by Mike Slodki
Coach Steve Fredricksonâ€™s program continues to see an increase in numbers from year to year, with this past fall season showing about 50 girls and 40 boys.
â€œIt has really been nice to see the numbers grow each year,â€ Fredrickson said. â€œWe have a lot of good young runners coming back next year and wish all the eighth-graders continued success at the high school level.
The biggest thrill for the middle schoolers was the 14-team Oswego Tiger Trails Invitational. The sixth graders took first, led by individual champion Victoria Clinton. The sixth grade boys took sixth, while the seventh grade girls finished first, thanks to champ Sydney Strang.
The seventh grade boys finished third, while the eighth grade girls finished first. The eighth grade boys also finished fourth. Kaneland, meanwhile, took the overall team championship.
Fredrickson gave a special thanks to the high school coaches and athletes, along with parents for supporting the Middle School cross country program.
The 8th-graders under coach Pat Sheetz and assistant coach Barney Callaghan went 6-5 in the 2008 fall season.
The wins featured a 36-0 game over Yorkville, a 26-16 affair over Geneva South, a 12-6 win over Aurora Herget, a 33-6 triumph over Sycamore, an 8-6 edging of DeKalb Huntley and a 28-0 solving of St. Charles Haines. The win over Haines came after a 36-0 loss to the same school in the early part of the season.
7th Grade Volleyball
Coach Tom Huels kept more girls on than in the past, which â€œshould provide a nice boost to the high school program when they arrive in 2010.â€
The A and B levels won a total of 15 matches combined, which is an improvement over past years. Huels pointed at three-game wins over Aurora Jewel, Aurora Herget and Geneva North as highlights, showing the girls could compete with anyone anytime.
8th Grade Girls Basketball
Despite injuries to pivotal players, KMS saw a 13-3 record for the â€œAâ€ squad and 11-4 on the â€œBâ€ side. One of the â€œAâ€ losses came to Geneva North, which was later avenged. The â€œBâ€ team had an impressive outing at the Yorkville B Invitational and finished second.
â€œThis group of talented athletes will potentially accomplish many things at KHS if they stay together and continue to work hard to improve,â€ Huels said.
8th Grade volleyball
In the level which adds more offensive and defensive strategies to the game, coach Sadie Stark looked to do more than win every time out.
â€œWe try to transition the girls to the high school game fairly quickly,â€ Stark said.
The â€œAâ€ (8-7) and â€œBâ€ (10-5) levels went a combined 18-12 on the fall season, but Stark was looking for something more from her squads of 20 combined girls.
â€œI never gage my teams on win-loss records. I gage it by where we started the season and where we ended up. We ended where we needed to and made the progress, and the girls saw that,â€ Stark said.
Matches vs. Batavia and St. Charles Thompson were mentioned as particular highlights.
Read Part II of the Kaneland Middle School wrapup in the March 26 Elburn Herald.