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Stoffa escorts families of fallen firefighters

in Elburn/Featured by

Photo: The National Fallen Firefighters Memorial in Emmitsburg, Md. Courtesy Photo

by Lynn Meredith
ELBURN—For the fourth year in a row, retired Elburn and Countryside Firefighter Lt. Mike Stoffa will escort the family of a fallen firefighter at the National Fallen Fire Fighters Memorial weekend.

The National Fallen Fire Fighters Foundation (NFFFF) in Emmitsburg, Md., every October sponsors a national tribute to all the firefighters who died during the previous year. Thousands attend the memorial weekend to honor the men and women who died in the line of duty.

About 100 firefighters die each year, with Illinois leading the nation for the most deaths in 2011. Stoffa was selected as an escort for the first time in 2009, after applying for eight years prior.

As one of 84 escorts chosen from across the country, he said it is quite a privilege.

“This is such an honor to be a servant for a family that has lost a loved one at the scene of an emergency or engaged in other fire department activity. This includes members of our military serving our country and engaged in fire suppression activities,” Stoffa said. “It is a weekend that cannot be repeated, a one-time honor to those who gave all for the cause, much like any other first responders here in the United States and abroad.”

Not every family that has lost a loved one attends the first year. Some can take up to five years to face the tribute.

“They’ve been through funerals, fundraisers—a lot of the grieving process. We gently open up the hearts of the people,” Stoffa said. “Sometimes the chief accompanies the family or their closest comrade, or sometimes 10 members of the department will come. They are often hard hit by the loss.

The escorts go through training and rehearsals to prepare to meet the families and provide for their every need throughout the weekend.

“We have multiple meetings, make logistical plans just like a fire scene. Everyone has a
job. It’s extremely organized and very military-minded,” he said. “Everything is rehearsed, rehearsed and rehearsed. It takes a whole year of planning.”

The escorts stand in front of the NFFFF building with a sign for the family they are assigned to escort. They then begin a round of activities. The children make lithographs and luminaries with pictures of their loved one. They all sign a huge banner. Professionally trained clowns who understand the grief process work with the children.

In the Memorial Chapel, the families can place a rose on the altar, light candles and sit for hours if they choose. Counselors are available to assist.

“The benefit of the place is the serenity. It is across the street from Camp David. You can see the sun rise above the hillsides and see the streams and rivers,” Stoffa said. “At night a candlelight vigil is held with musical presentations. The moon comes up over the top of the jumbotrons. The families are back in their hotels by 9 p.m. It’s been a long day.”

On Sunday, the memorial service begins with a “Sea of Blue.” Hundreds of honor guards
and about 400 bagpipers line a long walkway. The family is escorted through the line and is then presented with the flag, a rose and a medallion that is specially designed each year and personalized for the family.

Stoffa has come to expect the unexpected when it comes to his escort families. One year,
a widow from Tennessee finally found time to come to the event, and she died in route. In that
case or if the family cannot attend, a representative will receive the medallion.

Stoffa makes a few stops along the way as he drives to Maryland. He makes a point to stop in Pennsylvania at the Flight 91 site, where this year the big memorial will reach completion.
Stoffa also goes to Gettysburg and is awed by the Civil War displays.

“It’s an unbelievable honor, very emotionally taxing. You do it for the purpose,” he said.

Kaneland hosts 43rd Eddington Invite

in Boys Cross Country/Featured/Girls Cross Country by

Eddington Invite race schedule
(All races are 3 miles)

9 a.m. Girls Varsity Race
9:45 a.m. Boys Varsity Race
10:15 a.m.
Frosh-Soph Girls Race
10:45 a.m.
Frosh-Soph Boys Race
11:15 a.m.
Girls Open Race
11:45 a.m. Boys Open

KANELAND—One of Elburn’s oldest sports events, the Eddington Cross Country Invitational, will celebrate its 43rd edition this Saturday, Sept. 15, at Elburn Woods. Hosted by Kaneland High School, the meet commemorates the 25-year teaching and coaching career of Larry Eddington, a long-time Elburn resident who passed away suddenly in 1994.

Still an icon within the Kaneland School District, Eddington chaired the high school’s social studies and English departments and served as president of the Kaneland Education Association, while also coaching boys’ cross country, basketball, and track and field. His teams enjoyed success at the state level, winning the IHSA Class A State Cross Country title in 1987 and countless other awards and championships.

In 1982, Eddington was named “Kane County Educator of the Year.” Over the course of his coaching career, he was honored as “Illinois Cross Country Coach of the Year” three times. He was inducted into the Kaneland School District’s Hall of Fame in 2002 in recognition of his years of hard work and loyalty to Kaneland High School, where the “Larry Eddington Award for Courage, Leadership and Strength” is awarded annually by the school’s Athletic Department.

Eddington was an outstanding cross country runner, and track and field athlete at East Aurora High School and at Western Illinois University, where he prepared to pursue his goal of becoming a high school teacher and coach. His legacy is continued by former Knight runner Chad Clarey, who now coaches the Kaneland boys cross country team, and by former teaching colleague Doug Ecker, who coaches the girls team. Larry’s son Mark is the race director for the annual Elburn Days 5K and Mile Run.

At the 2012 Eddington Cross Country Invitational, the 21-team field includes seven girls teams who won their conference championship last fall and four teams that advanced to the State AA and AAA State Championships. Individually, eight individuals in the varsity girls race had performances on the track last spring that earned them “National Elite” designation by ESPNHS.com. Among the returners are Crystal Lake Central and sophomore Sami Staples, a 4:56/10:46 miler/2-miler on the track last spring, who are the defending Eddington Invitational varsity girls team and individual champions.

The boys’ varsity field includes four teams that advanced to the State AA and AAA Championships last fall, three individuals whose performances on the track last spring earned them “National Elite” designation by ESPN.com, and six others who received “State Elite” designation.

The host Kaneland boys’ team is led by junior Kyle Carter, who had a breakout track season last spring running 4:32 and 2:01 for the mile and 800. He is followed by seniors Conor Johnson, Brandon Huber, John Meisenger, and juniors Ryan Bower and Luis Acosta. The Knights placed 15th last fall in the IHSA AA State Championships and have won their first two triangular meets of the season with ease.

The Kaneland girls’ team is led sophomore Victoria Clinton who was the Northern Illinois Big-12 Conference Champion last year as a freshman and placed ninth individually at the state meet. She is backed by sophomore Aislinn Lodwig, seniors Abby Dodis, Maggie Brundige, Amanda Lesak and Ashley Castellanos, and junior Sydney Strang. The Lady Knights placed eighth last fall in the IHSA AA State Championships and have also notched lop-sided wins in their first two triangular meets of the season.

They are ranked No. 3 in the latest State AA girls team poll by Illinois Prep Harrier, behind Crystal Lake Central and Yorkville.

