Tag Archives: Sophie Blank

Rosary puts an end to Kaneland soccer season

Photo: Emily Heimerdinger had a banner day for her last win under Kaneland soccer’s tenure. In the win over IMSA last week, the senior placed four goals in net. Photo by Mike Slodki

by Mike Slodki
AURORA—In the case of Kaneland soccer in regional finals, bad things come in threes.

For the third season in a row, Kaneland girls soccer fell victim to a loss in the title match. This time after a 2-1 loss in double overtime against regional host Rosary.

Against the Royals, Katie Taylor’s goal off a Sophie Blank pass with 19:21 remaining in the first half was the lone score for Kaneland, as was Sam Duarte’s effort for Rosary.

With less than five minutes to play in the second overtime, Taylor Gibson’s header found the net, ending Kaneland’s season.

Before the Rosary heartbreaker, happier times were had against the Lady Titans on May 18.

While it was the senior Heimerdinger’s name in the goal column, the output was made possible by an offensive groove put together by consistent ball movement.

Heimerdinger’s first goal came on winning a battle for the ball near the goalie box and punching it in on a mini-breakaway with 22 minutes, 53 seconds left in the first half for a 1-0 lead on the Lady Titans.

“I’m just happy that we won. I think everyone’s happy just to be here, and this is what we’ve been playing for,” Heimerdinger said.

Heimderdinger then got on the board once again with 4:47 to go in the first half, and scored just 41 seconds later.

The Lady Knight scoring asset tallied her 96th career goal in the second half with 12:59 remaining.

“Once again, she’s doing her stellar part in being a scorer,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said.

Parillo was plain in noting that the regional opener win was a step on the way to a hopefully larger prize.

“I thought we played OK. I think we should have possessed more, and we weren’t staying out wide. But I’m happy, and hopefully third time’s the charm. We’re way different than we were in the start of the season.”

For the Lady Knights, the end of the season means saying farewell to seniors Heimerdinger, Blank, Sam Wantuch, Amy Fabrizius, Anna Henrichs and Shelby Fredericksen.

Soccer finishes second at KHS Classic, brandishes 11 wins

Photo: How productive was your week? Sophie Blank scored seven goals and contributed two assists in a packed stretch for Lady Knights soccer. Photo by John DiDonna

KANELAND—Despite weather that could generously be described as “dumpy,” Kaneland High School soccer’s fortunes are heating up.

Kaneland routed Hinckley-Big Rock (H-BR) on May 4, and followed that match with a busy KHS Klassic, featuring a Friday win over Streamwood, a tie vs. Woodstock on Saturday and a shutout loss to Burlington Central. The Lady Knights continued their latest tour with a Monday tie vs. Morris and a 7-0 rout of Rochelle. The latest action sees Kaneland end the regular season with an 11-8-3 mark in season play (6-3-1 Northern Illinois Big XII).

In the 7-0 win over the Lady Royals of H-BR, Emily Heimerdinger, Brittany Olson and Sophie Blank found the net in the first half, while second-half goals were supplied by Heimerdinger and Blank in alternating order.

In the win over the Sabres at the Klassic, Delaney Stryczek’s goal 12 minutes in kept KHS in a 1-1 tie at the break before goals by Heimerdinger and Katie Taylor within 52 seconds of each other iced the match.

Against Woodstock, Abby Bend scored with 25:54 to go in the first half, and Blank scored with 12:28 to go, leading into the scoreless second half for both sides.

After the 3-0 shutout loss to the Lady Rockets sent Kaneland to a second-place slot at its own tournament, the Lady Knights battled Morris in a make-up match.

The lone goal for host KHS against the Lady Redskins was a Heimerdinger goal with 15:36 to go in the first half, on an assist from Taylor.

On Tuesday in Ogle County, the Lady Knights lit up the scoreboard with six first-half goals.

Heimerdinger scored just 2:24 into the contest, and Blank followed up with a score 20 minutes later. Heimerdinger scored her second goal to give KHS a 3-0 edge just 48 seconds later.

Bend followed up with back-to-back goals before Blank capped the scoring barrage.

Blank’s goal with 34:28 to go was the lone second-half goal.

