Preps Talk

High School Lites Preview: Week 5


High School Lites Preview: Week 5

CSN Chicago will have cameras covering the biggest high school football games across Chicagoland on the week 5 edition of High School Lites, Friday night at 11 p.m. Who comes away with some serious momentum in the North Suburban Lake when Libertyville travels to Lincolnshire to take on Stevenson? Can undefeated Thornton beat undefeated Lincoln-Way West in a huge Southwest Suburban Red game? Does it get any better than Cary-Grove taking on Huntley? Also, who wins when the student (Mike Maloney) takes on the teacher (Dan Sharp) as Marian Central Catholic travels to Joliet Catholic in ESCC action?

(1) Homewood-Flossmoor at Lockport, 7:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: The No. 1 ranked Vikings (4-0) haven't needed to play its starters a full game for a few weeks now. Will the Porters (1-3) be able to present a better test this week? Under head coach Dan Starkey Lockport has been in every game this season and will look towards its running game with Matt Skobel and quarterback Deiondre Taylor. H-F will counter with a speedy and talented group of offensive skill players including senior quarterback Bryce Gray, who has been zeroed in all season. Best matchup? The Porters extra large offensive line versus the Vikings quick and athletic defensive line.

EDGY's Pick: Homewood-Flossmoor 41, Lockport 20

Tinley Park at Lemont, 7:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Head coach Nick Johnston has the Titans (4-0) playing well. Keep an eye on quarterback Dan McCullough, along with running back Lemont Brooks and wide receiver Maurice Robinson. Lemont (3-1) bounced back with a 20-7 win over TF South last week. Lemont has been solid all year on defense. The offense, however, has remained a work in progress. Can the Indians generate enough offense (with a potential need to trade scores) with an explosive Tinley Park offense?

EDGY's Pick: Tinley Park 21, Lemont 10

(19) Cary-Grove at Huntley, 7:15 p.m.

EDGY's Take: The Fox Valley (Valley) conference was expected to be a three-horse race. Cary-Grove (4-0) and Huntley (4-0) have lived up to the preseason hype. Cary-Grove will get the ball early and often into the hands of junior fullback Ty Pennington, who will run behind a rebuilt offensive line. Huntley and head coach John Hart has one of the area's best quarterbacks in senior Anthony Binetti and a running game that has been gaining big yards per attempt. Can Huntley get the football back from the Trojans’ ground-hugging offense? Can Cary-Grove put up points in a hurry if Huntley hits them with the quick strike, big play?

[MORE PREPS: CSN Preps Power Rankings - Week 5]

EDGY's Pick: Cary Grove 28, Huntley 24

(5) Libertyville at (9) Stevenson, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Libertyville (4-0) hasn't been in this position — as being the hunted — in the North Suburban Lake in several seasons. Senior quarterback Riley Lees (Northwestern) paces a Wildcats offense with both his legs and his arm. Miami (OH) commit defensive end Ben Kimpler is a name to watch on defense for Libertyville. Stevenson (3-1) will look towards senior quarterback Jack Sorenson (Miami OH) and a defense that played its best game of the year in a 20-7 win over Wauconda. Best matchup to watch? Libertyville's Lees against the Stevenson defense.

EDGY's Pick: Libertyville 22, Stevenson 21

Thornton at (17) Lincoln-Way West, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Thornton Township (4-0) is off to an impressive start under first year head coach Dontrell Jackson. Quarterback Sam Taylor has played a big role for the Wildcats so far. Lincoln-Way West (4-0) has an NFL-sized offensive line led by senior guard Bryan Brokop (Nebraska) and senior tackle Justin Witt (NC State). Senior running back Gabe Montalvo has been putting up big rushing numbers all season. Can the Thornton defensive line matchup against the Warriors offensive line? Can the Warriors defense keep Thornton's big play offense in check?

EDGY's Pick: Lincoln Way West 27, Thornton Township 22

(24) Marian Central Catholic at (6) Joliet Catholic, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Marian Central Catholic head coach Mike Maloney is a former JCA standout player and returns to Memorial Stadium for the first time on the visitors sideline. The Hurricanes will look towards a balanced offense led by senior quarterback JR Budmayer and senior running back Emitt Peisert. He ran for 308 yards in the Hurricanes 34-19 upset win over Nazareth Academy in Week 4. JCA (4-0) will simply run the ball right at you with their big offensive line and running back Michael Johnson. The Hilltoppers defense has been rock solid. Can Marian Central Catholic win on the road in Joliet? Best matchup: the MCC offensive line against the JCA defensive line.

