Malik Elzy is one of the most gifted high school football players in the country.
That’s an established fact and the Cincinnati recruit lived up to his billing on Saturday at Gately Stadium. Elzy wowed the crowd with a trio of breathtaking moments in Simeon’s 41-23 win against Wheaton-Warrenville South.
The Wolverines have another gamebreaker on offense this season, however.
Running back Andre Crews was nearly unstoppable for Simeon, finishing with 21 carries for 295 yards and three touchdowns.
“We started off a little rocky but at halftime we talked to each other in the locker room about our mistakes and in the second half we made it happen,” Crews said.
Simeon (1-0) trailed 23-7 in the second quarter. Crews busted loose for a 33-yard run to make it 23-14 and then Elzy caught a 49-yard pass from junior quarterback Keshaun Parker to pull the Wolverines within 23-20 at halftime.
Crews scored on a three-yard run in the third quarter to give Simeon its first lead and then provided a 34-23 cushion with an electric 69-yard touchdown scamper.
Crews has played all over the field for Simeon the past fourseasons, logging time at quarterback, receiver and on defense.
“Sticking to running back and a little bit of corner has helped me keep my energy and stamina so I can get out and make those breakout runs like I did today,” Crews said.”
Elzy had three receptions for 124 yards. Parker was 8-for-12 passing for 167 yards with two touchdowns and one interception.
“[Elzy] is our team, Simeon coach Dante Culbreath said. “He punts, he plays defense and offense. He might be the player I’ve seen at Simeon.”
Kirsten Stickney/For the Sun-Times
Wheaton-Warrenville South (0-1) was unable to establish much of a running game, finishing with 27 carries for just more than 50 yards.
Tiger quarterback Luca Carbonaro was effective. The sophomore was 12-for-14 passing for 122 yards and two touchdowns.
It was an impressive opening week of the season for Public League football. The top teams in the conference have clearly turned the corner after the COVID setbacks.
Morgan Park beat Richards on Friday and Kenwood and Simeon both showed on Saturday that they could hang with and defeat top suburban programs.
“It shows that when we have adequate time to prepare for our season, unlike last year with COVID and things, we can compete,” Culbreath said. “This is a competive club and a competitive league.
Simeon has another major measuring stick next week against Bolingbrook. The No. 5 Raiders, which beat Minooka 49-12 on Friday, will be at Gately at 3 p.m. on Saturday.