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Elburn Herald | Sugar Grove Herald

Ream’s through May 2015
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Community Sports - page 5

Photo: Still perfect

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photoThe 12U Elburn Softball Orange Crush continued its perfect streak as it concluded the season with a first-place win in the DeKane Tournament. Including all post-season play, the team went a perfect 16-0 for the year. This year’s team included Megan Stefanik (back row, left to right), Nora Crimmins, Abby Peeler, Makenna Sikon, Olivia DiChiarro and Stephanie Lawrence; Grace Nemechek (front row), Lily Karl, Thaya Luse, Sidney Warford and Emily Jones. Courtesy Photo

Photo: Neon Lightning take 1st

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The Elburn 12U Softball Neon Lightning played to a first-place finish during its season. The team included coaches Jeff Siblik (back row, left to right), Vaughn Hazen, Ron Erickson, Mark Wilson and Chris Rosati; Ella Siblik (front row), Angelia Harris, Lillie Lindgren, Olivia Hazen, Rachael Hendricks, Emilee Erickson, Danielle Wilson, Taylor Moss, Sarah Kantola, Grace Rosati and Madison Bayard. Courtesy Photo

Photo: Tops in the Bronco League

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The Kaneland Baseball 12U Silver Division team won the Kane County Bronco League. Team coaches Dave Panico (back row, left to right), John Ortegel, Fred Brown and John Marshall; players are, Jake Vogt (back row), Chase Carlson, Nikolas Panico, Joe Born and Declan McDonald; Sam Weigand (front row), Nick Ortegel, Spencer Brown, Zach Denning, and Will Marshall; missing from the photo is Nolan Fergus. Courtesy Photo

Photo: Closing out the season in style

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The Sugar Grove Park District 10U softball team took second place in its end-of-the-season tournament. The team included coaches Dennis Sheehan (back row, left to right) and John Ortegel; Olivia Franklin (middle row), Olivia Stratman, Olivia Sheehan, Olivia Ortegel and Delaney Lancaster; Isabelle Martinez (front row), Rachel Franck, Brooke Berens and Ella Edwards; missing from the photo are McKenna Ryan, Sara Michaelson and Sarah Phillips. Courtesy Photo

Express takes top spot

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Express 14U KCBL Champions
The 14U Express Baseball Team are the 2013 14U Kane County Bronco League Gold Division champions. Team included Brock Williams (bottom
row, left to right), Jake Hed, Jack Weigand, Preston Havis, Joey Brandonisio, Luke Calabrese and Daniel Franck; coach Tony Mitchell (top row), coach Mike Pollastrini, Josh Norman, Brett Glennon, Josh Pollastrini, Clark Hendricks, Jake Hummel, coach Scott Glennon, coach Bryan Williams, and coach Ross Davidson. Courtesy Photo

Former Knight champs boost CSBL Joliet squad in postseason

in Baseball/Community Sports by

Photo: Former KHS baseball player Brian Dixon (left) helped the Joliet Dirtbags baseball team beat the Crestwood Pantheers 14-4 in seven innings on Thursday in Midlothian, Ill. The Dirtbags qualified to compete in the NABF Major Regional tournament, set to begin Thursday, Aug. 1. The team features a pair of former Knights, with pitcher Kyle Davidson also on the team. Courtesy Photo

Davidson on mound, Dixon with glove help Dirtbags to 14-4 rout
MIDLOTHIAN—The Joliet Dirtbags baseball team had some nice moments before its end in the Chicago Suburban Baseball League’s postseason tournament, and two former Knights were the reason why.

Former Knight and current Millikin Big Blue Kyle Davidson pitched a strong six innings and teammate and fellow former Knight Brian Dixon played strong on the infield to propel the team to a 14-4 win over the Crestwood Panthers in seven innings last week.

The league tournament journey came to an end for the Dirtbags by a final of 9-2 on Friday at Madison Meadows in Lombard, Ill. By virtue of their finish, the Dirtbags, with five members of the Millikin team, are set to compete in the NABF Major Regional beginning on Thursday, Aug. 1.

The finals of the CSBL tourney had Lombard beat Beecher on Saturday, 8-0.

