Tag Archives: Tom Van Bogaert


Every second counts

Sectional semi loss follows David’s buzzer-beater for Regional crown
KANELAND—Kaneland boys basketball set the bar pretty high for Tuesday evening’s Hampshire Sectional semifinal against fellow No. 1 seed Rockford Lutheran.

After all, how could a team top a 62-60 Kaneland Regional final from Friday night that saw Drew David’s 20-footer go in as the buzzer sounded, prodding the KHS faithful to storm the court?

For the first 16 minutes of play in Hampshire on Tuesday night, it seemed like KHS would top the weekend and write a ticket to the sectional championship on Friday, up 37-26 at the break.

But a 31-11 third quarter in favor of RL put Kaneland in a deep hole. The Knights were able to cut it to two before RL ran away in a 76-61 win.

Kaneland finishes the 2013-14 season at 18-10. Rockford Lutheran was set to face the winner of Wednesday’s Marian Central Catholic-Sycamore contest.

Senior Tyler Carlson had 38 points Tuesday against Rockford Lutheran. Photo by Patti Wilk
Senior Tyler Carlson had 38 points Tuesday against Rockford Lutheran. Photo by Patti Wilk

Tyler Carlson put up 38 points against the Crusaders, with John Pruett adding 15 in the losing cause.

“At halftime, we were real excited,” KHS coach Brian Johnson said. “The kids were pumped, and I almost think it crept into their mind like ‘we’re going to win this game’. Against a team like Rockford Lutheran, who are very well-coached and has so many guys who can put it in the hole, you just can’t have that mentality.”

Down 19-11 in the first, Pruett made a putback and Carlson managed a three-point play to close it to 19-16 with 28.4 seconds left to close the scoring.

Midway through the second quarter, the Crusaders sunk a trey to take a 26-25 lead with 4:51 to go, but KHS went on a torrid 12-0 run capped by a Carlson three with 12.8 to go.

Fueled by six straight made shots in a row, RL would turn a 41-33 hole into a 57-47 edge before a Carlson free throw with 3.2 ticks left in the frame made it 57-48 going into the fourth.

KHS had one last run left in it, with four free throws from Carlson and Pruett and a trifecta from Carlson to close within 57-55 with 5:51 remaining. However, RL stormed further out into the lead with a 14-0 run to go up 71-55 with 1:58 to go, cinching the game.

Despite the season-ending setback, Johnson could appreciate Knight postseason performances like Carlson’s two-game explosion.

“(Carlson) was just outstanding. You could tell he was determined. It’s not something that comes easy for Ty; he worked really hard,” Johnson said.

Carlson, who put up 30 points against the Cadets, was no stranger to the close contests with the Aurora rival, having himself sunk two foul shots with under two ticks left to beat Marmion on Jan. 14.

“I can’t say enough about my teammates; they were playing awesome,” Carlson said. “Drew hitting that shot? That kid’s clutch.”

Drew David
With under a second to go against Marmion Friday, senior Drew David pulled up for a long two-pointer, draining the shot and prompting the Kaneland faithful to storm the court for a postgame celebration at KHS. The Knights won 62-60, but fell Tuesday to Rockford Lutheran in the Sectional. Photo by Patti Wilk

In the Friday setting that revealed the Knights’ second regional plaque in three seasons. Marmion led early 14-4 before Kaneland put in the next six points to close within 14-10.
Eight key foul shots by Carlson, including four on a technical foul, along with two Pruett foul shots helped supply an eight-point advantage. Marmion hit a shot with 7.3 left to close it to 34-28 before halftime.

The Cadets owned the third quarter, outscoring the Knights 18-8. Carlson’s bucket with 3:03 left in the frame gave Kaneland a 42-39 lead, but Marmion put up the last seven points in the quarter to head to the fourth up 46-42.

While Marmion was a flawless 8-for-8 from the foul line in the fourth, Kaneland held its own. Pruett’s putback and free throw managed to tie the game with 2:17 at 56-56. Two foul shots by the Cadets with 1:53 left lifted the visitors to a 58-56 lead. A floater by Cole Carlson followed with 1:40 to go to tie matters again. David hit free throws with 42.3 left for a 60-58 lead, and Ryan David’s chance to up the lead with two foul shots of his own came up empty.

“(Drew) makes those two free throws, he makes the game winner. I say it all the time, he’s a four-year starter, captain, an All-State football player. You come to expect those things out of him,” Johnson said.

Cadet Jordan Glasgow hit a shot attempt with 10.5 left, paving the way for Tyler Carlson to dribble up and haphazardly pass to David just inside the arc for the game-winner.

“This is something that not a lot of people get to do, and for us to do it especially the way that we did, it’s insane,” David said. “It’s something that I’ll never forget. It’s awesome.”

There wasn’t a lot of time to think once the game was deadlocked again.

