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Stuck by Barbs

Photo: Freshman Kiandra Powell (above) battles with a DeKalb player during Kaneland’s 1-0 loss Tuesday. Photo by Kimberly Anderson

Season opener sees Lady Knights stifled in Maple Park
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—After all the cancellations and scheduling switches, the Lady Knights’ soccer roster was ready for action.

It’s too bad it was in tundra-like conditions and against a capable rival in DeKalb High School.

A goal by the Lady Barbs with 35:44 remaining in the Tuesday afternoon tilt held up despite a handful of chances, and Kaneland fell in the 2013 curtain-jerker.

Kaneland is now 0-1.

The goal by Lady Barb Morgan Beaty kept going despite goalkeeper Jordan Ginther’s deflection attempt.

Kaneland controlled the ball for most of the second half, but the closest tries by Heather Ortiz and Kiandra Powell were stopped near the opposite goal.

Courtney Diddell’s booming rocket with 15 minutes to go was handled on the opposite goalkeeper’s end, marking the last best chance of the match.

KHS experimented with lineup modifications throughout the game due to a banged-up roster that left it down to two subs, and Michelle Ortiz had to leave the game with an ankle injury.

However, KHS coach Scott Parillo saw a silver lining on the frigid afternoon.

“I’m pretty pleased,” Parillo said. “I wish we didn’t have that little mental block where we left that girl wide open. But we’re not going to make any excuses. They capitalized when they needed to, and unfortunately we didn’t. We’ll build on this.”

The Kaneland lineup has capitalized on a suitable mix of leadership with younger talent, and the experimental lineup yielded some good signs for Parillo.

“Nicole Koczka did a nice job at stopper, Gabby Cano did a nice job at forward, Heather Ortiz did well at mid. This was not a bad effort with our first time outside being (Monday),” Parillo said.

Kaneland heads to the West Aurora Blackhawk Invite beginning on Thursday, April 4.

Spring kind to Kaneland athletics in awards season

Photo: Delani Vest capped a stellar senior season for Lady Knights softball by nabbing the NIB-12 MVP honor. File photo

KANELAND—A highly successful 2011-12 spring season was recognized with team awards dished out earlier this week, as well as honors from the end-of-year senior athletic banquet.

Awards were released on June 3.

Leading the charge was sectional semifinalist softball, which boasted the Northern Illinois Big XII MVP in pitcher Delani Vest. Joining the senior on the all-conference list was Paige Kuefler, Hayley Contorno, Allyson O’Herron and McKinzie Mangers, with teammate Lexi Roach an honorable mention.

Vest, Mangers, O’Herron and Sam Hansen were recognized as captains. O’Herron was named defensive player of the year, while Roach was named most improved player. Kuefler and Lanie Callaghan were named co-offensive players of the year, while Contorno and Kristen Gabrielson took home the Lady Knight award.

The senior athletic banquet awards recognized University of Wisconsin-Whitewater bound Sean Carter as Male Athlete of the Year, Kelly Evers as Female Athlete of the Year, Clayton Brundige as the Male Birkette award winner for dedication, and both Evers and Katy Dudzinski as the Female Birkette award for dedication recipient.

For boys track, Carter was named the Track MVP, while Nate Dyer took home the Field MVP honors. Brundige and Brandon Stahl were co-winners of the Drendel Award. Brundige, Carter, Miki Marin, Stahl, Nate Rehkopf, Kelvin Peterson and Mitch Dienst were recognized as captains. Dylan Nauert was named the winner of the Ron Probst award.

Finally, Kaneland’s boys track group of Luis Acosta, Brandon Bishop, Kyle Carter, Sean Carter, Dyer, Shane Jorgensen, Nate Kucera, Nauert, Tanner Andrews, Brandon Cottier, Marshall Farthing, Kory Harner, Conor Johnson, Dylan Pennington, Brundige and Marin were recognized as All NIB-12.

Meanwhile, the 11 State qualifiers were also lauded for their trip to Eastern Illinois University.

For Knights baseball, Tom Fox, Drew Peters, John Hopkins, Trevor Storck, Jake Razo and Tyler Heinle were named to the All NIB-12 team, with Bryan VanBogaert an honorable mention.

VanBogaert, Storck and Ray Barry took home the most improved player nods, and Trever Heinle was the recipient of the 41 Award in memory of Jeff Malewig. Fox was named the offensive MVP and Tyler Heinle was named defensive MVP, with Razo nabbed Mr. Kaneland Baseball for 2012.

The girls track season yielded quite the prestigious awards, with Amanda Lesak, Jessica Kucera, Maggie Brundige, Sydney Strang, Jen Howland, Lauren Zick and Kaltrina Ismaili being recognized as state qualifiers.

Christina Delach, Nicole Ketza, Elle Tattoni, Lesak, Gabby Aguirre, Strang, Zick, Ismaili and Howland also secured Northern Illinois Big XII honors.

Carolina Tovar and Ketza were recognized for their work as captains. Lesak took home the team’s most improved trophy.

The Track MVP honor was given to Strang, while the Field MVP honor went to Tattoni.

Kaneland soccer congratulated Jess Coia, Jordan Ginther, Delaney Stryczek and Katie Taylor for making All NIB-12, while Brittany Olson made the honorable mention list.

