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For the past four seasons, Hersey's Maggie Hogen and Wheeling's Kellie Kuzmanic played against each other in volleyball and basketball in the Mid-Suburban League.
But for the next four years, they will wear the same basketball uniform.
The seniors have verbally committed to the Cornell College women's basketball team in Mt. Vernon, Iowa, and coach Brent Brase.
They have been teammates in AAU basketball, playing together since eighth grade for coach Derril Kipp's Illinois Hustle.
"It is going to be fun to finally be playing with Kellie instead of against her," said Hogen (5.0 GPA, 31 on ACT), who was awarded the Presidential scholarship. "She is a really good player and friend of mine and I cannot wait for our college career to begin. I am really happy that we will not only be teammates but also roommates."
Kuzmanic, one of the most versatile players in the league, played a key role on Wheeling's dramatic run to the IHSA Elite Eight this winter.
"Maggie and I have been playing against each other since sixth grade feeder so I am really excited that we will be teammates for the next four years," said Kuzmanic, who led the Wildcats with 12 points and 10 rebounds this season. "It was great playing AAU ball with Maggie for four years with the Hustle."
• Carthage senior defender Michelle Tumberger (St. Viator) was named to the All-Midwest Women's lacrosse second team. She collected 3 goals, 27 ground balls, 7 draw controls and 5 caused turnovers.
Prospect pitcher Hanna Lythberg has chosen Valdosta State in Georgia to continue her softball career and major in elementary education.
"It felt like the right fit for me," Lythberg said. "They have a good education program, a top tier softball team and a coach that's passionate about the game, not to mention I have always wanted to play in warm weather all year round."
Valdosta is a top-five Division II softball program and has been ranked No. 1 in the National Fastpitch Coaches' Association poll for the majority of the 2012 season.
Coach Thomas Macera was an assistant coach with the Chicago Bandits. The team is currently 48-3 and set a Gulf South Conference record winning streak of 36 games while winning its fourth consecutive Gulf South championship.
"I was looking for a program that would give me the opportunity to pitch and hit, and other programs didn't seem as open to that possibility," Lythberg said. "Coach Macera is a great teacher of the game and I look forward to continuing my softball career at VSU as a Blazer."
Lythberg is hitting .410 with a .640 slugging percentage in the Mid-Suburban League and has an overall OBP of .430 and .573 slugging percentage. She has only struck out 4 times in 93 appearances and has 8 doubles.
As a pitcher and part-time first baseman, she remarkably has 48 assists.
"Hanna is easily our best player and has really emerged as one of the key leaders on the team," said Prospect coach Jim Adair. "Her abilities are exceptional and the other kids on my team recognize her desire and drive to win.
"On the mound (1.96 ERA, 116 strikeouts in 110 innings), she's been great. I wish we would have played better defense behind her. If so, her stats would have been incredible. Obviously, she'll be very difficult for us to replace next year."
• St. Joseph (Ind.) senior shortstop and leadoff batter Amy Varner (Prospect) helped the Pumas to a 5-3 victory over Northern Kentucky at the NCAA Midwest Super Regional. Varner had 4 assists and 4 putouts in the game.
Northern Kentucky loaded the bases in the top of the third and scored three times before Natalie Papi hit a liner to Varner, who speared the ball and stepped on second base to end the inning.
The victory clinched the best of three series and the Pumas will make their first appearance in the Division II College World Series. Showing her passion for the sport, Varner missed her graduation to play in the regional championship game.
• Fremd senior Rachel Doering (13-4), who will study biology at Ohio State, is not the only fastpitch hurler in her family.
Rachel's grandfather Paul Doering, who lives in Wisconsin, was a standout pitcher in the Greater Milwaukee Fast Pitch League in the 1950s and 1960s. Paul was a history teacher and assistant track coach at Germantown High School.
Freshman Joe Belmonte (Conant) went 4-for-5 in the championship game against Illinois Wesleyan with a triple, double, two singles and 4 RBI at North Park in an 8-4 triumph.
Belmonete finished the regular season batting .396. and Vikings closed out the regular season with a record of 32-12 and 14-7 in the conference.
They advanced to their first D-III NCAA tournament appearance since 1990.
Men's track and field
Kevin O'Brien (Palatine) earned all-conference honors for the United States Coast Guard Academy by placing second in the 10,000-meter race at the New England Men's Athletic Conference Championships in North Hampton, Mass.
