NewsTribune preview capsules for Week 6 of the 2023 season

Mendota's Braiden Freeman makes a catch over Bureau Valley's Corban Chhim on Friday, Sept. 22, 2023 at Bureau Valley High School.

Interstate 8/Kishwaukee River White

La Salle-Peru (3-2, 1-1) at Woodstock (0-5, 0-3)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 24-0 L-P (2022)

About the Cavaliers: La Salle-Peru looks to bounce back from a 40-0 loss to Morris against the winless Blue Streaks. L-P is 2-0 against Woodstock, winning the two games by a combined 73-7. Before being shut out and allowing 40 points last week, the Cavs were averaging 23.8 points per game while giving up 22.5. L-P quarterback Brendan Boudreau has thrown for 521 yards and five touchdowns while running fr 244 yards and four TDs this season. Last week, L-P’s Tyler Delphi and Noah Glynn recovered fumbles, while Glynn, Richie Santiago, Walter Haage and Zack Pocivaski recorded tackles for loss.

About the Blue Streaks: Woodstock remained winless with a 14-7 loss to crosstown rival Woodstock North last week. The Blue Streaks drove to the North 1-yard line with 9.5 seconds left, but were called for a personal foul and were unable to complete either of their last two pass attempts. Woodstock QB Caden Thompson completed 5-of-8 passes for 73 yards and a touchdown. Keaton Perkins caught all of Thompson’s completions. Max Miller rushed for 81 yards on 20 attempts. Woodstock has scored 28 points this season and has scored in only two games. The Blue Streaks have allowed 161 points and have given up 40 or more points three times. Woodstock has lost nine games in a row.

FND pick: La Salle-Peru

Chicagoland Prairie

Elmwood Park (0-5, 0-3) at St. Bede (3-2, 2-1)

When: 1 p.m. Saturday

Last matchup: First meeting

About the Bruins: St. Bede will welcome Elmwood Park to the Academy for the Bruins’ traditional Saturday afternoon homecoming game. The Bruins are 5-2 on homecoming under coach Jim Eustice, including a 31-20 victory over Bureau Valley last season. St. Bede is coming off a 42-8 rout of Westmont. The Bruins used a new look with two quarterbacks on the field at the same time, Max Bray and Gino Ferrari. Bray ran for two touchdowns in the win, while Ferrari threw a 60-yard touchdown to Alex Ankiewicz and also ran for a TD. Ferrari was voted the Friday Night Drive Team of the Week MVP. Last week’s win was the second time this season the Bruins held a team to a touchdown or less.

About the Tigers: Elmwood Park has been outscored 268-72 this season, including a 35-28 loss to Dwight/Gardner-South Wilmington last week. The 28 points was the highest output of the season for the Tigers, who had not scored more than 14 points in their first four games. The 35 points were the fewest points allowed this season by Elmwood Park after it gave up 48 or more in each of the first four games. The Tigers have lost 12 games in a row.

FND pick: St. Bede


IVC (0-5) at Hall (2-3)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 34-13 IVC (2010)

About the Red Devils: Hall is looking to bounce back from a 41-0 loss to Kewanee last week, which was its first shutout loss since losing 43-0 to Newman on Oct. 8, 2021. The Red Devils were held to just 88 yards (50 passing, 38 rushing) against the Boilermakers. Braden Curran led Hall with 40 receiving yards and 20 rushing yards. On the season, Curran has 253 yards and three touchdowns rushing, plus 176 yards and one TD receiving. QB Gianni Guerrini has completed 29-of-55 passes for 357 yards and two TDs with four interceptions while rushing for 261 yards and four TDs.

About the Grey Ghosts: IVC was 4-1 against Hall when both teams were members of the NCIC from 2006-10. The Grey Ghosts are coming off a 55-20 loss to Prairie Central. IVC has allowed 46 points or more in every game. The Ghosts scored 39 points in the season opener, but have only managed only 61 points over the last four games.

FND pick: Hall

Three Rivers crossover

Riverdale (0-5) at Mendota (0-5)

When: 3 p.m. Saturday

Last matchup: 57-20 Mendota (2021)

About the Trojans: The game was originally scheduled for Friday night, but was moved to Saturday afternoon due to a lack of officials. Mendota played its most competitive game of the season last week in a 35-14 loss to Bureau Valley. Mendota QB Justin Randolph completed 22-of-42 passes for 225 yards and a TD while also rushing for a TD. He has thrown for an area-best 633 yards. Braiden Freeman caught eight passes for 109 yards against the Storm. The Trojans are averaging 5.8 points per game while allowing 44. Mendota has lost nine games in a row.

About the Rams: Riverdale is looking for its first win since beating Sherrard 28-14 in Week 9 of the 2021 season. The Rams did not field a varsity team in 2022. Riverdale lost 49-16 to Sherrard last week. The Rams have given up 41 points or more in every game and are allowing 50.4 points per game. Riverdale is scoring 11.6 points per game. Aiden Sensabaugh plays football and soccer at Riverdale. Friday he scored two goals in a 3-2 win over Orion, then later booted a school-record 47-yard field goal against Sherrard.

