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In one fell swoop, Batavia High School announced it has filled three coaching positions this week.
The Bulldogs will install former Wheaton North coach Jim Nazos as boys basketball coach, succeeding Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Famer Jim Roberts.
Scott Bayer, a seven-year Batavia assistant wrestling coach, will now head that program following the resignation of another hall of famer, Ben Morris.
Brad Nelson, entrenched as a successful girls tennis coach at Batavia, will also assume command of the boys program, succeeding recently retired Bob Kummer, a third hall of fame coach in this group with 33 years of experience in the post and 43 teaching at Batavia.
"We've been in a mad rush to do interviewing and naming teaching positions as well as coaching positions since school's been out," said Batavia athletic director Dave Andrews, now free to enjoy his annual family vacation. "That's mainly what the administration has been doing."
Bulldog Nation was shocked by the coaching resignation of Roberts, who will continue teaching but gave up the varsity basketball position to spend more time with his family. Nazos, who coached Wheaton North's boys for a dozen years with three regional titles and a DuPage Valley Conference title to his credit, won the job in part because of his contacts within the sport.
"His experiences that he brought, the connections that he has within the coaching fraternity -- not just high school coaches but college coaches," Andrews said. "The potential connections that he has that he can bring with this program ... if we do have kids that want to play at the next level, I think he definitely can support that."
Morris, a member of the Illinois Wrestling Coaches and Officials Association Hall of Fame for his prep mat days at Fenton High School and subsequent high school coaching including two years at Batavia, turns the program over to Bayer.
An all-American wrestler at Monmouth, Bayer also served as an assistant to another IWCOA honoree, Tom Arlis, Andrews wrote in an email.
Andrews felt having Nelson coach both girls and boys tennis was a no-brainer. Chosen by Kummer as girls coach in 1999, Nelson boasts a career record of 205-58-17 with three conference titles, a 2011 sectional title, an unblemished record in conference duals since 2008 and, as Andrews said, "continuous improvement." Nelson's own expertise and connections have five Lady Bulldogs currently playing college tennis.
"That one just made sense," Andrews said.
Megan Hubbard received a surprise on a recent visit to the office of Purdue softball coach Kim Maher.
While in West Lafayette, Ind., to register for classes, the Fremd graduate planned on informing Maher that she was going to try and walk on to the Boilermakers softball team this fall.
Instead, Hubbard walked out of the coaches' office with a spot on the roster.
"It happened unexpectedly," said Hubbard, who became Fremd's all-time home run leader this spring. "When we sat down and talked, she (Maher) offered me a preferred walk-on position.
"Last summer, I went to a camp at Purdue and she (Maher) said she remembered my athleticism and how much of an athlete I was."
Hubbard had a season to remember this spring at Fremd, slugging a single-season school-record 9 homers and finishing with a school-record 21 homers for her career.
Quite simply the best power hitter in Fremd history, Hubbard also set the single-season record with 16 doubles while helping Fremd to another 30-win season under coach Jim Weaver. The all-area second baseman hit .479 (56 hits) with 45 RBI and had a fielding percentage of better than .970.
Hubbard plans to study physical education at the Big Ten School.
"My mom researched Purdue and found that it had a really good physical education program and that's why we went there to visit," Megan said. "And I like the idea of a Big Ten school because sports is a big part of the campus atmosphere."
Hubbard will go there with a lot of prior softball experience.
"I've had of a lot of help from my feeder coaches (Brad Schneider and Dan Patenaude), my high school coaches (Weaver, TJ Valacek and Christine Vlaming) and my club coach (Jim Goranson of the Illinois Bash)," she said. "And my family, too (parents Jim and Cindy and brother Matt). They've all encouraged me."
Danny Stringfellow won the qualifier for the Illinois Junior Open and he will he be joined by his former St. Viator teammate Jim Vitale, who also qualified.