Abbreviated NCAA fall volleyball season concludes for handful of Illinois girls

Belvidere North's Class of 2019 outside hitter BrookLyn Messenger and her Air Force Academy teammates are expected to begin their COVID-19 delayed season in February. Notre Dame junior and Mother McAuley graduate Charley Niego While Illinois high school teams sit idly until February due to the COVID-19 pandemic, several NCAA Division I college teams featuring Illinois Class of 2020 graduates are wrapping up the fall portion their schedules.The NCAA Division I Board of Directors approved a plan in late September to conduct 2020 fall cham...

A look at some of Illinois' top uncommitted girls in the classes of 2021-23

Illprepvb.com is creating a list of the top girls volleyball players in Illinois in the classes of 2021, 2022 and 2023 who have yet to commit to a college or university to continue their volleyball careers. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) Illprepvb.com is creating a list of the top players in Illinois in the classes of 2021, 2022 and 2023 who have yet to commit to a college or university to continue their volleyball careers. The following list includes players who compete at a very high level either for their high school or club teams. All par...

IHSA approves one-time exemption for high school and club volleyball participation

Boys and girls volleyball players will be able to participate in high school and club volleyball at the same time during the 2020-21 this school year following a ruling by the IHSA Board of Directors on Monday. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) A month after tabling a decision on whether to allow students to participate in club and travel sports while simultaneously competing for their high school teams during the spring and summer seasons, the IHSA Board of Directors gave the go-ahead Monday.IHSA By-law 3.100, which governs independent team parti...

Helping teens get through loss, isolation and fear begins at home, expert says

Teenagers are experiencing more stress than ever due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and it's important for parents to encourage their children to share their feelings, support them, work through the difficulties together while also caring for themselves. Maria Rago, Ph.D., is a psychologist and president of Rago & Associates Counseling Services. By all accounts, 13-year-old London Bruns of Ridgefield, Washington, was a happy teenager. Her parents described her as a sweet and sensitive daughter with a kind heart and incredible artistic...

A look at some of Illinois' uncommitted boys in the classes of 2021 and 2022

Illprepvb.com is creating a list of Illinois boys in the classes of 2021 and 2022 who have yet to commit to a college or university and have indicated a desire to continue their volleyball careers. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) Illprepvb.com is creating a list of Illinois boys in the classes of 2021 and 2022 who have yet to commit to a college or university and have indicated a desire to continue their volleyball careers. The following list includes players who compete at a high level either for their high school or club teams. All high school...

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Chicago Elite Volleyball Club continues to thrive despite pandemic, uncertainty

Chicago Christian and Chicago Elite Volleyball Club graduate Lia Moore (far right) is now playing at Michigan State. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) By Matt Le CrenSpecial to Illprepvb.comWith most youth sports on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic, volleyball club coaches naturally wondered if their enrollment would go down this fall.That has not been the case at Chicago Elite.“We thought we’d be a little bit hurt in numbers just because what’s the point of playing club if there’s not going to be any tournaments,” said Chicago Elite boys di...

Providence provides pioneering former Brother Rice coach with new start

Paul Ickes' 2007 Brother Rice team, led by Sun-Times Player of the Year Josh Scaletta (back row, fifth from left), was 39-0 heading into the IHSA quarterfinals before being upset by New Trier, a team it has defeated earlier that season. By Randy WhalenSpecial to Illprepvb.comPaul Ickes is going back to his roots, and the former Brother Rice volleyball coach could not be happier.Ickes, 56, who won 552 matches and took five teams to the IHSA state finals, is now at Providence Catholic High School in New Lenox. He is a theology teacher and wi...

Georgetown-Ridge Farm coach recognized for efforts in and out of the classroom

Georgetown-Ridge Farm's Kim Fraser coaches volleyball and softball at the Vermilion County school of approximately 300 students. Congratulations to Georgetown-Ridge Farm volleyball coach Kim Fraser. Fraser was honored by the IHSA and Country Financial as part of of a program to recognize the efforts of educators and coaches/advisors who go beyond the call of duty to positively impact the lives of Illinois high school students inside and outside of the classroom. Fraser took over a program 11 years ago that had not won a match in fo...

Seattle-bound St. Francis standout Sipes sets sights on successful senior season

Katlyn Sipes and her St. Francis teammates reached a Class 3A supersectional in 2019 before falling to eventual third=-place finisher Nazareth. (Photo courtesy of Daily Herald). Olivia Sipes is making quite a name for herself following in her older sister's footsteps. Katlyn Sipes cannot explain it.Unlike her sister Olivia, age 10, who followed Katlyn into volleyball after watching her older sister compete at the local and national level, youngest sister Beatrice, age 8, rejected volleyball for a sport dominated by men.“She plays ice hoc...