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Evergreen Park’s competitive dance team performs a routine that vaulted the Mustangs to sixth in the state on Saturday. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Competitive Dance State Finals | Evergreen Park has sixth sense again

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer BLOOMINGTON — For the second straight year, Evergreen Park’s competitive dance team qualified for the second day of state competition. For the second straight year, the Mustangs were the first team to perform on the second day. And for the second straight year, they finished sixth in the state in…

Shepard's cheerleaders won the coed division of the Bradley-Bourbonnais Sectional and will head to state. Photo courtesy of Shepard High School

Area Sports Roundup: Shepard, Sandburg and Marist win cheerleading sectional titles

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer The area collected three sectional cheerleading championships and head into the state competition with a head of steam. Sandburg, Marist and Shepard came out of sectional competition with trophies and will compete in the IHSA state finals, to be held Friday and Saturday at Grossinger Arena at Illinois State University…

Grace Hynes, a senior at the University of Chicago and a Mother McAuley graduate, shot 17-for-36 from the field and 10-for-13 from the free-throw line during a two game stretch that included a win over previously unbeaten New York University. Photo courtesy of University of Chicago Athletics

College Notebook | Grace Hynes helps Maroons end NYU’s unbeaten run

By Mike Walsh Correspondent Mother McAuley alum Grace Hynes was the University Athletic Association’s Athlete of the Week in women’s college basketball for the timeframe ending January 17. Hynes, a senior at the University of Chicago, had 22 points and 10 rebounds as the Maroons’ handed top-ranked New York University its first loss of the…

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Boys Basketball | TF North ends Oak Lawn’s win streak at seven

By Steve Millar Correspondent Oak Lawn had a seven-game winning streak snapped last week in Calumet City, but Spartans coach Jason Rhodes knows it’s still been a heck of a January for a team thriving despite the loss of its leading scorer. Junior guard Corey Lee scored 14 points and senior guard Ayham Salah finished…

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Girls Basketball | Trunk a treasure late as Sandburg tops Lockport

By Randy Whalen Correspondent On Senior Night at Sandburg, it was a freshman who saved the Eagles. Zoe Trunk stole the ball and hit a layup with 10 seconds to play, completing Sandburg’s rally from a 12-point third-quarter deficit in a 37-34 victory over Lockport on Jan. 26 in Orland Park. The Eagles (15-12, 3-3)…

Sophia Figueroa, a sophomore at Sandburg, wrestles for the Andrew co-op.

Girls Wrestling | Sandburg’s Sophia Figueroa eyes state tourney bid

By Steve Millar Correspondent Sophia Figueroa is fired up for the girls wrestling postseason. The Sandburg sophomore competes for the Andrew co-op girls team, which also includes wrestlers from Stagg. As a freshman last season, Figueroa fell one win short of qualifying for the inaugural IHSA girls wrestling state finals. She was pinned by Lincoln-Way…

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Boys Basketball | Evergreen Park breaks out, but can’t overcome Hillcrest

By Steve Millar Correspondent Evergreen Park coach Jim Sexton knows he has a team capable of putting up big offensive numbers behind a bevy of strong shooters. That just has not happened consistently this season for the Mustangs, who have struggled to score more often than not. The offense, however, had a breakout performance last…

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Boys Basketball | Adam Stuursma scores 30, helps rally Chicago Christian to win over Shepard

By Steve Millar Correspondent Chicago Christian went into last week’s game against crosstown rival Shepard having lost eight games in a row. It didn’t seem likely the Knights were going to end that streak when they went to halftime down by 16 points. Knights coach Kevin Pittman implored his team to focus on slowly chipping…

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Boys Bowling | Stagg charges to first state finals appearance

By Randy Whalen Correspondent For Stagg, it’s a first. For Sandburg, it’s a return trip. Both teams survived the Plainfield North Sectional at Town & Country Lanes in Joliet to advance to the state tournament. The finals will be Friday, Jan. 27, and Saturday, Jan. 28, at St. Claire Bowl in Fairview Heights. The Chargers,…

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Boys Bowling | Reavis rolls to sectional title, sixth straight trip to state

By Jason Maholy Sports Editor A strong all-around team effort and a runner-up performance by Ethan Deluna powered Reavis to the championship of the IC Catholic Sectional and a trip to the state tournament. The Rams totaled 6338 to top second-place Glenbrook North by 100 pins on Jan. 21 at Bowlero in Glendale Heights. Lyons…

McKendree sophomore tight end Jordan Sprycha, and Oak Lawn alum, finished third on the Bearcats in receiving touchdowns with five, and tied for sixth in both receptions (22) and receiving yards (193) for the 2022 season. Photo courtesy of McKendree Athletics

College Notebook: Ex-Spartan Sprycha balling with Bearcats

By Mike Walsh Correspondent The fall of 2022 was successful both in the classroom and on the football field for Jordan Sprycha. In the classroom, the Oak Lawn graduate was one of eight McKendree University chosen to the 2022 College Sports Communicators Academic All-District Team. CSC Academic All-District Award nominees must be a starter or…