Melissa Bohorquez, Ginther, Taylor and Taylor White were recognized as captains, while Brooke Harner was named Most Improved Player for the Lady Knights.

Courtney Diddell and Madi Jurcenko capped impressive campaigns by garnering Rookie of the Year honors.

Taylor Opperman, Heather Ortiz and Stryczek were named winners of the Coach’s Award.

Michelle Ortiz and Olson were named winners of the Lady Knights Award, while the co-MVPs were revealed as Taylor and Ginther.

Regional heartbreak for soccer

Photo: Taylor Opperman moves the ball during the Class 2A regional semifinal loss at Burlington Central on May 16. Photo by John DiDonna

by Mike Slodki
BURLINGTON—Kaneland High School’s current senior crop is the only group in school history to only know regional final action.

After the Class 2A regional semifinal at Burlington Central on May 16, those Lady Knights won’t even know that feeling again.

A hard-luck match against Crystal Lake Central (9-7) ended in a 1-0 loss.

Burlington Central then defeated Crystal Lake Central on Saturday evening in three overtimes for the regional plaque.

Kaneland’s loss dropped the season record to 12-6-1 (7-2-1 NIB-12).

Goalkeeper Jordan Ginther made key stops throughout the game, but Crystal Lake Central’s offense was on the move most of the match. Coupled with Kaneland’s choppy offense, it made for tough going capped by Maddie Edwards’ goal with seven minutes, 45 seconds left. Edwards launched a shot that landed in the right corner of the goal.

“She nailed it,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said. “Most goalies don’t even attempt at nailing that thing. If you’re going to lose, lose on a shot like that.”

“We were just hoping we could get things going,” Parillo said. “We just didn’t seem to be able to get anything going today. That’s a bummer.”

The Lady Knights had given up just 14 goals in the 2012 campaign.

Kaneland finished the season 7-3 in its last 10 matches, and was hoping to get through CLC for a date with BC, which had vanquished them on May 12.

Kaneland had lost the regional championship to CLC in 2009.

The Lady Knights went to a regional title match in 2010 and 2011, only to drop to Rosary.

KHS says goodbye in 2012 to Taylor White, Katie Taylor, Melissa Bohorquez and Abby Bend due to graduation.

KHS soccer solves 3, puzzled by Sycamore

Photo: Brittany Olson tries to get the upper foot in a battle for the ball during Thursday’s 2-0 setback at the hands of Sycamore. Photo by Mike Slodki

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—Lady Knights soccer’s late-season homestretch is busy, to say the least.

It matters little how healthy you are heading into the regionals next week.

The Lady Knights continue to soldier on, defeating host Hinckley-Big Rock 5-0 on May 2, but succumbing to host Sycamore on Thursday in a 2-0 match.

The Lady Knights’ loss to conference rival Sycamore was their first since early April’s tournament at West Aurora.

Kaneland righted its soccer ship with a 7-0 rout of Morris on Monday after rainy conditions gave way to sunnier skies, and on Tuesday’s Senior Night, defeated Yorkville by the same 7-0 margin.

Kaneland’s record sits at 10-4-1 (5-2-1 NIB-12) on the year, so far, beating last year’s pace of 7-7-1 through 15 matches.

Facing the Lady Royals along Route 30, Kaneland was treated to goals from Brittany Olson just 61 seconds into the contest, followed by a Courtney Diddell goal 26 minutes later.

The second half saw goals from Diddell with 32:59 left, Madi Jurcenko with 27 minutes to go, and Heather Ortiz with 7:36 remaining.

Assists were gathered by Jurcenko, Jessica Coia and Didell.

Against Sycamore, the Lady Knights fell victim to a goal with 19:43 left in the first half when a shot went out of reach of an outstretched Jordan Ginther, and the Lady Spartans cinched it with a penalty kick with 21 minutes to go.

“On a streak that we’ve had, you think that every match is going to 5-0 or 6-0. It’s always good to get smacked upside the head a little bit and brought down to earth. Hopefully, this did that,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said.

The loss certainly seemed to do the trick for KHS, judging by the two ensuing matches.

Against Morris, Coia supplied a hat trick, while Jurcenko and Olson scored two goals each.

A five-goal first half propelled KHS to another handy win. Taylor White got things going with a goal four minutes in, followed by Coia and Olson finding the net. Olson supplied a hat trick, while White had two goals and an assist. Katie Taylor had a goal and two assists. Coia had a goal and assist, while Jurcenko supplied two assists.

Kaneland faces host Streator on Monday, May 14.

Kaneland soccer hopes to reach beyond Regional

Photo: Melissa Bohorquez attempts to beat her Maple Leaf opponent to the ball in the girls soccer opener Saturday. Photo by John DiDonna

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—For the past three seasons, Kaneland girls soccer has made it to heights previously unknown.

Now comes the challenge of kicking even higher.

The Lady Knights finished 12-9-3 in 2011 and fell in the regional title match for the third consecutive year, but that was with 96-goal scorer Emily Heimerdinger at her peak.

With Heimerdinger and other personnel like Sophie Blank no longer brandishing the Knight insignia, its up to a crop that mixes returnees and newbies that now know nothing but a winning attitude.

“We are young with nine underclassmen on the team,” eight-year coach Scott Parillo said. “But in the opener (against Geneseo), when we possessed the ball, we created a ton of chances, and that’s promising.”