Meanwhile, the JV team coached by Travis Berth and Janet Barry ended the regular season at 11-7-4 (7-5-1 conference) with a win over Rochelle.

With the regular season now in the books, Kaneland now gears up for the IHSA Class 2A Regional at Rosary High School in Aurora. The second-seeded Lady Knights are set to clash with (3) Illinois Math and Science Academy coached by Sal Tamayo on Wednesday, May 18, at 4:30 p.m. The Lady Titans are 11-7-1.

The winner of that match faces either top-seeded Rosary, No. 4 Aurora Central Catholic or No. 5 Yorkville in the regional title match on Saturday, May 21, at 11 a.m.

Last year, the Lady Knights defeated Aurora Central Catholic before losing to Rosary in the regional final.

Lady Knights see offense open up

Photo: Michelle Ortiz fields a shot as keeper during Thursday’s 6-2 win in Northern Illinois Big XII Conference action in Yorkville. The Lady Knights prepare for their next challenge: the KHS Classic on Friday, May 6, and
Saturday, May 7. Photo by Ben Draper

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—It was a familiar setting for Kaneland soccer on Thursday, with chilly tempuratures and steady to heavy rains.

It’s been so familiar, in fact, that KHS coach Scott Parillo mentioned that the nicest conditions for Kaneland soccer occurred back on March 19, opening day in Geneseo.

However, with a 6-2 win in Yorkville and a 7-0 win against visiting Sterling on Tuesday, the fortunes of Lady Knights soccer look a little bit more sunny.

Kaneland’s mark is 8-7-1 with a 4-3 record in Northern Illinois Big XII conference play.

In Yorkville, Sophie Blank had a hat trick, while Emily Heimerdinger added two goals and an assist. Delaney Stryzek scored on a header and had an assist, while Brittany Olson also had an assist.

Breaking a 2-2 halftime tie, Blank hit a shot at close range just two minutes, 55 seconds into the second half. Stryzek’s header near the box with 29:02 left made it 4-2.

Blank completed her hat trick with 17:46 to go on a tricky shot, and felt like the offense’s recent output makes the struggles like the first half a bit easier to bear.

“I don’t know what it is, maybe because we are young,” Blank said. “Our offense is very confident, we just have to remember what to do.”

Heimerdinger’s final goal came with 8:50 remaining.

“We wanted to actually execute a gameplan, which we didn’t do in the first half,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said. “The coaching staff let them know they weren’t happy. We played much better in the second half. It’s better to have some of the underclassmen scoring lately, because Sophie’s a senior and Emily’s a senior.”

Against Sterling, Heimerdinger scored twice and had three assists while goals were also scored by Olson, Katie Taylor and Taylor White.

The Lady Knights brave the KHS Classic on Friday May 6, and Saturday, May 7.

Soccer regains footing against NIB-12 West

KANELAND—At a point where Kaneland soccer was looking for something, anything to get back in the win column, Thursday and Saturday, the Lady Knights found it.

On Saturday, Kaneland took a 4-2 matchup with Northern Illinois Big XII crossover opponent Dixon, and also dominated a 7-0 meeting with visiting Streator on Thursday.

Tuesday found the Lady Knights dropping a close 3-2 affair in DeKalb.

The win streak and the Tuesday loss improved Kaneland’s season mark to 6-7-1 (3-3 NIB-12).

Facing the Duchesses in Maple Park, KHS went out to a 2-1 advantage after the first 40 minutes thanks to an Emily Heimerdinger goal on an assist from Katie Taylor just 58 seconds into play, and a Sophie Blank goal from Jessica Coia with 17:57 remaining in the half.

In the second half, Heimerdinger found the net again, thanks to a feed from Amber Winquist-Bailey with 38:26 left. The scoring was capped on a goal by Blank on a pass from Taylor White with 33:44 to go.

In the match against Streator, the floodgates opened with first-half goals from Delaney Stryzek, Heimerdinger and Blank, and then saw four second-half goals thanks to Blank, Heimerdinger, Taylor and Coia.

Heimerdinger came up with a goal in each half against DeKalb, with 1:30 remaining in the first half and 4:17 to go in regulation.

JV action had Kaneland improve to 6-5-4 with a 1-0 win over DeKalb, thanks to a Maddie Hanzer goal.