For Saturday’s Eddington Invitational, Elburn Woods has only enough parking to accommodate participating teams and the meet staff, so spectators are to park at Kaneland High School, where three shuttle buses will ferry them every 10 minutes to the Forest Preserve, which is only about five minutes away.

Demolition Knight

in Featured/Football by

Photo: Running back Jesse Balluff heads for the end zone for a score during the first quarter of Kaneland’s 42-0 home victory against Sterling on Friday. Photo by John DiDonna

Kaneland dominates on both sides of ball in 42-0 rout of Sterling
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—Kaneland and Sterling’s football programs have had two highly anticipated and dramatic meetings in the last seven seasons.

The battle on Friday in Maple Park was no less anticipated, but maybe less dramatic.

A stifling rush defense and an all-cylinders offense paved the way for a 42-0 win over the visiting and AP-ranked Golden Warriors, raising the Kaneland season mark to 3-0. Sterling fell to 2-1.

KHS saw its regular season win streak extend to 22. The Knights have now won 27 out of their last 29 overall contests.

“Sterling is a playoff-caliber team, and we thought it would be a playoff atmosphere,” KHS coach Tom Fedderly said. “We really wanted to be up and show that we are a good team.”

Quarterback Drew David employed the run at his disposal and was a modest six-of-10 for 133 yards and two touchdowns. Nate Dyer had 70 yards rushing.

Even before they both shared spots in the Northern Illinois Big XII, KHS and Sterling went toe-to-toe in playoff action in recent years.

The Knights and Golden Warriors battled in a 2006 Class 5A quarterfinal playoff game that saw KHS outlast Sterling in overtime, 52-45.

Two years later, Sterling earned a 23-21 win in the first round of the playoffs.

The margin was wider in 2012, and the Knights got into the act early thanks to a 45-yard touchdown strike to Brandon Bishop for his first score of the still-new campaign for a 7-0 lead with 6:11 left in the first frame.

On the next possession, the Knights got mass yardage from Zack Martinelli for a 27-yard gain, and two plays later, running back Jesse Balluff plunged in from the two for a 14-0 lead with 4:11 to go in the first quarter.

The second quarter was more of the same, as a four-play drive from KHS mixed a little of pass and run and ended with a David touchdown run from the three-yard line with 10:16 to go in the second quarter for a 21-0 advantage.

After Sterling’s drive ended in a punt, Balluff, Dyer and David took turns carrying the ball until Dyer punched it in from the four for a 28-0 lead with 4:20 to go in the half.

On a fourth-and-20 from its own 36, a punt snap went awry and was recovered on the 13 by Cole Carlson. Four plays later, Bishop caught a touchdown pass from the seven-yard line on third down to make it 35-0 before halftime with 1:34 remaining.

The third quarter began with a long and sustained drive on the part of KHS. A 14-play drive concluded with a 22-yard TD run by Dyer, who navigated the holes enough to send the game onto a running clock.

It marks the first running clock achieved by Kaneland since a 56-14 win at LaSalle-Peru on Sept. 16, 2011.

It was that kind of day for Sterling football, and it was that kind of day for linebacker Gary Koehring, playing at a high level this year.

It was no different on Friday, as Koehring and the Knights allowed just 78 yards of offense, 45 in the first quarter.

“Our coaches put us in the right spots, and all we’ve got to do is study what they give us on film and hard work; that’s all we’ve got to do,” Koehring said. “I feel that I’m playing better and buying into what the coaches are saying.”

Up ahead for Kaneland is a trip to Streator High School on Friday, Sept. 14, which ends the crossover portion of the 2012 schedule.

Back to the win column

in Featured/Tennis by

Photo: Kaneland’s Stephanie Zwick keeps her eyes on the ball during the varsity girl’s home match against Rochelle on Tuesday. Photo by John DiDonna

Tennis rebounds with wins over Rosary, Rochelle
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—A win over a Sycamore Spartans tennis squad is often a lot to ask.

Such was the case for the Lady Knights tennis crew on Thursday along Route 23.

After managing to exorcise demons left over from an unexpected loss to IMSA earlier last week, the Lady Knights were able to secure a convincing win after a trip to LaSalle-Peru High School for an East-West crossover battle on Sept. 5.

Additional action saw KHS beat Rosary in Aurora by a 5-2 final, while Rochelle was defeated by host KHS on Tuesday in a 6-0 final.

Kaneland’s tally in dual action sits at 7-3.

The Lady Knights were slightly better, at 8-2, after 10 meets in 2011.

On the Sycamore grounds, KHS lost by a score of 3-2. After getting swept on the singles side, doubles victories came via No. 1 team Madi Jurcenko and Jelly Emmanouil in a 6-2, 6-1 encounter, followed by senior leaders Jenna Bicos and Jess Woodward at the No. 2 slots, 7-5, 7-6.

KHS coach Tim Larsen and crew tried to power through the setback.

“We lost to Sycamore and then had a really hard practice and switched the lineup a little bit,” Larsen said. “It was to try to get out of a couple of ruts, but there’s no question at the top of our lineup we’re playing really well.”

The JV troops managed a 4-1 win over their Spartan counterparts.

The day before, L-P was handled in a 5-0 manner. Top singles entry Sammie Schrepferman took a 6-1, 6-1 outing, while Colleen Landers won her No. 2 action with a 7-6, 2-6, 11-9 barn-burner.

Jurcenko/Emmanouil won a straight 6-1, 6-2 meeting. The Bicos/Woodward unit took a three-set win, 6-2, 2-6, 10-4. Capping the wins were Sarah Grams and Aly Harner, winning the No. 3 clash with a 6-1, 6-3 showing.

Meanwhile, the JV entries got the best of their Lady Cav counterparts, 5-0.

Against Rosary, Kaneland sported a rearranged lineup and saw two-set wins from Schrepferman, new No. 2 Stephanie Zwick and a three-set victory from Grams at the No. 3 spot.

Jurceno/Emmanouil and Landers/Stephanie Karolewicz (No. 3) took home wins.

In the Lady Knights-Lady Hubs duel on Tuesday in Maple Park, the home team saw wins from Schrepferman (6-0, 6-0) and Zwick in three sets.

Schrepferman feels that she has stood racket to racket with some formidable competition in 2012.

“I feel like I’m playing a lot better from last year,” Schrepferman said. “When it’s not going well, it’s usually unforced errors on my part.”

On the horizon for Kaneland is a trip to Yorkville on Saturday, Sept. 15.

Knight runners excel at Peoria

in Boys Cross Country/Featured by

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—One can only hope this past Saturday was a preview for bigger things down the course.

At Peoria High School’s First to the Finish race on Saturday, featuring the best Class 2A has to offer at Detweiller Park, the Knights ran away with a third-place nod.

