Football Friday 2022 // Week Seven

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Only three weeks remain in the high school football regular season as we kick off Week Seven! Teams are beginning to secure playoff spots while others are hoping to end on a positive note and play spoilers to their conference rivals. Another big week ahead so let’s get to the highlights! Football Friday is sponsored by BMO Harris Bank.

Waubonsie Valley vs. Neuqua Valley

Of course we begin with one of the best rivalries in the area, as Neuqua Valley hosts Waubonsie Valley. The two teams are heading in opposite directions this season taking some of the cache out of this year’s matchup, but you know both teams are going to play their hardest to come away with bragging rights.

Neuqua Valley with a 7-0 lead in the second quarter. The handoff goes to Sil Spatafora who plants his foot and cuts inside at the five before working his way into the end zone for his second score of the night. 14-0 Wildcats at halftime.

The Wildcat defense has proven all season long to be among the best in the state. Here we see Josh Friedman show the type of plays this blue and gold defense is capable of with a one handed interception.

In the second half, Ryan Mohler connects on a pass to Grant Larkin, who weaves his way back to the middle of the field and fights his way into the end zone. A suffocating victory for Neuqua Valley by a 28-0 score as the Wildcats improve to 6-1 on the season.

Naperville Central vs. DeKalb

The most important matchup of the week sees Naperville Central traveling west to take on DeKalb. Both teams enter the game at 4-2 and a win would secure playoff eligibility. The Redhawks flying high after an overtime win over Naperville North a week ago.

In the opening quarter, Central on the move. Quarterback Chris McCormack fakes the handoff and keeps the ball himself, taking the ball across the goal line for the first score of the game. 7-0 Redhawks.

The Naperville Central defense has been on an absolute tear as of late. Here we see Maverick Ohle and Oliver Robak combine for the sack as the Redhawks take a 13-0 lead into halftime.

The defense is able to pitch a shutout in this one and running back Caleb Brown scores two touchdowns on the night in place of the injured Tyler Dodd. Naperville Central with a big 26-0 road win, improving to 5-2 on the year as the Redhawks secure that all important 5th win of the season.

Naperville North vs. Metea Valley

Naperville North needs a bounce back win following last week’s heartbreaker in the Crosstown Classic. Metea Valley picked up a big win two weeks ago, but will need to bring their “A” game to hang with the high powered Huskies.

The first offensive play of the game for Naperville North sees Aidan Gray toss a swing pass to running back Nate Jacobs who catches the ball in stride and sprints up the field. After breaking a tackle, Jacobs finds himself outrunning the Metea defense for an 84 yard touchdown. What a way to start.

Later in the quarter, Aidan Gray rolls to his right and fires right on target to his tight end Peyton Seipel in the end zone. The Huskies take a 28-0 lead in this one.

Trailing big late in the game, Metea Valley is able to make some history. Pinned deep at their own one yard line, Noah Larson drops a pass to an open Robert Lynch who gets behind the defense. From there it’s a footrace and the Mustang receiver goes all the way, 99 yards for the touchdown. The longest play in school history on that connection to end on a high note. However, Naperville North controls this game throughout and wins 59-14, securing playoff eligibility with the 5th win of the season for the Huskies.

Benet Academy vs. St. Joseph

The lone out of state trip of the season for any of our teams sees Benet Academy traveling to South Bend, Indiana to face St. Joseph. It’s the second opponent from the Hoosier state for the Redwings this season after falling to Noblesville back in Week One. Benet could sure use another win as BA enters this contest 3-3 on the year.

The Redwing defense playing strong to start this game. Scoreless in the second quarter as St. Joseph faces third down. John Weidenbach comes flying off the edge and makes the sack to end the drive.

After a 0-0 first half, Benet driving in the third quarter. Jacob Hoeppel throws a swing pass to Pat Pitello who gets a nice downfield block and cuts upfield, going 26 yards for the touchdown. 7-0 Benet.

Late in the third quarter, St. Joseph knocking on the door of the end zone, but again the Redwing defense rises to the occassion as David Cservenyak and Pierce Walsh get the sack. St. Joseph is unable to score on the drive.

Final minute of the game, St. Joseph facing 4th and 10 from the 15 yard line. Alex Ortiz drops back to pass. Good coverage downfield as Lawrence Van Someren puts the pressure on and forces the incomplete pass. Benet hangs on for the massive 7-0 road victory. The Redwings improve to 4-3 on the season.

Standings and Schedules

Let’s look first at the CCL/ESCC Green Division standings where it was a very successful night for all four teams. Notre Dame took down DePaul College Prep, Nazareth throttled Leo and St. Rita won its 5th in a row over Marian Central Catholic. Notre Dame and St. Rita now playoff eligible while Benet needs just one win in the final two games to claim a spot.

Neuqua Valley remains the team to beat in the DVC with a perfect 4-0 conference tally. Naperville Central stays in second place while Naperville North moves ahead of DeKalb thanks to the Huskies head to head win over the Barbs.

Next week Neuqua Valley travels to DeKalb as the Barbs are in need of one more win to become playoff eligible. Naperville Central hosts Metea Valley and Naperville North welcomes Waubonsie Valley.

Benet Academy has a tough road matchup against longtime rival Joliet Catholic. All four CCL/ESCC Green Division members are on the road in Week Eight. Only two week of the regular season to go as the post season picture gets clearer and clearer. We’ll see you next week as we get down to crunch time! For Football Friday, I’m Justin Cornwell.

For more prep sports highlights, visit the Naperville Sports Weekly page!