Category Archives: Sports

KHS boys varsity soccer v. Morris Oct 2014-1-3

Kaneland Soccer finds footing

Photo: Senior William Koziol works against a Morris defender on Oct. 9. Photo by Laura Gampfer

Double-dip of wins vs. Morris, Plainfield East
KANELAND—Winners in seven of their last eight, the Knight soccer crew could be getting hot as the outside environment cools.

Using a premium of offense, the Knights laid waste to visiting Morris on Thursday, 6-3, and visiting Plainfield East of the Southwest Prairie Conference in a 3-1 affair.

With one regular season match left, Kaneland sits at 11-7-2, and 4-2-1 in Northern Illinois Big XII play, a big step up from 4-6-2 after the first 12 matches.

Against Morris, a 2-2 halftime tie was helped by a goal from Samuel Wolf on an assist from latest addition Carl Thorbjornsen, direct from Norway. Thorbjornsen scored his first goal of the game off a Cameron Pieczynski feed with 6:54 to go in the half.

Four goals came from KHS within a 24:04 span: Angel Escontrias’ penalty kick, Thorbjornsen twice (Peter Jefferson assist) and Eli Alvarado.

Against the Bengals in the weekend matchup, Kaneland’s two first-half goals came with 38:10 and 7:29 left, both by Felipe Speraggi. Drew Franklin and Jefferson tallied assists. Escontrias put the game away with a goal at the 19:29 mark off a Speraggi assist.

On Thursday, Oct. 16, the Knights go to Yorkville for the regular season finale, and on to the IHSA Class 2A Burlington Central Regional. No. 2 Kaneland battles No. 3 Sycamore on Tuesday, Oct. 21, at 7 p.m., with the winner facing No. 1 Burlington Central, No. 4 Hampshire or No. 5 Sandwich in the Friday, Oct. 24, regional final.


Kaneland Volleyball takes on NIB-12 rivals

Photo: The varsity volleyball team awaits a DeKalb serve during its 2-1 win over the Barbs Oct. 9. Photo by Mary Paulson

Hard-charging crew earns wins over DeKalb, Sycamore
SYCAMORE—At 17-9, and 5-2 in the Northern Illinois Big XII, Kaneland High School volleyball may well be in the midst of its best stretch of the 2014 season.

The Lady Knight crew only hopes to tack on to the prolific stretch.

With crucial matches last Thursday in DeKalb and Tuesday evening in Sycamore, the KHS roster handed the Barbs a 16-25, 25-18, 25-16 setback, and laid the kills on the host Spartans in a 25-22, 18-25, 25-15 win.

Kaneland has managed to take eight of its last 10 matches—with the regular season in its home stretch—eclipsing last year’s win total of 16.

The win against the Barbs featured Ellie Dunn’s 11 kills and 10 digs, Riley Hannula’s eight kills, two blocks and two service points, Anna Senese’s 12 service points including an ace, five digs and two kills, and Hollie Fedderly’s 16 assists, four service points and three digs.

Against Sycamore, Kaneland went out to an early lead in the first game, although a slim 12-11. Sycamore charged back for a 17-13 lead before KHS went on an 8-3 run for a 21-20 lead. Later, a McKenzie McMullan block gave the visitors a 23-21 lead. After the hosts cut the lead to one, it was an overzealous hit and a carry that gave the Lady Knights the necessary two points for the game one win.

Sycamore regrouped enough and held Kaneland at bay despite a powerful Hannula spike midway through to make it 19-15. Sycamore then nabbed four of the next five points for a 23-16 lead. Dunn’s later kill would make it 24-18 before the Spartans’ benefitted from a sideout for game point.

Kaneland would have all aspects of their game working, with McMullan rescuing balls throughout and Dunn playing a fierce frontline. Sycamore would commit several errors to put the final game out of reach.
Coach Cyndi Violett appreciated the important effort.

“Any time you start the second time around conference, it’s tough because they’ve seen you. But the girls stayed mentally strong. The last game showed mental toughness and they stayed focused.”

“It’s just really a team effort,” Hannula said. “Once we start acting like a team, you can see it work. They’re a really good team and hopefully we see them at regionals.”

On Thursday, Oct. 16, the Lady Knights host Morris in the final home match of the season.


Golfers get taste of postseason

Senior Tori Guyton was the lone Kaneland golfer to qualify for the state golf tournament. Photo by Laura Gampfer

Guyton continues family qualifying tradition
KANELAND—While the boys golf individual State quest had to wait 24 hours in Grayslake, Ill., due to rainfall, the girls side was able to get down to business on Oct. 8 and Monday.

Senior Tori Guyton, who qualified for the Monday Conant Sectional by virtue of her performance at the Burlington Central Regional, punched her ticket to this weekend’s State meet with an 81 in Hoffman Estates, Ill.

With the boys, there would be no state qualifying after a modified Grayslake Central Sectional that had to be spread out over two days in Grayslake, Ill.

Guyton, the first State qualifier for Kaneland girls golf since sister Hayley in 2010, was the eighth-best individual qualifier, just ahead of Conant’s Carly Bryeans’ 82. Oak Park-River Forest’s Amanda Youman was a 75 to top the individual qualifer list, while St. Charles North’s Kate Lillie shot a 69 for medalist honors.

“We are very excited for her to advance in her senior year,” KHS coach Mark Meyer said. “She has put a lot of hard work into her game these last four years, and she deserves to cap off her final season with a trip to state. We couldn’t be more proud of Tori.”

Maine South’s team score of 328 led the way at Conant.

Guyton had also qualified with classmate Julia VanGemert for sectional duty back at BC, with an 89 and 94, respectively.

For the boys, Brett Glennon shot an 81, while Jake Hed managed an 83. Jeff VanGemert launched an 88, while Jesse Denton’s 89 and Jeremy Faletto’s 92 ended the scoring column.

Glennon was involved in a eight-man playoff to determine the final individual qualifying spot, but lost out to Burlington Central’s Joe Sherman and Wheaton Academy’s Zack Spear.

Richmond-Burton’s Jordan Hahn’s 70 was good for medalist, while St. Francis (317), Richmond-Burton (324) and Vernon Hills (327) took the team qualifying spots.

The girls State tournament is Friday and Saturday, Oct. 17-18, at Hickory Point Golf Club in Decatur, Ill.

Lady Knights cross country tunes up before conference

STERLING, ILL.—A loaded field helped propel the Lady Knights to several personal bests at Saturday’s Sterling Invitational.

Even with coach Doug Ecker running some of his top individuals at the freshman/sophomore level, KHS still managed a 14th-place team showing with 359 points, 23 points behind conference-mate Dixon. Schaumburg won with 55 points, followed by Minooka’s 67. Minooka’s Ashley Tutt, Mackenzie Callahan and Emily Shelton went 1-2-3 individually.

For Kaneland, Briana Bower paced the team with an 18th place in 18 minutes, 52 seconds. Bower, who is still working her way back from a stress fracture, was 12th in 2013 in 18:39.

Senior Victoria Clinton was next for Kaneland in 36th place with a time of 19:36. Jessica Kucera was behind her in 66th place, running the 3-mile course in 20:09.

“Kucera continues her steady season with a time of 20:07,” Ecker said. “(That’s) a PR for her.”

Also in the mix for the varsity group was Carly Bartholomew (110th, 21:34), Grace Drake (135th, 22:47), Lilah Klingensmith (143rd, 23:34) and Murphy Garcia (144th, 23:46).

Freshman Andrea Wells paced the frosh/soph squad with a runner-up finish, while Sarah Daley was 12th in the younger race.

The Lady Knights’ next challenge with be the Northern Illinois Big 12 conference meet, held at Rochelle high school. The varsity girls run at 10 a.m., and are followed by the frosh/soph girls at 11:15 p.m. and the JV open at 12:30 p.m.

Knights boys CC 2nd at Byron

BYRON, ILL.—A unique format gave coach Chad Clarey a chance to feature a different lineup than usual.

The Knights, idle the this past weekend in preparation for Saturday’s Northern Illinois Big 12, last saw action at the Byron Handicap Invitational Oct. 8.

The handicap format features 10 runners from each school. The No. 10 runner begins when the gun goes off, and then 20 seconds later, the No. 9 runner is allowed to begin. No. 8 waits another 20 seconds, and so on until the No. 1 runs three minutes after the initial gun went off.

Resting seven of his usual top ten, the Knights still pulled off an impressive runner-up finish, trailing the Rock Falls Rockets by only two points.

“Unfortunately Rock Falls took the top three places overall, which gave them just enough points to seal the team title by two,” Clarey said.

Austin Kintz, the Knights’ No. 1 runner, ran 18:37 to pace KHS with a 4th place finish.

“Austin started three minutes back of the first flight of runners and managed a 4th place finish,” Clarey said. “His actual time was 15:38 over 2.87 hilly miles.”

Freshman Henry Nosek was the next Knight, finishing in 7th place with a time of 18:51.

“We feel (Nosek) is just starting to scratch the surface of his true potential,” Clarey said.

