Young SPVB 18 Elite's unbeaten run ends at Presidents' Day Challenge

SPVB 18 Elite saw its 15-match winning streak to open the 2020 season come to an end against Alabama Performance 18 Red in the 18/17 Power division championship match of the Presidents' Day Challenge Monday at the Schaumburg Convention Center. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) Something about the “SPVB” lettering on the front of the jersey brings out the best in the opposition.Alabama Performance 18 Red’s best Monday was pretty darn good.Led by its trio of Division I recruits – 6-foot-3 outside hitter Merritt Beason (Florida), 6-3 middle hitter Gabr...

Kahl's original five plan to go out the same way they came in – together, and winning

SPVB 18 Kahl's Katie Kaburov (26) rips a kill between two Rolling Thunder 18 Blue defenders Sunday during the Presidents' Day Challenge at the Schaumburg Convention Center. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) Greek philosopher Heraclitus coined the phrase “change is the only constant in life.”Although Heraclitus lived more than 2,500 years ago, he could have just as easily been talking about Sports Performance’s No. 2 18s team.After a successful run as 13s, Kayla Closset (Naperville Central), Gretchen Ketelhut (Plainfield North), Maddie Bourque (York...

Digtown 16 Red taking small steps at its first big tournament of the season

Digtown 16 Red is among the nearly 150 teams competing in the Presidents' Day Challenge hosted by Sports Performance at the Schaumburg Convention Center this weekend. https://youtu.be/YBY46NlzK3Y Volleyball is the No. 1 participation sport in the United States for high school-aged girls, and it continues to enjoy explosive growth, especially on the club level.Case in point? Digtown Volleyball Club in Yorkville.Three-year-old Digtown is the brainchild of Bob Coselman, whose daughter, Sydney, teamed with Sammi LaBolle to lead Sandwich ...

Here are the post-Lafata Michio Chicago/Illprepvb.com Boys Club Rankings

Future 18 Elite and SPVB B16 Elite finished second in their respective divisions at the just-concluded 2020 Dennis Lafata Boys Bid Classic in St. Louis. (Photos by Dave Ruggles) The 2020 Dennis Lafata Boys Bid Classic in St. Louis, Missouri, is in the books. Illinois teams did not win a single Open championship, doing most of their damage in the USA and Club divisions.Local division winners at Lafata included SPVB B18 Lenny (18 USA), Future 17 White (17 USA), 630 Volleyball 16-1 (16 USA) and Ultimate B15 Blue (15 Club).Runners-up in th...

Sky High Adidas 18 Black coming to the end of a very long but successful journey

The nucleus of Sky High Adidas 18 Black has been together since they were 12-year-olds. They are trying to make their final season together one to remember. https://youtu.be/5mT8j2vTEaM “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” – Winnie the Pooh.Sky High Adidas 18 Black’s Camryn Hausler and Taylor Jakubowski have been teammates at the Crystal Lake Club for the better part of nine years. Maddie Blake, Josie Schmitendorf, Hausler and Jakubowski have been together for almost eight.But come May 4 – the day afte...

In time, Sandt hopes to deliver 1st Alliance 18 Silver a solid-gold finish

1st Alliance 18 Silver setter Elizabeth Sandt (37), one of only four team members who have experience playing with each other, likes the direction the team is going. https://youtu.be/SFjT9Wnvbjo Elizabeth Sandt saw only a few familiar faces when 1st Alliance 18 Silver got together for its first practice two months ago.“The team is pretty new this year,” said Sandt, a product of Nazareth Academy who guided the Roadrunners to a third-place finish in IHSA Class 3A last fall following the first-ever semifinal appearance in school history.“...

Talented Adversity G18 Adidas studying diligently to pass chemistry test

Adversity G18 Adidas is loaded with talent, but putting it all together could take some time, said coach Melissa Masterson. https://youtu.be/CAIXJmHGmm4 Every time Adversity G18 Adidas takes the court this season, it will have the proverbial target on its back.“I think we have a lot of talent,” said Adversity’s 6-foot junior setter Rachel Muisenga from Benet, who is committed to perennial Big 10 volleyball powerhouse Penn State. “But it's going to be what we do with that talent that will determine how we come out.“Each match, we have...

Here are the latest Michio Chicago/Illprepvb.com Girls Club Rankings

There was some movement in this week's girls club rankings with Sky High Adidas 18 Black taking over the top spot among the 18s and Michio Chicago 16 National moving to the top of the 16s field. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) The Windy City Power League seeding is over and the league season is underway. Surprises? There were a few. Meanwhile, with a few exceptions, the schedule is a little light prior to Presidents’ Day tournaments hosted by the Great Lakes Volleyball Center in Aurora and Sky High Volleyball Center in Crystal Lake. ...

Michio Chicago 18 National getting it done with defense and a 'no fear' attitude

Michio Chicago 18 National is unbeaten at 9-0 after two weekends of seeding in the Windy City Power League. https://youtu.be/M50k_E2ZVDc This is not last year’s Michio Chicago 18 National team.Gone from the team that went 5-3 and finished in 25th place at the USAV Girls 18s Junior National Championship in Dallas last April are such big bangers as Marian Catholic’s Temitayo Thomas-Ailara (Northwestern), Sandburg’s Erica Staunton (Northeastern) and Latin middle blocker Kelsey Watkins (Furman).But different is not always a bad thing.Afte...

Where are Illinois' top girls' volleyball recruits headed? (updated 2/13)

Mary Gegen (2) of Rochester and Springfield Shock Volleyball Club recently announced her decision to continue her playing career at Lake Forest College. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) Illprepvb.com is creating a list of the top players in Illinois in the Classes of 2020, 2021 and 2022 who have committed to a college or university to continue their volleyball careers. All coaches and club directors have been invited to provide the names of their players who should be on the list. The attached list features the names of players that have been submi...