Parillo’s captains all bring a load of experience, and 2012 brings the return of 2010 superstar goalkeeper Jordan Ginther, fresh from a tour with her Naperville club team.

“We’re excited, we really are; she’s phenomenal and a class act,” Parillo said. “She’s one of the best goalies I’ve ever seen.”

With the other captains, Parillo is eager to put them to work on the pitch.

“They’ve only been on winning teams here at Kaneland. Taylor White, Abby Bend and Katie Taylor are all three-year varsity players. They’ve been around Emily and Sophie and Amy (Fabrizius) from last year and other players before that. We hope that if we make it to the regional championship this year, we can bring home that plaque,” Parillo said.

Taylor at midfield, Ginther and goal and Bend at forward provide good security for Parillo.

“They are all helping out and taking charge. Captains have to be vocal and lead the team,” Parillo said.

On the defensive crew, returnees Brooke Harner and Amber Winquist-Bailey help protect Kaneland, along with fellow multi-year Lady Knight Anne Marie Giese.

New additions to the defense are Taylor Opperman, a freshman.

At midfield, the captain Taylor lends her skills along with sophomores Delaney Stryczek and Jess Coia, with all three tallying goals and assists a year ago.

Able to play midfield and forward is freshman Madi Jurcenko, who tallied the first assist of the 2012 campaign.

At forward is fellow freshman Courtney Diddell, who got the pass from Jurcenko on St. Patrick’s Day for the first goal of 2012.

“These new girls are extremely coachable and fun to watch. They hate to lose and (are) eager to learn,” Parillo said.

Also contributing to the effort at forward are last year’s goalkeeper Michelle Ortiz, her sister, Heather, and Melissa Bohroquez and Brittany Olson.

Kaneland High School Honor Roll

High Honor Roll
Freshman: Omar Aguilar, Megan Bartholet, Anissa Becker, Rabina Beepath, Jacob Brown, Bryan Bulger, Jason Carlquist, Victoria Clinton, Jaemee Cordero, Mallory Dugan, River Dunne, Jarod Erlandson, Gemma Esposito, Connor Fedderly, James Fell, Robert Foy, Murphy Garcia, Andrew Garland, Breanna Geller, Emily Grams, Brittany Grider, Daniel Hammermeister, Riley Hannula, Anna Hayman, Shannon Herra, Kylee Hill, Olivia Hutar, Brooke Jablonski, Madison Jurcenko, Allison Kadampelil, Stephanie Karolewicz, Madison Keith, Ryan Koeppen, Rachel Kowalski, Matthew Krajewski, Kendall Krawczyk, Colleen Landers, Ashley Larsen, Axel Larsen, Julia Lennon, Andrew Lesak, Steven Limbrunner, Kristin Lipinis, Aislinn Lodwig, Alexis Lund, Alejandra Martinez-Aviles, Alyssa McCannon, Nicole McClellan, Michelle McCracken, Brianna McElroy, Rachel Miller, Jonathan Mills, Marissa Mulligan, Alexia Orosco, Samantha Payton, Marisa Peters, Gina Pettenon, Sabrina Pilkington, Cody Pitstick, Regan Prost, Kassidy Reever, Mitchell Reger, Anna Senese, Morgan Sikon, Amber Spaetzel, Michael Stanley, Nicholas Steers, Caitlyn Strasser, Elle Tattoni, Hannah Theis, Kyra Trynoski, Allison Van Bogaert, Emma Wallace, Hannah Wallace, Taylor Washlow, Anna Wendling, Austin Wheatley, Morgan Withey, Sarah Wolfe

Sophomore: Theresa Alef, Mitchell Bateman, Alexander Beck, Steven Becker, Brandon Bishop, Lauren Black, Morgan Buerke, Molly Campbell, Erika Carlson, Melissa Cherry, Hayley Contorno, Riley Coyle, Christine Crews, Andrew David, Kyle DiSandro, Megan Franklin, Spencer Good, Kyla Goodine, Kelsy Goodwin, Tatiana Guerrero, Kayla Hedgren, Caroline Heimerdinger, Madeline Heinzer, Mara Hernandez Gonzalez, Madison Hester, Tyler Hill, Tyler Holan, Michael Howard, Casey Jacobson, Shane Jorgensen, Koehring, Gary Koehring, Nathaniel Kucera, Emily Laudont, Eun Woo Lim, Jennifer Lubic, Kaley Martens, Rachel Mathys, Meredith McCaffrey, Carissa Miller, Abigail Needham, Brittany Olson, Julie Panasik, Mary Piazza, Eileen Ruppel, Alexandria Russell, Katelyn Schmidt, Tyler Slamans, Rachel Steinmiller, Nicholas Stollard, Elizabeth Strang, Delaney Stryczek, Jordan Thelander, Curtis Thorson, Thomas Van Bogaert, Christian VanDinther, Sophie Wallace, Brin Wilk, Azalia Wilkerson, Michael Williams, Amber Winquist-Bailey, Zachary Winthers, Ethan Witt, Lucas Wolski, Lauren Zick, Nathan Zitko

