NewsTribune preview capsules for Week 5 of the 2023 season

L-P faces tough test at Morris; Princeton to play 5A Sterling

L-P's Andres Medina and Josh Senica react after defeating Plano on Friday, Sept. 15, 2023 at Howard Fellows Stadium.

Kishwaukee River/Interstate 8 White

La Salle-Peru (3-1, 1-0) at Morris (4-0, 2-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 42-17 Morris (2022, first round Class 5A playoffs)

About the Cavaliers: Morris and L-P have one opponent in common, Woodstock North. Morris beat the Thunder 49-7 last week, while the Cavaliers beat Woodstock North 35-24 in Week 3. L-P rallied to beat Plano 20-15 last week when Brendan Boudreau threw a 52-yard touchdown pass to Seth Adams with 45.2 seconds left. Boudreau completed 11-of-17 passes for 136 yards and a TD while running for 46 yards and a TD last week. On the season, he has completed 40-of-64 passes for 494 yards and five TDs with one interception while rushing for 220 yards and four TDs. Brady Romagnoli leads L-P’s rushing attack with 317 yards and three TDs. The Cavs will be on the road for just the second time this season after three consecutive home games. L-P beat United Township 34-14 in the season opener on the road.

About Morris: Morris has beaten L-P four times the last two seasons, including 49-7 in the regular season and 42-17 in the first round of the playoffs last fall. Morris is averaging 46.3 points per game while allowing 15.8 points per game. Last week, Morris committed 10 penalties for 100 yards in the first half but still managed a 28-0 halftime lead. Jacob Swartz ran for 148 yards and two touchdowns against Woodstock North, Carter Button completed 11-of-17 passes for 191 yards with a 36-yard TD pass to Jack Wheeler and a 68-yard TD pass to Ethan Mumbrue, Griffin Zweeres rushed for an 18-yard TD, and A.J. Zweeres returned a punt 54 yards for a TD. Morris finished with 245 rushing yards and 206 passing yards last week, while limiting the Thunder to 128 total yards.

FND pick: Morris

Chicagoland Prairie

St. Bede (2-2, 1-1) at Westmont (1-3, 0-2)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: First meeting

About the Bruins: St. Bede looks to get back on track after suffering a 42-27 loss to Norridge Ridgewood in a conference game in Peru last week. The Bruins turned the ball over three times against Ridgewood, which led to three touchdowns for the Rebels. St. Bede quarterback Max Bray completed 13-of-34 passes for 138 yards with two interceptions while rushing for 176 yards and three TDs on 30 carries against Ridgewood. The Bruins are 0-2 at home this season, but 2-0 on the road.

About the Sentinels: After forfeiting in Week 3, Westmont suffered a 55-6 loss to Marquette last week. The Sentinels allowed Marquette to score 41 points on its first 10 plays from scrimmage. The Sentinels managed just 72 yards of total offense, including 51 rushing yards on 22 carries. Westmont’s lone points came on a 78-yard run by quarterback Lucas Fears against Marquette’s second-team defense.

FND pick: St. Bede

Three Rivers Mississippi

Hall (2-2, 1-1) at Kewanee (4-0, 2-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 26-15 Hall (2022)

About the Red Devils: Hall-Putnam County is coming off a 34-7 win over Mendota. Aiden Redcliff scored three touchdowns for Hall on a 56-yard shovel pass and rushing scores of 10 and 41 yards. He finished with 63 yards on 14 carries. QB Gianni Guerrini was 6-of-9 passing for 96 yards and a TD with one interception, while Braden Curran ran for 111 yards and a TD on 10 carries. The Red Devils and Boilermakers have one common opponent, Bureau Valley. Hall lost to the Storm 18-8 in Week 3, while Kewanee beat the Storm 42-20 last week.

About the Boilermakers: Kewanee stayed undefeated with a 42-20 win last week over Bureau Valley, the Boilermakers’ first victory over a team that currently has multiple wins. The Boilermakers took a 28-0 lead at halftime and led 42-7 in the second half. Brady Clark threw for 184 yards and four touchdowns and ran for 64 yards and a TD. Benjamin Taylor caught six passes for 96 yards and a TD, Colsen Welgat caught two TD passes, and Alejandro Duarte rushed for 64 yards and a TD.