With 184 team points, the Knights set a new high-water mark for the Peoria meet, after finishing fourth five years ago.

“The boys took advantage of great weather and fast competition to net a third-place finish,” KHS head coach Chad Clarey said. “Our pack split of 56 seconds (one through five) was a major factor in the team’s top five showing.”

Northern Illinois Big XII rival Yorkville’s 88 was tops out of 45 schools, followed by Normal U-High’s 119.

Kyle Carter was the flag-bearer for the Knight roster, finishing 10th overall with a time of 15 minutes, 23 seconds—setting a KHS record for the course, and also beating his own 2011 State race time by 22 seconds.

Next for KHS was Conor Johnson, who finished 30th with a time of 15:51, clipping his own state time by nine seconds.

John Meisinger was 40th with a time of 16:05, followed by Ryan Bower with a time of 16:08 (45th place).

KHS coach Chad Clarey was pleased with the 56 second pack split, and the Knights’ depth.

“John Meisinger and Ryan Bower each looked very strong,” Clarey said. “Another major key to our day was Luis Acosta. (He) ran nearly 30 seconds faster than his 2011 State time, and looks like a seasoned veteran.”

Acosta finished 59th at 16:19.

Ahead for KHS is the storied Eddington Invite at Elburn Woods on Saturday, Sept. 15.

Goal barrage lifts KHS

in Boys Soccer/Featured by

Photo: Ben Longson (14) shoots the ball past the IMSA goalie during Kaneland’s home victory on Thursday afternoon. Photo by Kimberly Anderson

KANELAND—No matter the competition, it looks like Kaneland is getting used to performing at a certain level.

No longer a pushover against teams like Geneva and handling its other current rivals, the Knights continued their season with a 9-1 win against Illinois Math and Science Academy in Maple Park on Thursday before playing to a 0-0 tie against DeKalb on Tuesday.

Kaneland is now 3-1-3 on the season.

Against IMSA, the first 40 minutes could have been called “The Anthony Parillo Show” as the Knight asset garnered four goals in the first 25 minutes of play.

The only goal the KHS crew would need came two minutes, 11 seconds into play on an assist from Arsim Azemi.

Parillo then assisted Tyler Siebert on the second goal 31 seconds later for a 2-0 edge. Parillo was then fed by Siebert for the third goal with 35:26 go play in the first half. A hat trick was then completed on a feed from Alec Koczka with 29:29 left in the half.

Kushstrim Ismaili and Parillo scored the next two times, with Azemi capping the deluge on a free kick with 10:21 left in the half.

Ismaili would complete his own hat trick on two second-half goals: one with 30:41 left on an assist from Ivan Bohorquez and the last with 2:21 remaining.

The JV squad also had a productive day, winning 8-0 over IMSA.

Tuesday’s conference opener against DeKalb concluded with a 0-0 tie. The sophomore unit fell 1-0, and the freshman squad came through for the Knights’ program with a 4-0 victory.

Felipe Speraggi led the way with two goals and an assist. Cameron Pieczynski added a goal and an assist. Alex Mendoza contributed a goal, while additional assists came from Tristan Powell and Tim Watcher.

Northern Illinois Big XII action continues with a trip to the Morris Redskins’ home pitch on Thursday, Sept. 13.

Knights win handily on links vs H-BR

in Featured/Golf by

Photo: Kaneland’s Stephen McCracken watches teammate Josh Kilgore putt during their varsity home match against Sycamore at Hughes Creek on Tuesday. Photo by Kimberly Anderson

by Mike Slodki
Kaneland—Hughes Creek was the site of a handy dual win for Knights golf on Sept. 5.

Facing Little Ten Conference representative Hinckley-Big Rock, the Knights used a consistent scorecard to vanquish the Royals by a final of 161-192 under clear skies.

The Knights also played Tuesday, losing to rival Sycamore 157-166.

Kaneland is now 4-3 in dual action in 2012.

It was last year’s postseason torchbearer junior Matt Yonkovich leading the way last week with a solid 38, followed by Brody Kuhar, Sean Glennon and Connor Williams with tallies of 41.

“It’s a good feeling to be competitive,” KHS coach Mark Meyer said. “It’s against everyone we play against. It’s never fun to lose, but then again, you can only play against the course.”

Golfers like Yonkovich hope to play quite well against every course, and he is encouraged by the level of recent play.

“We’ve been playing really good lately, and I think the way we’ve been playing will get us through the season. My putting has been really good lately, and I’ve been making almost everything,” Yonkovich said.

Tuesday, Sept. 18, sees the golfers host Morris at Hughes Creek.

Local band celebrates completion, release of new album

in Featured/Regional by

Photo: The band Train Company recently released their third CD, “The Remains of an Effort.” Photo courtesy of Train Company

by Amanda Niemi
ST.CHARLES—After four years of finding their eclectic sound, local quintet Train Company has made it on the major music scene with the release of their album “The Remains of an Effort.”

The album takes styles from Chicago blues, bluegrass, jazz and rock, and incorporates backup artists and a string quartet to create the band’s “most ambitious project” to date.

This is Train Company’s first major album release since their debut EP. It took one day for the band to record those three initial songs; “The Remains of an Effort,” aptly titled, took over two years to complete.

“It finally feels like the real thing,” band frontman said John Zozarro said.

The self-described “rotating group of musicians” consists of a core group that includes Johnny Zozarro (lead vocals, guitar), Mark Alletag (saxophone, guitar, woodwinds), Mike DeWitte (bass, backing vocals), Rob Lejman (drums), and, most recently Sam Wyatt (piano, keyboards, and key-tar).

“We’ve evolved not only stylistically, but we grew up together, too,” Zozarro said. “We started (Train Company) when we were just 21; you can hear how we’ve grown in our song composition and styles. We’re putting out the best we can do right now.”

The band made a decided choice to “keep it local” and give back to their fans as over 500 people came to “The Remains of an Effort” album release at St. Charles’ historic Arcada Theatre on Aug. 17.

“We have such a strong backbone in St. Charles and wanted to bring the show to them,” Zozarro said. “The Arcada is historic and beautiful; it worked out perfectly.”

The record release at the Arcada was Train Company’s biggest production to date, including back-up singers, strings and horns.

“At one time there were 17 of us on stage,” Zozarro said.

Fans were vocal about the CD release on the band’s Facebook page, posting pictures, well-wishes and positive reviews.

“I can’t stop listening to this CD; repeat for days. It’s beautiful,” said one fan from St. Charles.

“Sooooo I just heard your entire new album like (two) days ago, and I gotta ask … did you intentionally make me not want to listen to anything else?” said a fan from Chicago.

Zozarro seemed humbled by the bands supporters, new and old.

“We’ve had nothing but positive remarks all around from fans, blogs, magazines and news (organizations). We released something we were 100 percent satisfied with.”