A mass of Kaneland runners stingily took up the 9th through 12th spots, as Zach Kurz (9th, 19:02), Ben Smith (10th, 19:06), Aaron French (11th, 19:08) and Sam Webster (19:09) finished in a cluster. They were followed by Nick Moses (15th, 19:13,) Andrew Lesak (23rd, 19:52), Anthony Messina (30th, 20:08) and Jared Murri (56th, 26:46).

“Overall, (it) was a nice night for the team with many individual awards,” Clarey said.

Next up for the Knights is the annual NIB-12 gathering, this time at Rochelle High School. The boys varsity runs at 10:45 a.m., with the boys fr/so race at noon and boys open race at 1:15 p.m.

Oct. 16 Sports Recap

Don’t see your results in the Elburn Herald? Have your coach email them to or fax them to (630) 365-2251.

Girls JV Tennis
Oct. 8 @ Oswego East—The Lady Knights lost 4-3 at Oswego East. Abby Purnell (8-3) and Ava Mandele (8-5) won at No. 1 and No. 2 singles, and Mary Collum and Marley Schultz won 8-0 at No. 1 doubles.

Boys JV Cross Country
Oct. 8 @ Byron Invite—The Knights put up a perfect score of 15 to win the open race at Byron. The course was 2.87 miles.
1 A. Gale, 18:03; 2 D. Wojak, 18:29; 3 K. Wells, 18:31; 4 C. Girolamo, 18:34; 5 P. Heiser, 18:36; 6 T. Nance, 19:04; 7 G. Wilk, 19:25; 8 J. O’Sullivan, 19:38; 10 J. Kasap, 20:00; 12 K. Osborne, 21:07; 15 I. Piazza, 22:25; 16 J. Wolfe 22:26; 18 G. Gingrich, 22:49; 21 C. Rutter, 28:35

Boys Sophomore Soccer
Oct. 9 vs. Morris—The Knights won 5-0 over Morris. Brian Bartholomew had two goals and an assist, while Jose Chavez had a goal and assist. Diego Ruiz and Brandon Luebke also had goals, and Robbie Nachreiner had two assists for KHS.
Oct. 11 vs. Plainfield East—The Knights were down 2-1 to PE with 10 minutes to go in the second half when the Plainfield East coach was given a red card, and the game was left as “undecided.” Christian Medrano scored an unassisted goal for the Knights who are 10-1-2 on the season, 8-0-1 in NIB-12 play.

Girls Sophomore Volleyball
Oct. 9 vs. DeKalb—The Lady Knights won 25-13, 23-25, 25-14.
Oct. 14 vs. Sycamore—Kaneland won 25-21, 25-13.

Girls Freshman Volleyball
Oct. 9 vs, DeKalb—The freshman A squad won 25-19, 14-25, 25-16. The B team tied 19-25, 25-20, 21-21.
Oct. 14 vs. Sycamore—The A team won 26-24, 23-25, 25-12, while the B team fell 21-25, 19-25.

Girls JV Cross Country
Oct. 11 @ Sterling Invite—The Lady Knights placed 9th out of 22 teams Saturday. Andrea Wells led the team with a runner-up finish, while Sarah Daley was 12th. There were no team scores kept in the JV open race.
Fr/So results: 2 A. Wells, 19:45; 12 S. Daley, 20:42; 39 G. Dodis, 21:24; 76 K. Huber, 23:04; 99 M. Dries, 24:47; 100 M. Burger, 24:49.
JV Open results: 132 S. Sommerville, 24:17; 155 H. Penkala, 24:53.

Middle School
Cross Country

Oct. 11 @ IESA Sectional—In one of the toughest sectionals int he state, the Kaneland Harter Middle School cross country team saw its girls team qualify for the IESA State Meet by placing third behind Batavia Rotolo and Yorkville. The girls were paced by Rachel Richtman’s 3rd place in 12:03 over two miles. Lesley Viveros placed 10th in 12:28. Both were all-sectional selections. Also running for KHMS were Cassidy Motyka (15th, 12:37), Grace Purcell (19th 12:45), Tessa Brennan (21st 12:48), Erin Ball (22nd 12:51), and Emma Ball (28th 13:11). The boys squad placed fifth as a team, but saw two boys qualify as individuals. Seventh grader Zach Long took 3rd place in 10:59, while Dan Occhipinti placed ninth in 11:14—a personal record by 50 seconds. The state meet takes place at Maxwell Park in Normal, Ill. The girls team will run at 12:30 p.m., followed by the boys at 1:15 p.m.

8th grade volleyball

Eighth Grade Volleyball

Season recap—The 8th grade girls volleyball team of Kaneland Harter Middle School, coached by Jackie Self, had a successful season in the new Fox River Prairie Conference. This new conference includes St. Charles, Geneva, Batavia, and Yorkville. The A team was 8-3 overall in the regular season, and beat Geneva South, Yorkville, and St. Charles Thompson in the Conference tournament to claim the title of conference champions. The B team was 10-1 overall and claimed the title of defending champs at the Yorkville B tournament. This talented group of girls worked together incredibly well and have many great years ahead in the high school volleyball program.

Seventh Grade Volleyball
Season recap—The Kaneland Harter Middle School 7th grade volleyball A team, coached by Kevin Hagan, was 7-4 overall in the regular season and took 2nd at the conference tournament. The B team ended 4-7 and took third at the Yorkville B tournament.

Kaneland Youth
Football League

Oct. 11, 2014:
Kaneland White 31
@ Yorkville Red 6
Kaneland Orange 9
@ Kaneland Black 0
Yorkville Black 26
@ Kaneland Silver 30
Yorkville Black 0
@ Kaneland Black 21
Kaneland White 27
@ Yorkville Red 7
Kaneland Black 0
@ DeKalb Black 20
Kaneland White 13
@ Yorkville Red 27
Kaneland Black 11
@ DeKalb Orange 8 (OT)
Yorkville Red 6
@ Kaneland White 20

Oct. 11, 2014:
DeKalb Orange 25
@ Kaneland White 6
Kaneland Orange 19
@ Burlington Blue 0
Kaneland Black 0
@ Yorkville Black 18
Kaneland Silver 19
@ Burlington White 0
Kaneland Black 31
@ Yorkville Red 0
Kaneland White 8
@ Burlington Blue 13
Kaneland Black 14
@ Yorkville Red 0
Kaneland White 6
@ Burlington Blue 27
DeKalb Black 38
@ Kaneland Black 8
Kaneland White 33
@ Yorkville White 6

The following teams have
qualified for the playoffs:

8U White, 8U Silver, 9U Black, 9U White, 10U Black, 11U Black and 11U White.

Compiled by Ben Draper

Kaneland Sports Boosters to give cancer the boot

KANELAND—The Kaneland Sports Boosters have announced their plans for the annual pink out, which will take place during the football games the evening of Friday, Oct. 24.

Pink out shirts and socks will be sold the week of Oct. 20 during lunch at Kaneland High School. They will also be sold at the games on Oct. 24.

Anyone that enters the Oct. 24 game with cowboy boots on will receive a free raffle ticket to be entered into a drawing.

Before the varsity game the boosters will be have a parade on the track for anyone that is suffering from cancer, a survivor, or anyone that wants to walk in memory of a loved one. If you are interested in participating please contact Shanne Kuipers at

All proceeds from the pink out will be donated to breast cancer research.

Screen shot 2014-10-09 at 12.52.34 PM

Kaneland removes softball coach

KANELAND—The Kaneland School Board on Sept. 29 voted 7-0 to release Kaneland High School softball coach Brian Willis from his duties as head coach.

Willis had spent the last five years as head coach for Kaneland varsity girls softball. He also teaches drivers education, physical education and adaptive physical education at the high school.

Willis at the Sept. 29 School Board meeting said that he had been asked to resign from his coaching position, but declined to do so. He also read a prepared statement prior to the School Board’s vote

“I am writing this letter to ask the Kaneland School Board and the high school administration to reconsider the decision to release me from the head coaching position of varsity softball,” Willis read from his statement.

Willis’ letter continued, noting his 25 years of teaching experience—13 of them at Kaneland—and 10 years of coaching with the Lady Knights.

“(I’ve) never had an accusation made against me for something I have done illegal or immoral,” Willis read from his statement. “This continues to be the case this evening.”

He said that a harassment charge had been filed against him in May 2014.

“After an investigation, it was found to have no basis,” Willis read from his statement. “The root of the complaint was because an athlete was not playing as many innings as the parents thought she should. And they had to come up with something, thus the harassment charge.”

In his statement, Willis said the reason he was informed of the decision to release him from coaching was “vague.”

“When I asked for the reason, I was told of concerns administration had about the program,” Willis read from his statement. “Those concerns were also documented in the harassment charge, and again possessed no evidence of wrongdoing—only the opinion of people who disagree with my softball philosophy.”

Willis said that he had been told any information gathered had to remain confidential and that it could not be shared with him. He noted that a person usually loses a job because of illegal activity, immoral judgment or poor performance.

Willis also acknowledged that his coaching performance last season was not equivalent to years past and by his own standards.

“The reality was, I couldn’t perform at the same mental or physical level I am accustomed to because of my ongoing battle with cancer,” Willis read from his statement. “I did my best in the classroom and on the field with tremendous support from everybody. I was not told by high school administration my performance was substandard.”

