Breaking down this week’s Top 10 football teams

First and 10

Team (record) This week’s opponent

1. York (6-0) Glenbard West, Friday

Comment: The Dukes started the toughest three-game stretch on their schedule last week with an impressive 32-21 win over previously unbeaten Downers Grove North. Jake Melion rushed for 257 yards and scored 3 touchdowns a week after running for 213 yards and 3 TDs. Next comes a pair of 4-2 teams, Glenbard West and Lyons.

2. Hersey (6-0) At Rolling Meadows, Friday

Comment: The Nasir McKenzie comeback story added another impressive chapter last week in a 28-3 win over Prospect. McKenzie, a senior who tore his ACL as a sophomore, rushed for 211 yards — his second straight 200-yard rushing game. Combined with QB Colton Gumino and Hersey’s lethal passing game, the Huskies continue to be near impossible to stop.

3. Batavia (5-1) St. Charles East, Friday

Comment: Much, much, much closer this time — full marks to Boone Thorgesen’s Geneva squad — but another year, another Bulldogs win, this time 21-18. Now 13 straight, the one-time lopsided series is narrowed to 51-49-5 with Batavia coach Dennis Piron aiming to tie it in his final two years as coach. Batavia’s schedule finally eases up last 3 weeks.

4. Barrington (6-0) At Hoffman Estates, Friday

Comment: The Broncos continued their bounce-back season with a 55-14 win over Schaumburg last week, though the schedule gets harder to end the year. Next up are a couple of 4-2 teams with the Hawks and then Palatine before closing the regular season against Conant. QB Nick Peipert threw for 330 yards last week.



5. Downers Grove N. (5-1) At Lyons, Friday

Comment: The Trojans gave top-ranked York a battle last week despite missing RB Noah Battle. Sophomore QB Owen Lansu threw for 223 yards and found Oliver Thulin for a pair of touchdowns. Now they get another toughie against Jon Beutjer’s Lions before closing the regular season against the two Hinsdales — a combined 3-9.

6. Maine South (5-1) Glenbrook South, Friday

Comment: The Hawks enter on a five-game winning streak. The latest came against Glenbrook North — a game they trailed 7-0 before quickly putting 40 unanswered points on the board. Constantine Coines tossed three more TD passes and scored on an 8-yard run. Glenbrook South also is 2-0 in the Central Suburban South that the Hawks have absolutely owned.

7. Palatine (4-2) Conant, Friday

Comment: Kole Fager ran for 3 TDs last week in the Pirates’ 24-10 win over Fremd in the annual Battle of the Tracks matchup. Now comes a Cougars team that struggled last week in a 28-0 loss to Hoffman Estates. Cooper Hanson did rush for 151 yards for Conant, who let up all 28 points in the second quarter.

8. Warren (4-2) At Waukegan, Friday

Comment: After an absolute gauntlet of a schedule, the Blue Devils get 1-5 Waukegan this week and 1-5 Zion-Benton in Week 9 sandwiched around a Lake Forest team that just lost to Stevenson last week. Warren is in the driver’s seat for the North Suburban Conference title, and it is also looking like a strong bet for another long postseason run.



9. Lake Zurich (5-1) Lake Forest, Friday

Comment: The Bears bounced back from a hard-fought loss to Warren with an equally hard-fought win over Libertyville, 29-28 in overtime. Chris Pirrone rushed for 113 yards, quarterback Lucas Lappin added 75 more, and Lappin also threw the 2-point conversion pass to force OT before Pirrone scored the eventual game-winner on a 1-yard run in overtime.

10. Naperville C. (5-1) DeKalb, Friday

Comment: Watch out for the Redhawks, who have opened DVC play with a 27-0 win over an improved Waubonsie Valley team, then beat Neuqua Valley 21-7 and Naperville North 21-14 in back-to-back weeks. With 2-4 DeKalb and 0-6 Metea Valley up next, the Redhawks are in a great position with their lights-out defense and improving offense.

Second and 10

11. IC Catholic Prep 5-1 Lost to St. Francis 35-34; Loyola

12. Geneva 5-1 Lost to Batavia 21-18; at Wheaton North

13. St. Francis 4-2 Beat IC Catholic 35-34; St. Rita

14. Glenbard West 4-2 Beat Hinsdale Central 42-21; at York

15. Cary-Grove 5-1 Beat Hampshire 41-21; Huntley

16. St. Charles North 4-2 Beat St. Charles East 40-14; Glenbard N.

17. Glenbard South 6-0 Beat South Elgin 14-13; hosts W. Chicago

18. Prospect 4-2 Lost to Hersey 28-3; Elk Grove

19. Huntley 5-1 Beat Crystal Lake South 54-43; at Cary-G

20. Neuqua Valley 3-3 Beat Metea V. 41-0; at Waubonsie V.


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