State Stories

27

2013 Football - Destination DeKalb

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The Illinois High School Association (IHSA) Football State Championships move to DeKalb in 2013, as Northern Illinois University and Huskie Stadium will host for the first time. The eight title games will unfold on Friday and Saturday, November 29-30, marking the 40th annual edition of the state finals and the 13th season of the eight-class system.

Once again, the games will be broadcast in full High Definition (HD) by Comcast SportsNet Chicago and streamed on IHSA.tv. See links on righthand sidebar for channel information.


CLASS 1A
TRI-VALLEY VIKINGS (13-0)
VS.
LENA-WINSLOW PANTHERS (10-3)

Tri-Valley owned just one playoff victory in school history before navigating a heavy-weight slate to reach the state finals in 2013. The Vikings handily defeated perennial power Casey-Westfield in the quarterfinals (48-27) and then outlasted defending state champ Maroa-Forsyth (14-6) in the semifinals. Just three years removed from its first state title, Lena-Winslow flew below the radar this year after losing three-regular-season games, albeit to teams with a combined record of 29-5. The Panthers conference, the Northwest Upstate Illini, has produced eight state champions since 2002. Both teams love to run, with Braden Herrman (1,398 yards, 22 TD) and Tyler Oakey (1,506 yards, 16 TD) pacing Tri-Valley and Lena-Winslow, respectively.


CLASS 2A

NEWMAN CENTRAL CATHOLIC COMETS (12-1)
VS.
STAUNTON BULLDOGS (9-4)

Newman Central Catholic has rattled off 12 straight wins since a week one loss and finds itself in position to win a fifth state title in the school’s eighth championship game appearance. The Comets current streak included a 14-0 semifinal triumph over defending champ Mercer County. Staunton may be the Cinderella team of the weekend, as the Bulldogs were the lone 5-4 qualifier playing in the semifinal round. The Bulldogs trailed by 10 points in the fourth quarter of the semifinals, before getting the winning TD with 41 seconds remaining. WR/RB Marcus Sitko does it all for Staunton, as one of his 19 TDs this season was the semifinal game-winner, while running back Jake Snow (1,584 yards, 28 TD) makes the Comets go on offense.


CLASS 3A

ST. JOSEPH-OGDEN SPARTANS (11-2)
VS.
STILLMAN VALLLEY CARDINALS (11-2)

Stillmna Valley head coach Mike Lalor was a player on the Woodstock Marian team that defeated St. Joseph-Ogden in the Class 2A title game in 1989. That rivalry is renewed as Lalor looks to win his fifth state championship since taking over for the Cardinals in 1998. Dick Duvall was on the opposing sideline in 1989 as the head coach and has guided the Spartans to four state runner-up finishes previously, including 5-, 7- and 14-point losses. At 6-2 and 230 pounds, Zac Hare (1,464 yards, 27 TD) is a load in the Stillman Valley rushing attack, while his counterpart Orion Ciota (1,156, 14 TD) has become the key to the Spartans offense since Austin Hedrick was lost to a torn ACL.


CLASS 4A

GENESEO MAPLE LEAFS (12-1)
VS.
ROCHESTER ROCKETS (12-1)

A pair of coaches’ sons face off in this contest. Larry Johnsen Jr.’s father is currently an assistant on his coaching staff after he led the Maple Leafs to one of the school’s four state titles back in 1982. Ironically, the 1982 title game was against Scared Heart-Griffin, who will play in Saturday’s Class 5A title tilt, and is coached by Ken Leonard, the father of Rochester head coach Derek Leonard. Robbie Kelley (2,809 yards, 31 TD) has emerged as the next star quarterback in the Rockets up-tempo spread offense, which will face a stifling (2 shutouts and 15 points allowed in playoffs) Maple Leaf defense anchored by two-standout Nick Verbeck.


CLASS 5A

MONTINI CATHOLIC BRONCOS (13-0)
VS.
SACRED HEART-GRIFFIN CYCLONES (13-0)

Montini playing in the title game is becoming a Thanksgiving tradition in itself, as the Broncos vie for their fifth consecutive Class 5A state championship in 2013, a feat that, if achieved, would move them closer to the all-time mark of seven-consecutive state championships set by Driscoll from 2001-2007. Sacred Heart-Griffin is no stranger to playing on the final weekend of the season either, as the Cyclones try to win their fourth state championship under head coach Ken Leonard. Cyclone wide receiver Malik Turner is a game-changer on offense (1,311 receiving yards, 22 TD) and special teams, a fact accentuated by his 73-yard punt return for a TD in the semifinals. Montini quarterback Alex Wills controls the pace for the Broncos, having thrown for 2,721 yards and 32 scores this season.


