

Metro Suburban Conference

IC Catholic Prep (8-0) at St. Francis (6-2)

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: St. Francis 28, IC Catholic Prep 0 (Spring 2021)

About the Knights: IC Catholic comes off a 28-7 win over Bishop McNamara, who beat St. Francis the previous week. The Knights moved up to No. 1 in the Associated Press Class 3A rankings. Sophomore QB Dennis Mandala has completed 66% of his passes for 930 yards and 16 TDs with Denzell Gibson, KJ Parker and Antonio Richardson his top targets. Malik Gray has rushed for 725 yards and seven TDs. Defensively, Richardson has a whopping 12 sacks from his defensive end position along with 11 hurries, 34 solo tackles and 12 tackles for loss.

About the Spartans: St. Francis bounced back from its loss to Bishop McNamara to beat Riverside-Brookfield 35-7 last week. The Spartans are ranked No. 7 in the latest Class 4A poll. Junior Alessio Milivojevic leads a St. Francis offense that’s averaged 37 points per game. Adam Criter, Tyler Bishop and Blake Lawson lead a deep group of playmakers and TJ McMillen is one of the best linemen around. St. Francis has won the last two meetings with IC Catholic, its 2019 win snapping what was at the time a 33-game Knights’ winning streak.

FND pick: IC Catholic

— Joshua Welge

CCL/ESCC

De La Salle (3-5, 0-1) at Marmion (5-3, 0-2)

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday

Last Matchup: Marmion 14, De La Salle (2019)

About the Cadets: Marmion is just a really balanced team offensively. Last week in a 34-0 victory over Leo, the Cadets had 125 yards passing and 177 on the ground. Defensively, they held Leo to 30 passing yards and 81 rushing yards.

About the Meteors: De La Salle is susceptible to some big opposing point totals, granted the four-game stretch of surrendering over 40 points was Joliet Catholic, Fenwick, St. Ignatius and Brother Rice. The Meteors enter Friday off a 15-14 win over Chicago Hope Academy from last week.

FND pick: Marmion

— Jake Bartelson

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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