SXU sports summary: Cougars volleyball team earns academic honor

While the new school year is now in full swing, St. Xavier University’s volleyball team recently earned one last honor associated with the year that ended in May.

And this one didn’t have anything to do with on-court exploits. Rather, the 2012-13 Cougars were feted for their classroom work by being chosen as a recipient of the American Volleyball Coaches Association Team Academic Award.

To be eligible for the honor, a program had to carry a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. For the previous school year, SXU volleyball players compiled a 3.511 GPA.

“We had a very hard-working group of young ladies last year, and they were focused just as hard on their studies as they were on success on the court,” Cougars coach Bob Heersema said. “This is a special type of award because it showcases the tremendous balance that our team had in order to excel in both areas. We also had great senior leadership last year, and many of those seniors have already translated their academic successes into promising careers.”

Founded in 1981, the AVCA seeks to advance the sport of volleyball and its coaches. Based out of Lexington, Ky., the organization has over 6,200 members and works to serve volleyball coaches in both high schools and colleges across the nation.

Moraine athletics wrap: Rain reigns in cross country opener

  • Written by Maura Vizza

It was delay of season for Moraine Valley College runners.

At least that was so for the Cyclones men, who weren’t able to complete their initial race of the campaign because of rain on Aug. 30. The inclement weather washed out a portion of Elmhurst College’s Early Bird Invitational.

The women’s race was run in its entirety, but Moraine did not have an especially auspicious debut as it took 10th in a 12-school field. Marist grad Aileen Gorman was the Cyclones’ highest finisher, occupying the 54th position among 158 individuals after timing out in 17 minutes, 31 seconds over the 4K course at Eldridge Park.

Following their teammate down the chute were Queen of Peace alumnus Miranda Reyes (82nd in 18:44), Jessica Flores (121st, 20:12), Alexis Mindock (129th, 20:54), Nancy Ibarra (131st, 21:12), Stagg product Amanda Gerzon (136th, 21:53) and Maritza Najera (141st, 22:41).

Although the first outing was something of a mixed bag results-wise, Moraine coach Mark Horstmeyer took into account the conditions when assessing the Cyclones’ performance. He applauded his athletes’ efforts in a hot and humid environment.

“For Aileen, Jess and Lex, who were all running in their first collegiate race, it was an eye-opener,” Horstmeyer said. “They learned a few things about racing and about themselves, so they’ll go back to work.

“There’s a lot of work left to be done. I know the girls felt the same way.”

Trinity sports report: Trolls at home in Kentucky

  • Written by Tim Cronin

The old Stephen Foster tune wasn’t played before the volleyball matches Trinity Christian College participated in last weekend in Kentucky.

“My Old Kentucky Home” is reserved for the Kentucky Derby, but the Trolls were no less than thoroughbreds in winning three of four matches at Georgetown College’s Rumpke Invitational.

Trinity certainly wasn’t horsing around. That effort across two days ran the Trolls’ season record to 9-2, and with play in the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference commencing this week, the locals are in midseason form already.

Trinity met Purdue-North Central in its CCAC opener this past Tuesday and hosts Olivet Nazarene University tonight.

Only in Friday’s tourney nightcap against the NAIA’s preseason No. 7-ranked host school did the Trolls come up short. Georgetown scored a 25-22, 25-20, 25-15 victory, though Trinity led the first set until the Tigers forged a 22-all tie and the two clubs were knotted again at 16 in the second set before the home team pulled ahead once more.

Sports Wrap

  • Written by Anthony Nasella

By winning its first three dual matches of the season and then finishing as runner-up at Saturday’s Ottawa Invitational, Sandburg’s girls’ tennis team has thrilled coach Brian Ostrander.

The strong start was not completely unexpected, seeing as how the Lady Eagles field a deep and talented team. However, that didn’t diminish the impressive nature of Sandburg’s victories over Chicago Christian (5-0), University High (4-2) and Lincoln-Way North (7-0) during a three-day span last week.