Junior: Gabriella Aguirre, Lauren Banbury, Kami Bauer, Erica Brettman, Myles Chick, Rachael Clinton, Joshua Cohrs, Vanessa Cook, Kelsey Cotton, Robert Debolt, Abigail Dodis, Austin Doyle, Katelyn Dray, Brendan Dunphy, Zachary Eckhardt, Caroline Eichelberger, Christopher Farrell, Sean Flamand, Dominique Galloway, Sarah Grams, Keriann Groen, Nicole Grossman, Emily Gulanczyk, Nicole Hanlon, Alyson Harner, Brooke Harner, David Hernandez, Jenice Heyob, Conor Johnson, Erin Kettelkamp, Alec Koczka, Jessica Kolzow, Alexander Kovach, Taylor Krawczyk, Joseph Kuipers, Brittany Larsen, Cara Lenhardt, Matthew Limbrunner, Benjamin Longson, Stephanie Maras, Jay Markuson, Madeline McMullen, Daniel Miller, Alyssa Nolte, Allyson O’Herron, Beau Ott, Nicholas Philips, Joseph Pollastrini, Ashley Prost, Maxim Reger, Lauren Rusnok, Michael Saucedo, Jessica Smith, Nathaniel Snyder, Karizza Sotelo, Samantha Sparks, Savannah Stasik, Morgan Stewart, Ryan Straughn, Brianne Strobel, Maria Tapia Escobedo, Alexandra Vickery, Abby West, Jessica Woodward

Senior: Lauren Allen, Rebecca Arnold, Lilly Berrend, Madison Bluml, Brianna Brehm, Taylor Buri, Jocelyn Cabral, Lauren Companiott, Ashley Diddell, Katelyn Dudzinski, Brian Edwards, Eric Eichelberger, Kelly Evers, Grace Fabrizius, Ariel Geraghty, Noelle Goodine, Kelsey Gould, Adam Grams, Malory Groen, Elizabeth Howie, Christina Janes, Nicole Ketza, Denitza Koleva, Kaitlyn Kolzow, Benjamin Kovalick, Stelios Lekkas, McKinzie Mangers, Jacob Mazuc, Austin McElderry, Kayley McPhee, Anna Novotny, William Osborne, Athanasios Pesmajoglou, Drew Peters, Jordan Phillips, Alexa Reger, Karyn Ribbens, Josias Rodriguez, Stephanie Rosenwinkel, Maria Rossi, Alejandra Salinas, Connor Sandquist, Melissa Schmidt, Veronica Seawall, Ashley Shearer, Kylie Siebert, Ashlyn Slamans, Molly Speckman, Anthony Sperando, Brandon Stahl, Trevor Storck, Katherine Taylor, Valerie Tockstein, Catherine Tolan, Amber Urich, Marissa Villafuerte, Savannah Webb, Kathleen Werrline, Anders Winquist-Bailey, Elliot Witt, John Wooten

Regular Honor Roll
Freshman: Karina Alcantara-Camargo, Mariah Ausbury, Jacob Bachio, Melanie Bateman, Ivan Bohorquez, Nicholas Boose, Amy Burgholzer, Briel Castellese, Hannah Conley, Amy Croft, Gabriel David, Destiny Diaz, Courtney Diddell, Zachary Douglas, Sarah Dratnol, Alyssa Evans, Jeremy Faletto, Colton Fellows, Elise Fichtel, Sam Ford, Kevin Fuchs, Justin Garcia, Julia Golbeck, Victoria Guyton, McKayla Helm, Zachary Justus, Joshua Kasap, Rachel Keske, Joshua Kohler, Alyson Kowalczyk, Jessica Kucera, Shannon Limbrick, Matthew Lyons, Raymond McGarvey, Caitrin Mills, Lenora Murphy, Meghen Nance, Kayla Norell, Taylor Opperman, Nicole Partipilo, Katrina Paulick, Lauren Pence, Kellsie Pepponi, Noah Perez, Blaine Rivas, Vanessa Saltijeral, Colleen Schrems, Samantha Schrepferman, Deanna Scialabba, Jacob Sheehan, Christine Shelton, Aaron Steenwyk, Evan Thompson, Taylor Tindall, James Tockstein, Rachel Urich, Paige Wagner, Charles Wehrmann, Samantha White, Nicholas Winthers, John Wolf, Joshua Yeggy

Sophomore: Johnathan Bahena Diaz, Jesse Balluff, James Bartholomew, Anna Bateman, Dzenan Bogaljevic, Michelle Bohanek, Ryan Bower, Alexandra Brenwall, Johnathan Briggs, Lanie Callaghan, Gina Campobasso Jarvis, Andrew Carroll, Ryan Caul, Lesly Chavez, Jacob Cinkus, Taylor Corbett, Michael Deja, Christina Delach, Justin Diddell, Dakota Drefke, Emily Eckert, Daniel Evers, Alyssa Faulkner, Angelique Franks, Brittany Giannini, Denise Gombar, Christopher Hernandez, Jessica Jablonski, Matthew Kalinowski, Brittany Kemp, Samuel Kitz, Lydia Krauz, Broderick Kuhar, Sara Laurie, Thung Lee, Stefanos Lekkas, Nicolas Likeum, Ryan Longson, Trevor Malatek, Kellyn McMullan, Mikaela Messick, Shannon O’Shea, Joshua Opp, Andre Palpant, Anthony Parillo, Alexa Parrenas, Mason Pieczynski, Alec Pope, Shannon Ransford, Muhammad Rehman, Taylor Robertson, Paige Robinson, Joshua Rodriguez, Kyle Romas, Teri Ruffolo, Zackery Russell, Kaprice Sanchez, Blake Schultz, Kaleb Schuppner, Alexander Speckman, Allison Steininger, Sydney Strang, Ashlee Tennant, Cameron Thomas, Katelyn Treinen, Alyson Utterback, Matthew Vander Sande, Cynthia Vasquez, John Venneri, Jessica Villafuerte, Noelia Villanueva, Kelly Wallner, Lucas Welz, Nicholas Welz, Zachary Wielgos, Thomas Williams, Grant Wooten