Their recent tour included some impressive music venues, including Chicago’s Double Door, House of Blues, Metro, and South By South West (SXSW) in Austin, Texas. The band has also been an opening act for major acts like Counting Crows, Blind Melon and Blues Traveler.

Though the band chose to stay local for their first major release, Zozarro said they’re looking toward bigger things for the future.

“Over the last six months, we really wanted to release the album in the right way,” he said. “We’ve been fairly concerned in this area. We did the weekend warrior shows in the past, but this was our first big tour.”

Even though it’s been only a year and a half since the band ventured out of local venues, they’re confident they won’t have to play bars anymore.”

Train Company’s next performance will take place at Martyrs in Chicago on Friday, Sept. 7, at 9 p.m.

For more information on “The Remains of an Effort,” tour dates, or to contact the band, visit TrainCompany.net or email TrainCompany@gmail.com.

Offense name of the game in Knights win

in Featured/Football by

Photo: Dylan Nauert comes down with the ball from a pass by Drew David in the first quarter. Kaneland went on the road to beat Huntley 52-35. Photo by Patti Wilk

Kaneland improves to 2-0 after enduring furious Huntley rally
by Mike Slodki
HUNTLEY—It’s not one quarter of football, but rather four.

Once again, the Kaneland Knights football team had to endure a string of successful drives by the opposition.

Unlike Week 1, the Knights maintained the lead the entire way and saw their lead grow from a one-score situation in a 52-35 win at Huntley High School on Friday.

While the Red Raiders closed a 35-7 halftime chasm to 35-28 in the third quarter, the Knights’ offensive unit clicked despite three turnovers.

An air assault highlighted by junior quarterback Drew David’s four touchdowns and 348 yards passing, plus three touchdowns by wideout Zack Martinelli, helped withstand the Huntley comeback.

KHS coach Tom Fedderly was eager to see his Knights on the gridiron after their opening game in Chicago the previous Saturday.

“These kids have a lot of pride,” Fedderly said. “We had a great week of practice and tried to correct some things. Obviously, there are things we’ve got to improve on. I’m really happy with our first half.”

That first half started with a bang as David executed a flawless ball fake and ran 40 yards for a touchdown for a 7-0 lead just one minute, 23 seconds into the contest.

David later found Dylan Nauert for a 10-yard scoring strike with 7:18 remaining in the first for a 14-0 edge.

A Huntley drive accented the run with an eight-play, 80-yard drive ending on a four-yard QB keeper by Kam Sallee to make it 14-7 with 3:51 to go in the first.

It took just five plays for KHS to respond, this time in the form of a five-yard touchdown pass to Martinelli with 1:03 to go for a 21-7 lead.

The David-to-Martinelli connection hit paydirt twice more in the second quarter. A 10-yard TD with 6:29 to go made it 28-7, while a 12-yard score with 2:07 closed the first-half scoring and increased the margin to four touchdowns.

Huntley roared out of the gates in the third quarter, capping an opening drive with a 28-yard TD pass to Bryce Beschomer with 9:07 to go to make it 35-14.

The Red Raiders then converted two consecutive drive-killing interceptions to touchdowns on their end. Sallee ran it in from 19 yards to close to within 35-20 with 7:40 remaining, and Jake Lackovic caught a 23-yard pass for a touchdown with 4:45 to go, with the two-point try setting the score at 35-28.

KHS brought the momentum back by finding the end zone thanks to a one-yard plunge by goal-line option Nate Dyer with 9:31 left for a 42-28 lead. Matt Rodriguez’ 24-yard field goal gave KHS a three-score lead at 45-28 with 6:27 remaining.

Dyer’s nine-yard touchdown witha 3:06 to play made it 52-28 before a late Huntley TD set the final tally.

Kaneland’s many heroes included David, who also paced the ground game with 98 yards, Kyle Pollastrini with 120 yards receiving, and Martinelli.

Martinelli was reminded of a previous encounter that involved holding on to a big lead.

“It reminded me of Morris (Week 9 in 2011) where I was like ‘not again,’” Martinelli said. “We played three great quarters, and now we have to bring up that third quarter.”

KHS plays its home opener on Friday, Sept. 7, against Northern Illinois Big XII school Sterling. This will be the first meeting since November 2008, in which Sterling ousted Kaneland in a first-round playoff game.

Girls XC impresses in Oregon

in Featured/Girls Cross Country by

Photo: Jessica Kucera (left) and Maggie Brundige catch up to the West Chicago runners at the finish of the triangular meet with Wheaton Academy and West Chicago at Elburn Woods Aug. 28. Photo by Patti Wilk

KANELAND—Lady Knights cross country is still getting into the swing of things in 2012, and their best way is to do it in stride.

On a windy Saturday in Oregon, Ill., the Kaneland unit excelled in a wide field on a day when no team scores were kept at the Oregon Invite.

The open race that was 70 runners strong had Kaneland boasting four of the top 10 runners.

While Bureau Valley High School’s Reagan Weidner took the individual mantle with a time of 19 minutes, 30.4 seconds on the three-mile course, Kaneland representation followed soon after.

Sophomore Victoria Clinton paved the way for her colors at 19:34.4 and second place, followed by freshman Brianna Bower at 19:54.1.

“The order is what I thought it might be,” KHS coach Doug Ecker said. “But they will not always finish in the same order in every meet. Victoria will most likely be the number-one runner most of the time, but the order among the others will change, as it should, if all the girls are healthy and running well.”

In fifth place, senior leader Abby Dodis managed a 20:17.3 time.

Fellow senior Amanda Lesak rounded out the immediate Kaneland charge with a time of 20:32 in ninth place.

Tuesday’s meet at home against visiting East Aurora and Yorkville saw the Lady Knights sweep through the competition on their way to a dual meet win, earning a best-possible 15 points. Yorkville placed second in the tri-meet, with 67 points, followed by East Aurora’s 94 points.

Clinton broke away from the pack and took first overall with a time of 20:01. Dodis took second with a time of 21:29, followed by Maggie Brundige (21:44), Brianna Bower (21:59), Lesak (22:42), Jessica Kucera (23:01), Aislinn Lodwig (23:17) and Sydney Strang (24:01), who completed the Kaneland domination.

Ahead for the Lady Knights is a Saturday, Sept. 8, meet at the Wauconda Invite.

Knights soccer blocks H-BR, ties Geneva

in Boys Soccer/Featured by

Photo: Kaneland’s Arsim Azemi comes face-to-face with the ball while being chased by a Geneva player. The teams fought to a 1-1 tie at Kaneland on Thursday, Aug. 30. Photo by John DiDonna

KHS has just 1 loss through 6 contest
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—It looks like the Knights soccer team is an expert in playing close matches.

Outside of being on the wrong end of a rout in one match-up at Jacobs High School, the Kaneland group has made a living off of tight affairs.

