We are back for another week of Football Friday. Much cooler temperatures this time around as the calendar has turned another page. Five games on the docket tonight so let’s get to the highlights.
Lincoln-Way East vs. Naperville Central
Let’s begin with the showtime matchup as the Naperville Central fans welcome Lincoln-Way East into Memorial Stadium. Two of the top programs in the state squaring off. The Redhawks hope to build on a dominant defensive performance in last week’s win over Hinsdale Central.
Lincoln-Way East shows why the team has not lost in nearly three years as James Kwiecinski takes the handoff 53 yards for the touchdown. Griffins build a 17-3 lead.
But Naperville Central battles back, after a touchdown pass to James Jopes, this time Owen Prucha finds Reggie Fleuirma in a very tight window to tie the game at 17 after three quarters.
The Redhawks drive late all the way to the Lincoln-Way 13 yard line where Seth Lendzion is the hero. He hits the 30 yard field goal as time expires to stun the Griffins, handing them their first loss since November of 2018. Naperville Central flying high after a 20-17 win and a 2-0 start to the season.
Neuqua Valley vs. Wheaton Warrenville South
Neuqua Valley looks to build off a win over Oswego in the opening game of the year. Another tough 7A opponent awaits as Wheaton Warrenville South welcomes the Wildcats.
Opening quarter, Neuqua pinned deep at their own two yard line. Coach Ellinghaus calls a play action pass and Mark Mennecke delivers a strike to Carter Sessa on the post. Wildcat players on the bench nearly wipe out the cameraman but he and Sessa stay on their feet and it’s 6-0 Neuqua after a 98 yard touchdown pass!
Early in the 4th quarter, this time the Wildcats using the ground game to extend the lead as Grant Larkin runs in his second TD of the night. 20-0 Cats pulling away.
The exclamation point in this one comes via the legs of Mark Mennecke who slips through the defense and wins the race to the end zone. Neuqua Valley dominates on both sides of the ball in a 26-7 win over Wheaton Warrenville South.
Lockport vs. Metea Valley
Metea Valley hosting Lockport as the Mustangs look to pick up their first win after a valiant effort in last week’s 20-15 loss to Geneva.
However it was not Metea’s night as the Porters controlled the game on the ground from start to finish. Five rushing touchdowns in the game for Lockport, who rolls over the Mustangs 48-0.
Waubonsie Valley vs. St. Charles East
The Waubonsie Valley Warriors hit the road to take on St. Charles East. Both teams in search of win number one after Waubonsie fell to Oswego East while the Saints were dropped by Lemont.
St. Charles leading 17-0 in the second half, but Antonio Torres can always be counted on to make a big play. The senior running back takes it in from 42 yards out to get the Warriors on the board and back in the game.
But St. Charles quarterback Nathan Hayes was too much to handle in this game. The senior with four total touchdowns, three through the air and another on the ground as the Saints protect their home turf by the score of 27-7.
Glenbard North vs. Naperville North
Let’s wrap up Football Friday with a rematch of the 2007 8A state championship game. Glenbard North traveling to Naperville North as the Huskies would love continue their hot start after a win over Benet in week 1.
We jump to the second half with Glenbard North leading by two touchdowns, but Zeke Williams gets the Huskies back in the game with an 82 yard kickoff return for a touchdown.
After another Panther touchdown, it’s the Williams brothers show, this time Luke Williams with an interception return for a touchdown. We’re tied at 24.
After a second Luke Williams interception, Aidan Gray hits Luke for a receiving touchdown. 28 points in the third quarter puts the Huskies up 31-24.
But Glenbard North gets a touchdown and an onside kick. And with under five minutes to play, Damarion Elliston rumbles into the end zone for the game winning score. Over 300 yards in the game for Elliston. The Panthers hang on for a wild 36-31 victory.
Standings and Schedules
After two weeks of games we turn to the standings. Naperville Central and Neuqua Valley are the lone unbeaten teams with Naperville North and Dekalb each 1-1.
In the CCL/ESCC Green Division, Benet Academy picked up a hard fought, much needed 23-21 win way out west in Moline. The Redwings kept pace with St. Rita who won over Trinity in Kentucky.
Next week everyone in the DVC except for Dekalb is on the road and everyone except Metea Valley, who will be four hours away at Belleville East, is playing out of state.
Benet Academy travels to Brother Rice in week 3, taking on a Chicago Catholic League opponent. Because of the long distance, we will only have two highlights for next week’s Football Friday. Benet at Brother Rice and Metea Valley at Belleville East because those are the only two IHSA contests that will count for playoff points. So an odd week ahead, but after that the conference season is upon us. We’ll see you next time. For Football Friday, I’m Justin Cornwell.
For more football highlights, visit the Naperville Sports Weekly page!
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