CLASS 6A

BATAVIA BULLDOGS (12-1)
VS.
RICHARDS BULLDOGS (12-1)

It is rare that the state championship produces a regular-season rematch, but that is exactly the case in Class 6A, and the fans will be the winners if the second time around is as good as the first. Richards beat Batavia 31-25 in week two, but with a defense anchored by Savon Robinson (83 tackles) that has allowed just 12 points in the postseason, a lower scoring game may be in the cards this time. Batavia’s Anthony Scaccia (1,725 yards, 25 TD) hopes to make sure that is not the case, as the 5-7 dynamo running back tries to propel the Bulldogs to their first state title in school history.


CLASS 7A

MT. CARMEL CARAVAN (12-1)
VS.
LAKE ZURICH BEARS (12-1)

Mt. Carmel finds itself in a unique scenario, as the defending Class 8A state champion slipped down a class in 2013. Smaller doesn’t necessarily mean easier though, as Lake Zurich features a suffocating defense that has held nine opponents this season, including all four playoff foes, to seven points or less. Matt Domer (1,299 yards, 14 TD) is the running back to watch for in the Caravan’s option offense, of which the state’s all-time winningest coach Frank Lenti (9 state titles) is the architect of. Running back Ben Klett has been the Bears top offensive option this season, recording team-highs in rushing (625 yards) and touchdowns (17).


CLASS 8A

NAPERVILLE CENTRAL REDHAWKS (10-3)
VS.
LOYOLA ACADEMY RAMBLERS (12-1)

One of the great debates in Illinois high school football remains which large school conference is the best, and the two names that are often mentioned first are the DuPage Valley (Naperville Central) and Chicago Catholic League (Loyola & 7A finalist Mt. Carmel). The leagues have combined to produce 10 state champions since 2000. Naperville Central’s last state championship came in 1999, when current Redhawk running back Kevin Clifford’s (739 yards, 15 TD) brother Ryan produced a prolific 51-TD season. Loyola is in the championship game for the second time in three seasons and in search of its second state title (1993). Quarterback Jack Penn (1,982 yards, 22 TD) has been efficient in leading a Rambler offense that is deep and balanced.


SITE
Northern Illinois University
Huskie Stadium
DeKalb
Directions


SCHEDULE

Friday, November 29
Class 1A - 10:00 a.m.
Lena-Winslow vs. Tri-Valley

Class 2A - 1:00 p.m.

Newman Central Catholic vs. Staunton

Class 3A - 4:00 p.m.

Stillman Valley vs.
St. Joseph-Ogden

Class 4A - 7:00 p.m.

Geneseo vs. Rochester


Saturday, November 30
Class 5A - 10:00 a.m.
Montini vs. Sacred Heart-Griffin

Class 6A - 1:00 p.m.

Batvia vs. Richards

Class 7A - 4:00 p.m.

Lake Zurich vs. Mt. Carmel

Class 8A - 7:00 p.m.

Loyola Academy vs. Naperville Central


WATCH

Comcast Sports Net Chicago & the IHSA TV Network will broadcast the games in HD

Channel Listings

www.IHSA.tv  (free)

Postgame press conferences will air LIVE on www.CSNChicago.com
www.IHSA.tv


INTERACT

Twitter Coverage:
@IHSAState     #IHSA

Facebook Page

Photos


LISTEN
CLASS 1A
WJBC-1230 AM & 93.7 FM
(Bloomington)
Tri-Valley
Internet Broadcast

WQLF-102.1 FM (Freeport)
Lena-Winslow
Internet Broadcast


CLASS 2A
WLLT-107.7 FM (Polo)
Newman Cent. Cath.

WSDR-1240 AM (Sterling)
Newman Cent. Cath.
Internet Broadcast

WSMI-106.1 FM (Litchfield)
Staunton
Internet Broadcast


CLASS 3A
WRHK-94.9 FM (Danville)
St. Joseph-Ogden
Internet Broadcast

WRHL-1060 AM & 102.3 FM
(Rochelle)
Stillman Valley
Internet Broadcast

WPXN-104.9 FM (Paxton)
St. Joseph-Ogden


CLASS 4A
WFMB-1450 AM (Springfield)
Rochester
Internet Broadcast

WJRE-102.5 FM (Kewanee)
Geneseo
Internet Broadcast

WGRG-100.5 FM (Geneseo)
Geneseo
Internet Broadcast

WMAY-970 AM (Springfield)
Rochester
Internet Broadcast


CLASS 5A
WFMB-1450 AM (Springfield)
Sacred Heart-Griffin
Internet Broadcast


CLASS 6A

WSPY-107.1 FM (Plano)
Batavia
Internet Broadcast

SportsTownChicago.com (tape delay)
Internet Broadcast


CLASS 7A

WRLR-98.3 FM (Round Lake)
Lake Zurich

SportsTownChicago.com (live)
Internet Broadcast



RESULTS & BOX SCORES
IHSA Football Homepage


TICKETS
$10 per day (no re-entry)


HISTORY & RECORDS
2013 Playoffs

Record Book & Past Champions