The Dirtbags, now 18-19, were faced with a total elimination on Thursday after a 13-3 rout suffered at Homewood-Flossmoor High School to the Beecher Mustangs.

However, the team turned around its fortunes against Crestwood in its big win.

Davidson was able to hold off a rally from the mound after giving up a two-run homer for a 4-3 disadvantage and fanned six members of the Crestwood lineup, giving up four runs on five hits.

“If we lost, we go home, and the same with them,” Davidson said. “We had to come out and play our best game.”

Dixon, who was moved from his usual No. 8 or No. 9 hole, to second in the order by Dirtbags skipper Kevin Campbell, smacked an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth to tie the score at 4-4.

After a bases loaded walk broke the tie, Dixon (1-for-5, RBI) came home on a two-run single, effectively icing the game at 7-4.

“I was not expecting to bat (second),” Dixon said. “I like it; it’s different and it’s nice to get a different feel, and I took a different approach to it.”

In a do-or-die situation like the one presented on Thursday, Dixon preferred the smart approach to the hacking attack.

“Now is the time to be smart, definitely,” Dixon said. “That’s the way I’m looking at it. If it’s the right pitch and right count, I’m taking it.”

Dixon, at second base, was able to stab a liner off the Panthers lineup with runners on base in the top of the fifth that protected the lead.

Joliet scored four runs in the bottom of the sixth for an 11-4 lead, and scored three more to end it via the mercy rule, the last of which coming on a passed ball.

“Looking at their stats, I knew their top four guys were probably their best, so I tried to pound them, and cruise with the other guys,” Davidson said.

The Dirtbags’ next obstacle, the NABF Major Regional, is hosted by Beecher.

Phantoms tackle the Bandits

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Photo: Phantoms shortstop Ryan David (Kaneland) takes a throw from the pitcher in a pick-off attempt at second base on Saturday. Photo by Mary Paulson

The Kane County Phantom’s 16U baseball team, coached by Randy Jones of Elburn, played in the Team Exposure Road Ranger Wood Bat Tournament in Rockford, Ill. last week. Saturday’s game saw the Phantoms defeat the Bartlett Bandits 3-2. The team draws players from throughout the area, and includes a number of Kaneland-area athletes: Ryan David, Jason Edwards, Joey Esposito, Noah Jones, Tyler Paulson, Matt Rosko and Colin Turner.

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Elburn youth vies for national title

in Bowling/Community Sports by
Mabel Cummins

Photos: Mabel Cummins (right) follows through during a recent tournament in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Cummins (below) , a sixth-grader attending Kaneland Harter Middle School, gathers some of the trophies she’s won during recent tournaments from throughout the region. Courtesy Photos

Mabel Cummins seeks nation’s top spot in bowling tournament
Kaneland—Mabel Cummins, a sixth-grader at Kaneland Harter Middle School, is traveling to Detroit next week to compete in the 12-under division of the United States Bowling Congress Youth Open Championships.

Cummins is one of the top junior bowlers in the Chicago area with an average near 180 and a current high game of 238.

Bowling has been part of her life as long as she can remember, even as a toddler growing up in the wilds of Eagle River, Alaska. Somewhere around age 4, she started bowling with her father on Sunday nights before he went to work, but she didn’t get serious about the sport until she moved to the “lower 48” in 2008.

Since coming to Illinois, Mabel has developed a passion for the game, and now she bowls with a clear goal in mind: college scholarship. She has earned recognition with titles in and above her age group, and although only 11, she has caught the attention of some well-known professional bowlers.
Last month in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, she impressed PBA champions Jason Belmonte and Diandra Asbaty, co-sponsors of the Elite Youth Tour, when she rolled a five-game, 888 series at a regional event to become the youngest semi-finalist in the U-20 girls division. Earlier this year in Mission, Kansas, she received kudos from PBA Hall of Fame member Norm Duke, who watched her post the high scratch (non-handicap) series among 15-and-under boys and girls during a Next Level Bowling Pro-Am. Norm awarded Mabel with a new bowling ball, an autographed bowling pin and scholarship money for her efforts, and he noted that Mabel has the potential to become a future bowling superstar.