The KHS girls varsity softball team went 20-12 last season, after going 24-4 in 2013.
Regarding his release, Willis had just one question: why?

“I think that is a fair question,” Willis read from his statement. “And out of respect for my commitment towards Kaneland High School the past 13 years, I have earned the right to have that answered honestly.”

Willis said that both he and his staff worked hard to create a “winning program” on and off of the field. He said that tough decisions had been made that some didn’t agree with or like, but mentioned that he always has tried to teach his students and his athletes to be accountable for their actions.

“If you have done something out of favor, face the consequences,” Willis read from his statement. “If not, stand on the highest mountain and declare your innocence. Tonight, I stand on the mountain.”

Community members stood up to offer supporting words for Willis. Molly Cohrs, whose daughter plays for the Lady Knights, spoke of Willis putting together fundraisers for field improvements and returning Kaneland’s softball program to both a respected and winning program.

“Having recently waged a winning battle against cancer, he practiced until he could no longer stand, and then sat on a bucket so practice could continue,” Cohrs said.

She also spoke about what was expected of the Lady Knights softball team.

“Expectation is high, effort is required, and you have to be able to produce—defensively and offensively on the field, and in the classroom,” Cohrs said. “And yes, if a coach believes you are not giving 110 percent all the time; if he believes you are playing below your potential; he’s going to let you know it.”

Cohrs called student playing time the “most sensitive topic” in any high school sport played.

“I don’t think it is a coincidence that if you look back at the families and players who have complained about any Kaneland coach, their history of playtime at Kaneland will likely show that they were either cut from a program or they did not play as much as other players,” Cohrs said.

Paige Kuefler, senior Lady Knights player, wore a Team Willis gray T-shirt during the School Board meeting. She also spoke on behalf of the team about the one she calls “Coach Willis.”

“He wants the best for us,” Kuefler said. “Does he get frustrated with us? At times, yes. Because he knows we can do better; he knows how we play. He’s seen our 100 percent, and if he doesn’t, he will push us until he sees it.”

Kuefler mentioned that positions on the Lady Knights softball team had to be earned.
“Our positions were never handed to us,” she said. “Each and every athlete of the softball team had to earn a position.”

Following the meeting, Willis reflected on the support he received at the meeting.

“I’m very happy with the support I got tonight,” he said. “And the fact that even if I’m not reinstated as coach, I can lay my head on my pillow knowing that I had a positive effect on these young ladies’ lives.”


In full swing

KHS one stroke away from team advancement, also take fourth at NIB-12

KANELAND—While it won’t quite be to the heights of the 2012 stellar team finish, the Knight golfers still can claim some postseason greens.

Kaneland’s 347 team score at the Mendota Regional was just one shot away from earning a team advancement to the Grayslake Central Sectional. Wheaton Academy’s 333 earned first place, followed by St. Francis’s 336 and Aurora Central Catholic’s 346. Kaneland outlasted Sandwich (366) and LaSalle-Peru (375).

The Knights were third at last year’s Aurora Central Catholic Regional.

Kaneland was able to corner the market on advancing individuals, as five of the 10 slots were Knights. While Wheaton Academy’s Grant Gosden was medalist with a 74 and Sandwich’s Blake Andrew took a 74, the trio of Jake Hed, Jeremy Faletto and Brett Glennon took on 85, 86 and 86, respectively, for the two-through-four slots. Jesse Denton also advanced with a 90, and Jeff VanGemert was able to maintain qualifier status with a 91.

“One of our team goals was to get to sectionals, so it was a little disappointing and bittersweet. But, you get over that when you see that five of our guys qualified,” KHS coach Mark Meyer said.

Hed, Glennon and VanGemert provide a nice sophomore slant to the sectional proceedings, an encouraging program development.

“It’s really big for the sophomores here,” Meyer said. “They can feel what this is like and feel a bit of nerves, and see if they can get to sectionals or even State.”

Out at Senica’s Oak Ridge on Oct. 1, for the L-P hosted Northern Illinois Big XII meet, Kaneland’s 336 was good for fourth ahead of Ottawa (342). DeKalb was conference king with a 322 team score, while Geneseo was king of the West at 332, and Sycamore managed a 333.

Hed was tops for the Knights at an 82 for ninth place, while Denton, with 84, was 13th. Faletto’s 85 took 14th on the day.


Kaneland volleyball falls short to Sterling

Photo: Seniors Rachel Kintz, Riley Hannula and Anna Senese make a wall against Sterling Oct. 2. “Our blocking has been a huge development for us, and reading the hitters,” head coach Cyndi Violett said. Photo by Laura Gampfer

KANELAND—It hasn’t been a common occurrence in 2014, but the Kaneland Lady Knights volleyball team had to deal with a little losing streak.

Beginning with a loss at the beginning of last week against Yorkville, Kaneland hosted Sterling on Thursday in a Northern Illinois Big XII crossover and fell 16-25, 25-13, 28-26.

On Tuesday in Ottawa, Kaneland won 25-23, 25-22 in a close match with the Lady Pirates.

Overall, Kaneland sits at 15-9, with a 3-2 mark in NIB-12 competition.

On the Kaneland side, Ellie Dunn had four service points, 12 kills, two blocks and eight digs. Teammate Riley Hannula added seven service points, three kills, eight blocks and two digs. Anna Senese had 10 service points, four kills, 13 digs and a block.

Head coach Cyndi Violett knew some things had to be adjusted, while there was still a good stretch of time before regionals begin at the end of this month.

“After our loss to Sterling, I realized that we needed to come back together as a team and family. There wasn’t a specific skill or game play to focus on, but to re-energize ourselves for the love of the game and our teammates,” Violett said.

Still, there has been plenty of intangibles to be proud of.

“Our blocking has been a huge development for us, and reading the hitters,” Violett said.

Against Ottawa, Dunn had 11 kills and 15 digs in the two-game sweep. Hannula added four service points, six kills and two blocks, while Senese had five kills and 11 digs, and Hollie Fedderly had 13 assists and six service points.

On Thursday, Oct. 9, the KHS crew heads to conference foe DeKalb.


Kaneland girls cross thirst for Pretzel Invite

Photo: Sophomore Grace Dodis accepts Kaneland’s second-place trophy at Saturday’s Pretzel Invite. Photo submitted by Patti Wilk to

FREEPORT, ILL.—For the best girls cross country talent the northern half of the state has to offer on an October Saturday, one need not look farther than the Pretzel Invite.

On Saturday, Kaneland girls cross country took second place with 53 points, meaning the talent is doing nicely after the season’s health and lineup concerns. More local outfit Boylan Catholic of Rockford, Ill., nabbed first with 34 points.

Dixon (59), Freeport (102) and Winnebago (122) filled out the top half of the afternoon in the 10-team invite.

Three top-10 finishers donning Lady Knight garb were Victoria Clinton in fourth with an 18:53, fifth-place Andrea Wells in 18:60 and Brianna Bower with a 19:28, good for seventh.

Senior cornerstone Jessica Kucera paced to a 14th-place finish at 20:06, and Grace Dodis took 23rd at 20:53.

Other KHS varsity runners included Sarah Daley (30th, 21:12) and Carly Bartholomew (39th, 21:53).

The Boylan trio of Delaney Appino (18:01), Erica Lowry (18:40) and Grace McLaughlin (18:44) took the top three spots.

KHS coach Doug Ecker is a fan of the Freeport setup.

“It is nice to run against some different teams and see Boylan before the sectional. We like it because it is a smaller meet and it gives the JV girls a chance to run in a meet where they can be successful. All meets are important in preparing for the end of the season, but we value the entire season as important. We do not just point to the state series as the only thing that determines a successful season,” Ecker said.

Wednesday had the Byron Handicap come the Lady Knights’ way, and Saturday, Oct. 11, has the 65th annual Sterling Invite in Northern Illinois Big XII West territory.


KHS boys Pretzel Invite trip part of process

Photo: The KHS boys varsity cross country team earned second overall at Saturday’s Freeport Pretzel Invite. Photo submitted by Patii WIlk to

FREEPORT, ILL.—The Knights cross country team saw encouraging signs and cooler weather at the annual Pretzel Invitational.

The cool morning—which even featured early snow flurries—saw Kaneland nab a steady second-place finish, thanks to a 52-point output—just 12 behind Winnebago—five Knights in the the top 16 runners.

After Winnebago and Kaneland, it was Dixon (87), Boylan Catholic (95) and Rockford Guilford (154) securing the top five spots in the 10-team gathering.

While Winnebago’s Nathan Smith won the three-mile challenge with an effort of 15:32, KHS had plenty to be proud about.

On a day some 40 degrees cooler than the previous weekend’s Charger Classic, the Knights’ Austin Kintz grabbed fifth overall in 15:48, while Brandon Park was seventh at 16:01 in the talented field. Park managed a PR on the course by 44 seconds.

Eleventh-place Mitch Reger (16:40), 13th-place Will Kuipers (16:46) and 16th-place James Walker (16:55) were 15 seconds apart and sealed a 67-second pack split.

“We know that in order to finish in the top two today, it would be important to get good production from 3-7,” KHS coach Chad Clarey said.

Clarey and company also liked what the Freeport setting had to offer.

