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Athlete of the Week: Bolingbrook Quarterback Aaron Bailey

The junior signal caller has led the Bolingbrook Raiders to the IHSA 8A state semifinals.

By the voting deadline for this week's Athlete of the Week (9 p.m. Nov. 16), Aaron Bailey of Bolingbrook had 48 percent of the votes, making him the clear winner.

In Saturday’s , Bolingbrook's Aaron Bailey rushed for 214 yards and five touchdowns, the kind of production expected from big-time running backs.

Bailey, 's star junior, managed that output from the quarterback position. But it is nothing new to opposing defense's, which makes this type of performance in a playoff game all the more amazing.

For example, the Raiders' latest win was the second time they've managed a victory in the playoffs without the benefit of a single passing yard.

“We were kind of messing up on the first series, but once we got focused and figured out what we’re doing, we were able to make some big holes,” Bailey said after the game. “I thank God and my offensive line for their help.”

Undoubtedly, the Raiders (11-1) have come to thank Bailey, whose individual performances are making the team a strong threat to crack the Class 8A state finals.

First, they'll have to get through Naperville Central, its next opponent, whose defense was also nominated for this week's Patch award.

Here are the other Patch Athlete of the Week nominees:

: Football, Redhawks defense: While quarterback Ian Lewandowski amassed 94 yards and three rushing touchdowns, it was Central's defense that led the charge with five takeaways in its over Homewood-Flossmoor. The Redhawks recorded three interceptions and two fumble recoveries in a 42-14 win.

: Football, Indians defense: In their win over Hubbard—a 29-0 shutout—the Indians' defense held Hubbard to minus-23 yards of total offense with only one play of 10 yards or more for the whole game and only two completed passes on 10 attempts for seven yards.

 Maddy and Gabby Sims, swimming and diving: This sophomore twin swimming duo helped the Trojans' swimming and driving team to a second-place finish at its sectional competition Saturday. Gabby took first in both the 100-yard butterfly and 100-yard backstroke and was also chosen this fall for a

: Swimming, relay team: Hannah Veselik, Maya Rodrigues, Dana Vinyard and Rachel Hawken qualified for the state swimming and diving meet by finishing third in the 200-medley relay with a time of 1 minute, 50.74 seconds at the Lyons Sectional. Veselik will also compete in the 100-yard butterfly, and Rodrigues will compete in the 100-yard backstroke.

: Bowling team: The Chicago Sun-Times ranked the Spartans third overall in the preseason state rankings. The Spartans are led by sophomores Kyle Zaremba and Dakota Vostry. They begin their season this week.

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