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Inside football

Athlete of the Week

Chris Streveler

Marian Central, sr.

The Hurricanes quarterback had a rough start in Friday’s game against Montini with two lost fumbles, but he and Marian roared back.

The Hurricanes scored 42 unanswered points for a 49-24 victory in their Suburban Christian Conference Blue Division game against the three-time defending Class 5A state champion.

Streveler rushed 22 times for 131 yards and four touchdowns, and completed 17 of 19 passes for 212 yards and two touchdowns.

Noteworthy

Lanaski returns: Prairie Ridge linebacker Nick Lanaski feared his high school career was over during the summer when he suffered two fractured vertebrae in his lower back. But the 6-foot-3, 200-pound senior returned Friday night for the Wolves’ homecoming game.

Lanaski was a starter on last year’s Class 6A state championship team and would have been one of the Wolves’ best defensive players this season. He suffered the injury in late July and has since been on the sideline, cheering on his teammates and helping the linebackers.

“I did my physical therapy the last two periods every day,” Lanaski said. “When I went to my doctor, he said he had never seen improvement like that. He told me if I feel right to go for it. I was able to play my last varsity home game.”

Lanaski admits he is not in the playing shape of his teammates, but said he is pain-free. His back does get tight, but he wears a sports brace to help support his back.

“It was feeling good,” Lanaski said. “I was sore on Saturday, but it’s like I got a second chance. I can’t describe how good it feels to be back.”

Rockets take off: Richmond-Burton started its season 1-2, but the Rockets now have an opportunity to win their fourth consecutive Big Northern Conference East Division championship after a 28-0 pasting of Burlington Central on Friday.

R-B (5-2, 3-1) plays Friday at North Boone (7-0, 4-0), and a victory would put the Rockets in position to win a piece of the title.

“We’re in control of our destiny,” R-B coach Pat Elder said. “We just have to focus on the task at hand, and our youngsters have done a good job at that.”

R-B switched quarterback Matt Malecki to fullback to better utilize his running ability. The Rockets now have Malecki with running backs Chris Vlasak and Adam Kinsella, which makes for a potent backfield behind new quarterback Danny Rygiel.

“We’ve been unable to progress the way we wanted to,” Elder said. “We wanted to get Matt more opportunities out of our base look. He gave us a little spark. One of the biggest things with our team is our offensive line has improved so much.”

Santucci’s big catch: Woodstock running back Mike Santucci injured a knee in Friday’s 35-32 victory at Hampshire on a fourth-down catch in the Blue Streaks’ winning drive. Santucci twisted when he jumped to catch the ball and strained a knee ligament when he landed, Woodstock coach Steve Beard said.

Santucci grabbed a pass from quarterback Alan Hafer to prolong the drive. Tight end Mitch Kohley caught the game-winning touchdown pass with 59.8 seconds remaining.

“Some luck finally came our way,” said Beard, whose team moved to 3-4. “[Santucci] was down the sideline and well-covered, the ball was a little underthrown and he adjusted to it. It was a huge catch.”

Beard said Santucci, one of the Streaks’ fastest players, is day-to-day.

This week’s top games

Richmond-Burton at North Boone

7 p.m. Friday

R-B (5-2, 3-1) can put itself in position to win a share of the Big Northern Conference East Division title for the fourth consecutive year with a victory. North Boone is 7-0.

Crystal Lake South at Jacobs

7:15 p.m. Friday

South (4-3, 3-2) has won three games in a row and is trying to make the playoffs for the 12th straight season. Jacobs (4-3, 2-3) is trying to get in for the third consecutive season.

– Joe Stevenson

joestevenson@shawmedia.com

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