It was no different this past week, as KHS traveled to Hinckley to take on the host H-BR Royals in a 2-1 win on Friday.

That was preceded by a 1-1 tie against visiting Geneva on Thursday.

Kaneland now sits at 3-1-2 on the year.

KHS and H-BR scored their goals in the first half. The two Knight goals came as a result of two Arsim Azemi corner kicks, finished by Ivan Bohorquez with 14:19 left in the first half, and 47 seconds later off the foot of Anthony Parillo.

The junior varsity crew enjoyed a 3-1 win over its Royal counterparts to cap the action.

Kaneland managed to tie Geneva, a school which has never lost to Kaneland but had begun the season with three straight losses.

After falling behind 1-0 early, a Kushstrim Ismaili rocket to the net on an assist from Sam Rymarz tied matters with 7:46 remaining in the first half.

Geneva had a real chance to find the lead until goalkeeper Marshall Farthing of Kaneland stonewalled a penalty kick attempt with 25 minutes remaining.

“When it goes down, you’ve got to get your mind into the zone,” Farthing said. “That’ll decide the game right there. If I missed that goal, that’d be a huge differential right there.”

KHS coach Scott Parillo was proud of the troops, despite the lack of a win.

“We definitely picked it up in the second half there,” Parillo said. “They know I wasn’t real thrilled with the way we played in the first half. That wasn’t Kaneland soccer, but we picked it up and we’re getting some guys back.”

The Knights continue action on Thursday, Sept. 6, against Illinois Math and Science Academy in Maple Park.

Foundation to hold annual Hogfan Party fundraiser

in Elburn/Featured/Regional by

by Amanda Niemi
ST.CHARLES—The Friends of Jason Gould Foundation will hold its fourth annual fundraiser for leukemia and lymphoma research on Saturday, Sept. 8, from 4 to 9 p.m. at the St. Charles Moose.

Gould was an Elburn resident and Northern Illinois University graduate who was diagnosed with acute leukemia in 2003. Jason was treated, and told that 80 percent of patients had no signs of remission. He was one of the 20 percent, and went back for treatment a year later.

In 2005, Jason underwent a baby cord stem cell transplant, which was a success in curing his leukemia. However, due to a serious infection complicated by a weakened immune system after surgery, Jason passed in January 2006.

Jason’s Hogfan Party directly supports the research efforts of Ohio State University’s Cancer Research Center and Dr. Rob Baiocchi. Dr. Baiocchi and his team have developed a vaccine to prevent the Epstein Barr virus which complicated Jason’s immune system, the vaccine is now headed to clinical trials and FDA approval. Dr. Baiocchi and Ohio State have partnered with the Leukemia Lymphoma Society and a pharmaceutical company to manufacture the vaccine, the first of its kind.

“I researched treatments for two years and found Dr. Rob in 2008,” Sandy said. “He is working on a vaccine to prevent that complication, which one of the highest mortality rates.”

The Cancer Research Center at Ohio State hopes to make the vaccine available within two years.

“People think there is cancer money out there, and there was none for Dr. Rob’s study. With $2,500 of our money, they were able to complete their study.” Sandy said. “There is money for the big-known cancers, but little or no money for the lesser-known cancers.”

A video will be shown at the fundraiser about one of the patients involved in the clinical trial of the vaccine who has been in remission since 2009.

When asked what the community can do to help those diagnosed with leukemia and lymphoma, Sandy said people don’t know how easy it is to become a donor just by getting their cheek swabbed and adding themselves to the donor registry.

One-hundred percent of the funds received from donations and Jason’s Hogfan Party go directly to a 501c3 public charity fund for leukemia and lymphoma research, and are tax deductible.

The Grand Raffle prizes this year will include an iPad 3, 32-inch flat screen TV, a Trek Bike, an American Girl doll and a ride in a hot air balloon.

For more information, visit www.friendsofjasongould.com or call Sandy Gould at (630) 554-5764.

Kaneville Fest action

in Featured/Kaneville by

Sarah and Erin Ball of Elburn, with Kyla Baldridge of Kaneville, sell their duct tape crafts to Emma Ball during the Kaneville Fest on Sunday.
Photo by Kimberly Anderson

To kick off the 2012 Kaneville Fest, Hill’s Country Store held its annual movie night on Friday. The event included raffle prizes, free popcorn provided by Rich’s Auto Service in Sugar Grove, free pizza from Paisano’s in Elburn, cartoons and the movie “The Lorax.” Here, Kyla Baldridge of Kaneville and Lauren Steers of Elburn watch the cartoons before the movie. The Humm family (below) of Maple Park gets a prime spot for their blanket before the start of Movie Night at Hill’s Country Store. Photos by John DiDonna

Anderson seeks re-election

in Elburn/Featured by

by Lynn Meredith
ELBURN—Elburn Village Board President Dave Anderson recently announced that he will run for re-election in 2013.

A life-long resident of Elburn, Anderson was elected board president in May 2009. Prior to being elected, Anderson worked as supervisor of Blackberry Township. He has also acted as chairman of the village of Elburn Zoning Board of Appeals, been a three-term board member and past president of the Kaneland Board of Education and chairman of the Delnor Hospital Board of Directors.

He attributes community support, board support and issues still to be resolved as being what led to his decision to run again in April.

“There are some issues that I’d like to see carried out. The Comprehensive Land Plan, the Anderson Road Bridge project, if not completed ( while in office), at least close to being completed,” Anderson said. “Hopefully, the economy turns so we can be on the positive side. Our wants are many, but our needs are few.”

The toughest challenge for Anderson during his term was the elimination of positions and the cutting of payroll. Budget constraints led to the commander position in the Police Department being cut, three full-time Building Department positions eliminated, and two administration positions lost to attrition not filled.

Anderson said that this term saw an increase in water and sewer charges, but that the contract purchasing of electricity helped ease the pain.

“The increase in water and sewer charges did not make any of us happy. But it was wrong for us to continue losing $20,000 a month,” Anderson said. “To offset that, we did get involved in contract purchasing of electricity more than balanced the increase of water and sewer with the decrease of electrical bills.”

Anderson sees the challenge of managing the budget as ongoing. He also continues to fight for the Local Government Distribution Fund that Springfield has taken back, reneging on its agreement to allow municipalities to keep 10 percent of local sales tax revenues. Anderson testified in Springfield a year and a half ago and led the board in writing state legislators to urge the state to continue this agreement.

If re-elected as village president, Anderson wants to focus on economic development.

“We want commercial and industrial development to get a good healthy balance with residential as far as residential taxes go. We want to be business friendly,” Anderson said.

Anderson expressed his support of the community.

“One of the things I’m most happy for the community is parental involvement and community involvement with our kids, watching kids in youth soccer, football, cheerleading, dance … that’s what makes Elburn the community it is,” he said.

