Lakeside Bank 2022.July
SRP-IMAGE-Logo

Grappling girls get their day at inaugural state finals

By Jason Maholy
Sports Editor

The last weekend of February 2022 was an historic one for Illinois high school athletics, as female grapplers from across the Prairie State converged on Bloomington for the inaugural IHSA girls wrestling state finals.

The state finals were held Feb. 25 and 26 at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington. The tournament featured 224 wrestlers in 14 weight classes between 100 and 235 pounds.

Morton made its presence felt at tournament, with the Mustangs’ nine wrestlers the most among the 122 programs represented at the event. Homewood-Flossmoor fielded eight wrestlers, and Oak Park-River Forest and the Andrew Co-op — the latter which featured athletes from District 230 schools Andrew, Sandburg and Stagg — sent six apiece.

Aside from fielding the largest contingent of wrestlers from one program, Morton’s four medalists, led by runner-up Diana Rodriguez, were tied for the most with Peoria Richwoods.

Rodriguez, a senior, took second place at 190 pounds. Jennifer Villagomez (110) and Karla Topete (130) both finished fifth, and Leilany De Leon (120) finished sixth.

Rodriguez (15-5) pinned her first opponent, Ruby Sepeda of Moline, in 1:26 before toughing out a 5-4 decision over Noelia Vazquez (27-2) of Fenton in the quarterfinals. It was only the second loss of the season for Vazquez, who finished third.

Rodriguez then made short work of West Aurora’s Brittney Moran in the semifinals, pinning the freshman in 53 seconds. Her hopes for a state title ended with a tech fall to Jayden Huesca-Rodriguez in the championship match.

Villagomez (18-3), a senior, bounced back from a first-round fall to Evelyn Simon of Hoffman Estates to win her next three matches. A 5-3 loss to Burlington Central’s Victoria Macias in the consolation semifinals sent her to the fifth-place match, but she again rebounded, ending her tourney by pinning Amy Villegas of Maine East in 3:18.

Topete (18-3), who entered the state tournament with only one loss, pinned her first opponent in 1:53 before losing in the quarterfinals. Two more wins and a loss later the senior was in the fifth-place match, where she ended her season on a winning note by beating Katie Ramirez-Quintero of Bolingbrook, 6-3.

De Leon (13-5), a junior, went 3-3 at state. She ended her trip with a loss by fall to Ireland McCain of Round Lake in the fifth-place match.

Mustangs junior Paris Flores (100), senior Neida Arreola (115), senior Ximena Juarez (125), sophomore Faith Comas (135) and senior Aseel Jadallah (235) also qualified for state. Arreola, Juarez and Jadallah each won a match.

Best of the Rest
Curie’s Aaliyah GrandBerry got her name in the Condor record books as the program’s first state medalist. GrandBerry, a sophomore, entered the tournament 8-0 and continued her winning ways by pinning each of her first three opponents.

She was finally stopped in the 235-pound championship match by Kiara Ganey of Belleville East, who won by fall. Ganey, a junior, finished her season unbeaten.

Curie’s Vanessa Torres (120), a sophomore, also wrestled at state, dropping both her matches.

Evergreen Park junior Elliana Balderrama went 3-3 on the weekend and finished on the medals podium in sixth place. Balderrama (14-8) lost her first match before rattling off three wins in a row. She dropped a 6-3 decision in the consolation semifinals, then got pinned by Juliana Conroy of Buffalo Grove in the fifth-place match.

Other area state qualifiers were sophomore Eleanor Aphay of Riverside-Brookfield (120), senior Myeisha Davis of Kenwood (170), and Ava McGuire (145) and Emma Akpan (170) of the Andrew Co-op. McGuire is a sophomore at Stagg and Akpan is a freshman at Sandburg.

