It's not all about how you start. It's about how you finish.
No one knows that theory better than Maine South head coach Dave Inserra. Inserra and the Hawks started off the 2016 season with a less-than-impressive 1-2 record, then had its 77-game conference winning streak snapped by New Trier in Week 7. Yet even at 6-3 the Hawks remained a dangerous team. They caught fire in the postseason and rolled to the 2016 Class 8A state title.
Inserra, whose Hawks took part in the recently held Red Grange Classic 7 on 7 and Linemen Challenge at Wheaton South High School, took a few minutes to look back at the Hawks' magical 2016 postseason run along with previewing the 2017 Hawks.
Check it out in the video above.
High School Lites is back with an exciting Week 3 of the playoffs full of thrilling matchups. NBC Sports Chicago has the highlights of some of the top matchups from the games.
Be sure to follow us on Twitter @NBCSPREPS for all of the latest IHSA football scores and highlights.
Drive: Phillips Episode 12
Windy City Legends: PJ Fleck
Saint Xavier Team of the Week: Benet’s boys soccer team and girls cross country
Wintrust Athlete of the Week: Minooka’s Gabriella Charlebois
(23) Marist 41, (18) Loyola Academy 27
(24) Brother Rice 38, (1) Minooka 21
(1) Mount Carmel 24, (8) Phillips 8
(2) Nazareth 38, (7) Batavia 24
(5) Willowbrook 28, (20) Lake Zurich 10
(1) Prairie Ridge 14, (6) Cary-Grove 13
(8) St. Rita 35, (4) Hillcrest 8
Boylan Catholic 19, Sycamore 16
2) Richmond-Burton 24, (3) IC Catholic 14
(2) Byron 32, (3) Wilmington 0
2018-19 record: 23-8 (8-2 Southwest Suburban Blue)
Postseason results: Lost to Belleville West in Class 4A Supersectionals.
Players to watch: Darius Burford took advantage of a new role this summer and was one of the area's toughest perimeter players. The 6-foot-0 lead guard committed to Elon during the fall. Junior guard Kai Evans is another Division I prospect who should see an uptick in production this season. And freshman forward Donoven Younger has a chance to make a varsity impact right away. The 6-foot-7 Younger is already getting love from college coaches and area scouts as he's looked good in recent events.
Why they're in the power rankings: Most programs would be devastated following the loss of two decorated guards like Tyler Cochran and Joseph Yesufu. The Raiders have reloaded with multiple Division I prospects and strong younger classes that look promising for the future. Burford is a takeover player and he has plenty of talent around him. Bolingbrook should once again be one of the area's best.
Did you know? One of the state's most successful programs in the past decade, the Raiders captured their third sectional title in five years last season. Before the recent stretch, Bolingbrook only had one sectional title (1985) in school history.