High School Lites: Lenti looks to make history

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High School Lites: Lenti looks to make history

Thursday, Sept. 15, 2011
Posted: 1:29 p.m.

By Chris Boden & Scott Krinch
CSNChicago.com

Week four of High School Lites is coming up on Friday and Comcast SportsNetCSNChicago.com is the place to go for preps coverage in the Chicagoland area. We'll be bringing you highlights of over 15 games across the area and this week's marquee matchup is a showdown of unbeatens in the Southwest Suburban - Blue Conference: No. 6 Homewood Flossmoor hosts No. 4 Lincoln-Way East. Which team will come away still holding a big zero in the loss column? Tune in to find out. We'll also have highlights of Matt Alviti and the No. 1 Maine South Hawks taking on Niles North. After a 42-0 thrashing of Fenwick, No. 11 St. Rita will go to a hostile environment to take on their Catholic League rival, Brother Rice.

Here's a quick glimpse of each game we'll cover during Friday night's show at 10:30 p.m.:

Robeson (3-0) vs. Bogan (0-3), 3:30 @ Stagg

Chris Boden: The records aren't deceiving in this Prairie State division opener. The Bengals have managed just six points in each of their three losses, though things did get a little better against Lane last week, when they allowed just 28 points after giving up 54 and 51 to open the season against Tinley Park and Edwardsville, respectively. The Raiders are rolling behind RB Devon Sanders, who was Tom Lemming's MVP at a summer camp exclusively for juniors. He carried 58 times for 460 yards and 9 touchdowns in lopsided wins over Julian and Harlan before last week's 28-14 victory at Rich Central.

Young (2-1) vs. Simeon (1-2), 3:30 @ Gately

Scott Krinch: Getting their leader back was all Simeon needed. Quarterback Robert Gregory returned to lead the Wolverines to a 47-7 rout of Morgan Park last week. Before taking his talents to the University of Arkansas and the SEC, Gregory is hoping to lead Simeon to their first state title in school history. Well see if Young can contain Gregory in this Chicago Public League showdown.

Evergreen Park (2-1) @ Tinley Park (3-0), 7:00

CB: So, Mustangs, how good is your defense? The Titans were down 20-7 last week at home to T.F. North, then the Kyle Sheridan-led offense rolled up 49 second half points en route to a 56-52 thrill ride, won on a short touchdown run in the final minute by Preston Thompson. The game turned midway through the third quarter when TP returned kickoff & punt returns within about a minute of each other. That gives them 150 points in their three games. EP put up big numbers itself against Phillips and Payton to start its season, but dropped their South Suburban Red opener to Eisenhower last week, 28-9.

11 St. Rita (2-1) @ Brother Rice (3-0), 7:30

SK: Could this game be an upset in the making? The Crusaders have a powerful 1-2 running back punch of Martez Walker and Andrew Walker and the duo have combined for 14 touchdowns already this season. Will the Mustangs defense, coming off two straight shutouts be able to extinguish the Crusaders running game? Anything can happen in the Catholic League - Blue conference.

Bremen (3-0, 1-0) @ Oak Forest (3-0, 1-0), 7:00

CB: The south suburbs are the place to be this Friday, can't go wrong if you're able to pick-and-choose. Don't let the Braves and Bengals fly under your radar in the rugged, deep South Suburban Blue. The visitors snuck past Hillcrest 14-12 last week, while the hosts have been putting up 40 points per game. Their 33-21 win over T.F. South was their lowest offensive output. Each side has running backs with multiple D-1 offers, Big 10 included: Bremen's David Smith and Oak Forest's Tevin Coleman. Iowa, among others, is interested in both.

4 Lincoln-Way East (3-0, 1-0) @ 6 Homewood-Flossmoor (3-0, 1-0), 7:30

SK: If you're looking for offense this is the game to watch. The Griffins are averaging 44 PPG this season but not to be outdone, the Vikings are averaging 55. Wide receiver J.J. Robertson, an Illini commit, highlights the list of explosive players for Lincoln-Way East. While, HF's Tim Williams is one of the top quarterbacks in the state, passing for over 601 yards on the season. One costly turnover could be the difference in this game.

