'The sky's the limit' for Montini after Broncos beat Hononegah at McAuley

Montini punched its ticket to next year's Asics Challenge by defeating (Rockton) Hononegah to win the Mother McAuley Preview tournament. By Randy WhalenSpecial to Illprepvb.comThere was no letdown for Montini.Playing in their first tournament title match since their only loss of the season, the Broncos hit on all cylinders and defeated (Rockton) Hononegah, 25-14, 25-13, Saturday in the title match of the Mother McAuley Preview.It was the 11th straight victory for Montini (16-1), which will now play in the ASICS Challenge Tournament next s...

Metamora still having fun after beating Morton for win No. 30 in a row

Metamora won its 30th consecutive match with help from 9 kills and 3 aces by 6-foot sophomore Esma Frieden (8). Attempting to block her during host Morton's 25-16, 27-25 loss Thursday were Kaitlyn Baumann (17) and Olivia Pippin (11). (Photo by Randy Sharer) Metamora setter Victoria Hall (Photo by Randy Sharer) By Randy SharerSpecial to Illprepvb.comMORTON – Metamora High School is taking a game of momentum – namely volleyball – and turning it into a multi-season game of success.The Redbirds ran their winning streak dating back...

Hinsdale Central brings out the best in Lyons Township, and pays the price

Hinsdale Central's Kaitlyn Thick (17), shown here against Nazareth at the Crimson Classic, had 4 kills during Tuesday's loss at Lyons Township. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) There’s something about Hinsdale Central that brings out the best in Lyons Township.Conversely, there’s something about Lyons Township that brings out the worst in Hinsdale Central.Lyons Township opened the home portion of its 2021 schedule Tuesday by welcoming West Suburban Conference Silver division rival Hinsdale Central, and the Lions didn’t exactly play the hospitable h...

Marching to her own beat, Minooka's Jada Hampton kills it on bass drum, too

Middle blocker Jada Hampton (10, on right, with Desiree Anderson) was a big part of the 2019 Minooka team that went 32-8 and reached the supersectional before falling to eventual Class 4A state champion Benet. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) By Randy WhalenSpecial to Illprepvb.comJada Hampton marches to the beat of a different drummer.Her own.Hampton is a standout middle hitter for the Minooka volleyball team. But the 6-foot-1 inch senior also does something else. She plays the bass drum in the Indian's marching band. "I've got many big respo...

Middle, outside or back row, DGN's Wolkow excels everywhere she goes

As a freshman, Downers Grove North's Gwen Wolkow (back row, fourth from right) was a starting middle hitter on the team that finished second in the state in Class 4A. Downers Grove North's Gwen Wolkow Gwen Wolkow loves to fish. She doesn’t like fish. But she loves fishing.Wolkow also loves volleyball. Since her freshman year, when she was a starting middle hitter on the Downers Grove North team that finished second in the state in Class 4A, she has developed into one of the top outside hitters and all-around players in Illinois.“She's th...

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Plainfield North discovers a diamond in the rough to pair with its perfect gem

Downers Grove South junior middle hitter Allison Bogdanski (11) helped the Mustangs sweep Leyden on Tuesday in Downers Grove. However, the Mustangs fell in straight sets to rival Downers Grove North on Thursday. (Photo by Dave Ruggles) By Matt Le CrenSpecial to Illprepvb.comPlainfield North’s Ella Wrobel is the 24-carat diamond whose brilliance outshines every other player on the court.The 6-foot-4 outside hitter has committed to Wisconsin, so, of course, everybody knows her name.Far fewer people have heard of Wrobel’s teammate, 5-10 junior...

Niles West ends the wait, rallies to defeat Niles North in crosstown rivalry game

Niles West celebrates with the trophy that goes to the winner of the annual rivalry game between West and Niles North. Waiting.Everyone was waiting.The fans were waiting. The bench was waiting. The coaches were waiting.Finally, trailing 22-18 in the second set and on the verge of being forced to a third set at home against rival Niles North, the real Niles West showed up.“The last seven points, we actually played how we know how to play,” said Niles West coach Stacy Roth. “We came alive. We started being smart, doing things we normally do …...

Plainfield Central is thinking big after beating Sandburg for its sixth straight win

Kitty Sandt (6) and Nazareth, the only team to defeat Plainfield Central this season, dropped its East Suburban Catholic Conference opener Tuesday to Benet in LaGrange Park. (Photo by Dave Ruggles). By Randy WhalenSpecial to Illprepvb.comPlainfield Central kept its winning streak going.The Wildcats pulled out a very competitive match down the stretch and toppled Sandburg, 25-23, 23-25, 25-23, Tuesday in Orland Park.  The Wildcats (7-1) won their sixth straight. Their only loss was to eventual runner-up Nazareth in pool play of t...

Unbeaten Belvidere North turns to Flynn to win the Jacobs Invitational

Unbeaten Belvidere North won the Jacobs Volleyball Invitational on Saturday, defeating Lake Forest, 25-16, 11-25, 25-10 in the championship match. Sometimes, no matter how good you are, you can’t do anything right. It was about then that Jayden Flynn decided that she had enough.“We did everything wrong in the second set,” said Flynn, Belvidere North’s feisty setter after watching her team bow 25-11 to Lake Forest in Game 2 of the championship match at the Jacobs Volleyball Invitational Saturday in Algonquin.“It seemed like as the set k...