Preps Talk

Edgy Tim's second round postseason analysis and picks

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NBC Sports Chicago

Edgy Tim's second round postseason analysis and picks

NBC Sports Chicago will have cameras covering the biggest high school football games across Chicagoland on the IHSA playoff/second round edition of High School Lites, now on Saturday nights at 11:00 for the remainder of the football season. Last week, Kenwood picked up their first IHSA playoff win since 1986. Can they beat Deerfield on the road this week? Can Crete-Monee step up and beat Providence Catholic at the Emerald Isle? Can Thornton --or anyone else in 7A-- slow down the Roadrunners of Nazareth Academy? And does it get any better in Class 8A than Glenbard West at Loyola? Or Neuqua Valley at Homewood-Flossmoor?

**All games Saturday**

Class 5A

#1 Mt. Zion (10-0) at #9 Joliet Catholic (7-3), 2:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Mt. Zion will make the nearly-300 mile round trip drive from the Deactur area to Joliet. The Braves, who won the 4A-sized Apollo conference features an explosive offense led by RB/LB Sage Davis and QB Ashton Summers. Joliet Catholic has been rolling behind the always-tough double-wing running attack, led by senior RB Kenyetta Williams and an impressive group of underclassmen in the backfield, namely sophomore Jordan Anderson and junior Ja'Aire Mack. Can the Braves defense find the football and slow down the powerful JCA double wing? 

EDGY's Pick: Joliet Catholic 42 Mt. Zion 21

Class 6A

#7 Kenwood (8-1) at #2 Deerfield (8-2), 1:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Kenwood head coach Sinque Turner has a very young but talented team this season. Junior QB Kaleb Garner is a name to watch along with RB Lewis Bond and WR Dante Reynolds. Don't sleep on their defense-- a unit that has only given up 48 points through nine games. The talented unit includes senior S Donald Dillon and junior S Myles Mooyoung. Deerfield has been a great story so far this season. Head coach Steve Winiecki's Warriors are riding the arm of senior QB Ryan Nagelbach. Their defense has been a strength all season long, capped off by an impressive 34-0 shutout win over Crystal Lake South last week. Can Kenwood win a suburban road postseason game? Can the Deerfield defense contain Kenwood's speedy backs and receivers?

EDGY's Pick: Deerfield 21 Kenwood 14

#3 Crete-Monee (10-0) at #11 Providence Catholic (7-3), 2:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Crete-Monee head coach John Konecki is more than familiar with Providence Catholic. The Warriors boast All-State candidate senior QB Travyvon Rudolph (3,003 yards of total offense and 39 touchdowns) along with a stable full of speedy backs and receivers. Providence is coming off a 19-14 win over Normal West. Head coach Mark Coglianese's Celtics feature a balanced offense led by junior QB Kevin Conway, sophomore RB Aaron Vaughn Jr. and a group of big, experienced offensive linemen anchored by senior Jake Renfro (Cincinnati). Can the Crete defensive front match up against the bigger Celtics' offensive line? Can Providence run and keep up Crete's team speed for four quarters?

EDGY's Pick: Crete-Monee 34 Providence Catholic 28

Class 7A

#15 Thornton (8-2) at #2 Nazareth Academy (10-0), 1:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Thornton Township might be peaking at the right time. Coach Dontrell Jackson and company have won six straight. Watch for QB Derrick Williams, a multi-sport three year varsity starting quarterback, to lead the way for the Wildcats. Nazareth Academy has one of the top signal callers in the Midwest with junior QB JJ McCarthy (Michigan). Sophomore ATH Tyler Morris is as explosive as anyone in the state this season. Coach Tim Racki's Roadrunners defense is also talented. Keep and eye on junior OL/DL Ryan Keeler, senior FB/LB Riley Theobald, senior LB Marcus Griffin (Grand Valley State) and senior DB Jailon Welch (SIU). Can Thornton's defense slow down J.J. McCarthy? Can the 'Nazz defense contain and limit Derrick Williams' big play potential?

EDGY's Pick: Nazareth Academy 41 Thornton 14

#27 Downers Grove North (6-4) at #22 Wheaton-Warrenville South (7-3), 1:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Downers North always seems to be a 5-4 team entering the postseason. But don't overlook head coach Joe Horeni's Trojans. They always seem to find a way of winning big games and upsetting higher seeded teams. DGN has a run-first offense led by senior QB Drew Cassens. RB Josh Lumpkin is also having a big season. As for Wheaton South and Hall of Fame head coach Ron Muhitch, they walloped Harlem 50-23 in opening round action. The Tigers are more balanced on offense with junior QB Parker Brown, senior RB Jake Arthurs and RB Prince Lankah. Senior WR/K Jack Olsen (Michigan State) is a threat to hit a field goal any time the Tigers cross midfield. Can the Wheaton South defense stuff DGN's power running offense? Can North's defense continue to force turnovers in the postseason?