FND pick: Kewanee

Mendota (0-4, 0-2) at Bureau Valley (2-2, 1-1)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 49-23 Mendota (2022)

About the Trojans: Mendota showed improvement in last week’s 34-7 loss to Hall, as it was the first time this season the Trojans did not have the running clock put on them and scored in the first half. Mendota has been outscored 185-15. Against Hall, Justin Randolph competed 10-of-25 passes for 138 yards and ran for 52 yards. Mendota’s touchdown came when Braiden Freeman took a handoff and tossed a 25-yard TD pass to Keegan Beetz. The Trojans allowed Hall to rush for 302 yards.

About the Storm: Bureau Valley is 2-0 on the road and 0-2 at home this season, so the Storm look for their first home win against the Trojans. Bureau Valley lost 42-20 to Kewanee last week, falling behind 28-0 at halftime and 42-7 in the second half. The Storm allowed Kewanee to rack up 326 offensive yards — 175 passing and 151 rushing. Bureau Valley rushed for 176 yards and threw for 72 yards. Cameron Lemmons ran for 66 yards on 11 carries, while Elijah Endress rushed for 37 yards and a TD. Payton Walowski had 31 rushing yards and a TD. Bryce Helms completed 6-of-14 passes for 64 yards and a TD to Eli Attig. The Storm have scored 78 points this season and gave up 78 points.

FND pick: Bureau Valley


Sterling (2-2) at Princeton (3-1)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Sterling 19-6 (1949)

About the Golden Warriors: Sterling has won its last two games after staring 0-2. The Golden Warriors defeated Galesburg 45-14 last week following a 23-19 win over United Township in Week 3. Sterling quarterback Joseph Holcomb was a dual threat against Galesburg, completing 4-of-6 passes for 71 yards and two touchdowns and running for 87 yards and two TDs in the first half. The Golden Warriors scored on their first seven drives against Galesburg. Andre Klaver ran for a 1-yard touchdown and also had a sack on defense, while Mason Emin caught a 28-yard TD pass, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble. Wyatt Cassens led the defense with four tackles, two sacks and a fumble recovery, while Maurice De La Cruz recovered a fumble. Jaden Thompson intercepted a pass, and Ryan Gebhardt booted a 47-yard field goal.

About the Tigers: Princeton will face Sterling for the first time in more than seven decades. The meeting came about when Princeton needed to replace St. Bede on the schedule and Sterling needed to replace Alleman. The Tigers are coming off a 42-0 rout of Orion for their third shutout win of the season. Casey Etheridge ran for 291 yards and five touchdowns last week and now has 810 yards and 12 touchdowns on the season. The Tigers defense held Orion to negative-7 rushing yards on 20 carries and limited Orion QB Kale Filler to 115 yards on 14-of-24 passing.

FND pick: Sterling

Heart of Illinois Small

Heyworth (3-1) at Fieldcrest (2-2)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 47-0 Fieldcrest (2017)

About the Hornets: With three wins this season, including 41-14 over Deer Creek-Mackinaw last week, Heyworth has already surpassed last year’s win total. The Hornets only had one win on the field in 2022 and went 2-7 overall with a forfeit win from Fisher. Heyworth is averaging 29 points per game while allowing 24.3 points per game. Heyworth gave up 22 points combined the last two weeks after allowing 75 points through the first two games.

About the Knights: Fieldcrest is 2-0 at home this season with wins over Dwight (20-19) and Ridgeview-Lexington (36-14). The Knights are coming off a 55-14 loss at Tri-Valley. Eddie Lorton was kept out of the end zone for the first time this season in last week’s loss. He has rushed for 398 yards and six touchdowns on 99 carries to lead a ground game that averages 207.5 yards per game. The Knights are averaging 58.8 passing yards per game.

FND pick: Fieldcrest

Illinois 8-Man

Cambridge Ridgewood (3-1) at Amboy co-op (4-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: First meeting

About the Spartans: Ridgewood lost 48-44 to Polo last week for its first loss of the season. The Spartans are averaging 43.5 points per game. Ridgewood quarterback Ryle Catour ran for touchdowns of 8, 70 and 1 yards last week while also tossing a 25-yard TD pass to Sean Watt. Roy Sandberg had a 10-yard rushing TD for Ridgewood against Polo, while Watt intercepted a pass and returned it for a TD. Last week was the first time the Spartans allowed more than 16 points in a game.

About the Clippers: Amboy is coming off a de facto bye week after Peoria Quest forfeited last week, canceling Amboy’s homecoming game. The Clippers have outscored their first three opponents 186-16. The Clippers have scored 46 points or more in all three games while not allowing more than eight points.

FND pick: Amboy