KHS senior earns Miss Midwest Teen crown

in Featured/Sugar Grove by

by Cheryl Borrowdale
SUGAR GROVE—When Madeline Cole first inquired about competing in the Miss American Teen Pageant, she was told that the Illinois competition had already passed for the year—but that she could compete in the Midwest section instead.

The only problem? The pageant was just three weeks away, leaving Madeline, 17, with little time to prepare to go up against experienced competitors from across the Midwest.

“Some girls start when they’re little; they’ve been doing it all their lives. (Madeline) had done a couple of pageants previously, so it wasn’t like she was going into it cold turkey, but this was her first time in this one,” said Kim Cole, Madeline’s mother.

The two researched the pageant, bought an evening gown and prepared Madeline for the three sections: an eveningwear competition; an introduction, in which contestants are scored on their poise, personality and appearance; and an interview with the judges.

“This is a Christian-based pageant, so they are not looking superficially at outer beauty, but they are looking for the complete package. They want to see that you’re giving back and have strong academics. It’s about standing for something,” Kim said.

Madeline, who volunteers at soup kitchens and as an ambassador for Feed My Starving Children in Aurora, said she knew immediately she wanted to stand for hunger relief.

“I’ve gone to church my whole life, and to Lord of Life in La Fox since I was three, and our church is really active in the community,” she said. “We have different places that we go to monthly, and most of the ones I was doing were for the hungry. (I enjoy it because) you can make immediate impact and can make a difference.”

Neither mother nor daughter expected Madeline to win in her first attempt. They thought the experience would prepare her for next year’s pageant, Kim said.

Madeline was not only crowned Miss Midwest Teen, winning a $500 scholarship and a chance to compete in the national pageant, she also won the Volunteer Service award for the Midwest region and was named in the top four for the Academic Achievement award.

She will compete in the national pageant, which will be held at Disney World in Orlando, Fla., from Nov. 19-24. The national winner receives a $2,500 scholarship, plus a travel allowance to return to Disney World and crown the next queen, said Meg Hemphill, Assistant State Director of MAC Pageants.

The interview with a panel of judges, which counts for one-third of the overall points, is considered the most challenging part of the pageant.

“The judges can ask them any questions; they just can’t be political or religious questions,” Hemphill said. “There’s no right or wrong answers; they are looking for poise and personality, the overall package.”

Approximately 400 girls will compete in six different age divisions, Hemphill said.

If Madeline wins, she said she hopes to use her crown to promote hunger relief nationwide.

“It’s not about being in parades, it’s about being out there meeting with state officials and being able to truly make a difference,” Kim said.

Winning Miss Midwest Teen has already given her the opportunity to meet some Illinois politicians. Rep. Randy Hultgren visited her parents last week while Madeline was at school, and Gov. Pat Quinn’s office is supposed to contact her and make arrangements to meet.

Madeline said that although many assume all pageants are about beauty, she wanted to be taken seriously and chose to participate in the Miss American Coed Pageant system because it is more about inner beauty than outer beauty.

“There’s a lot of misconceptions about it. This is not the kind of pageant you go to with a fake tan. It’s a natural pageant with minimal makeup. It’s not like ‘Toddlers and Tiaras,’” Madeline said. “(Winning Miss Midwest Teen) has been opening doors (for me). People respect me now, and they see that I’m dedicated and driven and I have goals for my life.”

For this Kaneland High School senior, those goals include attending Hope College, a Christian college in Holland, Mich., and majoring in communications.

“I want to be a photojournalist and travel globally, to photograph third-world countries, so I’m minoring in Spanish so I can talk to people there,” she said. “I really want to go to Haiti. I helped a lot after the catastrophe there; I did a lot of drives for them through my church and raised food and clothes, so I’d like to go with (my church).”

Cutting it close

in Featured/Football by

Photo: Wide receiver Dylan Nauert gets away from a Brooks tackler during Kaneland’s 25-24 road win on Saturday. Photo by Ryan Wells

Knights overcome slow start for 25-24 win
by Mike Slodki
CHICAGO—It wasn’t the start the Kaneland Knights football outfit wanted, but it’ll take the finish.

A late touchdown pass from junior quarterback Drew David to receiver Zack Martinelli with 3:11 remaining in the fourth quarter capped the comeback mountain against Chicago’s Brooks Prep Eagles on Saturday for a 25-24 week 1 win.

The second-half flurry completed a 24-6 comeback over the vastly improved hosts at Gately Stadium, which lays a field goal away from Chicago State University.

It was 365 days earlier that Kaneland’s attack produced a running clock for the entire second half in a 44-0 rout over Brooks.

Saturday’s contest echoed last year’s 17-point comeback win in September 2011 at DeKalb, and was a mirror image of sorts to Montini Catholic’s late comeback over Kaneland in the Class 5A State semis.

Kaneland has now won 20 consecutive regular season games in a row, and 25 of its last 27.

The streak was in jeopardy often on Saturday, due to the offensive output from Brooks quarterback Ahmad Bradshaw and tailback Cleveland Clark. Brooks tallied 324 total yards.

“They were running sweeps outside and then started running some options, and we had problems with our option responsibility,” KHS coach Tom Fedderly said. “In the second half, we made some adjustments and tried to bring a little heat from the outside.”

For Kaneland, David went 14-for-30 for 275 yards with two touchdown throws and a pick.

Martinelli caught six passes for 163 yards and two scores.

In the first quarter, Brooks hit paydirt first on its second drive, when Clark powered in from the one-yard line with 3:14 remaining for a 7-0 lead after a nine-play drive.

Dylan Nauert helped answer with a reception, and combined with a face mask penalty, the play netted 30 yards. Back Nate Dyer scored the first Knights touchdown of 2012 with a six-yard plunge, but Matt Rodriguez missed the point afterward to keep it 7-6 with :57 left.

Brooks continued to control the ball and clock in the following frame, and it led to a 21-yard field goal by Jesus Miranda with 5:12 to go in the second quarter for a 10-6 lead.

A Nauert touchdown pass was called back due to offsetting penalties, and the Knights were forced to punt.

Brooks made good on the new opportunity with a Clark five-yard touchdown run to make it 17-6 with :23 left in the half.

Bradshaw accounted for a 39-yard touchdown run on an option play to make it 24-6 with 4:32 to go, but Martinelli caught a 62-yard rainbow 12 seconds later to make it 24-13.

The fourth quarter started to shift the way of KHS, and after a Brooks punt, Nauert’s 48-yard catch brought the ball into Eagles territory. Nine plays later, Dyer’s two-yard touchdown run with 8:29 left closed the gap to within 24-19 after a missed two-point try.

Brooks punted again, allowing Kaneland to orchestrate its go-ahead drive. Martinelli grabbed a 29-yard slant pass to set up his touchdown reception that saw him juke a defender on a screen.