St. Viator (0-3, 0-1) @ Joliet Catholic (3-0, 1-0), 7:30

CB: If there's any time Lions coach Chris Kirkpatrick might want to double-check to see if Brett Basanez and Jarrett Payton have any eligibility left, this is it. His team has been on the short end of thee blowouts in the East Suburban Catholic, and now face the king of the hill at Joliet Memorial. JCA avenged last fall's 5A quarterfinal loss to Peoria Richwoods with last Friday's 63-34 win, as Northwestern-bound Malin Jones rushed for 242 yards & 4 TD's. Ty Isaac "only" ran for 3, but churned out 273 yards on the ground.

8 Loyola (3-0) @ Providence (3-0), 7:30

SK: After a dominant, 48-13 victory over Lake Forest Academy, Loyola hits the road to take on Providence in their Catholic League - Blue opener. Providence has already matched their win total of last season, doing so with a balanced running game featuring Jack Klyczek, Andy Hoffmeister and Brandon Price. No one has been able to slow down Ramblers quarterback, Malcom Weaver. Weaver is a dual-threat quarterback that could make you pay with his arm and explosive scrambling ability.

Niles North (1-2) @ 1 Maine South (3-0), 7:00
CB: Who (if anyone) can knock off the three-time defending 8A champs? The well-oiled machine rolled past Deerfield last week behind 3 TD's on the ground from 5 foot 4 Paul Preston and another three through the air from junior QB Matt Alviti. It's hard to imagine anyone on the rest of their schedule putting a blemish on their record prior to the playoffs. They'll host the Vikings in this Central Suburban crossover, and their only win was by forfeit over Niles West sandwiched between losses to Oak Lawn and Waukegan.

Elmwood Park (2-1) @ Ridgewood (0-3), 7:00

SK: The Tigers offense finally started to click last Friday, with a 40-0 shutout of Carver Military Academy. Senior QB Tom Senn leads Elmwood Park into enemy territory to take on longtime rival, Ridgewood. The Rebels are winless but came up just short in 22-14 loss against King. Could this be the week that Ridgewood notches their first win?

Huntley (0-3, 0-1) @ 17 Crystal Lake South (3-0, 1-0), 7:15

CB: We'll feature the Gators this week after their dramatic, last-second, game-winning 51 field goal by a birthday boy last week at Cary-Grove. Led by an inspiring coach and a defense that's allowed just 13 points, they'll need to safeguard against a letdown versus the Red Raiders, who've had a brutal schedule this opening month (dropping a 43-2 decision last week to the newest Fox Valley "Valley" member, 12 Prairie Ridge). Despite Brad Walovitch's heroics in last Friday's win, Reese Dziedzic was the unsung hero, setting up the kick with a 16-yard run off a fake punt, and catching a pass for the Gators' lone touchdown.

Marian Catholic (2-1, 2-1) @ 10 Carmel (2-1, 2-1), 7:30

SK: The Corsairs have rebounded nicely, winning their last two games, after a heart-breaking season opening loss to Joliet Catholic. Carmel running back Jordan Kos is as dangerous as they come in the open field. Look for the Corsairs to feed Kos the rock early and often. If the Spartans have any chance of pulling off an upset, they will need running back Jeruel Taylor to have a repeat performance of his 197 yard, two touchdown game against Benet.

Record Hunting

Mount Carmel (3-0) @ St. Joseph (0-3), Saturday 1:30 p.m.

SK: Last week, Frank Lenti tied the legendary Gary Korhonen of Richards with his 306th career win. If Mount Carmel can get past St. Joseph on Saturday, Lenti will break the states all-time career wins record. The Caravan walloped De La Salle last week, 40-7. Being outscored 145-13 on the season, the Chargers have little chance of pulling off the upset. Look for Lenti to have his name atop the record books by Saturday evening.