Junior: Julia Angelotti, Olubukola Ayegbusi, Joanna Barragan, Alex Baumgartner, Jennifer Bicos, Jason Biddle, Emma Bradford, Margaret Brundige, Bailey Burns, Romina Carrano, Ashley Castellanos, Jacob Childress, Madeline Cole, Nicholas Crawford, Anna Croft, Austen Davis, Laken Delahanty, Claiborne Denlinger, Hannah Dewar, Natalie Dietrich, Alonzo Dominguez, Miricle Dominguez, Breanna Evola, Marshall Farthing, Kristin Gabrielson, Jordan Ginther, Sean Glennon, Jack Grimes, Stephen Gust, Nikolas Hale, Kory Harner, Tyler Hawbecker, Alexander Held, Kirstin Hinds, Meagan Holloman, Kushtrim Ismaili, Lisa Jennings, Johnson, Bradley Johnson, Brandon Johnson, Nicholas Katsigiannis, Brad Kigyos , Samuel Kilgore, Esther Kong, Luke Kreiter,, Baylee Lancaster,, Tanisha Lee,, Kara Leyden, Katherine Lucarelli, Sydney Luse, Alexandra Lyons, Zachary Martinelli, Jacqueline McClellan, Stephen McCracken, Joshua McHenry, James Merletti, Eric Meuer, Savanah Miles, Brayden Miller, Paige Nachreiner, Alyssa Nahley, Morgan Newhouse, Cory Nordine, Sarah Norman, Adam Poczekaj, Kyle Pollastrini, MacKenzie Powell, Lyndi Scholl, Collin Seidelman, Benjamin Sommers, Manuel Tapia- Zachary Theis, Kalani Tovar, Jack Van Gemert, Taylor Velazquez, Jemma Waldrop, Caitlin Wallace, Kaitlyn Wendling, Abbie Wilhelm, Connor Williams, Alexander Willis, Morgan Wojciechowski, Danielle Wylie

Senior: Kourtni Bingley, Melissa Bohorquez, Zachary Brown, Emily Carr, Colton Carter, Sean Carter, Jacob Chevalier, Acalia Cleaver, Zachary Douglas, Megan Dressel, , Tyler Fabrizius, John Goodrich, Joseph Gorenz, Casey Haffner, Bridget Hankes, Daniel Hansen, Samantha Hansen, David Heine, Austin Henkelman, Phoojywg Her, Heather Hochsprung, Alexandria Hornback, Seleana Isaacs, Sarah Kitz, Kelly Kovacic, Alec Krueger, Troy Krueger, Kathryn Lanute, Kayley Larsen, Cesar Lazcano, Nicholette LeBlanc, Victoria Likeum, Madison Limbrick, Madeline Meredith, Amelia Napiorkowski, Diana Nuno, Konstantin Paraskevov, Jari Ramos-Orbe, Sawyer Rego, Courtney Reiss, Jake Rosko, Margaret Ruppel, Alejandro Salinas, Max Sanko, Demi Schlehofer, Dana Schultz, Matthew Simmons, Grace Snyder, Erica Sorensen, Michael Tattoni, Mackenzie Theisen, Carolina Tovar, Shannon Wallace, Nicholas Wielgos, Joshua Williams, Jordyn Withey, Michael Withey, Maverick Wojciechowski

New-look Lady Knights try to start 2011 on right foot

Photo: Sam Wantuch participates in preseason ball drills for the Lady Knights. Photo by Mike Slodki

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—It was a season to remember, and an ending to forget.

Kaneland would love to have the regional championship loss to Rosary High School back. The season which ended at 15-3-5 under soccer coach Scott Parillo and a cohesive senior unit had a chance for redemption in 2011.

However, it will have to come with quite the new look.

With last year’s celebrated senior core gone, as well as last year’s freshman sensation in goal Jordan Ginther (playing club soccer in Naperville, Ill.), the Lady Knights break ranks as fluid as can be.

“Jordan was classy enough to tell us in advance and we had time to cry and get that out of the way,” Parillo joked. “Hopefully, she’ll be back next year. We need to replace seven starters. They’re working hard out here, and it should be exciting.”

But, the solid strengths begin with team captain and senior Emily Heimerdinger at midfield/forward, who will go down as having one of the most prolific careers in KHS girls soccer history.

“She’s not a secret anymore. She was no longer a secret at the end of her freshman year. She’s going to be similar to a point guard out there. What she may not get in goals, she’ll maybe contribute in assists and she’ll be a real leader,” Parillo said.