At Ottawa, the Lady Eagles wound up second by only one point.

“We played our first three matches last week and won all three, which is awesome,” Ostrander said. “It was a great start, and then we competed very well at Ottawa. A couple [doubles] matches didn’t go our way, but it was still a great effort and outing for the girls.”

Laying the groundwork for the shutout of Christian were singles players Molly Treverso and Natalie Schultz, plus the doubles pairs of Allia Obunaim-Priya Sharma, Nisha Riley-Jackie Makdah and Lauren Mitchell-Maddie Sheehan.

Sandburg will try to keep things rolling today against a highly regarded Homewood-Flossmoor squad.

“Homewood-Flossmoor is the best team in this area,” Ostrander said. “And while we don’t have state-ranked players like they do, we do have a deep roster that I believe is capable of competing with them. It will be a good test to see where we are.

“We know we have a lot of work to do as a team, and we know that our players have to improve in order to succeed at the state level. But the potential is there.”

Leading the way for Sandburg this year is the senior trio of team captain Treverso, Mitchell and Sheehan. Treverso went 4-2 last week, and Ostrander said he was especially pleased with Mitchell’s and Sheehan’s performance as a doubles team at Ottawa.

“They won the third-doubles championship, and that was a big highlight,” he said. “They are counted on as leaders, and them winning at Ottawa was a big step in the senior leadership that we are counting on them to provide.

“Molly is the player who drives our team. Her losses were a three-set loss and a two-set loss in the finals of Ottawa tournament. She beat the players she was supposed to beat and lost to the players she was supposed to lose to — that’s all we can expect from her.”

Shultz lost just one match at Ottawa, as did the doubles duo of Obunaim-Sharma. The latter were triumphant in each dual affair, and they rebounded from a first-match setback in the invitational to win twice more.

Riely-Makdah dropped a tiebreaker in the semifinal round at Ottawa.

“We’re relying on our depth to take us far,” Ostrander said. “I like what we’ve done so far.” 

Stagg was perfect last week, as it scored victories over Mother McAuley (4-1 on Tuesday), Shepard (5-0 on Wednesday) and Lincoln-Way East (4-3 on Thursday).

Nicole Pamphilis (No. 1) and Jillian Atkenson (No. 2) notched singles wins against the Mighty Macs, while Rhonda Habbal (No. 2 singles) was a standout opposite the Lady Astros.

In addition to its defeat against Stagg, Shepard came up short versus Hillcrest (3-2) and Lemont (4-1) last week in a pair of South Suburban Conference crossover matches.


Sandburg (3-2) won twice in three outings last week at the Best of the West Tournament in Naperville.

The Eagles bagged 1-0 triumphs over both Waubonsie Valley and Fremd, while Naperville Central blanked Sandburg 2-0. Nick Atkinson’s goal was the difference for the Eagles in the Waubonsie match, while Seamus Flannagan tallied the lone marker opposite Fremd.

Abe Ziad earned an assist on Flannagan’s goal. Sandburg netminder Scott Swiontek’s two whitewashes gave him three for the season. 

Shepard (1-2-1) picked up its first win of the season with a 5-0 decision over St. Rita in last Tuesday’s consolation match at the Windy City Ram Classic.

Ivan Magana’s hat trick keyed the Astros’ attack. 

Stagg improved to 2-0 on the season with a 4-2 victory over St. Laurence last Thursday. Beto Torres had a goal and three assists to lead the Chargers in Palos Hills.

Chicago Christian upped its ledger to 3-1-2 by beating Evergreen Park 5-1 last Thursday in Palos Heights behind a hat trick and one assist from Getenet Timmermans.


After dropping a 150-180 decision to Lemont last Tuesday at Cog Hill No. 1, Shepard bounced back to register South Suburban Conference Red wins over Eisenhower (187-202) and Oak Lawn (161-182) on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively.

