Man tries to lure EP girl into vehicle

  A man driving an SUV attempted Friday to lure an Evergreen Park girl into his vehicle, police said.
  Police said the girl was walking in the 2700 block of 98th Street to Central Junior High School.
  The man, described as white, mid 40s, average build, bald with a black and brown mustache and wearing a black jacket, slowed his Chevrolet Suburban alongside the girl and said: “Do you want a ride? Get in.”
  The student did not reply and the man drove away south on Washtenaw Avenue, police said.
—Regional News report

Stolen car leads to burglary charges

  • Written by Bob Rakow

  A stolen car was the key to Evergreen Park police arresting four individuals involved in several recent resident burglaries in the area, police said.
  Police on Oct. 20 spotted a car at the Shell station in the 2600 block of 87th Street. The car was reported stolen 30 minutes earlier from a residence in Evergreen Park.

  Police later learned that the car’s keys were taken during a Sept. 6 residential burglary and that the driver and three passengers were involved in several burglaries in the area.
  A subsequent search of an abandoned building in the 8200 block of Kedzie Avenue in Chicago revealed several items which were taken during the burglaries, police said.
  Christopher A. Sparks, 30, and Robin M. Fields-Tiner, 23, both of Chicago, were charged with retail theft. Ryan N. Fields-Tiner, 22, of Chicago was charged with unlawful possession of a stolen vehicle, and Levert P. Wragg, 59, of Chicago, was charged with criminal trespass to motor vehicle.

  The investigation is ongoing and has revealed the offenders’ involvement in incidents in Chicago, police said.

Battering Rams

  • Written by Ken Karrson

Reavis treated roughly by inspired Bulldogs

  Evergreen Park certainly did Reavis no favor.
  By squeezing out a victory over Richards in the closing seconds of a Week 5 showdown between two unbeaten squads, the Mustangs no doubt put Bulldogs players in an ugly frame of mind. Richards coach Tony Sheehan didn’t deny it, but stated that his guys used the Evergreen “wake-up call” in a positive manner.
  “This was probably one of our best weeks of practice,” Sheehan said. “The kids were really focused. I think they realize what’s in front of them and what’s at stake, and we came ready to play Friday night.”
  Did they ever. While the visiting Rams threatened to make some early noise, the Bulldogs’ defense refused Reavis entry into the end zone. Richards’ offense, meanwhile, racked up four first-half touchdowns and eventually claimed a resounding 40-0 South Suburban Conference Red triumph at Korhonen Field.
  “I hope it will continue,” Sheehan said of his team’s solid exhibition,” and I think it will. You’ve got to play your best every week or you’re going to get beat because this conference is so balanced. We learned that last week.

If it's any consolation....

  • Written by Jeff Vorva


Photo by Jamie Seed/NJCAA

Moraine Valley assistant coach Sean Mackey takes a selfie of the women's basketball team during nationals in Arkansas.


Moraine Valley Community College’s women’s basketball team’s quest for a national championship was dashed Tuesday, but the Cyclones can still bring some hardware back home.

Unlike some national tournaments, which are single elimination, the Cyclones will still be hanging around Harrison, Arkansas, for a few days as they compete in the consolation round of the National Junior College Athletic Association Division II Championships after dropping a 77-71 first-round decision to Kalamazoo Valley at Pioneer Pavilion.

The 10th-seeded Cyclones (16-18) are scheduled to play Lackawanna (Pa.) (19-11) at 9 a.m. today, Thursday in the first round of the consolation bracket. Lackawanna suffered a 72-44 defeat to No. 2 Johnson County.

Seventh-seeded Kalamazoo (29-3) raced out to a 25-12 lead after the first quarter and Moraine was able to close the gap to 51-48 after three quarters but could not pull it out.

As for most of the games in the past two seasons, the Cyclones were led by Mother McAuley graduate and Evergreen Park native Erin Drynan and Andrew graduate Michelle Borgen.

Drynan scored 21 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and notched two blocks and two steals. Borgen had 23 points and seven rebounds. Diamond Dortch and Krista Brill each had eight points.

The team stats were nearly identical in shooting percentage (Moraine was 39.7 percent to Kalamazoo’s 38.2), free throw shooting (Moraine had a 64.7-65.4 percent advantage) and rebounds (Kalamazoo had a 44-43 advantage). But the Cyclones were guilty of 26 turnovers, which led to 21 Kalamazoo points.