‘We’ve had a lot of hitches all week,” Martinelli said. “We’re coached to turn outside and I saw him turn inside.”

Martinelli knew the offensive side of the ball had to adjust in the final two quarters.

“I talked to Drew at halftime and told him it was just like DeKalb,” Martinelli said. “We’ve got to step it up and calm down. Once he calms down, Drew is probably one of the best quarterbacks in the state.”

Kaneland travels to Huntley High School to face the Red Raiders on Friday, Aug. 31. Kaneland has earned the upper hand in the last three meetings.

Tennis overcomes early bump

in Featured/Tennis by

Photo: The Kaneland varsity girls tennis team is off to a good start this year. Here, Senior Aly Harner serves during their home match against Belvidere on Aug. 23, which Kaneland won 4-3. Photo by Kimberly Anderson

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—A win last week at West Chicago had Kaneland tennis on a smooth track early.

That was until the Lady Knights met up with Wheaton Academy on Aug. 22 in Maple Park.

A 5-2 dual loss was then overcome on Thursday in a 4-3 squeaker against the visiting Blue Thunder of Belvidere North.

Kaneland now has a 3-1 record in dual play, as the schedule gets busier.

In the 5-2 loss to the Lady Warriors, the lone wins were handled by No. 1 singles entry Sammie Schrepferman in a 7-5, one-set affair, and by No. 1 doubles tandem Jelly Emmanouil and Madi Jurcenko in a 6-0, 6-0 sweep.

Wheaton Academy also bested Kaneland JV action.

Against Belvidere North, singles wins were gathered by Schrepferman, 6-4, 6-3, and by No. 3 star Stephanie Zwick, who held her counterpart at bay, 6-1, 4-6, 6-1, after Kaneland had already lost three matches.

Emmanouil and Jucenko took their match, 6-2, 6-0, while extra duo Colleen Landers and Kaylee Shoaff won the final match, 6-3, 6-1.

“Madi and Jelly played very good tennis and beat a couple of really good players,” KHS coach Tim Larsen said. “Sammie struggled but kept her composure for a good win. The hero of the day was Stephanie Zwick.”

Monday’s action saw the Lady Knights sweep Glenbard North in a 7-0 home victory, with every match going Kaneland’s way in straight sets.

Schrepferman cruised to a No. 1 singles victory, 6-2, 6-0. Steph Karolewicz earner her first varsity win of the season, 6-1, 6-2. Zwick completed the singles side of the sweep with a 6-4, 6-3 win from the No. 3 spot.

In doubles action, Jurcenko and Emmanouil breezed through a 6-1, 6-0 match. Jennifer Bicos and Jessica Woodward battled for a tough straight-set victory, 6-3, 7-5. Colleen Landers and Sarah Grams earned a 6-2, 6-1 win, and Abby Meyer and Kaylee Shoaff completed the sweep with a 6-2, 7-6 win.

Tuesday’s contest hosting DeKalb High School was rescheduled for Thursday, Aug. 30, and the Lady Knights will take on IMSA at home on Tuesday, Sept. 4.

Soccer takes 2nd at Jacobs

in Boys Soccer/Featured by

Photo: Defender Sam Rymarz (top left) goes up to block a corner kick in the first half of Kaneland’s 4-1 road win at Marengo on Aug. 21. Photo by John DiDonna

Knights win 2 of 3 in Fox Valley area
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—Jacobs High School’s tournament in Algonquin, Ill., usually provides a nice early-season test for Kaneland soccer.

Taking on three teams at the tournament, KHS finished with a passing grade.
With two wins and a loss, Kaneland is now 2-1-1 in 2012.

The hosts took it to the Knights on Friday by a 4-1 clip, but a rebound transpired with a 3-0 Saturday win over Crystal Lake Central and a 1-0 win in penalty kicks over Harvard soon after to clinch second place.

Against Jacobs, Kaneland fell behind 3-0 after the first 40 minutes, and even a Kushstrim Ismaili goal on a feed from Ben Longson with 28:42 left couldn’t undo the damage.

Kaneland got momentum on its side once Saturday hit, thanks to goals from Anthony Parillo (29:28), Ismaili (9:04) and Evan Bohorquez (8:15, second half) vs. Crystal Lake Central.

The uplifting conclusion to the round-robin affair happened after a scoreless regulation against the Hornets. Kaneland’s 5-4 edge in penalty kicks was the difference in match played without the benefit of six Knights due to injury.

“I would say that we did as well as we could with the injuries we have had early in season,” KHS coach Scott Parillo said. “The Jacobs game was a less than stellar effort but we regrouped on Saturday and played a little better. I want to see how we play when we are at full strength.We have been practicing PK’s all season and it paid off.”

Kaneland battles former Western Sun Conference rival Geneva in Maple Park on Thursday, Aug. 30.

Sauer named interim KC Coroner

in Featured/Regional/Sugar Grove by

by Cheryl Borrowdale
SUGAR GROVE—Retired Sugar Grove Police Chief Brad Sauer will reprise his role as an investigator for the next four months, as he steps into the role of interim Kane County Coroner.

Sauer was sworn in as interim coroner on Aug. 14, after the Kane County Board approved his selection by Board Chairperson Karen McConnaughay. Sauer, who retired from the Sugar Grove Police Department on July 1, will serve out the remainder of the term of Charles West, the former Kane County Coroner who died on July 4 and had been under indictment for official misconduct.

McConnaughay said Sauer was the “most well-rounded candidate,” citing his 24 years in the Police Department, including nearly a decade as police chief; his six years as a Kane County Board member between 1990 and 1996; and his stint as president of the Kane County Forest Preserve.

“There were 10 or 11 candidates, and they had a wide variety of backgrounds and were all good candidates,” McConnaughay said. “I thought that because Brad Sauer had a background in law enforcement and in county government and in administration, he was the best qualified for the position.”

Sauer will hold the office through Dec. 1, when he will be replaced by the winner of the Nov. 6 election. The two candidates running for the coroner’s position are DuPage County Sheriff’s Deputy Rob Russell, a Republican, and Tao Martinez, an Aurora Democrat and founder of ArchAngels BioRecovery, a company that decontaminates death scenes following accidents, suicides, homicides and other deaths.

In the meantime, Sauer said he hopes to prepare the coroner’s office so that there is a smooth transition between administrations.

“Really, not even a week into the job, I’m still trying to sort out quite a few thing and try to determine what is the biggest task so that I can leave the office in the best possible position for whoever the person is who starts Dec. 1,” Sauer said. “I want to try to get as much accomplished as possible to help out the office, try to make it accountable to the citizens of Kane County and make it run smoothly. The goal is to winnow the chaff from the grain and set priorities.”

Though Sauer said he considers the Coroner’s Office to be both a law enforcement position and an investigative position, he said it is different from his role as a police chief.

