Batavia and Richards will battle for title

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Batavia (12-1) vs. Oak Lawn Richards (12-1)

When: Saturday, 1 p.m. (Radio: WSPY 107.1 FM; TV: Comcast).

Where: Northern Illinois University’s Huskie Stadium, DeKalb.

Last week: Batavia d. Rockford Boylan 38-6; Richards d. East St. Louis 7-6.

First meeting: Richards 31, Batavia 25 in Week 2.

Points scored this season: Batavia 559, Richards 411.

Points allowed this season: Batavia 186, Richards 117.

Worth watching, Richards: IFCA All-State quarterback Hasan Muhammad-Rogers has passed for 2,298 yards and 28 touchdowns and has four receivers capable of making big plays: 6-0 Tacari Carpenter (47-862, 14 TDs), 6-3 Spencer Tears (33-479, 4 TDs), Dedrick Shannon (24-448, 4 TDs) and 5-9 Ryan Willett 26-419, 5 TDs). Romeo Johnson is the Bulldogs’ leading rusher with 76 carries for 509 yards and 9 scores. Linebackers Ramonta Hill, Romel Hill and Andrew Venerable lead a defense that has limited postseason foes to 12 points.

Worth watching, Batavia: Senior QB Micah Coffey leads an offense that features All-State running back Anthony Scaccia, who has run for a school-record 1,725 yards and 25 touchdowns on 246 carries. Coffey has completed 151-of-241 passes for 2,237 yards and 27 TDs. Michael Moffatt, an All-State defensive back, also plays wide receiver and has 42 receptions for 600 yards and seven scores. Jordan Zwart has 35 receptions for 670 yards and five TDs. Middle linebacker Anthony Thielk (99 tackles despite missing two games) leads a defense that is strong throughout. Moffatt is a lockdown corner but Rourke Mullins, a cornerback/wideout, has helped solidify the secondary.

Quotable: “(Richards) defense is stellar, they don’t make mistakes. They align so well. Their linebackers are good and so are their defensive backs. You don’t want to throw a pick because they will take it to the house. Their defensive line is aggressive and strong and keeps their pad level low.

“Offensively, they have weapons. The Carpenter kid is a touchdown waiting to happen. The quarterback can run it for a TD and throw it to anybody.They’ve got a big, fast offensive line.

“Our offensive line is awfully good. We did have a lot of yards and scored some points last time. We pose some issues to them with what they do schematically. They have such great athletes they can recover very quickly. A screen Scaccia would catch and go for 30 yards against some teams will probably go for seven against them. You’ve got to work a lot harder to get what you’re gona get, but we’ve been a first down grinding team.

“I think they’re gonna realize very quickly the defense they have to deal with right now is not the defense they saw Week 2. We have not been very susceptible to the big plays the second half of the season.”— Batavia coach Dennis Piron

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