The Lady Knights battle host Yorkville in a conference tilt on Thursday, April 28, at 4:30 p.m.

Lady Knights compete at West Aurora

Photo: Emily Heimerdinger wins the battle for possession in recent action. Heimerdinger scored four goals for the 4-5 Lady Knights this week. File Photo

KANELAND—A three-match skid left the Lady Knights scraping on the soccer pitch, but a Tuesday win over Streamwood sees Kaneland at 4-5 (1-2 Northern Illinois Big XII) through nine matches.

A year ago at this time, KHS was an astounding 8-0-1 on its way to a tournament championship in Aurora.

On Tuesday afternoon, Kaneland used a goal by Melissa Bohorquez and a second-half goal by Emily Heimerdinger for a 2-0 win over Streamood High School. On Saturday morning, the West Aurora Blackhawk Tournament featured Plainfeld East besting Kaneland by a 6-4 final.

With a goal by Sophie Blank 10 minutes into the contest, and an Heimerdinger goal six minutes later, Kaneland nursed a 2-1 lead into halftime over the Bengals.

Despite goals by Blank and Heimerdinger in the second half, Kaneland gave up five second-half goals in the loss. Jessica Coia contributed an assist on Heimerdinger’s second half goal.

Kicking off the tournament was a 3-0 loss to the host Blackhawks on Thursday.

Beginning the latest week of competition, Kaneland fell to visiting Sycamore on April 6 by a final of 4-1. The lone Kaneland goal came from Heimerdinger with 29 minutes, 42 seconds remaining in the match.

Ahead for the Lady Knights is a matchup with visiting Marengo on Monday, April 18, followed by a NIB-12 bout with the visiting Lady Redskins of Morris on Tuesday, April 19.

Soccer solves Indian Creek in lone contest of week

Photo: Kaneland defender Anne Marie Giese moves in on an Indian Creek opponent in the second half of their game at Indian Creek on Monday. Kaneland came away with an easy victory, winning 5-0. Photo by John DiDonna

KANELAND—If Indian Creek High School thought it would be able to close a 1-0 deficit in the second half during Monday’s early-April match, it was fooling itself.

Four second-half goals allowed the visiting Lady Knights to corral a 5-1 win over the Timberwolves and raise their record to 3-2 (1-1 Northern Illinois Big XII).

With question marks before the season on how the youth-infused lineup would gel, the scoring output has risen to the occasion more than once.

It started on Monday with a goal almost 17 minutes into the affair, thanks to Abby Bend on a feed from Emily Heimerdinger.

With 28:28 remaining in the game, Jessica Coia put one in the net, followed by Heimerdinger capitalizing on a Brittany Olson assist five minutes later.

Heimerdinger scored her second goal of the match and sixth of the season with 12:36 remaining in the contest. Capping off the scoring barrage was Olson with 4:02 remaining.

Sophie Blank and Michelle Ortiz combined in goal for the shutout.

Up ahead for coach Scott Parillo’s crew: a quest to repeat as West Aurora Tournament champions, beginning on Thursday, April 7, against the hosts at 4:30 p.m.

2011 Blackhawk women’s soccer tourney
Thursday, April 7: E. Aurora vs. Streamwood 4:30 p.m.
Thursday, April 7: W. Aurora vs. Kaneland 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 9: Kaneland vs. Plainfield E. 10 a.m.
Saturday, April 9: E. Aurora vs. W. Aurora Noon
Monday, April 11: W. Aurora vs. Streamwood 4:30 p.m.
Monday, April 11: Plainfield E. vs. E. Aurora 6:30 p.m.
Tuesday, April 12: Plainfield E. vs. W. Aurora 4:30 p.m.
Tuesday, April 12: Streamwood at Kaneland 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday, April 13: Kaneland vs. E. Aurora 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday, April 13: Streamwood vs. Plainfield E. 6:30 p.m.

KHS Lady Knight soccer scoring goals in bunches

Photo: Katie Taylor of Kaneland High School girls soccer made good on a goal against Northern Illinois Big XII crossover opponent Ottawa on Thursday. Taylor will be one of the Lady Knights counted on against Indian Creek
and in the tourney at West Aurora in mid-April. File Photo

KANELAND—With a mostly new lineup, one could be wary of how the offensive skills would come together for the KHS soccer group.