“We enjoy the different terrain Freeport provides us each year. Not a typical flat course—the rolling hills offer some challenge early on before flattening out and running down at the finish. Our kids love it,” Clarey said.

Other Kaneland athletes in the varsity race were Sean Spaetzel (23rd, 17:16), Andrew Lesak (24th, 17:20), Aaron French (34th, 17:44), Zach Kurz (38th, 18:15), Ben Smith (46th, 18:45), Nick Moses (68th, 19:58), Josh Kasap (76th, 20:29), Grant Gingrich (82nd, 21:35), Jacob Wolfe (83rd, 21:48) and Kyle Osborne (88th, 23:28).

Wednesday saw a trip to the Byron Handicap, with results not available for press, and the Northern Illinois Big XII Conference race.

Oct. 9 sports recap

Boys Freshman Soccer
Oct. 1 @ Burlington Central—The Knights won 1-0. Michael Minoque had 16 saves, and Javier Correa had the goal on a Devin Pieczynski assist.
Oct. 6 @ DeKalb—Pieczynski’s goal and Minoque’s five saves helped the Knights to a 1-1 tie on the road against the Barbs.

Girls JV Tennis
Oct. 1 @ Yorkville—The JV tennis team fell 4-1 against the Lady Foxes. The Lady Knights are 3-1 in conference play.

Boys Sophomore Soccer
Oct. 1 vs. Hinckley-Big Rock—The Knights won 2-0. Diego Ruiz (Brian Bartholomew assist) and Tim Wachter (Brandon Luebke) each had goals.
Oct. 7 vs. Sycamore—The Knights rolled 6-2 over the Spartans. John McCaffrey had three goals and an assist, while Bartholomew also had two goals. Ruiz had a goal and an assist, while Robbie Nachreiner and Christian Medrano each had assists. The Knights are 9-1-2 overall, and 6-0-1 in conference play.

Freshman Volleyball
Oct. 2 vs. Sterling—The A team won 25-21, 25-19, while the B team also won 25-12, 25-8.
Oct. 7 vs. Ottawa—The A team lost 15-25, 25-19, 19-25, while the B team lost 25-23, 20-25, 11-15. The A team is 9-4, 5-1 in conference play, while the B team is 2-9, 1-5.

Sophomore Volleyball
Oct. 2 vs. Sterling—The Lady Knights won 25-21, 25-19.
Oct. 7 vs. Ottawa—KHS won 25-19, 25-15.

Sophomore Football
Oct. 3 @ Sycamore—The Knights won 20-0 over the Spartans.

Girls JV Cross Country
Oct. 4 @ Freeport Invitational—The Lady Knights won the eight-team meet with 40 points. Boylan was a close second with 46.
3 O. Galor, 21:09; 6. K. Huber, 21:55; 8 G. Drake, 22:12; 9 L. Klingensmith, 22:13; 15 S. Sommerville, 23:27; 18 M. Garcia, 23:38; 26. M. Dries, 24:26; 29 H. Penkala, 24:30.

Boys Fr/So Cross Country
Oct. 4 @ Freeport Invitational—The Knights won the seven-team meet with 37 points, far ahead of runner-up Rockford East’s 66.
2 A. Kantola, 16:50; 3 A. Messina, 17:13; 5 S. Webster, 17:18; 13 H. Nosek, 18:17; 24 P. Heiser, 19:05; 25 D. Wojak, 19:08; 27 T. Nance, 19:14; 29. K. Wells, 19:17; 32. C. Girolamo, 19:29; 35. G. Wilk, 19:34; 38 J. O’Sullivan, 19:50; 80 C. Rutter, 25:22.


That was Sparta

Photo: Junior Steven VanHorn breaks up a 3rd-down pass to a Sycamore wide receiver Friday. “Both defenses played really well,” KHS head coach Tom Fedderly said. Photo by Mary Paulson

Urgency increases after 14-7 loss at Sycamore
SYCAMORE—Kaneland football has yet to pull off a three-game win streak in 2014. It’ll have to in order to be considered for postseason play for the seventh consecutive season.

With a chance to at least tie the Sycamore Spartans during the Spartans’ homecoming week on Friday, Kaneland’s offense put together a sustained drive until an interception in the endzone with 14 seconds remaining cemented a 14-7 loss to Sycamore.

For KHS, its season sits at 2-4 (0-3 Northern Illinois Big XII) for the first time since 2007. The four-game skid notes the longest in-season losing streak since 1993.

The competitive-yet-hard-luck streak means the Knights are 3-6 in their last nine overall contests, playoffs included.

Kaneland and Sycamore’s meeting on Friday was a tad more low-scoring than last season’s 31-21 road loss, and a stark difference from Kaneland’s 30-point per game output.

Juniors Jacob Gomes (below, No. 53) and Andrew Kray (No. 75) hold the Sycamore offense on a 3rd down Friday.
Juniors Jacob Gomes (below, No. 53) and Andrew Kray (No. 75) hold the Sycamore offense on a 3rd down Friday.

Despite just 81 yards passing during the defensive struggle, Knights quarterback Jake Marczuk was the game’s leading rusher with 129 yards on the ground.

After battling through an early stalemate that involved Knights receiver Mitchell Groen recovering a fumble out of the air—to no avail—on offense, the Spartans converted on a one-yard touchdown run by Brett Weaver to make it 7-0 with 2:05 left in the second quarter.

Marczuk’s 4th-down attempt to Connor Fedderly from the Spartans’ 42 was a no-go, ending the final first-half drive.

In the third quarter, Marczuk’s grasp on the ball was loosened during a scamper and Sycamore recovered on its on 29. Three plays later, Spartan Dion Hooker ran for a 63-yard score to take a 14-0 lead with 8:38 to go.

Marczuk finally brought the Knights to the scoring column with 7:09 to go in the fourth on a nine-yard run to make it 14-7. After forcing Sycamore to punt, a forced fumble during Fedderly’s return went to Sycamore. KHS was able to dig deep and block a 32-yard field goal attempt and take over at its own 29. Using the strength of a 21-yard run by Marczuk, the Knights found themselves in Sycamore territory.

On 2nd and 10 from the 32, Marczuk was sacked, but gained 21 yards on a run to the 16. After a pass attempt to the middle of the end zone to Fedderly went incomplete, a slant to Fedderly in the end zone was snagged by Sycamore’s Bryce Hansen to end it the Knight hope.

“(Coach Joe Ryan) does a great job with his kids, and it was just a hard-fought game. I think we did some things to kind of hurt ourselves. They did a tremendous job. We had to put drives together, and Sycamore stepped up and did a good job. Both defenses played really well.” KHS coach Tom Fedderly said.

Kaneland has a date with the 2-4 Morris Redskins on Friday, Oct. 10. Morris has ceased to beat Kaneland since rejoining the conference landscape together in 2010.

NIB-12 tennis tournament moves to DeKalb

KANELAND—Kaneland will still host this year’s Northern Illinois Big 12 conference tournament—it’ll just be at DeKalb High School.

The two-day tournament, beginning Friday morning at 10 a.m. at 501 W. Dresser Road, DeKalb, and resuming Saturday at 8 a.m., was moved early this week from KHS. An email to head coach Tim Larsen asking the reason was not returned in time for press.

A seeding meeting took place at DHS Wednesday evening, but the results were not available prior to press. Head coach Tim Larsen’s crew is the defending conference champion.

“We’re going to be very competitive going in,” he said. “I’ll know more after tonight’s seeding meeting.”

Although the forecast looks clear, in the event of rain, the tournament will be moved to Monday.

_KHS tennis v. Yorkville-4

Lady Knights smash Ottawa, compete in Ogle County

Photo: Senior Stephanie Karolewicz and No. 2 doubles partner Colleen Landers won 6-0, 6-4 over Yorkville Tuesday. Photo by Laura Gampfer

KANELAND—If the homestretch of the regular season is any indication of how the Kaneland Lady Knights tennis group handles itself, opponents could be in for a long October.

Last Thursday in Ottawa, the KHS girls took care of their Northern Illinois Big XII crossover opponent in 6-1 fashion. KHS then came back to compete in the Lady Hub Tennis Invite on Saturday and took first overall. On Tuesday, KHS hosted Yorkville and defeated the Lady Foxes 4-1.

Kaneland is now 7-2 in dual competition.

Against the Ottawa foe, singles wins came as a result of No. 1 Sammie Schrepferman in a 6-1, 6-1 bout, and No. 2 singles entry Brittany Zablocki won a 6-3, 6-2 battle. No. 3 singles entry Kayla Corirossi won her first-ever singles match on the varsity level by taking a 7-6, 6-1 match.

No. 1 doubles unit Madi Jurcenko and Jelly Emmanouil won a 6-0, 6-2 match, and No. 2 doubles team Colleen Landers and Mallory Dugan followed suit, 6-1, 6-1. To cap, No. 4 doubles team Jessica Poust and Emily Grams won 7-5, 6-2.

Kaneland’s time in Rochelle at the Creason Athletic Complex had an output of 24 team points for the win after topping four of five divisons. Sterling Newman was second with 15, Freeport was third with 14, and DeKalb and Rochelle brought up the rear at 11 each.

