Beat the Streets Brawl caps week of showdowns

Nine teams, seven from other states, will compete in the Beat the Streets Brawl Saturday at Oak Park-River Forest.

Montini is one of eight visiting teams. The other seven are tops in their respective states. Orlando (Fla.) Lake Highland Prep and Oradell (N.J.) Bergen Catholic return to the field for the second straight year. Newcomers include Oklahoma powers Tuttle and Broken Arrow, Liberty (Mo.) and Fort Dodge (Iowa).

Lake Highland Prep went 3-0 in this event a year ago. Four rounds of dual meets will be contested starting at 10 a.m.

Fresh off its victory in the star-studded Princeton Tournament last week, Dakota, which rose to the No. 2 spot in the 1A team rankings on, continues its January schedule gauntlet by taking on the No. 1 teams in two different classifications on back-to-back nights.

On Thursday, coach Pete Alber’s Indians travel to West Carroll for a double dual in which they face defending state champion Lena-Winslow/Stockton in a No. 1-vs.-No. 2 showdown. Just 24 hours later, Dakota faces the 3A No. 1, Montini, in another double dual at Rockton Hononegah.

The Broncos will be coming off a big match of their own. They travel to DeKalb to take on the No. 3 Barbs on Wednesday before finishing the week with the Beat the Streets event. It’s one of two Wednesday dual meets matching ranked teams. In 2A, No. 15 Rock Island visits No. 10 LaSalle-Peru.

In addition to the Dakota/LWS showdown Thursday, north suburban powers Marian Central Catholic and Antioch square off as part of a double dual at Lakes.  They’re two of the top four teams in the 2A classification. Like Dakota, the Hurricanes also have huge duals on back-to-back nights. Marian Central travels to Huntley to meet the Red Raiders, No. 8 in 3A, on Friday.

Two locations to feature four ranked teams Saturday

There’s plenty of other activity in addition to the Beat the Streets event on Saturday. Two other Chicago-area events will have four 3A Top 25 teams on the premises.

The Neuqua Valley Duals includes No. 4 Lockport, No. 7 Glenbard North, No. 10 Barrington and No. 22 Bolingbrook in a field that also includes Plainfield Central, Metea Valley, Bradley-Bourbonnais and the host Wildcats.

Libertyville hosts the annual quad with DeKalb, Conant and Lyons Township, and for the first time in four seasons, all four teams are in the Top 25. The Lions could earn program win No. 1,000, depending on what happens in the next few days.

Finally, Stevenson hosts Huntley, Deerfield and Wauconda in a quad that includes three ranked teams, two from 3A.

The Chicago Public Schools tournament takes place this weekend, as a well as a pair of conference mega-dual events. Many of the best 1A teams in central Illinois will be competing in the Illini Central Duals Friday and Saturday at Pontiac. On Monday, the East Suburban Catholic Conference mega-duals take place at Carmel.