Returnees joining Heimerdinger that are no stranger to big-game soccer include Amy Fabrizius at goalie/defender and Sophie Blank at goalie/midfield.

Returning to a bigger role after a 2010 with limited varsity action include the likes of Abby Bend (mid/forward), Sam Wantuch (defense/mid).

Also providing a spark are returning mid/fwd Katie Taylor, def/mid Anna Heinrichs and mid/foward Taylor White.

“The girls are up to the task, the coaches are up to the task, and we hope the girls gel as quickly as last year,” Parillo said.

New on the varsity ranks for Kaneland are def/mid Amber Winquist-Bailey, mid/forward Brittany Olson, mid/fwd Jessica Coia, mid/fwd Delaney Stryzek, midfielder Delaney Stryzek, goalie/midfielder Michelle Ortiz, midfielder/forward Shelby Fredricksen, def/mid Valerie Tockstein and defender Anne Marie Giese.

With two matches already under their belt, the Lady Knights begin the Northern Illinois Big XII East Division slate on Wednesday, April 6, against Sycamore. The regular season concludes on Tuesday, May 10, in Rochelle.

All-WSC, team awards handed out at KHS

KANELAND—Kaneland High School dished out end of the year and spring speason sports awards last week.

In Knights boys track and field, Logan Markuson was named the Track MVP, while Nick Sinon, state champ in high jump, was named Field MVP. Edgar Valle, also a state champ as part of the 4×400 relay , was named recipient of the Drendel Award. Markuson, Derek Bus, Joe Levita, Brett Ketza, Justin Choate and Sinon were recognized as captains. Andrew Essex was named winner of the Ron Probst Award. Sinon, Markuson, Taylor Andrews, Valle, Bus, Matt Reusche, Matt Spitzzeri, Sean Paulick, Tommy Whittaker, Dominic Furco, Trevor Holm and Levita were recognized as the final Kaneland representatives for the all-Western Sun Conference team.

Brandon Cottier, Essex, Curtis Secrest, Whittaker, Spitzzeri, Valle, Bus, Taylor Andrews, Markuson, Levita, Holm and Sinon were all lauded for their trip to the Class 2A State Finals in Charleston, Ill.

For girls track, Lisa Roberson and Andie Strang, both State-goers, were named co-Track MVP’s, while Brooke Patterson, fresh off a trip to Charleston, was named field MVP.

Mel Mazuc and Nicole Ketza were part of a group of three named most improved field athletes, along with Briana Stark in long jump. Hurdler Hillary Luse took the most improved track athlete award.

Roberson and Sydney Bilotta were recognized as captains, while Patterson, Ashley Castellanos and Gabby Aguirre were honored for their All-Western Sun Conference performances.

Strang (800 meter run, 4x800m relay), Roberson and Kris Bowen (4x800m), Sara Wallace (pole vault), Jessica Stouffer (4x800m), Patterson (pole vault, triple jump) and Castellanos (long jump) were lauded for their State trip.

For the 20-win softball team, first-year coach Brian Willis gave most outstanding defensive player to Jordan Hester and most outstanding offensive player to Andrea Dimmig-Potts. Samantha Hansen took home the most improved player award, Kristen Stralka and Brittany Davis got in on the Lady Knight Award, while 13-win pitcher Delani Vest was given the most outstanding player award.

In the freshman softball ranks, Elizabeth Eckert and Sarah Grams took the co-MVP honors, while Danielle McCormack won the Kaneland Knight award.

For baseball, Dave Dudzinski and Bobby Thorson were named recipients of the Mr. Kaneland Baseball award.

Jake Tickle, he of the 19-game hit streak during the season, was named offensive MVP, and Steve Colombe was crowned defensive MVP.

The 41 Award, in honor or Jeff Malewig, was given to Tickle and Jake Fiedler.

Thorson, Fiedler, Colombe and Tickle were all recognized for their All-Western Sun Conference honors.

For the 15-win girls soccer team’s history- making season, Megan Gil, Haley Johnson, Shelby Koester, Colleen Gebauer and Emily Heimerdinger were lauded for their captain-ship.

Amy Fabrizius was given the most improved player honor, and freshman goalkeeper Jordan Ginther was named Rookie of the Year.

Sophie Blank, Andie Bruce and Natalie Swieca won the coach’s award. Gebauer and Katie Taylor were co-winners of the Lady Knights Award, while Heimerdinger and Gil took the MVP honors.

For the final awards of the night, the female Birkette award was given to Roberson. Markuson and Bus took home the male Birkette award.

Markuson was honored with the Male Athlete of the Year award, while Roberson was given the Female Athlete of the Year award.

Levita, for his time in cross country, wrestling and track, was honored for his three-sport commitment.

Photo: Lisa Roberson, shown here in relay action in Charleston, Ill., two weeks ago, was awarded Female Athlete of the Year and Female Birkette Award winner at last week’s 2010 Senior Athletic Banquet Awards. File Photo

Historic girls soccer season ends at foot of Rosary in regional

AURORA—For the second straight year, the Kaneland Lady Knights’ soccer journey ended on the cusp of regional glory.

However, the signs of progress continue to reveal itself, thanks to talent and depth.

Second-seeded Rosary got the best of the top-seeded Lady Knights on Saturday afternoon by a 1-0 final. Kaneland’s final record is 15-3-5 (3-2-2 Western Sun Conference), which marks an all-time best for coach Scott Parillo’s crew.