“The police department tries to find the people that caused the death, while the coroner’s office tries to find out the cause of death, and we let the police department go from there,” Sauer said. “For me personally, it’s working with the chief deputy coroner and the deputies and trying to determine what needs to be done in the investigation to come up with the answers that we’re looking for.”

Though Sauer will receive a pension for his years in the Police Department, his position as interim coroner will not increase that pension or make him eligible to receive a second pension, he said.

“I’m not taking any pension, not taking any health insurance or anything, just what the board determines is the starting wage for the coroner,” Sauer said. “It’s not adding to a county pension, and the (police) pension which I will be getting one of these days (as soon as the paperwork goes through) is from downstate. They can’t mix. You have to have seven years to be vested in the county, and I only had six (when I was a board member). The few months I will be here won’t be enough to make it seven years, so I can only get back what I put in originally. We got it straightened out that I wasn’t trying to collect two different pensions.”

Football Preview: Kaneland’s Got Talent

in Featured/Football by

Photos: The Kaneland Knights varsity football team (right) hopes to keep its strong defense and improve over last year’s overall record of 21-1. The Knights lost a heartbreaker in last year’s IHSA semifinal 35-31 against Montini. Quarterback Drew David (below) will return to lead the team’s offense. File Photos

Knights’ football feels good about what 2012 holds
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—For the second straight season, Kaneland football endured a heart-pounding postseason journey.

For the second straight season, Kaneland had its heart broken against visiting Montini Catholic in the Class 5A State semifinals.

But this Knights crew, behind sixth-year coach Tom Fedderly, looks to start a new journey, and have it go just a bit further.

In the early days of practice, Fedderly is feeling good about his crew that has gone undefeated in regular season play since an Oct. 16, 2009, overtime loss to Geneva, and has won 27 of its last 29 contests.

The Knights can take solace in the fact of having five all-Northern Illinois Big XII players coming back.

“A lot of guys are returning, including four offensive linemen, and that means we can spend more time on the little things,” Fedderly said.

“Obviously, when you look at our team coming back, we have a lot of people back but we have to replace Sean (Carter) and Quinn (Buschbacher), and I think we’ll have some kids that’ll do that,” Fedderly said. “We have our quarterback coming back, and he’s a smart kid.”

That smart kid, Drew David, went undefeated, commanding the vaunted spread offense as a sophomore, and continues in the steps of his three-year starting predecessor, Joe Camiliere.

David passed for 39 touchdowns in 2011 and spurred comebacks against teams like DeKalb and Belvidere.

“When you look at Joe’s sophomore year and Drew’s, it’s about the same. I think they had 10 picks each. This year, we hope to not have as many turnovers. We talk about that a lot. Drew’s a smart kid, and he’s not going to make the same mistake twice,” Fedderly said. “He’s a real competitor, and we’re looking forward to seeing what he can do.”

Jesse Balluff returns to bear the load of the ball-carrying in his junior season.

“Last year, we didn’t know what we had coming off the ACL,” Fedderly said of the running back who battled an injury prior to the start of last season. “As the year went on, he got stronger. We just want to continue the progress with him.”

Carter and Buschbacher leave for collegiate ball in Wisconsin, meaning it’s time for new blood.

“We’ve got Zack Martinelli back and Kyle Pollastrini back; both started last year. Tyler Slamans will be out at tight end. Dylan Nauert primarily played defense last year, but he’ll take Carter’s spot and Brandon Bishop comes up, too,” Fedderly said.

On the line, Alex Snyder returns from an exceptional freshman season, and Joe Komel joins the three other returnees—Shane Jorgensen, Drew Sharp and Zach Theis.

Linebacking crew members Ryan Lawrence, Kory Harner and Gary Koehring are expected to bring more all-conference honors and big hits in 2012.

The secondary needs to replace the opportunistic ball-hawking play of Jacob Razo.

Nauert, Harner, John Pruett and Tanner Andrews are looking for picks and hits in the defensive backfield, with Dan Goress and JR Vest fighting for a spot, as well.

Buschbacher’s exit leaves a return hole, but Martinelli and Bishop are projected to offset that need.

Matt Rodriguez will contribute his kicking and punting skills in 2012.

Kaneland looks to take care of tasks and will rely on not only its coaching staff on the sidelines, but on the field.

“We have experience and really smart kids. Getting to the semis last year, they got big-time experience in big games and I think these kids have their heads on straight,” Fedderly said.

The Knights’ quest begins on Saturday, Aug. 25, against host Brooks Prep at Gately Stadium in Chicago, while the first home game is Friday, Sept. 7, against Sterling.

Varsity Football Schedule
• Saturday, Aug. 25; 4 p.m.
At Gwendolyn Brooks
College Prep HS
• Friday, Aug. 31; 7:15 p.m.
At Huntley HS
• Friday, Sept. 7; 7:30 p.m.
Home vs. Sterling HS
• Friday, Sept. 14; 7:30 p.m.
At Streator High School
• Friday, Sept. 21; 7:30 p.m.
At Rochelle Township HS
• Friday, Sept. 28; 7:30 p.m.
Home vs. DeKalb HS
• Friday, Oct. 5; 7:30 p.m.
At Yorkville HS
• Friday, Oct. 12; 7:30 p.m.
Home vs. Sycamore HS
• Friday, Oct. 19; 7:30 p.m.
Home vs. Morris HS

Varsity roster Seniors
Kyle Pollastrini, WR/LB;
Zack Martinelli, WR/DB;
Blake Bradford, LB;
Ryan Lawrence, RB/LB;
Tanner Andrews, WR/DB;
Dan Goress, RB/LB;
Kory Harner, WR/DB;
Michael Kinder, TE/DE;
Zach Theis, OL/DL;
Caesar Estrada, OL/DL;
Nick Sharp, OL/DL;
Bradley Johnson, OL/DL
Dan Evers, WR/DB;
JR Vest, DB;
Drew David, QB;
Gary Koehring, RB/LB;
Matt Rodriguez, K;
Brandon Bishop, WR/DB;
Tyler Slamans, TE/LB;
Tyler Carlson, QB/WR;
John Pruett, WR/DB;
Dylan Nauert, WR/LB;
Grant Wooten, WR/DB;
Jesse Balluff, RB/LB;
Nate Dyer, RB/LB;
Cole Carlson, LB;
Bryan Endrenal, OL/DL;
Justin Diddell, OL/DL;
Tom VanBogaert, TE/LB;
Sam Bower, OL/DL;
Joe Komel, OL/DL;
Shane Jorgensen, OL/DL;
Jaumaureo Phillips, OL/DL;
Evan Ortiz, OL/DL;
Alex Snyder, OL/DL
Connor Fedderly, WR/LB
Head coach
Tom Fedderly

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