Analysis | Friday Night Drive

Kane County Chronicle preview capsules for Week 2

Batavia’s Drew Gerke runs the ball during a game against Phillips at Gately Stadium in Chicago on Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022.

Nonconference

Batavia (1-0) at Lincoln-Way East (1-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: First meeting

About the Bulldogs: There are a lot of similarities between these teams, most notably of which is an excellent Batavia defense that squelched Phillips at every turn during its runaway win in Week 1. Batavia’s offensive attack is also multi-faceted and capable of exacting problems against just about any defense and doesn’t specifically rely on one player to shoulder a majority of the load. The running attack was paced by RB Ryan Whitwell in the Philips win, but keying on him to slow Batavia’s attack would likely have a limited success pattern, as the Bulldogs could simply shift focus to another part of their effective offensive attack.

About the Griffins: It took a little bit of time for Lincoln-Way East to get its bearings in its Week 1 win over Crete-Monee, but the Griffins sometimes have the luxury of easing into things because of the capabilities of their defensive unit. The now experienced core stymied what will likely end up to be a pretty good Warriors offensive unit, allowing the Griffins offense some additional time to catch its groove. James Kwiecinski paced a varied Lincoln-Way East rushing attack with 128 rushing yards, and RB Petey Olaleye will also likely play a heavy role in a bruising offensive attack.

Friday Night Drive Pick: Lincoln-Way East

– Steve Soucie

Geneva (1-0) at Kaneland (1-0)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last Matchup: Geneva 31, Kaneland 20 (2021)

About the Vikings: Nate Stempowski established himself as the starting quarterback and didn’t disappoint last week, passing for 154 yards, three touchdowns and running for two. Talyn Taylor and Dylan Reyes had three catches apiece. Defensively, the Vikings held Metea Valley to one net rushing yard in the first half and 40 overall.

About the Knights: Kaneland also ripped off an impressive opening performance last week. Troyer Carlson threw for three touchdown passes and the defense forced three fumbles, which led to the scores.

FND Pick: Geneva

Lake Zurich (1-0) at St. Charles North (0-1)

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday

Last Matchup: St. Charles North 24, Lake Zurich 0 (2021)

About the North Stars: The North Stars limped out of Week 1 with a loss to Palatine on the road. Drew Surges had 300 all purpose yards, two touchdowns, 18 tackles and three for-loss, but it wasn’t quite enough to rally past the Pirates. Sophomore Ethan Plumb threw for 257 yards and helped the North Stars overcome an early 12-0 deficit. A late defensive mistake led to the game-clinching touchdown last week, so limiting big plays and chunk yardage will be a focus this week.

About the Bears: Senior quarterback Ashton Gondeck opened with a season debut to remember. On his first pass from scrimmage last week, Gondeck hit a 68-yard touchdown. An apparent dual threat, Gondeck had 122 rushing yards and was 7-for-17 passing for 196 yards on the night. Cal Grabowski and Ja Martinez split carries in the backfield. The Bears’ defense also was able to put pressure on the quarterback all night last week, so look for that to be an obvious focus to repeat.

FND Pick: St. Charles North

St. Charles East (1-0) at Waubonsie Valley (0-1)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Last Matchup: St. Charles East 27, Waubonsie Valley 7 (2021)

About the Saints: The big play defined the Saints’ opening win last week. Between linebacker Charlie McArdle returning a fumble for a touchdown, Blake Schuette’s 100-yard kick return for a score or Trent Matejko ripping off 137 rushing yards, the potential for growth is clearly there for the Saints. Keep an eye out for right guard/defensive lineman James Brennan, who is back after not playing football since freshman year. The Saints are excited about him.

About the Warriors: Oswego East was largely able to cruise last week by riding quarterback Tre Jones. Waubonsie gave up 14 unanswered points in the first quarter and 21 over the course of the game. Linebacker Mason Ringenbach is the leader of a defense for Waubonsie with several new faces. Luke Elsea returns at quarterback and running back Amir Spikener leads the skill positions.

FND Pick: St. Charles East

Lake View (0-1) at Marmion (1-0)

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday

Last matchup: Marmion 57, Lake View 0 (2021)

About the Cadets: The Cadets certainly cruised last week to a 42-0 victory over Bishop McNamara. Quarterback Josh Lim impressed with three touchdowns and 204 all purpose yards in just one half of football due to the score. Look for Ryan Prell, Sean Scheck and more to emerge this week.

About the Wildcats: A bit of tough sledding in a 42-0 loss to Niles North to open the season, Lake View now gets a Marmion team that appeared to rest a majority of starters and primary playmakers by the second half.

FND Pick: Marmion

Sterling (1-0) at St. Francis (1-0)

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday

About the Golden Warriors: Sterling, out of the Western Big 6 Conference, hosted Lakes in Week 1 and scored a 40-7 victory. Senior quarterbacks Kael Ryan and JP Schilling each scored two TDs. Running back Antonio Tablante is a player to watch. “Sterling is a very well-coached team that is very physical,” St. Francis coach Bob McMillen said. “We will need to match their physicality and play mistake-free football. We will have to spread the ball around and hopefully confuse Sterlings defense.”

About the Spartans: Some individual superlatives coming out of the Week 1 win at Lake Forest. Dash Dorsey had three catches for 75 yards and a touchdown, while Cole Pickler was active on defense with 9 tackles and 1 sack. Quarterback Alessio Milivojevic was 7 of 12 for 154 yards and a touchdown.

FND Pick: St. Francis

-- Mike Miazga, Daily Herald Media Group

Fox Valley Conference

Prairie Ridge (1-0) at Burlington Central High School (1-0)

When: 7 p.. Friday

Last Matchup: Prairie Ridge 41, Burlington Central 14 (2021)

About the Rockets: Central pulled off an impressive comeback last week against Hampshire in their 15-14 win. Jackson Alcorn threw for two touchdown passes and the Rockets also succeeded in recovering an onside kick. James Muetterties had 8.5 tackles and two sacks while Robbie Gall starred with 20 of his own. Look for Michael Ganziano (93 rushing yards) and wideouts LJ Kerr and Michael Person to emerge after a promising week one.

About the Wolves: As probably expected, Prairie Ridge’s offense ran wild in a win over McHenry last weeek. The Wolves totaled 464 yards of total offense and a healthy dose of Nathan Greetham (28 carries, 208 yards, 2 TD) and quarterback Tyler Vasey (18 rushes, 198 yards, 2 TDs) accounted for much of it.

FND Pick: Prairie Ridge