Preps Talk

High School Lites preview: Week 14

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High School Lites preview: Week 14

It's playoff time on High School Lites as we have highlights of 13 games this week, including boys basketball highlights in Class 2A, 3A and 4A and the girls basketball state semifinals in Class 3A and 4A. 

The girls basketball state semifinals will be live on CSN+ on Friday and play resumes on Saturday on CSN. For more information, as well our channel finder, click on this link here.

You can watch High School Lites live at 11 p.m. this week on CSN and streaming live on CSNChicago.com. Be sure to follow us on Twitter @CSNPreps for the latest IHSA basketball updates. 

BOYS BASKETBALL CLASS 2A

Orr vs. Uplift at DePaul Prep, 7:00 p.m., 2A DePaul Prep Sectional Championship. - The Class 2A sectionals don't have a lot of area firepower but this is an intriguing game between two Public League teams. Orr (19-3) has been a solid top-25 team for most of the season as they're led by electric sophomore Raekwon Drake. Uplift (19-7) will counter with two talented brothers in junior Demarius Jacobs and freshman Davarion Jacobs. 

BOYS BASKETBALL CLASS 3A

Marshall vs. North Lawndale, 6:00 p.m., 3A Marshall Regional Championship - Two Red-West rivals clash for as Class 3A regional title as Marshall hosts North Lawndale. The Phoenix (21-7) are considered to be a major threat for a downstate run while Marshall (8-16) is trying to pick up a memorable upset in their home gym. 

Farragut vs. Westinghouse, 7:00 p.m., 3A Nazareth Regional Championship. - Two more Red-West teams battle for another 3A regional title when Farragut takes on Westinghouse. The Admirals (19-10) are led by senior Dulan Scott while Westinghouse (15-11) counters with talented junior Coreyon Rushin. 

Glenbard South vs. Burlington Central, 7:00 p.m., 3A Glenbard South Regional Championship. - This could be a strong game as Glenbard South hosts Burlington Central. The Raiders (18-9) have been a strong team in the Metro Suburban West all season while Burlington Central (26-3) is led by senior Ryan Fitzgerald.  

BOYS BASKETBALL CLASS 4A

Simeon vs. Brother Rice, 4A T.F. North Regional Championship. - Simeon is the major target for everyone in Class 4A and they try to capture a regional title against Brother Rice. The Wolverines (25-3) are playing their best ball of the season in late February as they're led by a balanced team. Brother Rice (19-10) has been a solid team in the Catholic League this season under new head coach Bobby Frasor, but they haven't beaten anyone close to Simeon's caliber. 

Thornton vs. Bloom, 4A Thornton Regional Championship. - Arguably the two top teams in the south suburbs battle for a regional title as Thornton hosts Bloom. While the Wildcats (23-3) have been one of the hottest teams in the area this season, they lost to Bloom a few weeks ago, so this one should be close. The Blazing Trojans (17-10) are led by senior and All-Area candidate Jamal Parks, a 6-foot-4 wing who is having a breakthrough season.

Riverside-Brookfield vs. Proviso East, 7:00 p.m., 4A St. Ignatius Regional Championship. - .Another fantastic regional championship game as Riverside-Brookfield tries to go on another playoff run. The Bulldogs (22-5) are a balanced team with a strong backcourt and they've been in the top 25 of the @CSNPreps Power Rankings for most of the season. Proviso East (17-8) could gain an emotional lift with the return of head coach Donnie Boyce as they're led by senior guard Antonio Williams. 

Hinsdale South vs. Downers Grove South, 7:00 p.m., Glenbard East Regional Championship - These two West Suburban Gold rivals match up for the fourth time this season -- this time for a regional title. The Hornets won two of the three games but Downers South was the division champion in the conference. The key could be Downers South slowing down Hinsdale South senior center Barret Benson. The Northwestern commit has put up big numbers this season.

Naperville North vs. York, 7:00 p.m., 4A Lyons Township Regional Championship - Another rematch for a regional title as York knocked off Naperville North in the title game of the Jack Tosh Holiday Tournament earlier this season. This time, Naperville North (23-4) will be the favorite on a neutral court as they've been one of the best teams in the area since the turn to 2016. York (18-12) is a dangerous No. 6 seed in this sectional as they have one of the area's best defenses. 

GIRLS BASKETBALL CLASS 3A AND 4A STATE SEMIFINALS

Highland vs. North Lawndale, 12:00 p.m., Class 3A state semifinal, CSN+ - North Lawndale is one of three Chicago Public League schools representing the girls basketball proceedings this weekend as they face Highland. The Phoenix (22-11) are led by freshman Jada Thorpe (14.1 ppg). Highland (30-4) has won 13 consecutive games as they're led by senior guard Amanda Ponce.