Local News

With the color guard flags whipping in the breeze, the Shepard High School marching band rehearses their new field show. (Supplied photos)

Marching Astros take the field

Weeks before the start of the new school year, marching band members from Shepard High School baked in the summer sun to prepare for the coming competitive season. As much as any event, marching band camp signals the start of a new school year. For a week, the Marching Astros arrived early and stayed late…

Ryan Clancy talks about his sister, Chicago Police Officer Patricia "Patsy" Swank, 29, who committed suicide last month. Clancy said the pressure on all police officers is a heavy burden and supports the Oak Lawn Police Department following a controversial arrest of a teen last month. Clancy made his comments during the Oak Lawn Village Board meeting Tuesday morning.(Photo by Joe Boyle)

Oak Lawn residents offer staunch support for police

By Joe Boyle Oak Lawn residents came out in force to offer support for the village’s police department after a well-publicized arrest of a teen following a traffic stop last month. Residents jammed the Oak Lawn Village Hall for the board meeting Tuesday morning to provide testimony in support of officers after the arrest of…

American English, an award-winning Beatles cover band, entertained the large crowd for over two hours, despite on-and-off rain, as the final act of Sunday's event. (Photos by Isabella Schreck)

Tunes and tons of local restaurants come together at the Taste of Orland

By Isabella Schreck The Supremes, John Mellencamp and The Beatles came to the Taste of Orland. Well, really, tribute bands brought their music and presence to Orland Park Village Center’s stage. “I was really impressed with American English,” Rebecca Whealan, of Palos Heights, said. “From the costumes to their sound [Eric Michaels] as Paul McCartney,…

election 2022

Calandriello announces Biking the 17th District on Sunday

From staff reports Daniel Calandriello, the Democratic nominee for the Cook County Board 17th District, announced a “Biking the 17th District” event from Elk Grove Village to Orland Park on Sunday to raise awareness of the Cook County Forest Preserve. Calandriello, of Orland Park, plans to bike several trails located within the Cook County Forest…

Bob Krusza shows off his 1964 Chevy Impala SS at Thursday night's Auto Show. (Photo by Steve Neuhaus)

Willow Fest 2022

Willow Springs Willow Fest will take place through Sunday at Willow Springs Village Center, 1 Village Circle, Willow Springs (corner of Archer Avenue and Willow Springs Road). Hours are 4-11 p.m. Friday, 1-11 p.m. Saturday, and noon to 10 p.m. Sunday. Special needs hours 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday. Free parking. Free shuttle service…

Joan Hadac

If you’re young, grab the baton

By Joan Hadac Your correspondent in Clearing and Garfield Ridge (708) 496-0265 • [email protected] If you’re a young adult in Clearing or Garfield Ridge—or even a middle-aged man or woman—it’s easy to look at the senior citizens leading our local civic leagues or neighborhood watches and assume it’s always been that way. But you’d be mistaken.…

Thomas McGill

Campaign 2022: Garfield Ridge man to run for state senate

McGill to focus on law enforcement issues By Bob Bong As it turns out, Democratic state Senate candidate Mike Porfirio looks like he will face a Republican challenger in November’s general election. Porfirio, a Lyons Township trustee, had filed to run for the 11th Illinois Senate seat on the same day incumbent Sen. Steve Landek withdrew…

Acting Police Chief Mel Ortiz joins some kids in the bounce house at Summit's National Night Out last week. (Photos by Carol McGowan)

Summit police mingle with public at National Night Out

By Carol McGowan Summit police and firefighters hosted their annual National Night Out last week and entertained residents with games, food and music. Thousands of communities in the United States and around the world celebrate on the first Tuesday of August as people are asked to turn on outside lights and join first responders to…

Matt Duzak, Bridgeview’s newest fire lieutenant, was sworn in by Mayor Steve Landek on Aug. 3. (Photo by Steve Metsch)

‘A fine man’ is newest fire lieutenant in Bridgeview

By Steve Metsch Matt Duzak wanted to be a firefighter since he was a young boy. In his adult life, he drove trucks around the Chicago area for a living, working with his father-in-law. But that old desire to fight fires never disappeared. After a stint with the Roberts Park Fire Protection District in Justice…

State Rep. Fran Hurley

Hurley says August 15 is deadline to apply for Illinois State Police

State Rep. Fran Hurley is encouraging interested Illinois State Police candidates to apply by Monday, Aug. 15, to be considered for the January 2023 cadet class. “For those who want to pursue a career of service, this is a wonderful opportunity to work for a great organization that supports its members,” Hurley said. “It is…

