Playoff preview: Lyons vs. Simeon

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Class 8A: No. 11 Lyons (5-4) vs. No. 6 Simeon (6-3), 3:30 p.m. Saturday at Gately Stadium

Players to watch

Leonard Ross, Lyons — The junior running back ran for 114 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries in the Lions’ 21-20 victory over Proviso West on Friday.

A.J. Villarreal, Lyons — When the senior linebacker is playing well, Lyons’ defense is playing well. It’s as simple as that.

Darnell Cockrell, Simeon — The senior wide receiver/cornerback, who is dangerous as a punt returner and has a knack for finding the end zone during all three phases of the game, has scored four touchdowns over the last two weeks.

Martece McClinton, Simeon — This senior linebacker/safety has been on varsity for three years and brings a lot of experience to the field.

Key matchup

The Wolverines could load up the box to shut down the explosive Ross. If that’s the case, it will be up to Lyons senior quarterback Tom Fiedler to make plays with his legs and arm. Fiedler scored the game-winning touchdown on a 5-yard run against Proviso West.

On the other sideline

No. 25 Simeon is the only Chicago Public League team ranked in the Sun-Times’ Super 25 football rankings. The Wolverines’ two in-state losses came to Crete-Monee and Homewood-Flossmoor, who are both 8-1 this year. Simeon has won six straight games, outscoring its opponents 284-19.


The two teams have never faced each other in the state playoffs.

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