EDGY's Pick: Joliet Catholic 34, Marian Central Catholic 21

[MORE PREPS: A.J. Epenesa visits, enjoys Iowa]

(15) Lincoln-Way East at Bolingbrook, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Lincoln-Way East (3-1), as expected, has bounced back well after a week 1 loss to Oak Park-River Forest (4-0). The Griffins have been relying on the arm of quarterback Brandon Bauer along with the emergence of junior running back Nigel Muhammed. Bolingbrook (2-2) is led by Ohio State commit linebacker/tight end Tuf Borland and the Raiders offense has improved this season behind its option/run-first attack. Can the Griffins offense dent the Raiders defense? Can Bolingbrook's offense establish the run against the Griffins defense?

EDGY's Pick: Lincoln-Way East 21, Bolingbrook 13

(23) New Trier at Evanston, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take:  Under head coach Brian Doll, New Trier (4-0) will look towards junior quarterback Clay Czyzynski, along with junior running back/linebacker Max Rosenthal in this huge Central Suburban South matchup. Evanston (3-1) also has a big-time signal senior caller in Western Michigan commit Matt Little and the Wildkits also feature senior Michigan State commit defensive lineman Naquan Jones, along with senior wide receiver Travion Banks (Miami OH). Can the Trevians offense win time of possession and finish those long drives with points?

EDGY's Pick: New Trier 27, Evanston 20

Wheaton North at Lake Park, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Here we go with another huge game in the DuPage Valley Conference race.  Wheaton North (2-2) is led by junior quarterback Luke Anthony and they’ve won two straight after starting off the season at 0-2. Lake Park (2-2) is also in the thick of the conference race as the Lancers will rely on its defense led by Michigan State commit Mike Panasiuk, along with his brother junior defensive Jacub Panasiuk. Can the Wheaton North offense dent the Lake Park defense? Can Lake Park's offense generate enough points against the Falcons this week?

EDGY's Pick: Wheaton North 24, Lake Park 13

Playoff drama highlights a busy week on High School Lites

Playoff drama highlights a busy week on High School Lites

High School Lites had a busy show as it was the final week of the regular season for IHSA boys basketball Class 3A and 4A. The Class 1A and 2A playoffs also tipped in boys basketball as the show has some thrilling regional titles that were decided in the final minute. And finally, the girls basketball Class 1A and 2A state semifinals were played on Friday as the state's top teams played in Bloomington.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @NBCSPreps for the latest news and scores for IHSA basketball.

Wintrust Athlete of the Week: Richards wrestler Mia Palumbo

Saint Xavier Team of the Week: Simeon boys basketball


Marshall shocks Leo in Class 2A regional final

Aurora Christian runs past Harvert Christian for 1A regional title

Buzzer-beater lifts Monticello over Gibson City for regional title

Jacobs goes unbeaten in Fox Valley with win over Dundee-Crown

West Aurora gets by rival East Aurora

Yorkville completes season sweep of DeKalb

Lemont escapes past T.F. North

Marshall needs OT to get past Teutopolis in girls 2A semifinals

Harlan takes down Eureka in 2A semifinals

Stockton runs by Okaw Valley in 1A

Schlarman races by Lebanon

Boys Basketball Playoffs begin on busy week of High School Lites

Boys Basketball Playoffs begin on busy week of High School Lites

High School Lites is down to the final week of the regular season in local high school hoops as the Class 3A and 4A schools finish up conference play. The boys basketball playoffs have also started as the Class 1A and Class 2A regional championships will be played on Friday night.

The girls basketball Class 1A and 2A state semifinals will also be featured. You can catch all of those games on NBC Sports Chicago on Friday beginning at 11 a.m. with the 1A semifinals. High School Lites will air Friday night at 11 p.m. on NBC Sports Chicago

East Aurora at No. 11 West Aurora, 7:00 p.m. -- These two rivals meet for the 225th time. The Blackhawks (20-4, 9-0) won the first matchup by 22 points as they try to finish the season on a 12-game winning streak. 