Against Yorkville, the Lady Knights saw wins from Schrepferman (6-1, 6-2) at No. 1 singles, and a dominating doubles three-set sweep: Jurcenko/Emmanouil (6-0, 6-0), Landers/Mallory (6-0, 6-0), and Dugan/Wendling (6-0, 6-1).

“This is the perfect season to prove the point that you have to be ready for every match,” head coach Tim Larsen said. “We had a slip-up on that day against Sycamore and they gave us no opportunity to catch up.

“While we won’t finish the regular season in first place, we do have the conference tournament coming up,” he said. “We intend to keep that conference tournament championship trophy right where it is in the KHS hallway.”

On Thursday, Oct. 2, the Lady Knights take on Southwest Prairie Conference opponent Plainfield Central at the Wildcats’ home.

Knights golf measuring shots

KANELAND—With next week’s postseason gauntlet approaching, it was time for Kaneland golf to get some final regular season swings in against some eager competition.

On Sept. 24, the Knights traveled to Pine Hills Golf Club and vanquished crossover opponent Ottawa 159-171. On Sept. 25, KHS travelled to Arrowhead Golf Club in Wheaton, Ill., and fell to Wheaton-Warrenville South 145-169.

On Saturday, Kaneland traveled to the Oak Club of Genoa for the usual late September Fran Noyes Invite, and took third in the Genoa-Kingston-hosted battle.

Kaneland sits at 9-4 in dual competition.

Using a modified Stableford scoring system where the highest points win in Genoa, Kaneland’s 110 was behind only Huntley’s 128 and Lake Forest Academy’s 121. Hampshire (107) and Richmond-Burton (104) rounded out the top five. Jesse Denton led the Knights with 29 points, while Brett Glennon had 28 and Jake Hed had 26.

Against the Tigers in Wheaton, Denton led the team with a 40, followed by Jeff VanGemert’s 42 and Glennon’s 43. Also competing for the Knights were Hed (44), Jeremy Faletto (45), Jacob Sheehan (47), Jakob Sanders (48) and Zach Strayve (55). In the Sept. 24 win against Ottawa, Denton again led the team, this time with a 35. Hed’s 40, Sanders’ 41 and VanGemert’s 43 paced the Knights.

Wednesday had Kaneland’s scheduled trek to Ottawa for the Northern Illinois Big XII meet, followed by Tuesday’s IHSA Class 2A Regional setting in Mendota at the Mendota Golf Club. The girls golf unit’s postseason journey was slated for Sycamore Golf Club on Wednesday, Oct. 8.

Oct. 2 update: Kaneland’s boys golf team finished as conference runners-up Wednesday, with Jake Hed and Jesse Denton earning individual honors.

_KHS Soccer v. Sterling -1-4

Pirating a victory

Photo: Junior Felipe Speraggi, in action against Sterling last week, had two goals against Ottawa Tuesday. Photo by Laura Gampfer

Offensive output comes in crossover win
OTTAWA, Ill.—Tuesday’s Northern Illinois Big XII conference crossover setting was a little bit off-kilter.

For starters, the match between Kaneland and host Ottawa was not at the usual football field setting, but off on a side field.

Additionally, the Knights finally broke open a dam of awaiting goals in a healthy 4-1 win over the Pirates.

Complimenting the week were a scoreless tie against host Hinckley-Big Rock on Saturday and a 2-1 loss to invading Sterling last Thursday.

KHS sits at 5-6-2, with a 2-2-1 mark in NIB-12 play. Postseason seeds are slated to be released on Thursday, with pairings on Friday.

Against the Pirates, Felipe Speraggi’s shot a minute into play was stopped, and Drew Franklin’s shot was stopped as well. A shot past keeper Andrew Mathys found its way to the net, sending KHS into a 0-1 hole, 10:03 into the match.

The goals began to come with Speraggi making good on a shot opportunity just a short time after getting stopped, tying the score at 1-1 with 20:21 left in the first.

Kaneland’s share of opportunities, coupled with execution, finally paid off with Speraggi’s second goal coming with 24:37 left in the game for a 2-1 lead.

To put it away, Knight Trevor Jahns connected on a breakaway goal with 15:49 left for a 3-1 lead, with Jahns scoring again just minutes later.

“I just told them the first goal was a mistake and we had to battle back,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said. “We’ve got so many shots on goal, and the law of averages says we’ll score. They’re trying really, really hard. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.”

Jahns was also relieved to find the scoring column and help his fellow roster mates.

“I just kind of followed through on what we were supposed to do. We executed everything we needed to,” Jahns said.

Preceding the scoreless tie against the Royals, the contest against Sterling featured all the scoring in the first half. Kaneland’s lone goal came with 10:17 left in the first half from Angel Escontrias off an Ivan Bohorquez feed.

Kaneland suits up against host Sycamore on Tuesday, Oct. 7.

Positive movement

KHS ends September on strong note
STERLING, Ill.—Patience is key when it comes to long distance running.

For a season that begins in mid-August, runners usually don’t start to see the fruits of their labor until the cooler October weather hits.

But the Lady Knights cross country team decided to begin their upward trajectory a week early, putting together their best team effort of the season Sept. 27 at Sterling High School’s Rock Rive Run Invitational.

KHS placed third in the 17-team meet with 122 points, just one ahead of Hononegah. Geneva, fresh off their win at last week’s Eddington Invitational at Kaneland, took the team championship with 37 points over Belvidere North’s 44. Belvidere North was the runner-up at the Eddington Invite.

Kaneland also placed third at the 2013 edition of the Rock River Run with 134 points.

The Lady Knights, currently ranked No. 16 in’s most recent poll, were paced by Brianna Bower’s 19 minute, 32.2 second effort, which was good enough for 14th place out of the 173 runners in the race. Freshman Andrea Wells (20th, 19:47.2) was next for Kaneland, followed by Aislinn Lodwig (23rd, 19:52), Victoria Clinton (27th, 20:05) and Jessica Kucera (39th, 20:50.5). Kaneland’s scoring pack split of 1:18.3 was far better than last week’s 2:30 split.

Head coach Doug Ecker was pleased with the overall improvement week-to-week by the girls squad.

“It was a nice race for Brianna Bower with only two weeks of running after missing seven weeks with a stress fracture,” Ecker said. “Another solid race from freshman Andrea Wells and senior Jessica Kucera.”

Also running for KHS in the varsity race were Sarah Daley (48th, 21:10.9), Carly Bartholomew (79th, 22:19.2), Olivia Galor (82nd, 22:28.4), Grace Drake (86th, 22:50.0), Lilah Klingensmith (99th, 23:23.2), Samantha Sommerville (114th, 24:05.4), Murphy Garcia (120th, 24:25) and Haley Penkala (150th, 26:26.2).

Kaneland travels to Freeport, Ill., on Saturday for the annual Pretzel Invitational, starting at 9:30 a.m. on the campus Highland Community College.

__KHS Football v. DeKalb -1-5

Down to the Barbed Wire

Photo: Senior Zack Thielk manhandles a DeKalb player during Kaneland’s 37-34 loss against the Barbs. Photo by Laura Gampfer

Late comeback try falls short in first-ever conference loss to DeKalb
KANELAND—It seems like 2014 has the Northern Illinois Big XII Conference upside down.

DeKalb and Yorkville are atop the current landscape, with Kaneland, Sycamore and Morris looking up.

The Knights, after a valiant fourth-quarter comeback and a penchant for matching visiting DeKalb’s big plays, had the ball and a chance to at least tie the game with 42 seconds to go, but a Barb interception on the drive’s second play ended the threat and set the final in DeKalb’s favor, 37-34 on Friday.

“That’s what we preach to these guys,” KHS coach Tom Fedderly said. “We’ve got to come here and have a chance at the end if we don’t make a lot of mistakes. That’s something we really worked on all week. We really had a good week of practice.”

Kaneland falls to 2-3, with an 0-2 mark in the Northern Illinois Big XII. It marked the first losing streak in conference play since the NIB-12’s 2010 kickoff. The Knights have not had a 2-3 mark in regular season play since the 2007 campaign, after wins over Burlington Central and Batavia, with losses against Marmion Academy, Rochelle and Sycamore.

DeKalb is 5-0 and has already matched its 2013 win total, with meetings against Morris, Rochelle, undefeated Yorkville and undefeated Geneseo still to come.

“These guys have been playing for a while. This is their year, and they have a lot of really good seniors and they’ve got a pretty good sophomore quarterback,” Fedderly said.

Kaneland QB Jake Marczuk was 23-for-36 for 420 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions. Wideout Connor Fedderly had 294 yards receiving and two touchdown catches, including a 61-yard bomb that brought the game to its final margin. Tyler Paulson had four catches for 69 yards.

DeKalb’s Rudy Lopez picked off a tipped pass to end the first drive of the game, and the Barbs converted with a 63-yard scoring scamper by Eriq Torrey. Danny Hammermeister blocked the PAT to make it 6-0 with 8:44 left in the first frame.

Knight Drew Franklin kept the hosts in it with a 25-yard field goal with 5:06 remaining in the first, and Brandon Kigyos’ fumble recovery paved the way for a 29-yard field goal with five seconds remaining in the frame for a tie score.