Much like other aspiring athletes, Mabel travels around the region to participate in various tournaments, but her main source of competition is the Fox Valley Junior Travel League. Between competitive events, she hones her skills at Funway Ultimate Entertainment Center in Batavia, under the guidance of long-time PBA professional Mike Sopper.

Mabel said she hopes to eventually use her abilities to garner a spot on Team USA, an elite group of top American men and women athletes who represent the U.S. in international bowling competitions. For now she has other priorities, like staying on the KHS Honor Roll despite being enrolled in advanced level (challenge) classes and teaching early life skills to second-graders on Sunday mornings at Fox Valley Christian Church.

Orange Crush crushes competition

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The 12U Elburn softball team Orange Crush worked its way through a perfect 12-9 season, including a perfect game in late June. The team includes coach Brad Luse (back, left) and Coach Ingrid Luse; Sydney Warford (middle, left to right), Stephanie Lawrence, Lily Karl, Abby Peeler, Nora Crimmins and Pitching Coach Sarah McGinnis; and Emily Jones (front, left to right), Makenna Sikon, Megan Stefanik, Olivia DiChiarro, Grace Nemechek and Thaya Luse. Courtesy Photo

Youth soccer clinic set for July 20

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Elburn—The Kaneland Youth Soccer, Kaneland United Soccer, Youth Elite Soccer, and Chicago Fire organizations are teaming up to offer a youth soccer training clinic on Saturday, July 20, from noon to 3 p.m. at Blackberry Elementary School in Elburn.

The clinic is open to youth players of all abilities, positions and ages. It’s $30 per player and includes a chance to win four club seats to an upcoming Chicago Fire regular season game.

The three-hour clinic is run by Youth Soccer Elite, the official camps partner of the Chicago Fire.
Players do not need to be a KYSO or KUSC member to participate. Registration information is available at

Perfect summer

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The DeKalb Hurricanes 16U softball team took first in the USSSA State Championship the first weekend of July and became the only team to go undefeated during the tournament, with a 6-0-1 record. The team was led by Belvidere High School pitcher Payton Ivy. Also assisting with pitching was Sycamore High School’s McKenna Marcinkowski. Tournament Best Defense was awarded to Abby Taylor of DeKalb High School. All Tournament team was awarded to Justine LaShure of Macomb High School (formerly Sycamore High School), Kaley Martens of Kaneland High School and Rachael Johnson of DeKalb High School. The team also qualified to attend the 16UB World Series in Tulsa, Okla., July 23- 28. The team consisted of pitching coach Jeaneen Ivy (top, left to right), assistant coach Chris Sikon, Kelsey Cooper, Abby Taylor, Kayley Aase, McKenna Marcinkowski, Haley Tadd, Payton Ivy, Justine LaShure and Coach Mike Taylor; Rachael Johnson (bottom), Rachel Urich, Morgan Sikon, Kaley Martens, Amber Thaler and Katie Schneider.
Courtesy Photo

Youth soccer clinic set for July 20

in Community Sports by

Elburn—The Kaneland Youth Soccer, Kaneland United Soccer, Youth Elite Soccer, and Chicago Fire organizations are teaming up to offer a youth soccer training clinic on Saturday, July 20, from noon to 3 p.m. at Blackberry Elementary School in Elburn.

The clinic is open to youth players of all abilities, positions and ages. It’s $30 per player and includes a chance to win four club seats to an upcoming Chicago Fire regular season game.

The three-hour clinic is run by Youth Soccer Elite, the official camps partner of the Chicago Fire.

Players do not need to be a KYSO or KUSC member to participate. Registration information is available at

Kaneland Travel Baseball announces tryout dates

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Kaneland—The Kaneland Travel Baseball Program announced its dates and times for tryouts for the 2014 season.

New this year are two additional levels of travel baseball—9U and 14U. Those teams will be in addition to the 10U-13U levels that were established during the inaugural year last year. Additional information can be found at

Players do not need to make all of the tryout dates, making one of the tryout dates is preferred.

In the event of inclement weather on any of the tryout dates, please check for any changes to locations and times.

