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Prep Football Preview Capsules: Week 5


Game time:
7 p.m. Friday

Last meeting: Burlington Central 26, Genoa-Kingston 14, in Week 5 of 2012 season

Scouting the Rockets: Like G-K, Burlington Central struggled to a 0-2 start before improving in conference play. After shutting out Rockford Christian, the Rockets narrowly fell to Big Northern East title favorite Harvard last week, 17-13. They allowed only 57 yards in the second half but were hurt by a late interception. The defense has been stellar as of late, so it’s up to the offense to eliminate costly turnovers.

What’s at stake: Conference standings. At this point, teams are just trying to get a leg up on their local foes and build momentum. G-K leads the conference with a 2-0 mark, though Harvard and North Boone both sit undefeated at 1-0. A win is crucial to get the Cogs above .500 going into a tough matchup against 4-0 Winnebago.

– Luke Srodulski,


Game time:
7 p.m. Friday

Location: Marquette Academy, 1000 Paul St., Ottawa

Last meeting: Marquette 42, Hiawatha 7, in Week 1 of the 2012 season

Scouting the Crusaders: A big, physical team with a loaded roster is the only undefeated team in the Northeastern Athletic Conference. The first-place Crusaders have outscored opponents 169-35, behind a stout 4-4 defense that crashes hard upfield and a potent Wing-T offense.

Quarterback Patrick Killelea is the decision-maker and fullback Jacob Martin (eight TDs) and running backs Cole Lindhout and Tyler Verona provide a challenging mix of running-game options.

“Marquette is very good, big, strong and fast,” Hiawatha coach Sean Donnelly said. “They just come at you. They keep reloading bodies.”

What’s at stake: A win would secure first place in the NAC for the Hawks. However, a roster depleted by injuries will be taxed further. Chris Schuck, Ben Watson, Bart Hall and Nick Doolittle are out for tonight’s game.

“We feel good about the position we are in,” Donnelly said. “But we are beat up physically. If we can go into their field and pull out a win it would be sweet. We’ve overcome so much this season to put ourself in a position to play for first place. We’ve used some smoke and mirrors, but I’m proud with how we’ve fought, scratched and clawed our way through the first half of the season.”

– James Nokes,


Game time:
7:30 p.m. Friday

Location: Ottawa High School, 211 E. Main St., Ottawa

Last meeting: Ottawa 10, Sycamore 6, in Week 5 of 2012 season

Scouting the Pirates: Last weekend against DeKalb, the Ottawa defense was in shambles, allowing touchdowns on the Barbs’ first seven possessions of the game.

Ben Niemann, Dion Hooker, Devin Mottett and the Sycamore offense might have an absolute field day one week after Dre Brown and Jack Sauter shredded the Ottawa defense for a combined 331 rushing yards.

Offensively, the Pirates put up a fight in the second and third quarters against DeKalb. Quarterback Carter Krause was forced to chuck the ball after DeKalb took a 23-0 lead early in the second quarter, and his 10-for-23 passing day would have been much better if not for a number of drops by Ottawa receivers.

What’s at stake: For Sycamore, an undefeated record heading into the meat of the NI Big 12 East season. The Spartans play Morris next week, which will serve as a warmup for games against Rochelle and Kaneland. If Sycamore was upset by the Pirates, it would be a crushing disappointment not only for the Spartans, but for fans wanting to see unbeaten teams go at it down the stretch in the NI Big 12 East.

– Anthony Zilis,

DeKALB (2-2, 0-1 NI BIG 12 EAST) AT STREATOR (0-4, 0-1 NI BIG 12 WEST)

Game time:
7:30 p.m. Friday

Location: Streator High School, 202 W. Lincoln Ave., Streator

Scouting the Bulldogs: It’s been a struggle for Streator the past three seasons, and this year has been no different. From 2010 to 2012, the Bulldogs won a total of one game, and Streator is off to a 0-4 start this season, having given up a combined 119 points to East Peoria, Bartonville Limestone, Ottawa and Kaneland. The Bulldogs had only 76 yards of total offense in a 42-0 loss at home to Kaneland last week.
It’s Streator’s swan song in the NI Big 12, as the Bulldogs will join the Interstate Eight next year.

What’s at stake: With a tough NI Big 12 East slate coming up, this is a game DeKalb has to have if it is going to be competing in the playoffs. After tonight’s game, the Barbs get Kaneland, Morris, Yorkville and Rochelle, who are a combined 13-3.

– Steve Nitz,

ROCHELLE (4-0) at KANELAND (4-0)

Game time:
7:30 p.m. Friday

Last meeting: Kaneland 34, Rochelle 6, in Week 5 of 2012 season

Scouting the Hubs: Rochelle has made quick work of its overmatched opponents through the first four weeks, averaging 56 points a game. However, the Hubs haven’t faced a team with a winning record.
Rochelle running backs Tommy Sprowl, Marquez Felix and Evan White all will get touches in the Hubs’ running-oriented attack. It’s hard to tell much about Rochelle as the Hubs have started 4-0 each of the past three seasons, but went only 2-3 in the NI Big 12 East.

What’s at stake: A likely playoff berth is on the line for both Rochelle and Kaneland, although neither team will worry too much if they come away with a loss.

Kaneland’s 32-game regular-season winning streak remains intact after a 42-0 victory over Streator last week, and the Knights will look to continue their dominance in the conference.

– Ross Jacobson,

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