Morton (IL) vs. Morgan Park, 2:00 p.m., Class 3A state semifinal, CSN+ - Another Public League team takes the floor in Class 3A as Morgan Park battles Morton. The Mustangs (30-3) have only lost to Whitney Young and Trinity among teams from Illinois this season and both of those teams made the final four in Class 4A. Defending champion Morton (31-3) is looking to win another state championship as they're led by junior forward Brandi Bisping (14.6 ppg).

Whitney Young vs. Fremd, 6:30 p.m., Class 4A state semifinal, CSN+ - The city champion Whitney Young Dolphins will look to advance in Class 4A when they battle Fremd. The Dolphins (27-5) haven't lost to an Illinois opponent since falling to Montini on Dec. 30 as they're led by senior guard Kiara Lewis (24.8 ppg). Fremd lost in the state title game to Benet last season but returns with a 29-2 record this season. The Vikings are a balanced group led by senior Bryana Hopkins (12.9 ppg), senior Brianna Lewis (11.6 ppg) and junior Grace Tworek (10.2 ppg).

Benet vs. Trinity, 8:15 p.m., Class 4A state semifinal, CSN+ - Defending state champion Benet is looking to repeat as they take on Trinity. The Redwings (30-3) are led by senior guard Kathleen Doyle (17.1 ppg) as Benet has only lost to Morgan Park, Whitney Young and Homewood-Flossmoor this season. Trinity (29-5) has won 12 straight games as they're usually paced by seniors Kaitlin Aylward and Annie McKenna. 

VOTE: Viewers' Choice Game Of The Week

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NBC Sports Chicago

VOTE: Viewers' Choice Game Of The Week

Who wants it more?

We are putting High School Lites, Chicagoland's top prep sports show, in the hands of area football fans in our "Viewers' Choice Game of the Week." Fans will get the chance to pick one game that the @NBCSPreps crew will cover on Friday night. We will send our cameras to the game that gets the most votes; highlights and postgame reaction of that game will appear on that night's "High School Lites" broadcast at 11 p.m. The show also live streams at www.nbcsportschicago.com/watchlive. High School Lites will also have broadcast replays at 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. the following Saturday. 

Week 9 is “Bubble Week” for many teams fighting to stay on the right side of the postseason bubble. Who moves on? Whose bubble will burst? Will Wauconda advance to the playoffs after finishing 2-7 last year? Or will Grant end their season on a winning note? Schaumburg and Fremd both stand at 4-4. The winner goes to the postseason. The winner stays home for November. Zion-Benton hasn’t been to the playoffs since 2003. A win over Libertyville gets them there. But for the Wildcats, this ‘is’ their playoff game. Who wins in the North Suburban conference? We’ll send our cameras to one of the following:

Grant at Wauconda, 7:15 p.m.

Schaumburg at Fremd, 7:30 p.m.

Libertyville at Zion-Benton, 7:30 p.m.

— Follow @NBCSPreps on Twitter.
— Note the "pinned Tweet" atop the @NBCSPreps feed. Vote for the game you want us to cover.
— Spread the word! 

We will make an announcement on @NBCSPreps just after 4 p.m. Thursday with the official results of which game will be covered. And as a reminder, be sure to follow @NBCSPreps for updates on the "Viewers' Choice Game of the week," along with other high school sports news, scores and highlights this season.

Edgy Tim's Preps Power Rankings: Week 9

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NBC Sports Chicago

Edgy Tim's Preps Power Rankings: Week 9

Here are the latest @NBCSPreps Top 25 Power Rankings.
 
1. Lincoln-Way East 8-0 (1)
Last Week: Beat Thornwood, 56-18
This Week: vs Bolingbrook
EDGY's Take: The Griffins get a nice Week 9 test hosting Bolingbrook. Can the Raiders push the Griffins for four quarters?

2. Batavia 8-0 (2)
Last Week: Beat St. Charles North, 27-24
This Week: @ Wheaton North
EDGY's Take: An epic drive late in the game with no timeouts. The Bulldogs pull out the close-call win over St. Charles North.  

3. Brother Rice 8-0 (3)
Last Week: Beat Leo, 48-0
This Week: @ Montini Catholic
EDGY's Take: What were the preseason that the biggest Chicago Catholic League game of the year would be Brother Rice at Montini?

4. Marist 7-1 (4)
Last Week: Beat Marian Central Catholic, 42-6
This Week: @ Benet Academy
EDGY's Take: The Redhawks will get a nice Week 9 on Friday from Benet at Benedictine University. 

5. Mount Carmel 7-1 (5)
Last Week: Beat St. Laurence, 40-0
This Week: vs Fenwick
EDGY's Take: The Caravan have been playing as well as any contenders ranked here.