Kyle Longfield was the Astros’ low scorer versus the Cardinals as he carded a 40, but that left him two strokes shy of medalist Vinny Curta of Eisenhower. Shane Wright earned medalist honors against the Spartans by firing a nine-hole score of 37.

Medalist Blaine Wright (38) led Chicago Christian in last Wednesday’s Suburban Christian Conference meeting with Montini at Willowcrest Golf Club in Oak Brook, but the Broncos grabbed the team win by four shots, 160-164.

Stagg fell short in two SouthWest Suburban Conference crossover matches last week, as Andrew (164-176) and Lincoln-Way Central (158-168) both got the better of the Chargers. The Thunderbolts topped Stagg at Silver Lake on Tuesday, while the Knights prevailed on Thursday.

Nick Adduce captured medalist honors for Sandburg with a 36 in last Thursday’s 155-161 victory over Brother Rice, then teamed with the other Eagles to defeat Lincoln-Way East at Saturday’s Coed High School Golf Classic and register a second-place overall finish.

Sandburg shot a 308 at Green Gardens in Frankfort on Saturday, combining with the Lady Eagles for an overall score of 567. Michael Mishek and Adduce swept the top spots for Sandburg, the former doing so after overcoming a double-bogey opening hole.

Using five birdies to get back on track for the rest of the day, Mishek finished with a 1-over-par 73. Adduce was one stroke behind him at 74.


Sandburg rolled in its two SWSC crossover meets last week, then after defeating Bradley-Bourbonnais (165-225 on Wednesday) and Lincoln-Way North (159-213 on Thursday) the Lady Eagles joined their male counterparts at Saturday’s Coed High School Golf Classic.

Frankie Saban was Sandburg’s ringleader as her nine-hole scores of 38 and 36 made her the medalist in both dual events. She then posted a seventh-place individual finish on Saturday.

Stagg came up short against both Lincoln-Way Central (194-226) and Oak Forest (217-226) last week.


At last Tuesday’s Shepard Triangular, the host Lady Astros boasted the individual champion as Alondra Delfin completed her three-mile race at Conkey Woods in 21 minutes, 20 seconds.

Shepard, however, had to settle for second place as a team. Argo claimed the title with 24 points, while the Lady Astros accrued 31. TF South was third with 74.


Adrienne DiFoggio won the 200-yard individual medley (2:18.89) and 500-freestyle (5:23.32), as Stagg defeated Hinsdale South 107-78 last Tuesday.


AYSO soccer season in full swing

The Palos AYSO soccer season is in full swing, and a number of matches were contested last week.

Following is a recap of those reported encounters


Team #2 4, Avalanche 4

  Seven different players found the back of the net as the Avalanche and Team # 2 battled to a draw.

Scoring for Team #1 were John Mattes (two goals), Michael Kaunas and Adam Alleruzzo. Martin Kizlaitis was Team # 2’s top performer with a goal and assist, but Wael Gad, Alejandro Hucker and Kyle Donnahue all tallied as well.

Lightning 3, Team #6 3

  Another tie was registered in the Under-14 Division, as Ramiz Fakhoury scored twice and Darek Michniak had one goal for the Lightning. Jake Yerkes assisted on one of the markers.


Silver Soldiers 4, Blue Smurfs 2

  Two goals from James Hunt, plus one apiece by Matt Bogner and John Kennedy were enough to lift the Soldiers past the Smurfs.

Omar Gad distributed an assist for the Soldiers and Griffen Sterling also played well in a winning cause. Smurfs standouts included Ethan Zickert (goal), Aidan O’Leary (goal), Eric Nunez (assist) and George Evangelopolous (assist).

Blazing Energy 4, Ghosts 1

  Andrew Hughes and Matthew Senanov both booted home a pair of goals, and the Energy used those as the springboard to a triumph over the Ghosts.