In the second quarter, DeKalb’s 29-yard field goal with 10:13 to go gave the Barbs a 9-6 lead. Sophomore QB Derek Kyler’s one-yard sneak with 6:51 to go in the half made it 16-6, but Marczuk found Fedderly in the corner of the end zone from the 10 to make it 16-13 with 5:20 to go. Fedderly’s 37-yard catch earlier in the drive had set up the possession’s good tidings.

DeKalb would answer on a 25-yard touchdown pass to Lopez with 2:53 to go, making it 22-13 to close down the first half scoring.

A 15-yard touchdown, followed by a two-point conversion by University of Illinois recruit Dre Brown with 9:24 to go in the third, made it a daunting 30-13 margin. Kaneland’s offense would march 65 yards down the field and punch through on an Isaac Swithers four-yard touchdown run to make it 30-20 with 6:38 to play in the third.

The Barbs’ Brown seemingly put the game away with a 15-yard touchdown run and dive into the end zone just four seconds into the fourth to make it 37-20, but Marczuk’s 16-yard touchdown run with 10:09 to go brought the margin to 37-27.

Fedderly’s catch-and-run with 4:00 to go closed it to three, and DeKalb was forced to punt after four straight penalties made it 2nd and 47 from its own 16-yard line. After a downed punt, Kaneland set up shop with 42 ticks left from their own 27. An attempt to Fedderly was incomplete, and with 31 seconds left, Barb Thomas Lowie snatched the pass after a bobble to ice the contest.

Kaneland’s next challenge is the host Sycamore Spartans on Friday, Oct. 3. Sycamore is 3-2 after a 42-0 shellacking of host Ottawa on Friday.

Local athlete on Central College football team

PELLA, IOWA—Kaneland graduate and wide receiver Zack Martinelli is a member of the Central College football team.

Central has captured a record 30 Iowa Conference championships with 20 NCAA Division III playoff berths, including 17 in the past 27 years. The Dutch have not had a losing season since 1960. Central is 2-1 heading into Iowa Conference play. Coach Jeff McMartin has an 81-28 (.743) record, and is in his 11th season for Central.

Oct. 2 Sports Recap

Sophomore Football
Sept. 26 @ DeKalb—The Knights defeated the Barbs 25-6. No individual stats were provided.

Boys JV Cross Country
Sept. 27 @ Aurora Central Catholic—The boys freshman/sophomore team placed sixth at the Charger Classic in Aurora. Kaneland also had runners compete in the open race, but no team score was kept. Fr/So results: 8: A. Kantola, 16:55; 23: A. Messina, 17:32.4; 28: S. Webster, 17:48.4; 33: H. Nosek, 18:05.6; 58: C. Girolamo, 18:53.7; 69: D. Wojak, 19:14.7; 77: K. Wells, 19:31.7. Open results: 63: P. Heiser, 19:20.7; 97: G. Wilk, 20:11.6; 127: J. O’Sullivan, 21:20.1; 139: Josh Kasap, 22:21.6; 140: G. Gingrich, 22:21.6; 155: J. Wolfe, 23:14.3; 159: K. Osborne, 23:29.1; 180: I. Piazza, 26:42.9; 185: C. Rutter, 29:07.5.

Girls Fr/So Cross Country
Sept. 27 @ Sterling—With only four runners, the Lady Knights didn’t factor into the scoring at Saturday’s Rock River Run in Sterling, Ill. Results: 6: G. Dodis, 21:20.7; 26; K. Huber, 23:14.9; 61: M. Dries, 26:42.6; M. Burger, 28:38.

Boys Freshman Soccer
Sept. 24 vs. Burlington Central—The Rockets shut out the Knights 4-0. Michael Minogue had five saves.

Boys Sophomore Soccer
Sept. 20 vs. Mendota—Kaneland won 3-2 over Mendota. Peter Castillo had two goals, and Brian Kemp had one. Assists came from Jon Turyna, Diego Ruiz and Brian Bartholomew.
Sept. 20 vs. Genoa-Kingston—The Knights won in overtime on penalty kicks. The score was tied 1-1. Jose Chavez scored on a Christian Medrano assist. KHS converted all five penalty kicks.
Sept. 23 vs. Yorkville—Kaneland defeated the Foxes 1-0 on a Chavez goal (Ruiz assist).
Sept. 25 vs. Sterling—The Knights and Warriors tied at 2. Brandon Luebke (Ruiz assist) and Bartholomew (John McCaffrey assist) had the Kaneland goals.
Sept. 30 vs. Ottawa—The Knights defeated Ottawa 4-0. Ruiz (Medrano assist) and Bartholomew (McCaffrey assist) each had a goal, while Medrano (one unassisted and a Chavez assist) scored twice. The Knights are 6-1-2, 4-0-1 in conference play.

Girls JV Tennis
Sept. 25 vs. Ottawa—The Lady Pirates defeated KHS 4-1. The No. 1 doubles tandem of Lauren Karolewicz and Marley Schultz was the lone Kaneland winner, defeating their Ottawa oppenents 10-5.

Freshman Volleyball
Sept. 25 vs. Aurora Christian—Kaneland defeated Aurora Christian 25-12, 25-19. No individual stats were provided.
Sept. 30 vs. Yorkville—The KHS freshman A team defeated Yorkville 25-12, 25-19 to move to 4-0 in conference play. The freshman B team lost 25-23, 25-16 to fall to 0-4 in conference play.

Sophomore Volleyball
Sept. 25 vs. Aurora Christian—The Lady Knights defeated Aurora Christian 25-12, 25-12. No individual stats were provided.
Sept. 30 vs. Yorkville—Yorkville narrowly defeated the Lady Knights 25-16, 18-25, 25-23. Kaneland is now 2-2 in conference play.

WCC Womens Soccer
Sept. 24 @ Oakton CC—Waubonsee defeated Oakton Community College in Des Plaines, Ill., 2-1 in overtime. Andrea Garcia and Haley Kilbride had the WCC goals, while Kelli Cardine and Elizabeth Goll had the assists. Lisa Gaffino had four saves. WCC had 35 shots on goal, and is 7-2 on the season.

WCC Mens Soccer
Sept. 23 @ McHenry—Waubonsee tied McHenry 1-1. Akim Suraji had a goal from a Ramon Eurioles assist in the second half.
Sept. 28 @ Augustana—WCC earned a win over Augustana 3-2 in Rock Island, Ill. David Renoso (Juan Ponce assist) and David Sanchez both scored in the first half for WCC, while Suraji (Alex Del Toro assist) put in the game-winner in the second half. WCC’s men’s soccer is now 5-3-1 on the season.

Boys Fr/So Golf
Sept. 25 @ WWS—Wheaton-Warrenville South defeated the Knights 162-186. Dan Franck led KHS with a 45, and was followed closely by Joey Brandonisio’s 46. Jake Hummel (47), Jacob Milton (48), Michael Petrick (53) Brock Williams (53), Jake Romas (54) and Rhett Espe (55) also competed for the Knights.

Kaneland Youth
Football League
Sept. 27, 2014

Yorkville Black 6
@ Kaneland White 33
Burlington White 12
@ Kaneland Black 6 (OT)
DeKalb Orange 25
@ Kaneland Silver 0
DeKalb Black 0
@ Kaneland Orange 20

Burlington Blue 12
@ Kaneland Black 6
DeKalb Black 14
@ Kaneland White 13

Burlington Blue 22
@ Kaneland Black 8
DeKalb Black 50
@ Kaneland White 32

Burlington Blue 6
@ Kaneland Black 35
Yorkville White 7
@ Kaneland White 42

Don’t see your results in the Elburn Herald?
Have your coach email them to or fax to (630) 365-2251.

Volleyball handles Aurora Christian, succumbs to hot Yorkville squad

KANELAND—Rare is the team that can rattle off an undefeated conference season, even with a campaign as steady as the Kaneland Lady Knights in 2014.

A 25-8, 25-22 sweep of visiting Aurora Christian last Thursday was a nice taste of victory, but a hard-charging, one-loss Yorkville squad beat the host school on Tuesday in a 25-15, 25-23 matchup.

Kaneland is still 14-7, with a 3-1 mark in Northern Illinois Big XII action. The loss against Yorkville was Kaneland’s first since Sept. 13 to LaSalle-Peru at the Pontiac Invite, breaking a six-match win streak.

Against the Eagles, cornerstone Ellie Dunn had nine kills, four service points and four digs. Riley Hannula had seven kills and three service points, while Hannah Nauert had 13 service points and 14 assists.

Against Yorkville, Dunn had eight kills and six digs, while Hannula had six kills and a block. Nauert had six assists, six digs and three kills, Anna Senese had eight service points, and Holly Fedderly had 10 assists and two digs in the loss.

Kaneland finds itself with a crossover challenge in the form of Sterling, Ill., on Thursday, Oct. 2.

‘The Knights Way’

by Peter Goff, Kaneland Athletic Director
Greetings Kaneland Knight fans. This is your KHS Athletic Director Peter Goff dropping you a line for the Sports Wrap. A theme that we are trying to promote here at the high school is “The Knights Way.”

What does that mean to our students and community members? In old times, Knights went the extra mile to protect others and uphold virtue and honor. In more modern times, this translates to wanting both students and teachers to have a great attitude in the classroom and in extra-curricular activities. The Knights way today is to go the extra mile to help someone who is not as fortunate as you.

