No. 23 Prairie Ridge at No. 10 Cary-Grove, 1 p.m. Saturday
This game between the 4-0 teams in aggregate and in Fox Valley could determine a lot – bragging rights in the far northwest of the suburbs, the conference title and maybe a seed. # 1 in the Class 6A playoffs if the winner goes 9-0 in the regular season. Since 2009, one of those teams has reached the 6A final seven times, with Prairie Ridge winning three state titles and Cary-Grove two. This year, Cary-Grove was untested, scoring an average of 39 points. Quarterback Jameson Sheehan and fullback Nick Hissong keep the Trojans’ offense rolling. Prairie Ridge passed Jacobs 49-48 last week, stopping the Golden Eagles on a two-run conversion try with 2:33 left, Nathan Greetham rushed for 165 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Wolves offense.
No. 25 Crete-Monee at No. 4 Joliet Catholic, 7:30 p.m. Friday
This is the second high profile clash for Crete (3-1), which lost 35-20 to Lincoln-Way East in Week 1. The Warriors are emerging from a 78-18 rout of Thornwood in which Joshua Franklin had eight touchdowns. (two rushing, six assists) and 528 all-purpose yards. Class 4A-ranked Joliet Catholic’s closest game was a 30-20 win over Cardinal Ritter of St. Louis, a game the Hilltoppers led 23-0. The JCA just won a 42-0 shutout against Will County rival Providence, which filled Memorial Stadium in Joliet. While Illinois rookies Jordan Anderson and Malachi Hood may have entered the season with a higher profile, quarterback Aidan Voss has also been a big reason for the Hilltoppers’ success.
No. 5 Naperville Central at No. 7 Neuqua Valley, 7:30 p.m. Friday
It could be the first of two clashes between neighborhood rivals, as DuPage Valley plans to play a league game in Week 9. Senior Parker Domschke had a big game last week for Neuqua (4-0 , 1-0) with seven tackles. as a defensive back and a 56-yard touchdown on a false punt. Junior quarterback Mark Mennecke, an efficient scrambler, hints at opposing defenses. Naperville Central (3-1, 1-0), whose only loss was on the road to Detroit Central Catholic, specializes in low-score games. The Redhawks haven’t scored more than 20 points or allowed more than 17 points this season.
No. 9 Lincoln-Way East to No. 17 Bolingbrook, 6 p.m. Friday
Lincoln-Way East has won 26 consecutive conference games and has dominated that rivalry with seven straight wins. Can the Griffins (3-1, 0-0 SouthWest Suburban) extend those streaks with one of their youngest teams in the 20-year tenure of coach Rob Zvonar, who claimed his 200th career victory in the last week? Bolingbrook (4-0, 0-0), who will honor members of his 2011 State Championship team, has some star power this year with likes of junior safety Damon Walters, who has SEC offers from Tennessee and Vanderbilt.
Simeon vs. Phillips, 4 p.m. Saturday at Gately
This is the week we start to get a better idea of who the best team in the Public League is with two of the four favorites (Kenwood and Morgan Park are the other contenders). Simeon (2-2) rebounded from decisive losses to Joliet Catholic and Bolingbrook with a pair of unbalanced wins against CPS rivals. Wolverines’ Malik Elzy, a 6-3, 198-pound wide receiver, is one of the state’s top juniors and his 13 offerings include Illinois, Notre Dame, Michigan and three SEC schools (Kentucky, Tennessee and Vanderbilt) . Phllips (2-2) had a similar trajectory, losing to Batavia and Mount Carmel before managing a pair of city rivals. Junior quarterback Tyler Turner is a player to watch,