He also established a U.S. Coast Guard Academy record for the 10,000 meters by finishing the race in 31:46 to earn All-New England honors at the New England Division III championships.
His time qualified him to compete in the East Coast Athletic Championships which will be held in Troy, NY on Thursday.
On Wednesday, O'Brien receives his commission upon his graduation from the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Conn.
• Matt Babicz (Prospect) of DePaul won the Big East Championship in the shot put with a throw of 60 feet, 1¾ inches.
• Oakton's Kenny Alferes (Maine West), Martin Chavez (Maine West) and Haider Sheikh (Maine West) will compete in the 3,200-meter relay event at the NJCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field National Championships today through Thursday in Levelland, Tex.
The Raiders earned a trip to the Lone Star State by finishing under the national qualifying time of 7:57.22 at the Wisconsin Open on May 7.
Senior Mike Etchingham (Prospect) will play for Augustana. The 6-foot-1, 185-pound linebacker, offensive tackle and running back helped Prospect to Class 7A playoff appearances two years in a row and was an all-conference selection.
• Indiana's Teddy Schell(Barrington) was named a member of the 2012 National Football Foundation Hampshire Honor Society, which is comprised of college football players from all divisions who each maintained a cumulative 3.2 GPA or better throughout their college career.
Fremd senior midfielder Nathan Serviss, a three-year varsity performer who scored his 100th goal against Conant last week, has received an athletic scholarship to play lacrosse at Adelphi University.
The 6-foot-4 Serviss also started on Fremd's varsity basketball team this winter.
• Fremd's Jon Bryk will continue his career at Augustana. An attacker and midfielder, he was a second team Mid-Suburban League all-conference selection as a junior. He is tied for the Fremd team lead with 17 assists through the first 14 games this season and also has 12 goals and 40 groundballs.
Schaumburg seniors Alyssa Saklak and Kelly Skorczewski will play at Augustana. An honor roll student, Saklak plans to major in nursing.
"She is an outstanding athlete who has enjoyed great success at Schaumburg," said Augustana coach Lori Kerans. "We firmly believe she has all the tools to be an impact player in our program: leadership, scoring, passing, defending, and rebounding. Alyssa is the complete package."
Saklak averaged 18 points and 11 rebounds this winter as her team's MVP.
Skorczewski plans to major in athletic training.
"Kelly is a strong 6-foot post player," Kerans said. "Any opponent going to the basket or reaching for a rebound is going to have to go through 'Skor.' Kelly owns the paint."
Skorczewski was a co-captain for the Saxons and winner of the Saxon Leadership Award.
"Having watched Kelly this past year, our staff knew we wanted her in a blue uniform for the next four years," Kerans said. "She is the type of person, player, and athlete we want wearing the blue."
• Hoffman Estates High School coach Luke Yanule will host a Junior High Boys Basketball clinic on Sunday, May 20 from 1-3 p.m. in the main gym. Boys in grades fifth through eighth can meet Hoffman coaches at a two-hour mini-clinic focusing on offensive skills, footwork and team play. There is a $5 suggested donation, parents must sign a waiver at check-in and participants must reside inside the Hoffman boundaries within District 211 in accordance with state eligibility rules. For questions contact Yanule at email@example.com.
• Mike Small will offer fundamental camps for boys and girls, grades first through eighth at the following locations.
The camps will be held at St. James (Arlington Heights) June 11 to June 15, St. Mary (Buffalo Grove) June 18 to June 22 and St. Alphonus (Prospect Heights) Aug. 6 to Aug 10.
For more information, go to www.mike-small.com or call (847)635-8437.
Schaumburg senior setter Sam Mellert will play volleyball for Augustana and major in athletic training.
"Sam is very athletic and has the passion and intensity to compete at our level," said Vikings coach Debbie Kiick. "She comes from a strong high school program. Once she learns our offensive systems and adjusts to the college game, we think she can make a big contribution to our program."
As a senior, Mellert earned a school record for most aces in a single match (7), highest serving percentage at .971 and most service points at 178.
Oakton No. 1 singles player sophomore Nick Adamovic (Prospect) won his division's individual championship at the NJCAA Region IV Tournament hosted by Moraine Valley Community College. The NJCAA honored Adamovic as the Region IV Player of the Year.
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