All tryouts will be held at Wheeler Park at 901 Wheeler Road, Sugar Grove, IL 60554

Tryout dates/times/locations
Friday, July 19
• 10U—5:30 p.m.
• 11U—6:30 p.m.

Saturday, July 20
• 12U—8:30 a.m.
• 13U—9:30 a.m.
• 14U—10:30 a.m.

Sunday, July 28
• 9U—6:00 p.m.

Friday, Aug. 2
• 10U—5:30 p.m.
• 11U—6:30 p.m.

Saturday, Aug. 3
• 9U—8:30 a.m.
• 12U—9:30 a.m.
• 13U—10:30 a.m.
• 14U—11:30 a.m.

Sunday, Aug. 4—Catch-all tryout date
• All levels—12:30 to 2:30 p.m.

Wasco softball registration to begin

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Wasco—Wasco Girls Fastpitch Softball (WGFSL) registration for the 2013 Fall Ball season began Monday.

WGFSL is a recreational softball league open to all area girls in grades kindergarten through 12th grade.

Games are played on Saturdays at in St. Charles. Practices start in mid-August with games starting Aug 24th and conclude with the Susan G. Komen tournaments in mid-October.

Wasco also offers Fall Ball Training Camps. Space is limited. These clinics are very popular and fill up fast.

Players may download a registration form, register online at, or call (630) 513-1200. Fees are the same regardless of where you live—there are no “out-of-district” fees.

Photos: 2013 Knight Run

in Community Sports/Kaneland by

Photo (right): Jack Wituk of Maple Park worked hard as he competed Friday night at the Kaneland Foundation 5k and Fun Run at Kaneland High School. The event is held to raise money for the educational needs of District 302 students.

The Kaneland Foundation’s Knight Run took place Friday night. A non-profit organization, the Kaneland Foundation’s mission is to support academic excellence in the Kaneland School District. All money earned via the Kaneland Foundation goes directly back to the students at D302.

Photo: Champs!

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Team_9794The NI Thunder softball teams had a strong showing at the 2013 Northern Indiana State USSSA Championship Tournament in West Lafayette, Ind., last week. The 18U team (left), took first in the weekend tournament. The organization’s 16U and 14U teams also took first, and the 13U team placed second. All five teams qualified for a chance to compete in the World Series.
Photo courtesy of Jim Ecker

Kaneland Youth Soccer spring registration

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Elburn—The Kaneland Youth Soccer Organization (KYSO) is taking registrations for Fall Recreational Soccer through June 30 at

The fall season includes eight games, running from Aug. 24 to Oct. 26. All games and practices are held at the KYSO fields next to Kaneland High School in Maple Park.

Registration is open to boys and girls ages 4 to 17. Registration fees are $85 for the first child, $65 for each additional child and include a soccer jersey, shorts, socks, end-of-season trophies and certified referees.

KYSO also provides a TOPSoccer program for players with special needs. TOPSoccer (The Outreach Program for Soccer) is a national soccer program created to train young people with disabilities in a caring coaching environment. The program is generally carried out by volunteers at the local level, with financial support from US Youth Soccer and local youth soccer organization such as KYSO.

KYSO features small-sided games, balanced teams and college level trainers to support player development and provide coach support.

Volunteer coaching positions are also available, and a coach training session will be held in early August. Please email for details.

About KYSO
KYSO provides Big Rock, Elburn, Hinckley, Kaneville, Maple Park, Sugar Grove and Virgil, youth with recreational soccer opportunities. KYSO has approximately 50 recreational soccer teams for boys and girls ages 4-14 (U5-U14). KYSO recreational program teaches soccer through the use of smaller teams and fields, maximizing participation by all. The program also allows young players to learn and enjoy soccer in a positive and fun environment, usually in their own community with the same children with whom they go to school.

For the player who is primarily interested in fun, fitness and friendship; KYSO provides a healthy activity through its recreational and small sided games program. This program emphasizes fun and de-emphasizes winning at all costs. Every child is guaranteed playing time (three quarters minimum), and the game is taught in a fun and enjoyable atmosphere.

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