This was the first time the Cyclones qualified for nationals since 1989.

Even before the first basketball was bounced this season, coach Delwyn Jones had a good feeling about this team.

The dynamic duo of Drynan and Borgen and their ability to dominate inside, had the coach thinking big.

“I really feel that there’s no way we can’t go to nationals as long as we stay healthy,” Jones said dyring the preseason. “This team is just flat-out good.’’

On the court, they proved him right as the Cyclones won 31 of 33 games with their only losses coming to Triton (69-67) and Kankakee (83-74) and ran the table in the Skyway Conference.

But late in the season, the NJCAA ordered the forfeiture of 15 games for using ineligible players and the Cyclones were given a 4-8 mark in the conference and entered the nationals with a 16-17 record.

Jones called them “very minor infractions” and there was no intent to cheat.

He also said that the team was able to get through the disappointment of being stripped those victories and made it to the nationals.

“They have fought and have never given up,” Jones said. “We feel the world is against us and tried to take away some things we felt we earned legitimately.’’

The area has one other connection in the tournament.

Evergreen Park’s Megan Pfister, a 5-foot-9 sophomore, is playing for Kankakee Community College, which had a first-round game on Wednesday night. 


Kennedy vows to bring diversity to Illinois government

  • Written by Ray Hanania

chris kennedy photo 3-23

Photo by Steve Neuhaus

Christopher Kennedy, a Democratic candidate for governor, attended the Arab American Democratic Club event Sunday in Palos Hills.

Gubernatorial candidate Christopher Kennedy vowed Sunday at an annual Democratic candidate’s banquet to bring diversity back to the state of Illinois and include American Arabs if he is elected governor.

Kennedy was the keynote political speaker at the event hosted by the Arab American Democratic Club (AADC) that drew the attendance of more than 50 elected officials and officeholders in local municipal, county, state and federal government.

A theme of the evening was championing the rights of American Arabs and including American Arabs in local, county, state and federal government, as well as opposing national policies restricting the rights of immigrants.

“Immigrants are our neighbors, our friends. They are the architects of our famous buildings and they enrich our daily lives. Immigrants are the very fabric of our society, just as I am and just as all of you are. Immigrants are American. We shouldn’t stop them from becoming Americans,” Kennedy, the son of Robert Kennedy, told the more than 400 attendees at the Belvedere Chateau in Palos Hills.

“When we welcome new people into our lives and into our country we encourage new ideas and new ways of looking at old problems.”

Kennedy told Americans that the experience of his grandmother, Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy, taught her family the lessons of prejudice that Irish Catholics faced when she was a little girl.

“She described the signs hung above the back service doors of the restaurants that said N-I-N-A, ‘No Irish Need Apply’,” Kennedy recalled noting that though she was the mother of an American president, she was the daughter of Irish immigrants.

Attending the event were Oak Lawn Mayor Sandra Bury and Worth Mayor Mary Werner. Some other mayors in attendance were Gerald Bennett, of Palos Hills, and Mike Howley (Hickory Hills), Dan McLaughlin (Orland Park), David Seaman (Tinley Park) and Steve Landek (Bridgeview), who is also the Democratic state senator from the 12th District.

The keynote speaker was Jim Zogby, the president of the Arab American Institute based on Washington D.C. Zogby served on the platform committee for the Democratic National Committee (DNC), who urged Arabs to become involved in local politics, to vote and to be inclusive.

“As immigrants, we help America to be smarter, stronger and better,” said Zogby who reminded the audience that it wasn’t too long ago that American politicians who return money rather than accept donations from American Arabs to avoid be associated with a community engulfed in controversy.

“We bring a lot to this process,” Zogby said. “We are Americans. We have contributed to this society and continue to contribute to this country.”

Cong. Dan Lipinski (D-3rd) also attended the event, along with Palos Committeeman Robert Maloney, Oak Lawn Trustee Bob Streit (3rd), who is a candidate for mayor; Paul Geller, candidate for alderman in Palos Hills; and Safaa Zarzour, candidate for Oak Lawn Community High School District 229 Board.

Samir Khalil, executive director of the AADC, said the group is proud that so many government officials attended the brunch.

“Arab Americans are actively engaged in our society and communities. We pay our taxes. We have served in the military to defend this country. We have our homes, families and businesses in these communities. It’s important that our elected officials recognize our needs along with the needs of others,” Khalil said.