Neighbors

State lays out $34.6B multi-year spending plan for roads, bridges, ports, airports, rail and transit

State lays out $34.6B multi-year spending plan for roads, bridges, ports, airports, rail and transit

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Transportation on Friday laid out a $34.6 billion six-year spending plan for road, bridge, transit, rail, airport and port upkeep. It’s the latest multi-year plan backed by the state’s 2019 Rebuild Illinois bipartisan infrastructure law, which doubled the state’s motor fuel tax…

2022 Illinois State Fair officially opens

2022 Illinois State Fair officially opens

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – The 2022 Illinois State Fair officially got underway Thursday when Gov. JB Pritzker and Secretary of State Jesse White cut the ceremonial ribbon in front of the main entrance to the fairgrounds. “As many of you know, the Illinois State Fair, one of my favorite events…

CAPITOL RECAP: State Fair begins in Springfield

CAPITOL RECAP: State Fair begins in Springfield

By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker and Illinois State Fair organizers unveiled the 101st State Fair butter cow Wednesday, an unofficial kickoff of the fair which began Thursday, Aug. 11, and runs through Aug. 21. The sculpture – by Iowan Sarah Pratt – consists of more than 800 pounds of recycled butter…

‘Grow with Us’ State Fair, butter cow theme a nod to agriculture, infrastructure

‘Grow with Us’ State Fair, butter cow theme a nod to agriculture, infrastructure

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker and Illinois State Fair organizers unveiled the 101st State Fair butter cow Wednesday, an unofficial kickoff of the fair which begins Thursday and runs through Aug. 21. The sculpture – by Iowan Sarah Pratt – consists of more than 800 pounds of recycled…

Pritzker eying Indiana firms after abortion law signed

Pritzker eying Indiana firms after abortion law signed

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Democratic Gov. JB Pritzker said this week that he is actively reaching out to businesses in Indiana and other states that have recently passed restrictive abortion laws in hopes of luring those companies to Illinois. “Well, already I’ve reached out to companies that are affected in…

Regulatory work behind 1 million EV push in full swing in Illinois

Regulatory work behind 1 million EV push in full swing in Illinois

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Ten months after Illinois lawmakers passed the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act which set a goal of putting 1 million electric vehicles on state roads by the end of the decade, state agencies are engaged in a flurry of regulatory planning aimed at meeting those goals.…

10-day sales tax reduction on clothing, school supplies begins Friday

10-day sales tax reduction on clothing, school supplies begins Friday

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Beginning Friday and lasting through Aug. 14, the state will reduce its sales tax rate from 6.25 percent to 1.25 percent for certain clothing items costing less than $125 and school supplies. The “tax holiday” was included in Gov. JB Pritzker’s “family relief plan,” one prong…

Pritzker highlights Rebuild Illinois funding for Cahokia Heights sewers, Rend Lake Resort

Pritzker highlights Rebuild Illinois funding for Cahokia Heights sewers, Rend Lake Resort

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinoi [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – When state lawmakers voted on bipartisan lines in 2019 to double Illinois’ motor fuel tax and raise several driving-related fees, it laid the groundwork for a $45 billion infrastructure plan, the largest in Illinois’ history and the first in nearly a decade. The plan, spanning six…

CAPITOL RECAP: Democrats choose Hernandez as new party chair

CAPITOL RECAP: Democrats choose Hernandez as new party chair

By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – The vote for state Rep. Elizabeth “Lisa” Hernandez as the Democratic Party of Illinois’ first Latino chairwoman was unanimous and uneventful Saturday morning – the drama had occurred in the days prior in a power struggle of some of the state’s most prominent Democrats. Hernandez was backed Gov. JB…

Pritzker: Monkeypox disaster declaration will aid in vaccine distribution

Pritzker: Monkeypox disaster declaration will aid in vaccine distribution

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker issued a public health emergency declaration and declared Illinois a disaster area in response to the monkeypox virus Monday, a move his office said would help mobilize resources. The governor’s office said the proclamation will aid in moving vaccines to the most impacted…

House Ad Subscription2
Regional CC Asphalt House Ad