Brother Rice’s Ahmad Henderson shoots a game-winning 3-pointer against Fenwick his sophomore season. He has also had last-second game winners in his junior and senior seasons. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Hoops Wrap: Ahmad Henderson’s late-game heroics lift Rice over Marist

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer There is no rule that says Ahmad Henderson needs to sink a game-winning basket at least once a season. If there was such a rule, the Brother Rice senior would follow it to perfection. Henderson worked his closing-seconds magic in one of the area’s hottest rivalries in a 49-48 victory…

Evergreen Park's competitive dance team is heading back to the state meet after winning its first sectional. Evergreen Park High School photo

Area Sports Roundup: Evergreen Park dancers make history with first sectional crown

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer Evergreen Park was the only team from the area to place in the state’s top 12 in competitive dancing last season. The Mustangs, who finished a program-best sixth in the state in Class 1A in 2021, are seeking an even better showing this year. Evergreen Park made history by winning…

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Boys Basketball: Improving Sandburg still seeking first conference win

By Randy Whalen Correspondent Sandburg coach John Daniels doesn’t have to give to his team what he refers to as the “let’s play hard” speech. The Eagles play hard. But as Daniels acknowledged after a 53-43 loss at Lockport on Jan. 17, they “have to play better.” David Vargas led Sandburg (9-14, 0-3 entering this…

Chicago Hounds CEO James English (left) and head coach Sam Harris. (Supplied photo)

Major League Rugby coming to SeatGeek Stadium

Chicago Hounds expansion team to play games at Bridgeview facility By Bob Bong A new professional sports team will be playing its matches at SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview next month. The Chicago Hounds, an expansion team for Major League Rugby, will be calling Bridgeview home when they begin their inaugural season in February. “We’re honored…

Nazareth graduate Kaylen Evans hit seven of Morton College's 22 3-pointers Thursday in Cicero. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Hoops Wrap: Morton women go wild from long-range in win over McHenry

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer That Morton College’s women’s basketball team drilled 22 3-pointers in a 111-44 victory over McHenry County might seem amazing. What is more amazing is that it was the second time this season the Panthers had that many treys in game. After the win over McHenry in the Skyway Conference battle…

Stagg freshman Noah Jones (holding plaque) rolled a 300 to help the Chargers capture the boys bowling program's first team regional title. Photo courtesy of Stagg High School

Area Sports Roundup: Freshman Noah Jones rolls 300, leads Stagg to first boys regional title

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer The Stagg boys bowling team had never won a postseason tournament. That changed Jan. 14, thanks in part to a sensational postseason debut by Noah Jones. In the second game of the Oak Lawn Regional at Palos Lanes, Jones rolled a 300. He wasn’t perfect the rest of the way,…

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College Notebook | Sandburg grad Oblena has big season for Illinois-Chicago volleyball

By Mike Walsh Correspondent Illinois-Chicago women’s volleyball player Jaclyn Oblena was one of two Flames named to the Missouri Valley Conference Scholar-Athlete Team. Oblena, a Sandburg graduate, was named to the First Team. Oblena, a junior libero, appeared in all but one set this season for the Flames, leading the team with 394 digs (3.46…

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Boys Basketball | Depth the difference for Marist in win over Marian Catholic

By Steve Millar Correspondent Keshaun Vaval got off to a slow start, scoring just two points over the first three quarters in Marist’s game last week against Marian Catholic. To add to his underwhelming performance, the sophomore guard committed a potentially costly turnover in the fourth quarter. He knew at that point he had to…

Penelope Hocking of Penn State was taken in the draft in the first round by the Chicago Red Stars. Penn State photo

Red Stars hire new GM, draft four players amid flurry of moves

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer For the past couple of months, the Chicago Red Stars watched player after player leave without replenishing the roster, which was down to 17 players. That changed last week, with the team drafting four players (who must still be signed) and adding two waiver-wire pickups. The Stars last week also…

Chris Toth was a two-year starter at Aurora University, where this season he earned Associated Press Division III All-American honors, among other accolades. Photo provided by Aurora University

Paving a path to the pros?

Sandburg grad Chris Toth optimistic about following his father’s footsteps to the NFL By Mike Walsh Correspondent When your father is able to list blocking for Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino on his resume, chances are pretty good that football is a strong component of your family’s lineage. Such is the case for Aurora…

St. Rita junior James Brown opened the year verbally committing to North Carolina. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Local Hoops Wrap: Scuffling St. Rita eyes big March

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer They have never had a nickname, such as the Fab Four. But that title could have applied. The foursome of James Brown, Morez Johnson, Josh Pickett and Jaedin Reyna came to St. Rita High with high expectations, with all four receiving scholarship offers from Northern Illinois before playing a single…

Mother McAuley's Ellie White, a Michigan recruit, earned a national player of the year award in volleyball. Photo courtesy of Mother McAuley

Area Sports Roundup: Mother McAuley has another national POY; Red Stars’ scorer has new last name

By Jeff Vorva Staff writer How many national players of the year can one team have? If you are the Mother McAuley volleyball team, you can have more than one. The Class 4A state champions are cornering the market in that regard. Less than a month after senior Gigi Navarrete won a national player of…

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College Notebook | Stagg alum on fire in pool for Illinois-Chicago