EDGY's Pick: Wheaton South 21 Downers Grove North 14

#8 Phillips (8-1) vs. #9 Normal Community (8-2) at Gately Stadium, 3:00 pm.

EDGY's Take: Phillips was still buzzing this week after a thrilling, last-second win over Lincoln-Way west. The Wildcats got a big performance from QB Antonio Brown and senior WR/S Ronald Pledger (Western Michigan), who teamed up for the walk-off TD last week. Phillips' offensive and defensive lines are big and physical. Normal Community head coach Jason Drengwitz was able to get his offense in gear in last week's 36-14 win over Reavis. The Ironmen got a big game from QB Aiden Oliver and RB Cam Jackson. Can the Phillips defense slow down the NCHS running game? Can the Ironmen defense limit Phillips' big play capabilities?

EDGY's Pick: Phillips 27 Normal Community 21

Class 8A

#14 Niles Notre Dame (8-2) at #3 Lincoln-Way East (10-0), 1:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take:  Notre Dame has relied on a lights-out defense and a balanced offense this season. Hall of Fame coach Mike Hennessey's Dons have a junior signal caller in QB Anthony Sayles. Junior RB Julian Schurr and senior LB Anthony Ranallo are also key leaders. Lincoln-Way East head coach Rob Zvonar's offense is led by do-it-all senior ATH A.J. Henning (Michigan). QB Kyle Quinn is back in the starting lineup after suffering a mid-season injury. LWE is star-studded on defense as well. They have two D-1 defensive ends in Sean McLaughlin (Northwestern) and senior Adrian Wilson (Bowling Green). The remainder of the East defense has speed and brings a blue collar approach and mentality week in and week out. Will Notre Dame's ball control offense keep the East offense on the sidelines? Can the LWE offense strike quicky against the Dons?

EDGY's Pick: Lincoln-Way East 28 Notre Dame 14

#2 Glenbard West (10-0) at #18 Loyola Academy (7-3), 1:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: This will be a good one. Glenbard West head coach Chad Hetlet, once again, has his team playing exceptional football into November. The Hilltoppers have a run-heavy offense led by a stable of top running backs including Nic Seifert, Joey Richmond and Jalen Moore. But West's calling card has always been the defense and this year is no different. They're led by senior OLB Greyson Metz and the remainder of the Hilltopper 'D has speed to burn. Loyola head coach John Holocek also relies heavily on defense. The offense has been a work in progress from week to week. When Loyola has the football, keep an eye on QB J.T. Thomas, RB Tyler Flores and RB Trevor Cabanban. The remainder of the offensive skills department is solid, including sophomore WR James Kyle and senior WR Matt Mangan. Can West's offense throw the football effectively, if needed? Can the Loyola offense get its running game in gear? 

EDGY's Pick: Glenbard West 21 Loyola 20

#13 Fremd (8-2) at #4 Warren Township (10-0), 6:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Both Fremd and Warren Township have more than a few things in common. This game could be one of the fastest games all weekend. Fremd head coach Lou Sponsel has playmakers in QB Ryan Saxe and several more on defense-- a group that has been suffocating opposing offenses all season long. Warren Township head coach Bryan McNulty leads a run game that is anchored by RB Derrick McLaughlin. But the Blue Devils' calling card is their defense. It is simply one of the best overall units in Chicagoland. Look for senior DT Willis Singleton Jr. (Iowa State) and senior LB Juan Delacruz to make plays. The big storyline: Will anyone score points on Saturday? It'll be tough to do on either side. 

EDGY's Pick: Warren Township 14 Fremd 7

#11 Neuqua Valley (9-1) at #6 Homewood-Flossmoor (9-1), Sat., 6:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Neuqua Valley has a Player of the Year candidate in senior QB Mark Gronowski (South Dakota State). Coach Bill Ellinghaus' Wildcats have plenty of weapons including senior WR Patrich Hoffman and senior WR Sean Larkin (SIU)-- the latter is expected back this week from injury. The linebackers are critical to Neuqua's success. They're led by senior Jack Belskis. H-F head coach Craig Buzea has plenty of firepower on hand as well. On offense, looks for the running game to get established with junior RB Sean Allen (1,654 yards, 20 TDs) running behind big and physical offensive line anchored by senior Marcus Harper II (Oregon). Senior QB Dominic Jones (1,468 yards passing, 17 TDs) is a very capable dual-threat threat. Can the H-F defense corral Mark Gronowski and the Wildcats receivers? Can the Neuqua's defense slow down the Vikings run game?

