John McBride Classic

  • Written by Ken Karrson

Max-imum efficiency

Strus carries Chargers to another tourney crown

  It would seemingly be difficult for a 6-foot-6 individual to stay hidden.
  In John Daniels’ opinion, however, Max Strus has somehow managed to do that.
  Daniels, who is in his 11th coaching season at Stagg and 21st overall, unabashedly refers to Strus, a still-growing senior, as the best player he’s ever coached. And the veteran leader insists “it’s not even close.”
  “You know you have a Division I athlete when you have one,” Daniels said. “He’s better than some of the guys who have committed to those schools.”
  By “those schools,” Daniels was referring to the mid-sized NCAA Division I universities in Illinois, none of which has approached Strus with a scholarship offer. The latter’s decision to eschew AAU basketball for baseball at Stagg has likely kept Strus a relatively unknown commodity to the collegiate basketball world.


Drink to our health? Nah, they’ll toast their wealth

(Reprinted from Oct. 20, 2011)

  Is it just me, or are some of you also growing weary of constantly being told what’s good and not good for us?
  I’m talking food and drink here. Most of us are already aware that stepping in front of a speeding train, sticking a fork into a plugged-in toaster and standing under a tree during a thunderstorm are not activities undertaken with health consciousness in mind.
  The dietary police might not be so bad if they arrived at an opinion and then never wavered from it, but theories abound and tend to change with the same frequency as Jennifer Aniston’s love interests. Two items that seem to cause the most confusion are eggs and coffee.

Girls’ basketball roundup

  • Written by Anthony Nasella

Lady Spartans perfect through five

  Oak Lawn coach Janet Meyers can confidently say that the members of her Lady Spartans team truly enjoying playing basketball with one another.
  And through the first five games of the 2013-14 season, her athletes are also winning.
  That certainly was true at last week’s Glenbard East Tournament, where Oak Lawn captured a championship by triumphing four times in a row. The Lady Spartans edged Downers Grove North 60-58 in the title contest last Wednesday, one day after they slipped past Glenbard South 55-52 in the semifinal round.
  Oak Lawn’s Brianna Markusic was named the tournament MVP, while LaTondra Brooks and Jannah Mahmoud joined her on the all-tourney team. By sweeping their tournament contests, the Lady Spartans are off to their best start to a season under Meyers.

Sports wrap

  • Written by Anthony Nasella

With 11 of 14 starters from last season’s state championship team having graduated in the spring, this year’s Sandburg wrestling squad is definitely younger.

 The Eagles still have talent, however, most noticeably with defending state champ Johnny Pellegrino. But he’s not going it alone.

 It’s already evident that Sandburg’s youthful makeup isn’t hindering its performances. The Eagles opened their 2013-14 season last Wednesday with a dual-meet win over Homewood-Flossmoor, then went 3-0 at their own quadrangular on Saturday.

SXU sports summary

Football players receive postseason honors

  The 2013 football season didn’t produce the kind of team accomplishments St. Xavier University has grown used to in recent years, but individual accolades were still plentiful in the postseason.
  A total of 12 Cougars were recognized by the Mid-States Football Association as members of its All-Midwest League squad. Nine of those players were named to the first team, and two of them — junior Nick DeBenedetti and senior Spencer Nolan — were chosen in a couple of categories.
  DeBenedetti copped first-team honors as both a receiver and return specialist, while Nolan was tabbed as the first-team punter and second-team place-kicker. Other first-team selections from SXU were senior running back Nick Pesek (Oak Lawn), senior offensive lineman Tim Ladd, senior linebackers Zach Dolph and Dave Marciano, junior defensive lineman Greg Hayward (Oak Lawn) and junior defensive back Jacob Ghinazzi.