By Mike Walsh Correspondent One of the top performers at the recent three-day House of Champions Invitational held at the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis natatorium was UIC women’s swimmer Taira Juronis. Juronis, a Stagg graduate, won the 200-breaststroke with a time of 2:16.49, nearly two seconds faster than the second-place swimmer. Juronis also bested her…

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Boys Basketball | St. Laurence looks to keep good times rolling in 2023

By Steve Millar Correspondent A young St. Laurence team is hitting its stride and starting to believe. The Vikings took momentum into the New Year by winning four straight games at the Jack Tosh Holiday Classic to capture the tournament’s consolation championship. “It was a pretty big boost getting those four wins,” sophomore guard Zerrick…

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Hours Are Extended For Oak Lawn Children’s Museum

Hours have been extended for families and their kids to visit the Oak Lawn Children’s Museum, 5100 Museum Drive. The extended hours will be offered through Friday, Dec. 30.{{more}} The museum will be open the second and fourth Thursday until 8 p.m., and will also be open the second and fourth Friday until 8 p.m.…

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Lipinski Aids Lifttruck Facility

Stressed ‘Buy American’ When Bedford Park Co. Was Bypassed Cong. Dan Lipinski (D-3rd) and Hoist Lifttruck, 6499 W. 65th St., Bedford Park, have secured a ÒBuy American” victory for American manufacturing. On Tuesday morning, Lipinski announced that Hoist Lifttruck had been awarded a $670,000 contract to build four 18-ton forklifts for the Department of Defense.{{more}}…

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Cockatiel Found In Hale Park

A Cockatiel was found in Hale Park on Sunday, October 16th. Anyone missing a Cockatiel should contact the finder at (773) 203-0947 or e-mail her at [email protected]

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Cite Officers In Battling Against Abuse

The Chicago Lawn (8th) District Domestic Violence Subcommittee on Tuesday night recognized Officers Raymond Piwnicki and Timothy Quinn for going above the call of duty while responding to a domestic violence call.{{more}} The officers are both from the 8th District of the Chicago Police Department. The awards were presented at the 8th District station. In…

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Unemployed Look For Possibilities at Job Fair

Long lines and expectant faces awaited prospective employers at Cong. Dan Lipinski’s (D-3rd) first-ever job fair last Friday. On Oct. 7, Lipinski hosted a job fair at the Bridgeview Community Center, 7900 S. Oketo Ave., to help residents who are unemployed or underemployed network with potential employers.{{more}} Participating businesses included Cintas Corp., Metra, Pace, and…

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Future of Holy Cross, Nativity Are Unknown

Maria High School, 6727 S. California Ave, apparently will become a charter school in 2013. For 100 years, Maria has served the Southwest Side of Chicago as an all-girl Catholic school. But the announcement came last week that Maria will no longer continue to operate as a Catholic institution because it is no longer financially…

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Lane Resigns As Committeeman, Suggests Curtis

Lona Lane has decided she wants to concentrate solely on her duties as 18th Ward alderman. On Oct. 5, she handed in her resignation as ward committeeman and has asked the community to support Derrick Curtis to take her place.{{more}} Curtis is the current ward superintendent for the city’s Department of Streets and Sanitation. He…

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Mayor Selects New Trustee In Oak Lawn

Cynthia Trautsch is Oak Lawn Mayor Dave Heilmann’s choice for 1st District Trustee. Trautsch will take the place of former Trustee Jerry Hurckes. Hurckes resigned in August after being on the board for 12 years. He is now the chief of staff to Cong. Dan Lipinski (D-3rd).{{more}} Trautsch was born and raised in Oak Lawn,…

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Maria High School To Close

100-Year-Old Institution Has Plans To Become a Charter Facility The Sisters of St. Casimir and Maria High School, 6727 S. California Ave., recently announced that they are in discussions to open a K through 12 co-educational charter school at Maria.{{more}} On July 21, an application for this charter was submitted to Chicago Public Schools (CPS)…

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Oak Lawn Author Writes Book On Haunted Spirits

A local man may add being a published author to his resume. Elkossei Ashraf, an Oak Lawn resident, has written a book titled, Haunted Estate Sale: 2 Angry Spirits. Ashraf said that he came to the United States from Egypt approximately 20 years ago.{{more}} A former resident of Chicago Ridge, he has resided in Oak…

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Warn of ‘Scams’ in Oak Lawn

Village Board Also Approves New 1st District Trustee Several senior scams have been reported in the Village of Oak Lawn, and they were among the topics of discussion at the Oak Lawn Village Board meeting on Tuesday.{{more}} Trustee Alex Olejniczak (2nd) stated that offenders are calling seniors, pretending to be the police. One senior couple…

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Kupczyk Tells Chamber Crime Dips in 8th District

Residents of Chicago’s Garfield Ridge and Clearing neighborhoods can sleep a bit more soundly because crime is reportedly down in those areas. Chicago Lawn (8th) District Cmdr. John Kupczyk gave an update on crime in the area at the Garfield Ridge Chamber of Commerce meeting on Tuesday.{{more}} Ò(In) the city as a whole, crime is…

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