When Kaneland teams and fans leave a venue, we hope that people from that town say to themselves, “What a bunch of nice students and fans!” Too often, that thinking has been lost in this day and age, but we want to make sure we put sportsmanship first here!

The Knights Way is not new, but it is something we want to work to highlight. This week, I received a phone call from one of the athletic directors in our conference praising one of our students. This student sent a letter to the AD saying that the concession stand had given too much change back. Instead of saying, “Sweet! I just made some extra money that I can spend on something else for myself!” this Kaneland student sent a letter with the extra money back to that school.

The athletic director said to me, “In this day and age you don’t often find good citizenship and that he really appreciated our student’s honesty and integrity!”

As a school, we are looking for those teachers and students who will do that little extra something that will make our community a better place. Now that’s the Knights Way!

Thank you and we will see you again next month.

Kane County Jrs tryouts begin Oct. 5

ELBURN—Tryouts for the upcoming Kane County Jrs volleyball club will take place starting Sunday, Oct. 5, though Sunday, Nov. 9. Tryouts include a non-refundable $25 tryout fee. All tryouts take place at the M.A. Center, 41W501 Keslinger Road, Elburn. Be sure to attend the first available tryout in your age group. All participants must show proof of USA Volleyball membership. To obtain a membership, visit

Elementary/Middle School:
• Sunday, Oct. 5
14U: 8 to 10 a.m.
13U: 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
12U: 1 to 2:30 p.m.
• Friday, Oct. 10
13U: 6 to 8 p.m.
12U: 6 to 8 p.m.
• Sunday, Oct. 12
14U: 8 to 10 a.m.

High School:
• Sunday, Oct. 26
15U: 8 to 10 a.m.
16U: 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
• Wednesday, Oct. 29
16U, 17U, 18U: 6 to 7:45 p.m.
15U: 8 p.m.
• Sunday, Nov. 2
All HS ages: 8 to 10 a.m.
• Friday, Nov. 7
All HS ages: 6 to 8 p.m.
• Sunday, Nov. 9
All HS ages: 10 a.m.

For more details on signups, visit


Siebert named CCIW Defensive Player of the Week

Photo submitted by Dave Wrath of Augustana Athletics to

ROCK ISLAND, Ill.—Augustana junior libero and Kaneland graduate Kylie Siebert was recently selected as the “Defensive Player of the Week” in the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin in volleyball. Siebert is the first Viking this season to win the honor.

The Sugar Grove native had a tremendous week for first-year head coach Kelly Bethke’s Vikings, and it started with a great effort in Augustana’s opening match in the CCIW. The Vikings came from behind to defeat Illinois Wesleyan 3-2 (25-23; 22-25; 23-25; 25-20; 15-9) at the Carver Center on Sept. 24. In that match, Siebert had a game-high 41 digs and added two assists and one service ace.

Over the weekend, Augustana went 2-2 in the University of Chicago’s Gargoyle Classic, and Siebert piled up a total of 48 digs, 16 setting assists and six service aces. The Vikings beat Concordia-Chicago 3-0 (27-25; 25-14; 25-12) and lost to the University of Chicago 0-3 (15-25; 17-25; 21-25) on Friday, Sept. 26. The next day, Augustana beat Kalamazoo 3-1 (25-12; 25-14; 21-25; 25-15) before falling to Cornell 1-3 (21-25; 26-24; 21-25; 24-26).

For the week, Siebert totaled 89 digs (4.94 per game), seven service aces and 18 setting assists. She has been a force all season from her libero position, and she leads the team with 287 digs in 53 games for a 5.42 average. She also has 16 service aces.


Boys XC tries to master rising temps, pressure in Oakhurst setting

Photo: Ben Smith, Austin Kintz and Alex Gale get going at the beginning of Saturday’s varsity race at the Aurora Central Catholic Charger Classic. Kaneland placed 10th as a team. Photo by Tiffany Kufer

ACC’s Invitational another part of lead-up to postseason
AURORA—Temperatures were more akin to a larger boys cross country meet below the Mason-Dixon line than autumn in Aurora.

But as the stakes are raised for Kaneland High School boys cross country on weekends, it’ll have to dig deep and face all kinds of environments and competition, much like Saturday’s ACC Charger Classic Invitational out at Oakhurst Forest Preserve in Aurora.

Out of 11 teams in the meet’s Gold division, Kaneland’s score of 222 was good for ninth overall. DeKalb (236) and Marmion Academy (262) were behind the Knights in the stacked field. Linn-Marr High School, of Marion, Iowa, used three pivotal top 10 finishes to grab a 46-point total and a first-place finish. Oswego East’s 58 was second and East Aurora’s 63 was good for third.

Kaneland’s Austin Kintz was the top Knight finisher with a time of 16:16.2, while Daniel Murphy of Linn-Marr was tops in the entire field at 14:59.9.

Knight Mitch Reger was next for the local troops in 33rd at 16:35.3.

Reger knows bigger challenges are ahead for the Knights, but was psyched for his fellow team members and their ability to improve.

“It’s almost essential as practice,” Reger said. “If you don’t think that you can do it, you won’t do it. You have to believe.”

Willi Kuipers finished 44th at 16:52.4, and teammate James Walker took 52nd at 17:03.2. Zach Kurz was 71st overall at 18:14.3 out of a group of 85 varsity runners.

“We’ve seen a lot of good people in a variety of races today,” KHS coach Chad Clarey said. “What’s most important is to take what we have right now and continue to see the improvement. We had a lot of kids manage personal records on this course. Despite the warm weather, I think that bodes well.”

Ahead for the boys is the Pretzel Invitational hosted by Freeport High School of the NIC-10, on Saturday, Oct. 4.


Can’t avoid the rush

Photo: Senior Isaac Swithers was back in action Friday night, scoring two touchdowns and rushing for 44 yards. Photo by Ben Draper

Yorkville’s Kurtz rushes for 303 yards, 4 TDs, hands KHS 41-25 loss
YORKVILLE—Local observers of football have eyed a Yorkville football program on the rise.
On Friday, at Campbell Field, the Kaneland Knights were set up for a fall.

Behind 303 yards and four touchdowns for Foxes running back Mike Kurtz, the Knights’ three-quarter-long comeback—and a lead lasting all of 12 seconds—was negated by a furious rally in a 41-25 defeat.

Kaneland falls to 2-2, and 0-1 in the Northern Illinois Big XII. Yorkville improved to 4-0, and 1-0 in the NIB-12.

The victory for Yorkville marks the first win over Kaneland’s program since Oct. 5, 2002, in what was a 34-13 decision at Yorkville’s homecoming. Kaneland’s win streak over Yorkville, over head coaches Jim Still and Karl Hoinkes, stopped at 11 encounters.

KHS has now lost two games in a row for the first time since dropping games to Batavia and Glenbard South in the 2008 season, a campaign that saw the Knights go 5-4 in regular season play. In Kaneland’s last nine combined regular season and playoff games dating back to last year, KHS is now 5-4.

“A credit to them, (Yorkville executed). We’ll look back on this and we’ll try to look at the positives,” KHS coach Tom Fedderly said.

Kaneland actually outgained the Foxes 371-368, with Yorkville failing to complete a pass in six attempts.

Knights QB Jake Marczuk was 20-for-36 for 252 yards, with one touchdown and three interceptions, eventually resulting in three Yorkville touchdown drives. Marczuk was also the leading rusher for KHS with 68 yards, and a returning Isaac Swithers had 44 yards on the ground and two TDs.

On the pass-catching front, Tanner Robertsen caught six balls and Connor Fedderly caught seven, both for 83 yards.

“(Tanner) had a good game, he was a positive; Swizz (Isaac Swithers) was one and Connor was, too. We made some plays. We have playmakers; we just have to take a look at our mistakes,” Fedderly said.

A Brody Sharp interception concluded Kaneland’s first offensive possession, while Kurtz made them pay with a seven-yard touchdown run for a 7-0 lead with 8:06 to go in the first. Kaneland answered with an 11-play, 60-yard drive that concluded with a 25-yard field goal from Drew Franklin for a 7-3 score with 3:18 to go in the first.

Yorkville would next strike in the second quarter on QB Nathan Scott’s bootleg from the one 54 seconds into the frame for a 14-3 lead. Kaneland’s Franklin would bring the visitors closer with his boot from 23 yards out to make it 14-6 with 6:47 to go.

Another long drive for Kaneland that began on Isaiah Berenklau’s pick ended in a one-yard TD run for Swithers with 1:04 to play in the half to make it 14-13.

In the third quarter, after a nine-yard run by Tyler Paulson, Swithers busted through to the end zone with 5:52 to go to give the Knights their first lead at 19-14. Kurtz would scamper for a 65-yard touchdown run to give Yorkville the lead for good at 21-19.

Sharp would pick off another Kaneland pass, which would lead to a fourth-down bootleg by Scott for an 11-yard touchdown run with 3:31 to play the frame for a 28-19 lead. After a Knight punt, Yorkville’s Kurtz would convert on yet another 65-yard TD run for a 35-19 lead with 1:23 to go in the quarter.