“We wanted to get a stop. We thought we could win it on the defensive end. Once they got a bucket, everything just kind of went crazy,” David said.

After the loss to Rockford Lutheran, Kaneland says goodbye to seniors David, Pruett, Tom Van Bogaert, Tyler Carlson, Eric Przbylski and Cole Carlson.

Photos from Kaneland/Marmion game (by Patti Wilk):

Photos from Kaneland/Rockford Lutheran game (by Patti Wilk):


Long-range game

Photo:Senior John Pruett drives to the hoop with junior Ben Barnes right behind during Saturday’s boys basketball practice. Photos by Patti Wilk

Johnson’s crew aims for third NIB-12 title in four seasons
KANELAND—Kaneland boys basketball may have 67 wins under coach Brian Johnson in his previous four years, but the lack of one specific win last February is what spurs them on.

A regional semifinal loss to Wheaton’s St. Francis High School at the IMSA Regional put an end to a season that saw a 16-12 mark and a second-ever Northern Illinois Big XII championship.

The ending of the last campaign meant Johnson said goodbye to two hard-working seniors, Matt Limbrunner and Dan Miller.

“Losing Dan and Matt is obviously a big loss,” Johnson said. “Matt was player of the year in our league and had a nice season. Dan was a leader who played outstanding defense.”

The loss of the two anchors is lessened somewhat with the return of backcourt powerhouse Drew David and senior company.

“Drew is a four-year starter. John (Pruett) is coming off an all-conference season, and Ty (Carlson) was solid throughout the year. We definitely have guys coming back that were solid contributors for us,” Johnson said.

The three are also well-versed in the clutch, having seen David crush dreams of DeKalb and Sycamore with late three-pointers last year, and Carlson beating Morris with a putback.

“They’ve gone through a lot as far as basketball is concerned. With them having been in football and baseball, they’ve been through a lot of varsity games and hopefully can add to their basketball experience,” Johnson said.

Junior Connor Fedderly also returns after having served time in the starting lineup, as does Cole Carlson.

“Connor had a nice year last year and a nice summer with his shot. Cole put in major minutes for us last year. We have some other guys that played a little bit last year,” Johnson said.

Johnson refers to assets like tower Tom Van Bogaert and Ben Barnes in his junior year.

Sophomore Dylan Vaca, thrown into the fire last year as a freshman, returns for more second-year minutes. Junior Steven Limbrunner makes his varsity entrance with a good pedigree, while junior Owen Korpela joins the squad as well.

Zach Douglas, Ryan David and Jake Gomes also join the Knight ranks for 2013 after JV experience.

In his fifth year, Johnson has gained more experience with juggling a lineup of different players and personalities.

“It’s nice that I know the kids really well and they know me. I have an idea with some guys, and there’s a competition for minutes. Some guys that may start may not finish games,” Johnson said.

Looking at the upcoming season, Kaneland is upping the ante on awareness and competition, which includes a return to the Plano Shootout over the holidays, and a return to the United Center court for the first time in four years against Geneva. The Knights also host the first-ever Kaneland Shootout in February.

“We’re trying to step up our competition, and we play in good competition over the summer. The goal is not to hide,” Johnson said.

For the NIB-12 landscape, nothing will be taken for granted.

“Every night is a solid matchup, we’re all pretty evenly matched across the board. Sycamore finished strong with a regional title. They have solid players,” Johnson said.

The season tips off on Wednesday, Nov. 27, with the Batavia Windmill Classic. Conference play begins at Sycamore, on Friday, Dec. 6.


2013 Football Preview: The road black

Photo: Senior quarterback Drew David, here taking the field at last Thursday’s Knights Under the Lights scrimmage, will lead the Knights in 2013. The Knights are looking to move past an early second-round playoff exit in 2012. Photo by Patti Wilk

Talented upperclassmen look to remedy second-round exit of 2012 season
Kaneland—Get ready Kaneland football fans, and prepare to retreat Kaneland football opponents.

Nothing may be more dangerous to opponents than a team that has won 28 regular season games in a row and a class that has won 34 of 47, and wants to remedy a second-round Class 5A elimination at the hands of Lincoln-Way West.

“The kids still feel embarrassed how it ended last year,” seventh-year coach Tom Fedderly said. “We’ve looked at the film of our scrimmage and we want to take a big step improving. We’ll look for faster improvement for this week.”

“We’ve looked at the film of our scrimmage and we want to take a big step improving.  We’ll look for faster  improvement for  this week.” KHS football coach  Tom Fedderly
“We’ve looked at the film of our scrimmage and we want to take a big step improving.
We’ll look for faster
improvement for
this week.”
KHS football coach
Tom Fedderly

Leading the way at quarterback is Drew David, a senior who’s guided the team to the postseason two straight years. David suffered a hand injury in a victory over Yorkville in last year’s regular season, even missing the win over Sycamore. A pin was put in his hand, and Fedderly has a healthy quarterback again.