In two games this week, the Lady Knights lost to visiting Rosary in a regional rematch, but earned a shutout win over Northern Illinois Big XII crossover foe Ottawa.

After the March 23 loss and the Thursday win, KHS sees its record sit at 2-2 (1-1 NIB-12).

After getting shut out 4-0 in temperatures struggling to hit 35 on the thermometer, Kaneland rallied to hand the Ottawa Lady Pirtates a 6-0 drubbing on Thursday in Maple Park.

Senior leader Emily Heimerdinger got the Lady Knights on the board first with a goal after being fed by Jessica Coia. That gave Kaneland a 1-0 lead with 10:43 remaining in the first half.

Anne Marie Giese scored the first second-half goal with 17:11 to go, giving KHS a 2-0 edge.

Taylor White made the most of her scoring opportunity and found the net with 13:38 to play for a 3-0 edge.

Heimerdinger, Katie Taylor and Sophie Blank each scored within the last 10:46 to take the win over their West Division foe.

Ahead for KHS is a Monday, April 4 clash at Indian Creek.

2011 GOAL-ED STANDARD
Emily Heimerdinger 4 goals
Sophie Blank 2 goals
Abby Bend 1 goal
Anne Marie Giese 1 goal
Katie Taylor 1 goal

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

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

KHS soccer trumps Sycamore for first time; steadies for regional

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—Kaneland High School girls soccer continues to add on to its season of greatest hits, and it’s evident the squad doesn’t want the music to stop.

On Thursday, Kaneland defeated visiting Sycamore 1-0, marking the first time in school history that either the boys or girls outfit has defeated Sycamore.

On Friday and Saturday, KHS then hosted the inaugural Kaneland Klassic, and came away with the first-place nod after a scoreless tie vs. the visiting Burlington Central Rockets.

The regular season came to an end with a 5-0 loss at Batavia on Tuesday.

However, KHS has now eclipsed it’s record for season victories, and sits at 14-2-5 (3-2-2 WSC) on the campaign, ready for regional action.

Against the Spartans, the lone goal was scored by Sophie Blank, assisted by Emily Heimerdinger.

With Sycamore desperate to score a goal, Lady Knight captain Haley Johnson was among those trying to put a stop to the Spartans.

“You’re definitely focusing on the defensive aspect and trying to stop goals, and that becomes the important part,” Johnson said.

Coach Scott Parillo was pleased as to how things went down.

“We’ve never, ever, ever beat Sycamore before and we finally did,” Parillo said. “It’s a conference win and that’s huge, that gives us three for the season, and this is huge for the seniors.”

The Lady Knights, at No.1 seed, will play the fourth-seeded Aurora Central Catholic Lady Chargers on Tuesday, May 18 at 4 p.m. at Rosary High School in Aurora. The winner of that encounter faces off against the winner of No. 2 Rosary and No. 3 Illinois Math & Science Academy who duke it out on Wednesday, May 19, in the Class 2A regional championship set for Saturday, May 22.

The winner of the Rosary Regional heads off to the Hampshire Sectional against potentially Hampshire or Marian Central Catholic.

Photo: Lady Knight Emily Heimerdinger will be looked on for a big match if Kaneland is to have Rosary Regional success on Tuesday, May 18, against Aurora Central Catholic File Photo

Soccer earns win, tie

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—Lady Knight soccer found its propensity for finding the net on Tuesday, just in time for the season’s homestretch.

The Lady Knights went to a 0-0 draw in Hinckley against the H-BR Lady Royals. Kaneland came back on Tuesday and took it to the Lady Hubs 4-1 to garner their first win since April 24.

With an 11-1-4 mark and a 2-1-2 record in Western Sun Conference play, the Lady Knights broke open the scoring column, with three first half goals against Rochelle.

Emily Heimerdinger had the first two goals, assisted by Sophie Blank and Andie Bruce on the opening goal and Haley Johnson on the second goal. Katie Taylor closed the first half scoring out with an assist by Colleen Gebauer on a corner kick. Blank scored the lone second half goal and was assisted by Melissa Bohorquez.