Transfer troubles

Chicago Pubic League sports administration director Calvin Davis ruled Julian senior DaeShaun Hurley ineligible for the season on Monday. Hurley transferred to Julian from Morgan Park after head coach Lexie Spurlock was fired following the season. Hurley was highly regarded as one of the best players in the state and despite being ineligible he is still being recruited by a handful of D-1 schools.

Coaching Carousel

Rumors swirled around Fenwick High School after the dismissal of head coach Joe DiCanio on Tuesday but no one is quite sure whether he resigned or was fired. DiCanio led the Friars to a Prep Bowl title last season but his team was just (1-2) to start the season. Scott Thies, Class of 99 and Fenwick athletic director, will take over head coaching duties for the remainder of the 2011 season.

On tap

Tune in to see St. Patrick, our Muscle Milk Team of the Week as they prepare for their upcoming match-up with Nazareth Academy. Also, Chris Boden highlights Frank Lenti as he goes for career win 307. Our Flashback segment this week takes us back to Pierre Thomas glory days at T.F. South. See how Thomas went from an undrafted free agent out of the University of Illinois to a Super Bowl champion with the Saints. Well also be previewing Saturdays games.

If you have any story ideas, feel free to email us at: csnchicagowebsite@comcastsportsnet.com

As questions about his future remain, David Accam is in his best run with the Fire

As questions about his future remain, David Accam is in his best run with the Fire

For the past two seasons, David Accam was a bright spot on bad Chicago Fire teams.

This season, with more talent on the roster, Accam has blossomed into one of the most dangerous players in the league.

He had a hat trick and an assist in Saturday’s 4-0 win against Orlando. That gives him 10 goals and six assists on the season. Only two other players in Major League Soccer have 16 combined goals and assists, New York City FC's David Villa and teammate Nemanja Nikolic (the leading goal-scorer in the league).

“I thought I could do anything on the pitch today,” Accam said. “I just wanted to enjoy myself and entertain the fans and also help the team win. That’s what we did today, especially after my first goal. I just thought I could get more goals and also help the team win.”

Accam’s big game comes after he sat out the previous two games, which were both played on turf. He wasn’t listed on the injury report, but coach Veljko Paunovic said, “he didn’t recover from the physical issues that he had in the previous game.”

The rest seemed to do Accam some good, but his success in the game (as well as his recent run of eight goals and four assists in his last eight matches) coincides with questions about his future. He was recently rumored to be the target of a Turkish club.

In the past, Accam has spoken about his ambition to play at the highest levels. Typically, that means Europe. General manager Nelson Rodriguez said last month that he expects offers to come in for the 26-year-old because he is a good player in his prime ages.

So is Accam playing like someone trying to earn a new contract? That could be either impressing potential suitors in Europe or boosting his negotiation position with the Fire. Rodriguez has talked about contract negotiations with Accam before, and said those will not resume again until after the season.

“I wanted to be in a team where I would develop as a person and also win trophies, whether here or somewhere (else) I don’t know,” Accam said. “For me, I’m doing really well here and every year if I keep playing well there will be always interest. I know there is a lot of interest because I’m doing well. For me it’s always extra motivation to keep doing well. You don’t know where I will end up, whether here or somewhere else. I’ll just keep playing.”

Accam’s play earned him another call-up to the Ghanaian national team. He will join the team on Sunday for a pair of friendlies in the U.S. The Black Stars will take on Mexico in Houston on June 28 and the U.S. in East Hartford, Conn., on July 1 as the two North American countries prepare for the Gold Cup.

“That’s where I want to be,” Accam said. “I want to be playing for the national team so it’s extra motivation for me to perform well and also to go to the national team.”

Accam has been one of the most productive players in MLS this year, based on goals and assists, and is young enough to draw the attention of plenty of teams. For now, the Fire have him as a key part of the best season the club has had in years.

“I think that he understands very well how to play with the team that we have now and with the teammates that he is surrounded with,” coach Veljko Paunovic said. “We just have to work to give David opportunities… Then we expect that performances like that will come even more.”

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