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Prep Football Insider: Wait finally over for Butler, St. Francis

Wheaton St. Francis runningback James Butler fights off a Riverside Brookfield tackler during their game Sunday Sept. 1 in Wheaton. The game was postponed Friday night and Saturday morning due to weather. It was the first game on the new field at the High School.
Mark Busch -
Wheaton St. Francis runningback James Butler fights off a Riverside Brookfield tackler during their game Sunday Sept. 1 in Wheaton. The game was postponed Friday night and Saturday morning due to weather. It was the first game on the new field at the High School. Mark Busch -

Wait finally over for Butler, St. Francis

Having Friday's season-opening slate wiped out wasn't easy for anybody, but St. Francis players had to deal with yet another disappointment when Saturday morning's rescheduled game was then pushed back another day, to Sunday afternoon, because of more inclement weather.

The Spartans apparently took out their frustration on Riverside-Brookfield, romping to a 35-9 win in the long-awaited debut of Kuhn Memorial Stadium.

“You don’t know how mad I was feeling those two days,” St. Francis senior running back James Butler said. “It was hard, but we came out here to play.”

Butler is more accustomed to difficult waits than most. He made his St. Francis debut after sitting out last year while abiding by IHSA transfer regulations following his transfer from Bartlett.

Butler scored a 34-yard touchdown on the Spartans' opening drive and finished with 181 yards and three touchdowns on 19 carries.

Vikings' defense impresses Wicinski

Geneva's flashy statistics in the passing game were difficult to ignore in Saturday's 29-27 win at Oswego, but Vikings coach Rob Wicinski also was impressed by how his defense competed against a formidable Oswego offense.

"We haven't had some stops like that, I mean, in a couple years," Wicinski said. "A long, long time. So we've lost track of our defense. I'm hoping we can build off that."

Maintaining that defensive uptick won't be easy with Wheaton North and Batavia looming the next two weeks.

"This is huge," Geneva two-way standout Pace Temple said after the Oswego win. " … We've got Wheaton North, who's incredible, and Batavia. We're just happy to get going. Get some confidence in us."

Wicinski said defensive lineman T.K. Hood came out of the Oswego game "dinged up," while offensive lineman Ryan Powers left the game with cramping issues.

"I hope [Hood] is OK because we don't have much depth at either spot," Wicinski said.

Lost game

Aurora Central Catholic's home game against Oostburg (Wis.) that was postponed Friday is not expected to be made up because of the travel logistics.

Chargers coach Brian Casey said on Monday that ACC offered to reimburse Oostburg travel expenses to make up the game on Saturday, Sunday or Monday but Oostburg was not willing to do so. Casey said ACC is waiting on word from the IHSA about whether the game will be counted as a forfeit win.

The Chargers are now slated to open their season on Saturday in Chicago at Bogan.

– Jay Schwab, Dan Santaromita and Kevin Druley, Shaw Media


Marmion defense

What they did: The Cadets intercepted two Plainfield Central quarterbacks a combined six times in Saturday's season opener, including three picks for junior defensive back Noel Abraham, as Marmion won, 25-7.

Geneva's receivers

What they did: Pace Temple and Kyle Brown are the leaders in the clubhouse as top 1-2 receiving punch in the area; Temple caught seven balls for 168 yards with two touchdowns and Brown added six catches for 137 yards, including an 80-yard reception from quarterback Daniel Santacaterina with 4:19 left in the fourth quarter that proved the game-winner in Saturday's 29-27 Vikings win at Oswego.


Be careful about leaving games early.

Plenty of late, fourth quarter twists occurred in games affecting area teams, most notably at Elk Grove, where St. Charles North scored two touchdowns in the final minute to send Saturday's game into overtime before the North Stars lost, 23-22, in overtime. 


How playing football on a Tuesday affects Aurora Christian today and going forward.

The Eagles' postponed home game with DuSable on Friday was pushed all the way until 6 p.m. today, which will make for an extremely challenging turnaround leading up to Aurora Christian's Week 2 matchup with Chicago Urban Prep Charter.


Geneva's opening win at Oswego was huge. Huge!

The Vikings might not look at it like an upset, but that's a heck of a road win to nab to start the season, and Sly's guessing it's a W that will come in major handy when it's time to start sizing up the playoff picture.

Still a lot of challenging games left on the Vikings' schedule, so avoiding an early hole, especially with what's coming these next couple weeks, was imperative.

Fine work, fellas.

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