The Lady Knights brace for a WSC showdown with the visiting Sycamore Lady Spartans on Thursday, May 6, at 4:30 p.m. and also prepare to host the first-ever Kaneland Klassic, which takes the place of the Burlington Central tournament.

On Friday, Kaneland also received post-season news and has earned a No. 1 seed for the first time in program history.

Having matched the mark for most wins in school history for a season, the Lady Knights, at No.1 seed, will play the fourth-seeded Aurora Central Catholic Lady Chargers on Tuesday, May 18, at 4 p.m. at Rosary High School in Aurora. The winner of that encounter faces off against the winner of No. 2 Rosary and No. 3 Illinois Math & Science Academy who duke it out on Wednesday, May 19, in the Class 2A regional championship set for Saturday, May 22.

The winner of the Rosary Regional heads off to the Hampshire Sectional against potentially Hampshire or Marian Central Catholic.

Lady Knights 6-0 on pitch

Kaneland’s start on the pitch shows no signs of slowing down.

Even if the Lady Knights have given up a whopping two goals after three straight shutouts to open 2010.

The girls soccer squad has its best start in team history and are 6-0.

So far this week, the Lady Knights took care of visiting Class A team Indian Creek in Maple Park by a final of 7-0 under cold conditions on April 7.

In the opening of the 2010 Blackhawk Soccer Tournament on Thursday, Kaneland executed a 3-2 win over host West Aurora. Kaneland followed that gem with a 4-0 shutout against Plainfield East in the second game of the gathering on Saturday. Finally, the Lady Knights put forth a Tuesday shutout against the Lady Sabres of Streamwood by a 4-0 clip.

Against the Lady T-Wolves, Emily Heimerdinger scored twice, while additional goals were scored by Andie Bruce, Katie Taylor, Shelby Koester, Thalia Garcia and Colleen Gebauer.

Against West Aurora, KHS and the hosts were deadlocked at two after the first 40 minutes until Kaneland scored again.

Heimerdinger, Koester and Gebauer found the net.

Heimerdinger managed a hat trick against the Bengals and Garcia also added one. Haley Johnson tallied an assit.

Against Streamwood, Heimerdinger, Koester, Sophie Blank and Andie Bruce found the net.

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.

Kaneland’s ‘09 kicks ended by Crystal Lake Central

by Mike Slodki
A productive Kaneland soccer season launched the girls into their first ever regional championship match on Friday night.

Unfortunately, at the home of the Burlington Central Rockets, that’s where the launch ended.

Dealing with top-seeded Crystal Lake Central, the Lady Knights dropped a 3-0 result in a physical contest.

The loss, coming after a high-intensity 1-0 win over Hampshire last Tuesday, ended the Lady Knights’ 2009 campaign at an above-average 11-9-3.

That’s the best winning percentage in team history, eclipsing a 2005 squad that went 11-10-1.

That team, also coached by Scott Parillo, defeated Hinckley-Big Rock in a class A opening round matchup before losing to Wauconda in Hampshire.

The Tigers drew first blood with a shot over goalkeeper Sophie Blank’s head in just 6 minutes, 40 seconds into the match for a 1-0 lead.

The two teams stalemated until a header found its way in just 1:31 before halftime to make it a 2-0 margin.

Crystal Lake Central’s final score came with 36:52 left in the contest.

Parillo lauded the girls’ season despite the less-than-ideal end result.

“We really did well,” Parillo said. “We had freshmen and sophomores starting at different points. We’re young and this is going to leave a bad taste in their mouths. Crystal Lake Central did everything they needed to do to win, but this is the first time to a final for us and it was a good experience.”

Kaneland says goodbye to five seniors: Savanna Castillo, Brittany Chase, Bridget Crosby, Danni Garcia and Sarah Goodrich.

“We had pretty good leadership. Three were captains and it’s a shame to lose them, they were all good kids,” Parillo said.

KHS rockets over Hampshire in 1-0 thriller

Free kick by Gebauer propels soccer to regional title chance
by Mike Slodki
Lady Knights soccer had the odds against it in the regional semifinal match on Tuesday.

Going up against a Class A juggernaut in Hampshire that moved to 2A in the new three-class system and was a State-goer the past three seasons, the Lady Knights’ chances against the Whip-purs may have seemed slight.