EDGY's Pick: Neuqua Valley 27 H-F 21

High School Lites Week 2 basketball roundup

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO

High School Lites Week 2 basketball roundup

High School Lites featured plenty of great basketball action on Friday night as NBC Sports Chicago had highlights of many of the area's top matchups.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @CSNPreps for all of the latest IHSA basketball scores and highlights.

Windy City Legends: Kendrick Nunn

Team of the Week: Catalyst Maria Soccer

Athlete of the Week: Halle Douglass

Friday's scores:

Stevenson 57, Zion-Benton 44

No. 8 Evanston 50, New Trier 40

Homewood-Flossmoor 63, Lincoln-Way Central 31

No. 14 Thornton 58, Rich Central 34

No. 4 Whitney Young 56, No. 11 Lincoln Park 50

Loyola 34, Notre Dame 31

Homewood-Flossmoor 63, Lincoln-Way Central 31

Francis W. Parker 55, Latin 47

GIRLS: Evanston 59, New Trier 33

 

Viewers’ Choice Game of the Week

Mather 61, Foreman 57

Catalyst Maria soccer coach Jose Miguel Burgos wins SportsEngine TrueSport Champion Coach Recognition award

Catalyst Maria soccer coach Jose Miguel Burgos wins SportsEngine TrueSport Champion Coach Recognition award

Catalyst Maria soccer coach Jose Miguel Burgos said he’d never been surprised, until the day the school, his players and even family from Chile let him know he won the SportsEngine TrueSport Champion Coach Recognition Award.

“It means a lot to me because of the recognition we have for the kids,” Burgos said. “As I try to think all in, and think about this, I think my initial inclination is to think about them, about the fact that what we’re doing is seen, that their hard work will pay off and those values that I’m trying to instill in them are reaching them. And I’m very humbled about the whole experience.

"I’ve never been thanked publicly and it’s new, but it’s obviously something positive for the community, which the work I do is centered around.”

The school held a ceremony to honor Burgos, whose nomination bested more than 300 others to win. His team at Catalyst Maria won $2,500. Burgos’ friend and former colleague, Joel Farran, nominated him for his countless works in the community. Just some of the acts Burgos was noted for in the nomination include helping facilitate college scholarships for students, building relationships for students who were struggling to find proper housing, reaching out to students on the middle school levels, inviting parents to come together through events like potluck picnics and organizing a tournament for sixth through eighth-grade students as a way to provide a safe and fun environment for local children.

“He puts people first, and he puts people before himself, and he’s all about elevating others,” Farran said. “Whether it’s on the field or off the field, soccer is just one of the ways he does that. But it is the way he knows best. And it’s about creating opportunities — not only on the field — but when you fail on the field, learning to adjust from that and create solutions, but off the field, creating opportunities for scholar-athletes to continue to excel.”

Burgos’ students agree.

“He’s more than just a coach,” soccer player Alondra Gonzalez said. "He’s like another father-figure to me. When it comes to coaching, he does more than beyond. He created a webpage so everyone could see us. He created a ‘Go Fund Me’ [page] so we could have money for our uniforms, like jackets, because we play in the cold, and he wants us to do a lot more than just play and practice almost every day to be better.”

Another student-athlete, Angel Santillan, said Burgos is an “amazing person.”

“He means everything to me,” Santillan said. "Like the sport, it’s just a passion that he does everything for us. It’s a great experience to be coached by Mr. B. He’s just an amazing coach and he does everything for us.”

Three-time Olympian Kara Winger presented Burgos with the award, as a representative of TrueSport.

“Coach Burgos is clearly taking the time and effort to make a difference in these kids’ lives,” Winger said. “I was very blessed to have amazing coaches growing up who taught me how to be not only the best athlete I could be, but to be the best person I could be, and it’s clearly his mission here at Catalyst Maria schools, so TrueSport is so excited to honor him with the Champion Coach Award.”

Burgos, who was visibly moved by the surprise celebration, said he appreciated his work being recognized.

“I know there’s a lot of joy when you give, when you simply give without thinking about what’s going to happen next,” he said. “I do it because it’s the way that I continue to grow; it keeps me alive. I think we humans are here on Earth to take care of each other, to respect each other, to love each other, to cheer each other up. And those are values that I defend, and I have defended always.

"And now that I’m here, and I see that they are recognized, it validates what I knew. It will ultimately — if you are kind to people, if you’re loving, this is what happens. And it’s wonderful to see it for myself.”