Jacobs at Dundee-Crown, 7:00 p.m. -- Fox Valley rivals match up as Jacobs tries to go unbeaten in the conference. The Eagles (23-3, 15-0) has been playing very well as they've won 20 of 21 games heading into this one -- including an earlier win against Dundee-Crown. The Chargers (14-11, 10-4) has won seven consecutive games since dropping to the Golden Eagles as they're second in the Fox Valley heading into this one. 

Yorkville at DeKalb, 7:00 p.m. -- The top two teams in the Northern Illinois Big 12 East play in this one. DeKalb (16-11, 11-1) has already clinched a share of the conference title as the team's only league loss has come against Yorkville. The Foxes (17-8, 10-2) knocked off DeKalb at their place on Feb. 3 as they try to win again to get a piece of the division title. 

T.F. North at Lemont, 7:00 p.m. -- Two of the better teams in the South Suburban Blue battle on the eve of the playoffs. Lemont (17-8, 9-3) has picked up three straight wins entering this one. T.F. North (11-9, 9-3) is trying to build some momentum after recent close losses to Hillcrest and T.F. South.

Carmel at No. 10 Benet, 7:30 p.m. -- The ESCC closes out its season with this one. Benet (22-4, 7-1) is coming off a nice road win at Marian Catholic earlier this week. Carmel (17-10, 4-4) knocked off Joliet Catholic during the week as they've been a dangerous team in the ESCC. 

Class 2A Boys Basketball Regional Championships

Leo vs. Marshall, 6 p.m. -- The Lions are the favorites but the Commandos are the host of this regional title game. Leo (20-5, 8-0) has a 13-game winning streak as they won the Catholic League White. Marshall (8-17, 4-5) struggled in the win column but they were a competitive 4-5 in a very deep Public League Red-South. 

Uplift vs. Northridge, 7 p.m. -- This should be an interesting battle as Uplift is playing on the road at Northridge. Uplift (17-9, 6-3) has played an extremely competitive schedule that includes a recent close loss to No. 1 Simeon as Kansas commit Markese Jacobs and senior forward Toraze Dobbs are one of the best combinations in the Class 2A field. Northridge (22-5, 12-0) went unbeaten in the Independent School League this season as they're riding a 13-game winning streak.

Class 1A Boys Basketball Regional Championships 

Aurora Christian vs. Harvest Christian, 7 p.m. -- These two teams play for the third time this season in what should be an interesting regional title game. Aurora Christian (23-1, 10-0) is the host as they only lost to Winnebago this season. The Eagles beat Harvest Christian twice in a six-day span in December. Harvest Christian (18-8, 8-2) finished third in the Northeastern Athletic as they played the second game within two points. 

Class 1A Girls Basketball State Semifinals

Okaw Valley vs. Stockton, 11 a.m., NBC Sports Chicago -- Okaw Valley (29-5) is making its first state appearance after winning its first regional title in school history. Stockton (31-2) finished under .500 last season (13-15) and had an amazing turnaround that includes a current 15-game winning streak. 

Lebanon vs. Schlarman, 12:45 p.m., NBC Sports Chicago -- These two teams have combined for two losses this season as this should be a good one. Lebanon (31-1) just won its first sectional title in school history as they've now moved on to state. Schlarman (31-1) is led by junior Anaya Peoples, a Notre Dame commit and five-star prospect in the Class of 2019. 

Class 2A Girls Basketball State Semifinals

Harlan vs. Eureka, 5:30 p.m., NBC Sports Chicago -- Two red-hot teams play in the first semifinal in Class 2A. Harlan (25-6) is riding a 12-game winning streak as this is its first appearance at state for girls basketball. Eureka (28-3) has a 19-game winning streak as they make their first state appearance since 1988.

Marshall vs. Teutopolis, 7:15 p.m., NBC Sports Chicago -- Two storied programs in the state match up in this one. Marshall (20-7) will be making its 21st state appearance as head coach Dorothy Gaters is one of the most storied coaches in Illinois. Teutopolis is making its 17th appearance at state as the Lady Shoes (28-6) seek their first title since 1995.