“We at Kaneland have been lucky as anyone for the quarterbacks we’ve had, no doubt,” Fedderly said.

Fellow senior Jesse Balluff once again sees time at the running back position.

“It’s nice to have him and have that balance in a spread offense. You have to prepare for him, and he’s a running threat,” Fedderly said.

Also in the backfield is bruiser and goal-line option Nate Dyer, who may also see some time on the other side of the ball at nose tackle.

The all-important wideouts in the Kaneland offensive package see some departures, but also see returnees like Dylan Nauert and Brandon Bishop.

Adding to the offense at wideout are John Pruett and Connor Fedderly. Tyler Slamans returns after an ACL injury to serve at tight end.

The offensive line features Alex Snyder, who has amassed the most varsity wins for any player in Kaneland football history, having joined the ranks as a freshman.

He’s joined by Joe Komel, in pursuit by college football programs, Shane Jorgensen, and Justin Diddell, with Tom Van Bogaert projected at center.

“We have a lot of big guys there, and average about 260 pounds,” Fedderly said.

On the ball-snatching side of the field, the linebacking corps features Gary Koehring, who had no shortage of key plays and stops in 2012. Sam Bower, Slamans and Dan Hammermeister. The Knights’ crew also has Tyler Carlson and Cole Carlson for linebacking duties, as well.

Kaneland also gets a boost from secondary play. JR Vest returns, and will be joined by Knights like Grant Wooten and Isaac Swithers.

“Isaac is a tough kid; the secondary has to know what the offense is trying to do,” Fedderly said.

Matt Rodriguez returns as the kicking specialist.

“It’s so important to have a kicker who can put it 80 yards downfield for field position,” Fedderly said.

Kaneland’s reputation precedes itself in NIB-12 history, as the only conference champ the group has ever known, but the East division houses threatening teams beginning with Class 5A runner-up Morris.

“Morris is always good, and that’s a really big game down there; Sycamore has a good senior class, and that’ll be interesting to watch against Lincoln-Way West in week one, Rochelle is always tough, we know DeKalb’s coach from having faced Belvidere in the playoffs the last two years, and Yorkville has eight sophomores that saw time last year,” Fedderly said.

KHS hosts Brooks Prep of Chicago on Friday, Aug. 30, and tries to add to the two-game win streak against the Eagles. KHS needed a fourth-quarter comeback for a one-point win in 2012.

No decay in Decatur area for Knights baseball

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—Spring break stories for Kaneland baseball will feature impressive displays against teams from Decatur, Ill.

Going to the former stomping grounds of KHS coach Brian Aversa—Millikin University, the Knights beat Decatur’s Eisenhower High School on March 28, plus handed Decatur’s MacArthur High School a loss on Thursday.

Kaneland also took it to host Harlem in Machesney Park, Ill., by a final of 3-1 on Monday to raise its overall mark to 6-4 in 2012.

In the 15-2, five-inning win over Eisenhower, Drew Peters earned his first win of the year (1-1), and the Knights put up five runs in the first and five in the fifth to bookend the barrage.

Jake Razo went 2-for-2 with two runs and two RBI, while Zach Martinelli smacked a two-run triple.

Against Decatur’s MacArthur team, the Knights put up seven runs in the top of the first inning, needing all of those runs as the hosts crawled back enough to make it a closer 11-7 win for Kaneland.

Bryan VanBogeart, with three innings of relief, took the win with five strikeouts to its credit.
Peters went 1-for-2 at the plate for the victorious Knights.

It was not as kind a day for Peters on the mound on Friday against host Washington High School. The lefty went 4.2 innings and gave up four runs, but just two earned, in an 8-3 setback. The hurler did fan nine batters.

John Hopkins went 1-for-4 with two RBI.

Despite taking a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth inning, Washington came back with a four-spot in the fifth and sixth innings to cinch things.

Against the Harlem Huskies, Kaneland’s offensive attack involved a run in the second and two runs in the fourth to break a tie.

VanBogaert’s outing of just three hits allowed was enough to get the win on the mound, and Matt Limbrunner’s two-inning outing earned him the save.

Quinn Buschbacher went 2-for-2 with a double and two stolen bases.

KHS next battles Rockton’s Hononegah High School locally on Thursday, April 5.

Kaneland then heads to Dixon High School to face the Dukes in NIB-12 crossover action on Saturday, April 7, to the site of the 2011 sectional championship grab—Rochelle, on Monday, April 9, and back home to host the purple-clad Hubs on Tuesday, April 10.

In other levels of Kaneland Knights diamond action, the Knight sophomores fell to West Aurora on Monday by a final of 8-6.

Tom Van Bogaert went 1-for-1 with a walk. Tyler Carlson went 3-for-4 with a double and two RBI, and Nate Hopkins had a 2-for-3 day at the plate with a walk and a run scored. The sophomore Knights still search for their first win after three opening losses.