FND pick: Mendota

Three Rivers Mississippi

Kewanee (5-0, 3-0) at Princeton (4-1, 1-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 56-7 Princeton (2022)

About the Tigers: Princeton has played well since losing 22-21 to Morrison in Week 2, beating its last three opponents a combined 90-6, including a 28-6 win over Sterling last week. Casey Etheridge led the Princeton offense last week, as he rushed for 174 yards and three touchdowns on 35 carries. The Tigers only attempted two passes. Etheridge has run for 984 yards and 15 TDs on 111 carries this season. He has scored multiple TDs in four of five games this season. Princeton has shut out three opponents and only gave up more than one touchdown against Morrison. Payne Miller has 7 1/2 tackles for loss and four sacks to lead the Princeton defense. Noah LaPorte has three interceptions on the season, including a pick he returned for a TD last week. Princeton lineman Bennett Williams, who is committed to the Air Force Academy, suffered an ACL/MCL tear against Sterling.

About the Boilermakers: After winning by a touchdown in Week 1, Kewanee has dominated, winning by an average margin of 33 points per game. The Boilermakers have scored 41 points or more in the last three games and have shut out three of their last four opponents. Senior quarterback Brady Clark threw two touchdown passes in last week’s 41-0 win over Hall, while Alex Duarte ran for TDs of 9 and 1 yards.

FND pick: Princeton

Bureau Valley (3-2, 2-1) at Newman (4-1, 0-1)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 27-0 Newman (2022)

About the Storm: Bureau Valley needs to win two of its final four games to become playoff eligible. The Storm have lost 11 consecutive games to the Comets, with BV’s last win coming in Week 8 of the 2009 season when the Storm won 34-6. Bureau Valley is coming off a 35-14 win over Mendota in which the Storm did not attempt a pass while rushing for 434 yards. Elijah Endress ran for 249 yards and five touchdowns to bring his season totals to 528 yards and 10 TDs. Cameron Lemons has rushed for 495 yards and a TD. BV is allowing 18.4 points per game and has allowed only one opponent to score more than 21 points while holding three to 14 points or less. Connor Scott leads the team in tackles (45), while Endress has six tackles for loss and 4 1/2 sacks.

About the Comets: Newman has kept games low scoring this season, averaging 14 points per game while holding opponents to 12.8. Newman has not scored more than 22 points in a game this season and has not allowed more than 20 while holding three teams to 10 points or less. The Comets forced three turnovers in last week’s 20-7 win over Erie-Prophetstown, bringing Newman’s takeaway total to 16. Newman quarterback Evan Bushman completed 7-of-11 passes for 119 yards and two TDs last week, while Brady Grennan ran for 60 yards on 10 carries and caught a 23-yard pass. Carter Rude scored on a 9-yard run.

FND pick: Newman

Heart of Illinois Small

Fieldcrest (2-3, 0-1) at Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley (4-1, 1-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 23-14 GCMS (2022)

About the Knights: Fieldcrest rallied last week but lost 29-28 after a missing a two-point conversion late. The Knights turned to their passing game during the comeback, as QB Brady Ruestman completed 14-of-24 passes for 237 yards and a TD, while Jozia Johnson caught seven passes for 112 yards and two TDs. Eddie Lorton has rushed for 440 yards and seven TDs on 112 carries this season.

About the Falcons: GCMS has won three games in a row, including 42-0 over Fisher last week. The Falcons are averaging 27.6 points per game. Ty Cribbett and Aiden Sancken combined to run for 210 yards and four touchdowns last week, while Brayden Elliott competed 8-of-21 passes for 130 yards. GCMS is allowing 11.2 points per game and has held every opponent to 16 points or less. The Falcons held Fisher to 16 total yards.

FND pick: GCMS

Illinois 8-Man

Amboy co-op (5-0) at Milledgeville (5-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: 40-36 Amboy (2022)

About the Clippers: Amboy, which is ranked No. 1 in the eight-man rankings, will face its toughest test of the season against the No. 2 Missiles. The Clippers have scored 46 points or more in every game, including a season-high 80 against River Ridge. Amboy beat Ridgewood 48-42 last week. Amboy QB Eddie Jones has completed 16-of-22 passes for 440 yards and eight TDs with no interceptions while rushing for 131 yards and two TDs on 10 carries. Landon Whelchel (466 yards, nine TDs) and Quinn Leffelman (445 yards, seven TDs) are the Clippers’ top rushing options, while Brennan Blaine has caught 10 passes for 281 yards and six TDs. He’s also a leader on defense with 40 tackles and seven sacks.

About the Missiles: Milledgeville has already beaten No. 3 Polo (58-22). The Missiles are averaging 58.8 points per game and have scored 50 or more points in the last four games, including a 74-34 win over Hiawatha last week. QB Connor Nye completed 7-of-10 passes for 204 yards and four TDs while running for 105 yards and a TD last week. Bryce McKenna caught four passes for 131 yards and three TDs against Hiawatha, while Micah Toms-Smith rushed for 167 yards and two scores.

FND pick: Amboy