Brian Sweeny notched an assist, while Hughes, Kaleb Donnahue, James Murphy and Matthew Rivera shared the netminding duties and anchored a robust Energy defense. Also helping out in that area were Mia Pagnotta, Isabel Piper, Devin Thielmann, Alaina Wolan and Maya Doyle.

The Energy were losing 1-0 in the third period when an infraction by the Ghosts resulted in a penalty kick, which Senanov converted to get his team on the board.

Team #9 5, Green Monsters 3

  Two goals by Michael Georgiou and one from Jonathan Lezon couldn’t save the Monsters from a loss to Team #9. Kevin Brennan and Yosef Ismail also played well in defeat for the Monsters.


Team #13 1, Neon Lights 0

  The Lights were turned off by Team #13, which recorded a shutout. Daniel Sweeney, Dylan Gumtow, G.G. Navarrete, Maggie McHugh, Nate Tran and William Hardison were the Lights’ principal figures in the match.

White Fury 2, Red Bull 1

  Colin Budd had a goal, but Red Bull couldn’t do any additional offensive damage against White Fury, who made off with a low-scoring victory.

Ryan Farkas, Karim Mohamed and John Vasiliades were other contributors on offense for Red Bull, while Grace Compagner, Josh Miller and Kaidence Roque aided the defense.

Rubber Duckies 8, Piranhas 0

  A four-goal effort by Faith Duggins highlighted a potent Duckies attack and propelled the team to a lopsided win over the Piranhas.

Also scoring for the victors were Aiden O’Hara (two goals), Eamonn Boyle and Nathan Colton. Keepers Haley Tadevich and Anthony Galan shared in a shutout.

Stickouts for the Piranhas included Lily Ceretto, Matthew Gilhooly, Alvaro Hucker, Maddy Meehan, Greg Sawertailo and Cassie Thornburg.

Team #10 5, Killing Bees 1

  Aydan Wilson’s goal was all the offense the Bees could muster as they dropped a decision to Team #10. Michael Jeffers assisted on Wilson’s tally and played a good all-around game for the Bees.

Blue Hurricane 3, Red Demons 1

  Tim Clancy scored, and Alan Wrzesinski, Nick VanWitzenburg and Victoria Venclovas all turned in solid efforts, but the quarter couldn’t prevent the Demons from coming up short versus the Hurricane.


Team #6 7, Orange Knights 5

  Defense was a missing ingredient as Team #6 outgunned the Knights despite Jude Welsch’s hat trick and Tessa Welsch’s two-goal exhibition on the latter’s behalf.

Tessa Welsch also passed out an assist, as did Emily Purtill.Also contributing for the Knights were Donny Chapman and Tegan Bumsted.

Team #4 6, Team #13 1

  Two goals apiece from Gavin Triezenberg and Nolan Navarrete carried Team #6 to a convincing win over Team #13. Lucas Parr and Sean Richards each added one tally for the victors.

Starring on the defensive end were Gianna Bacerott, Harry Doyle, Claire Connors, Alexandra Jancekova and Rebecca Lacina.

Ninjas 1, Green Dragons 0

  Jack Tadevich supplied the match’s lone goal, which boosted the Ninjas past the Dragons. Defensive notables for the winners were Grace Gambotz, Faisal Kherwish and Charles Librizzi.

Sharks 3, Storm 1

  Solo markers by Mari Jarmoszka, Lana Kerley and Julian Ruiz enabled the Sharks to calm the Storm. Tyler Blocker and Jackson Natenek each distributed an assist, and the latter also anchored his team’s defense.

Midnite Thunder 9, Team # 11 0

  Dual hat tricks by T.S. Thornburg and Sebastian Magiera were at the heart of a dominant Thunder attack, and the team had no trouble vanquishing Team #11.

George Vandiver and Brendan Zielinski both punched in one goal, while Layon Abuhanow and Oliver Levy were defensive staples.