What happened was that Kaneland made good on its best chance, a free kick by Colleen Gebauer with 4:17 remaining in regulation, and took a 1-0 win into Friday’s 2A Burlington Central Regional against (1) Crystal Lake Central.

Kaneland improved to 11-8-3 and tied the most wins in team history.

“I just asked for my 10 yards and waited for our people to get set up,” Gebauer said. “I just aimed for the corners and hoped for the best.”

With still more work to do, Sophie Blank held strong in goal and made a sliding save with 3:28 remaining. Emily Heimerdinger had a chance just a minute prior to the goal with a shot that hit the post.

“We just needed to be aggressive and keep our focus,” defender Megan Gil said. “The last five minutes were going to be the most crucial of the whole game. Celebrate the goal and settle down.”

With a 9-1 win at Western Sun Conference rival Yorkville in the morning, the Lady Knights assured themselves of their first winning season since 2005 (11-10-1) and the second in team history.

Kaneland also ends its conference portion of the season at 2-5.

Against the Lady Foxes, KHS went out to a 5-1 lead after the first 40 minutes of action, and added four more in the second half.

Emily Heimerdinger scored three goals, and Bridget Crosby added two herself. The other goals were had by Thalia Garcia, Andi Bruce, Paige Rogers and Sarah Goodrich.

The freshmen closed their season out with an 8-1 loss to Plainfield North on Thursday, as Hayley Garcia found the net.

PHOTO: Megan Gil tries to get the ball out of Kaneland’s zone in the second half of the varsity home loss to Batavia on May 12. The Lady Knights improved to 11-8-3 with an upset win over Hampshire at Tuesday’s regional. Photo by John DiDonna

Lady Knights bring the goals in win over BC

by Mike Slodki
If Lady Knights soccer had more weeks like this, it’d put itself in pretty good shape.

A productive week leaves the Lady Knights at 4-3-1 through eight matches. Kaneland hosted Burlington Central on Saturday afternoon, coming away with a 6-0 win. Wednesday, April 15, saw KHS end the West Aurora Tournament with a 1-1 tie vs. Rochelle. KHS could have made it through with an undefeated week if not for a 2-1 Tuesday loss to DeKalb.

Against the Rockets, the Lady Knights went out to a 4-0 lead after the first 40 minutes and added two more goals in the second half.

Colleen Gebauer had a goal and assist, while Andi Bruce, Sophie Blank and Emily Heimerdinger also added goals. Amy Fabrizius scored an assist.

The Lady Knights finished the gauntlet a West Aurora with a 2-1-1 record, the second best in team history.

Down 1-0 after the first half against the Lady Hubs, Kaneland felt the pressure and was stopped on several close-range shots in the initial stages of the second frame.

A Blank save seven minutes in preserved the deficit and paved the way for a tie score. A rocket by Shelby Koester just outside the goalie box tied the score at one with 29:39 to go.

“I’m happy we salvaged a tie, because we did not play well in the first half,” Kaneland coach Scott Parillo said. “We played much better in the second half; that I’m happy about. If we play well, we’re going to score. I told the girls that it shows how good they really are, to not play up to their potential and still manage a tie.”

Against the Barbs, Crosby scored after being fed by Heimerdiner’s assist, but the Lady Knights still suffered a loss in its first conference match.

The JV crew managed a 2-1 win over Plainfield North on Wednesday, April 15. Perla Gaytan and Katie Merlo found the net.

Varsity heads back on the pitch Thursday, April 23, vs. Indian Creek and Saturday, April 25, vs. Morris.

Lady Knights subdue IMSA in opener

Kaneland girls soccer got the season off to a winning start with a rain-swept 4-0 win at Illinois Math & Science Academy in Aurora on Tuesday.

With drenched conditions and high winds, Kaneland had 18 shots on goal, hitting paydirt thanks to Emily Heimerdinger (twice), Colleen Gebauer and Shelby Koester.

Sophie Blank made five saves in goal.

Kaneland was up 3-0 after the first half.

The JV squad under coach Kevin Bickley took IMSA by a 6-0 final, thanks to goals by Judith Chavez (2), Katie Taylor (2), Abby Bend and Sam Wantuch.

The Lady Knights’ next test is at home vs. Rosary on Thursday, March 26.