The Royals earned revenge for a 1-0 Kaneland win back on March 24.

With 10 minutes remaining in the first half, Samantha Duarte of Rosary scored the lone goal of the match, and was good enough for the final margin.

Kaneland now says goodbye to an impressive senior core that rose through the ranks: Colleen Gebauer, Haley Johnson, Natalie Swieca, Megan Gil, Andie Bruce, Shelby Koester and Thalia Garcia.

Slated to return next season, however, are standouts like freshman goalie Jordan Ginther, who shut out 12 different opponents, and junior Emily Heimerdinger, who now has 61 goals through three seasons, including 18 this season.

Rosary, meanwhile, lost to Sycamore 3-1 on Tuesday in the Hampshire Sectional opener. Sycamore defeated DeKalb 2-1 in the Rochelle Regional title match.

Soccer takes regional opener with 2-0 knockout

by Mike Slodki
AURORA—Better the second half than not at all.

A scoreless first half for Kaneland soccer in the semifinal of the Class 2A Rosary Regional had the 15-2-5 Lady Knights flummoxed against the fourth-seeded Aurora Central Catholic Lady Chargers.

But a Sophie Blank goal just 13 seconds into the second half gave Kaneland a lead, and an Emily Heimerdinger goal with 32:19 left provided the final 2-0 margin.

Kaneland now increases its season record for wins and also a team goal with 15 wins.

The Lady Knights will now await the winner of (2) Rosary and (3) IMSA, which were set to battle on Wednesday, in the regional title game on Saturday, May 22, at noon.

This now marks the second consecutive season that Kaneland finds itself in the regional championship.

Coach Scott Parillo feels that Kaneland will need to pick up the performance.

“It wasn’t a good display at times. We didn’t pass well and we didn’t shoot well. The good thing is we won and we’re in the regional championship,” he said.

Blank’s goal got the team off to as good a start as possible for the final 40 minutes of action.

“We just needed to be aggressive, and Andie (Bruce) had a good pass,” Blank said.

Heimerdinger’s goal occurred after weaving through waves of ACC defenders and hitting the left corner.

With the Lady Knights surrendering just 15 goals thus far, and goalkeeper Jordan Ginther pitching another shutout, captain and defender Megan Gil knows the defense’s task is magnified in this “second season.”

“You just have to keep your head in the game,” Gil said. “The defense has to be strong and help the offense. We work together as a team. We’ve played a long time and we’ve come from winning only three games our freshman year. We like playing with each other.”

Photo: Kaneland goalkeeper Jordan Ginther makes a stop against Aurora Central Catholic during Tuesday’s 2-0 regional-opening shutout. Photo by Mike Slodki

Soccer now 10-1-2

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—It’s been an unfamiliar feeling for the Kaneland soccer squad this year.

For the first time this season, despite a close match, KHS lost to host Geneva (9-5-1, 3-0-0 WSC) on Monday in Western Sun Conference play by a 2-1 tally.

“It’s not unfamiliar, just this year,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said.

“We’ll practice and go. We had a couple players not here, and the players did well with that adversity and we’ll move on.”

Geneva broke a 1-1 tie on a goal with 13:29 to play in regulation by Amanda Lulek.

Earlier in the week, Kaneland completed its 12th straight match without a loss in a 4-3 win at Morris.

Currently, the Lady Knights are 10-1-2 (1-1-1 WSC).

The Lady Knights fell behind early against the Vikings six minutes, nine seconds into the game on a double penalty kick, a first seen by Parillo.

Geneva’s first attempt at the penalty kick was high over the crossbar, but the officials ruled a KHS player had stepped into the goal box, allowing another try, which was converted by Sammi Hill. The kick went off of the post and off of goalkeeper Jordan Ginther (12 saves) into the net for the lead.

“I’ve never had it happen to me in nine years of coaching,” Parillo said.

With 10:04 remaining in the first half, Colleen Gebauer converted on a penalty kick to the right of goalie Jenny Lienau to tie matters after getting tripped up in the box.

Against the Lady Redskins, Kaneland and Morris were tied at one after the first 40 minutes before pulling away.

Sophie Blank had two goals, while Katie Taylor and Gebauer had the others.

Emily Heimerdinger had two assists, and Gebauer added one.

Soccer takes Blackhawk title

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—For Kaneland girls soccer, it’s quite alright to party like its 2005.

For the 2010 version of the Lady Knights is easily the best since the version five years ago, evidenced by KHS taking the Blackhawk Invite title at West Aurora on April 14.

The 3-0 win over Rochelle cinched the deal, and continued Kaneland girls soccer’s best start in school history.

On Saturday, KHS managed a 1-1 tie vs. Burlington Central, stopping a seven-match win streak, but continuing an unbeaten streak.

On Monday, Kaneland finished off host Marengo by a 6-1 count.

Tuesday had Kaneland battle host DeKalb to a 1-1 draw.

The Lady Knights now sit at 8-0-2.

Against the Western Sun Conference rival Hubs, scoring threat Emily Heimerdinger had a shot stopped five minutes in, while Katie Taylor’s opportunity seven minutes later was also stymied.

Kaneland finally hit the net when Heimerdinger received a centered pass from Taylor in the box and scored with 21:03 remaining in the first half.