6. Homewood-Flossmoor 7-1 (6)
Last Week: Beat Andrew, 35-3
This Week: vs Sandburg
EDGY's Take: Head coach Craig Buzea got his 200th career win last Friday over Andrew.

7. Cary-Grove 8-0 (7)
Last Week: Beat Prairie Ridge, 21-14
This Week: vs Naperville Central
EDGY's Take: The Trojans rallied from being down 14-0 and scored 21 unanswered points to defeat their bitter rivals.

8. Simeon 8-0 (8)
Last Week: Beat Taft, 58-7
This Week: @ Curie
EDGY's Take: The big question coming Saturday night-- Will the Wolverines wind up in 8A or 7A? 

9. Nazareth Academy 7-1 (9)
Last Week: Beat Joliet Catholic, 49-20
This Week: vs Marian Catholic
EDGY's Take: The Roadrunners get a nice bounce-back win last Friday over Joliet Catholic.

10. Maine South 7-1 (10)
Last Week: Beat New Trier, 38-21
This Week: vs Niles West
EDGY's Take: The Hawks get another big Central Suburban South win. 

11. Oswego 8-0 (11)
Last Week: Beat Joliet Central, 49-0
This Week: @ Plainfield South
EDGY's Take: The Panthers will take on a very defensive-minded Plainfield South team on Friday.
 
12. Richards 8-0 (13)
Last Week: Beat Reavis, 51-0
This Week: vs Eisenhower
EDGY's Take: The Bulldogs continue to cruise and are gearing for a high seed in Class 6A.
 
13. Phillips 6-2 (14)
Last Week: Beat Westinghouse, 46-6
This Week: @ Raby
EDGY's Take: The Wildcats will look to finish strong this week against Raby.

14. Willowbrook 8-0 (15)
Last Week: Beat Proviso East, 40-7
This Week: @ Downers Grove South
EDGY's Take: The Warriors will look to send Downers Grove South (4-4) home for the holidays on Friday.

15. Naperville Central 6-2 (16)
Last Week: Beat Waubonsie Valley, 35-14
This Week: @ Cary-Grove
EDGY's Take: The Redhawks have won six straight games and have the makings of a team that could make some postseason noise. 

16. Bolingbrook 7-1 (17)
Last Week: Beat Thornton, 43-7
This Week: @ Lincoln-Way East
EDGY's Take: The Raiders will look to derail the "Big Cobalt Blue Machine" this Friday in Frankfort. 

17. Montini 8-0 (18)
Last Week: Beat Providence Catholic, 27-3
This Week: vs Brother Rice
EDGY's Take: The Broncos will host Brother Rice on Friday in the biggest game of the year in the Chicago Catholic League.

18. Oak Park-River Forest 6-2 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Glenbard West, 10-7
This Week: vs Lyons Township
EDGY's Take: The Huskies have a top-notch defense and found a way to beat Glenbard West at Duchon Field. It was OPRF's first win there since 1998.

19. Warren Township 7-1 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Stevenson, 21-0
This Week: @ Mundelein
EDGY's Take: The Blue Devils defense came to play. An impressive 21-0 shutout over Stevenson 21-0 last Friday.

20. Glenbard West 6-2 (12)
Last Week: Lost to Oak Park-River Forest, 10-7
This Week: @ Proviso West
EDGY's Take: The Hilltoppers defense is still salty as ever. But can the offense find a few more options besides standout RB Tyquan Cox?

21. Hillcrest 8-0 (22)
Last Week: Beat TF North, 50-6
This Week: vs Bremen
EDGY's Take: The Hawks have made it look easy this regular season. They'll go for a 9-0 sweep later this week in an effort to claim a high seed in 5A.

22. Notre Dame 7-1 (23)
Last Week: Beat Carmel, 21-7
This Week: vs Joliet Catholic
EDGY's Take: The Dons now host JCA and will try to knock out the Hilltoppers from the state playoff field.

23. Hinsdale Central 8-0 (24)
Last Week: Beat Lyons Township, 57-0
This Week: vs Hinsdale South
EDGY's Take: The Red Devils will get challenged this Friday against crosstown rival Hinsdale South (The "Doings Cup" game).

24. Rolling Meadows 8-0 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Hersey, 38-35
This Week: @ Buffalo Grove
EDGY's Take: The Mustangs get a huge win over Hersey. Why do I get the feeling we could see an RM-Hersey rematch in the postseason?
 
25. St. Charles North 6-2 (21)
Last Week: Lost to Batavia, 27-24
This Week: vs Wheaton South
EDGY's Take: The North Stars drop a last-second loss to Batavia last Friday; they will look to get back on track this week against another tough opponent in Wheaton South.