Fourth-quarter scoring consisted of Kurtz’ 20-yard run with 9:06 to go, and a 33-yard bomb from Marczuk to Robertsen with 6:51 to go for the final 16-point margin.

Kaneland now plays visiting DeKalb, which comes in at 4-0 and is the top team on the IHSA Playoff Outlook for Class 6A. Kickoff is slated for Friday, Sept. 26, at 7:15 p.m.

Photos by Ben Draper


Kaneland soccer splits Yorkville, DeKalb in conference rush

Photo: Senior Ivan Bohorquez tries to keep the ball against two Yorkville players Tuesday. Photo by Tiffany Kufer

KANELAND—Kaneland soccer knows it will have difficulties here and there, but would rather not have them against programs it has traditionally handled.

As it stood, the Yorkville Foxes earned its first win on the grounds of Kaneland this past Tuesday in a 3-0 whitewash.

Additionally, the troops traveled to Dresser Road and handed the host DeKalb Barbs a 2-0 defeat back on Sept. 17.

Knight boys soccer is 4-5-1, and 2-2-1 Northern Illinois Big XII.

Against Yorkville’s onslaught, the Knights were subject to two first-half goals, sending the hosts in an early hole.

With 19:31 to go in regulation, Yorkville scored its clincher goal on a point-blank rebound off keeper Andrew Mathys. A free kick try by Kaneland’s Jack Wolf couldn’t find the net for the last best chance on the KHS front. Mathys made another key save with roughly 12 minutes left, as well.

KHS coach Scott Parillo hoped it was just an outlier.

“It was a good old-fashioned butt-whipping,” Parillo said. “We just didn’t come to play. Our minds must be somewhere else. You just hope it doesn’t happen on gameday, and it did. The only thing you take away from this is that it doesn’t happen again. If we do, we’re going to struggle. It’s unfortunate.”

Against DeKalb, Kaneland’s go-ahead goal came with 7:43 remaining in the first half of play, thanks to a Cameron Pieczynski unassisted effort. Drew Franklin took a successful opportunity with 10:35 remaining to give the KHS crew a 2-0 lead to stay.

Kaneland hosts Sterling on Thursday, Sept. 25.

The biggest rival is …

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Three weeks ago, we set out to find out who was Kaneland High School’s biggest sports rival. We talked with current coaches, former coaches, players and administrators. We also had a survey on our website asking you who is the biggest rival of the Kaneland Knights. In our survey, we asked for basic demographics: male/female and age. But also about your connections with KHS: were you a graduate?; if you were a graduate, were you an athlete at KHS?

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of current or former Kaneland athletes viewed Sycamore
as Kaneland’s biggest historical rival,
compared to only 50 percent of non-athletes

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Kaneland’s Biggest Rival

Based on the survey results, we can say with confidence that Kaneland’s biggest sports rival, both current and historical, is Sycamore High School.

Sycamore earned a whopping 81 percent of the vote for question “In 2014, who is Kaneland’s biggest rival?”
When we asked about historical rivalries, Sycamore still prevailed with 60 percent of the vote. Batavia was second with 23 percent.

2014 Biggest Rivals
1. Sycamore
2. Yorkville
3. DeKalb/Morris (tie)
5. Burlington Central

Historical Biggest Rivals
1. Sycamore
2. Batavia
3. Geneva
4. Burlington Central/Morris (tie)[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/3″][vc_column_text]

Variations in demographics

While there was a pretty remarkable consensus for the contemporary rivals, historical rival opinions varied depending on if you were a Kaneland athlete or not. Athletes did view Burlington Central as more of a current rival than their non-athlete counterparts that favored Batavia and DeKalb.

71 percent of Kaneland athletes believed Sycamore was Kaneland’s biggest historical rival, compared to 50 percent of non-athletes. Non-athletes cited rivalries with Geneva and DeKalb as other options, while athletes voted for Batavia and Oswego for their historical rivals.

History was also divided when it came to males and females. 75 percent of males that took our survey pegged Sycamore as the top rival. Females made Sycamore their top choice, but only with 43 percent of the vote. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/3″][vc_column_text]

Location, location, location

Some of our internal office speculation that rivalries in old conferences would make an appearance was squashed when looking at the results. The proximity of rivals was a key component to them making the list. On average, it would only take about 20 minutes to get to the nine most-voted-for schools. The closest: Geneva at just under 12 miles. The farthest: Morris at 39 miles. Rochelle came in at just a touch under 33 miles.

None of the chief rivals were over an hour away, and six are less than a 25 minute drive.

Top 4 closest rivals
Geneva 11.7 miles
Batavia 13.3 miles
Burlington Central 13.7 miles
Sycamore: 14.5 miles[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″ css=”.vc_custom_1411698183444{background-color: #e2e2e2 !important;border-color: #dd3333 !important;}”][vc_column_text css_animation=”appear” css=”.vc_custom_1411698170420{background-color: #e2e2e2 !important;border-color: #dd3333 !important;}”]

What do you think?

Sound off in the comments below!



Boys XC tries to make own trail in Eddington crowd

Photo: The Knights boys varsity team accelerates out of the box during Saturday morning’s Eddington Invitational at KHS. Over 1,300 runners took to the course during the six contested races. Photo by Mary Paulson

KANELAND—It was a different setting, but the same Kaneland pride on display.

On Saturday, the Eddington Invitational was housed on the Kaneland High School grounds, switched from the classic Elburn Woods home, and was the largest athletic event held at KHS, with 1,300 athletes, according to head coach Chad Clarey.

“The meet itself was a huge success due in large part to the effort of many facets of Kaneland schools. From administration to maintenance, coaches to athletes and their families and KHS boosters, this would not have been possible,” Clarey said.

The Knight pack itself finished in 14th place out of 19 teams, but all members ran personal bests during the 65-degree conditions.

KHS, with a 334 point total, was 18 ahead of next-closest school Sycamore, but behind Johnsburg by 30.

Comprising the top five were Glenbard West (70), Crystal Lake Central (114), East Aurora (115) Benet Academy (120) and Grayslake Central (171). Kaneland’s average time was a 17:19.6 effort, compared to the Hilltoppers’ 16:03.8.

West Aurora’s Connor McCue outran the entire field with a time of 15:27.1, 6.5 seconds better than Belvidere North’s Eryk Yunk.

The Knight effort was led by 48th-place senior Brandon Park, who ran a 16:52.6, followed soon after by classmate Mitch Reger at 17:04.1, good for 60th. Knight Sean Spaetzel, at 17:05.9, finished 62nd overall. Will Kuipers ran 17:47.7 for 84th place, and fellow Knight James Walker took 85 at 17:47.9. Aaron French (94th, 18:04.6) and Zach Kurz (117th, 19:01.7) rounded out the varsity group.

“We feel that this meet’s quality for talent is among the best in Illinois on this particular weekend,” Clarey said. “(I’m) very pleased with the strong races from our varsity, who all set personal bests on the well-groomed course.”

Saturday, Sept. 27, sees the Aurora Central Catholic Invitational as the next Knight challenge.

Photos by Mary Paulson


Girls XC produces eight-best in top-flight Eddington field

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Photo: Junior Carly Bartholomew placed 72nd at the Eddington Invitational Saturday. Over 1,300 athletes competed at the Kaneland High School campus—one of the largest athletic events ever held there. Photo by Mary Paulson

KANELAND—Kaneland’s Eddington Invitational, held on Saturday, is always a highlight once late September rolls around.

However, its fixed place on the girls cross country schedule can also highlight a team’s strengths and areas it needs to build up before the high-intensity postseason.

Before the quest to Peoria gets rolling, 17 local teams got to gather a head of steam at Kaneland’s Eddington—the 2014 version of which was conducted on the Kaneland High School grounds.

Geneva’s 40-point total, including four of the top 12 finishers, was better than runner-up Belvidere North by 43 points. Crystal Lake Central (115), Benet Academy (116) and Marengo (125) took over the top five spots. Kaneland’s 206, including three of the top 35, was good for eighth, six points ahead of Grayslake Central.

Also finishing ahead of KHS were Glenbard East at 167 and Rosary at 189.

Belvidere North’s Jenna Lutzow’s 18:04.1 effort was a full six ticks better than Marengo entry Kitty Allen on Saturday, while Lady Knight senior Victoria Clinton was the premiere finisher on her roster with a 19:29.5, an 18th-place finish.

Steadily rising Aislinn Lodwig shored up the Kaneland total with a 30th-place finish, thanks to a 19:55.5, and junior teammate Brianna Bower took 35th overall at 20:01.9.

KHS representative Jessica Kucera managed a 53rd-place finish at 20:49.2, while fellow Lady Knight Carly Bartholomew made a case for a postseason spot with a 21:59.9, for 70th place. Additionally, senior Grace Drake hit the 77th spot at 22:45.2 and Murphy Garcia was 108th in 24:26.7.

Next up for the Lady Knights is the usual Rock River Run stop in Sterling, Ill., on Saturday, Sept. 27. In 2013, Brianna Bower finished an exceptional eighth with a time of 18:58.[/vc_column_text][vc_text_separator title=”Photos by Mary Paulson” title_align=”separator_align_center” color=”grey”][vc_column_text][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]