With a chance to do more damage, Heimerdinger rocketed a shot from just outside the box to give KHS a 2-0 lead with four ticks left in the half.

“(Asst. coach Travis) Bickley said to me, watch and we’ll score with less than a minute left, and sure enough we did. They’re talented enough and they believe in themselves enough that even when they’re lackluster, they’re going to win,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said.

“2-0 is a good lead, I guess, but it’s not where we wanted to be,” Heimerdinger said. “They were still in it.”

Freshman goalkeeper Jordan Ginther, who’s allowed just three attempts to get past her through eight matches, continued her strong play in the second half.

Heimerdinger attributes the above-average play in the net as one of the perks of a fantastic start.

“The shutouts are the biggest thing; Jordan has been playing great and our defense is stopping everything,” Heimerdinger said.

The scoring column was closed with 22 seconds remaining in the contest, thanks to a Shelby Koester goal that occured despite two Rochelle defenders hanging with her every step.

Against the host Indians, KHS went out to a 4-1 lead at the half before tacking on two more.

Heimerdinger scored twice and had two assists, while Colleen Gebauer had two of her own. Sophie Blank had a goal and assist while Sam Wantuch scored her first goal of the 2010 campaign.

Heimerdinger scored goal No. 14 on the year in the first half against DHS, but the Lady Barbs rallied in the second half to tie.

KHS faces Yorkville on Thursday, April 22.

Lady Knights Soccer:
Alive and Kicking
EMILY HEIMERDINGER—14 goals
SHELBY KOESTER—6 goals
THALIA GARCIA—3 goals
COLLEEN GEBAUER—3 goals
ANDIE BRUCE—3 goals
KATIE TAYLOR—2 goals
SOPHIE BLANK—2 goals
SAM WANTUCH—1 goal
Kaneland has outscored its opponents 34-5 in 2010.

Lady Knights kick off with 4-0 win

by Mike Slodki
MAPLE PARK—Ideal conditions met the Kaneland High School girls soccer team on Tuesday afternoon, as did an ideal result.

Using four first-half goals and enough defense to do the trick, the Lady Knights came away with a 4-0 win over IMSA to begin the season 1-0.

Captain Shelby Koester found the net 5 minutes, 48 seconds into the contest off an assist by Emily Heimerdinger.

Koester struck again with 27:29 left in the first half after putting in a blocked shot attempt that rebounded her way.

Midfielder Thalia Garcia rocketed a ball in the net 2:07 later, and midfielder Taylor White put in a shot thanks to a Katie Taylor assist with 10:42 to go in the half.

“We stepped it up,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said. “We started out a little sluggish, but once we got the first goal it seemed we got another one every few minutes. We had other people besides Emily (Heimerdinger) score goals, so that’s huge.”

Earning her first shutout, freshman Jordan Ginther appreciated the opportunity.

“I was pretty nervous,” Ginther said. “It was my first game in high school, but the girls are great.”

The Lady Knights take on host Rosary on Thursday, March 25, at 4:30 p.m.

5 captains, new goalie for soccer

Photo: Midfielder Sophie Blank participates in pre-season drills for Lady Knights soccer. Photo by Mike Slodki
by Mike Slodki
MAPLE PARK—What happens when most of the Lady Knights soccer squad that scored a sizable upset over Hampshire in regional action returns?

You’ll have optimism and talent on a squad that tied its mark for most wins in club history.

“We got the lead against Hampshire and held on to it,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said. “You go back a few months and we lose a 3-0 lead at West Aurora. So that win was a ‘get over the hump’ moment for us.”

Leading the charge are the five captains. Midfielder Colleen Gebauer, defenseman Megan Gil, forward Emily Heimerdinger, midfielder Haley Johnson and midfielder Shelby Koester bring talent, experience and a solid core familiar with big late-season victories.

“They bring knowledge of the game and played big schools and small schools. Megan is a four-year varsity player, Emily’s a scoring machine, and Shelby, Colleen and Haley are all three-year varsity players. They’ve all been in pressure-filled games,” Parillo said.

Returnee Sophie Blank, pivotal to the regional semifinal win, moves out of goal to midfield, her more natural position.

In goal is freshman Jordan Ginther, who has already managed a shutout this year.

One might ask why there’s a wealth of experience in the field and a freshman in goal.

“You’ve got to watch her play. Her club team is nationally ranked. She will blow people’s minds,” Parillo said.

Joining Gil on the defense is teammate Natalie Swieca, back for a third year.

Savannah Webb returns as well on defense, for a unit looking to recover from graduation losses.

Amy Fabrizius is set for forward, midfield and maybe a bit of defense.

“We have enough players that can play multiple positions; we should be OK,” Parillo.

Katie Taylor shores up the forward ranks along with Andi Bruce and Abby Bend. Melissa Bohorquez can play forward and midfield, as can Sam Wantuch.

Also back for more is midfielder Thalia Garcia, who has already found the net this season. Anna Heinrichs plays defense and midfield, while Valerie Tockstein and Taylor White help out the midfield and forward ranks.

Soccer plays its usual West Aurora Tournament stop beginning on Thursday, April 8, and hosts the Burlington Central Tournament beginning on Friday, May 7. The regular season ends on Tuesday, May 11, at Batavia.