2017-'18 Season Coverage
posted: 4/30/2013 12:01 AM

MSL representatives take their Hall spots

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It's official.

Four individuals and one team, all associated with girls basketball in the Mid-Suburban League, are now members of the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame. The 2000 Class AA state champion Buffalo Grove girls basketball team, Ashley Berggren (Barrington), Daryl Schaffeld Rappe (Fremd), Corrine Vossel Ginder (Hersey) and Geri Brongiel (Friend of Basketball) were inducted into the hall last Saturday at Illinois State's Braden Auditorium.

Sports notes trivia

With above-mentioned girls basketball players from the Mid-Suburban League joining the 2013 IBCA Hall of Fame 2013 class, name the last girls basketball player from the MSL to enter the hall.

Nicole Niro commits

She is only a junior, but Nicole Niro has already chosen her college choice.

The talented defender, who attends Barrington High School and player of the Eclipse Select Soccer Club, has made a verbal commitment to play for Auburn beginning in the fall of 2014.

Niro decided she wanted to experience an education and college soccer career in the south.

"It's really exciting after starting soccer at such a young age and then building up to this point," Niro said in a release from the Eclipse Club. "It's definitely a milestone in my life and something I'm proud of.

"I really wanted to go to a school in the south, and after hearing about Auburn from a friend I looked into that and visited," she added. "It felt like Eclipse in the sense that it was family-oriented, warm and welcoming. I knew I wanted to experience this type of change."

Niro is looking forward to playing for Auburn head coach Karen Hoppa, who has directed the Tigers for the past two decades.

"She (Hoppa) is a wonderful person and I immediately connected with her when I first started speaking with Auburn," Nicole Niro said. "She's definitely built the program in a good direction and I felt like I would be in a good place on that team. Soccer-wise, I also thought it fit my style.

"We briefly touched on my role, about possibly playing a defender or holding midfielder. That decision will come with time and we'll see how I do in their practices when I start."

Bauch honored

Illinois freshman infielder Allie Bauch (Conant) was named Big Ten 'Freshman of the Week' as she hit .412 with 6 RBI, 4 runs and 2 steals to help Illinois to five conference victories.

College club hockey

Kevin Pabst, who will graduate from Michigan State next month, competed in the Spartans club hockey program for his five years on campus.

A former all-state hockey player at Buffalo Grove, Pabst served as a team captain in his final two high school seasons.

While at Michigan State, his club team went to the national tournament five times (16 teams make it out of 180 club teams) and it advanced to the final four the last three seasons.

Pabst's career culminated last month with the Spartans winning the D-2 Club national championship in his last competitive game. It was a fitting ending to his playing career before he moves on to coaching the sport.

Pabst scored 10 goals with 8 assists while playing 19 games during the regular season.

The Spartans accumulated an overall record of 28-5-2, including 9 postseason wins. They previously won the national championship in 2005 and 2007.

Korcek creates scholarship

Mike Korcek (Prospect, 1966; Northern Illinois University, 1970) has created a memorial scholarship fund at Northern Illinois in honor of his inspirational mother, who died in 2011 at the age of 94.

The Josephine Korcek Memorial Scholarship Fund will provide scholarships for communication students in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences who write for The Northern Star, NIU's student-run newspaper.

Korcek, who is in the NIU Athletics Hall of Fame and the media wing of the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, was Sports Information Director at the school for 22 years, following the legendary Bud Nangle (Palatine).

Korcek was named a Prospect Distinguished Alumni in 2010.

Amanda Kelly commits

Schaumburg multisport athlete Amanda Kelly has made a commitment to play basketball for Illinois Wesleyan in Bloomington.

The senior guard averaged 17 points this season and finished her career with more than 1,000 points.

Kelly was much more than just a scoring machine in her four-year varsity career. She found teammates with assists and helped spark the defense with steals. She averaged 4 assists and also made 2.5 steals. Kelly scored a career-high 34 points against Plainfield East. "Amanda set the standard for both work ethic and positive attitude throughout the season," said Saxons coach Ashley Berggren after the season.

Women's swimming

DePauw freshman Erin Horne (Hersey) represented the women's swimming and diving team at the NCAA Division III Championships in Shenandoah, Texas.

Horne anchored the 400-yard freestyle relay to a 13th place finish in a time of 3:28.50, earning honorable mention All-America honors with her teammates and breaking the school record for a second time that day. Horne also swam in the 200 freestyle relay which posted the 12th best prelim time before being disqualified, and in the 200-yard medley relay which placed 20th.

Prior to the NCAA Championship, DePauw came off a strong season (5-2), placing third at the North Coast Athletic conference meet behind Denison and Kenyon.

Horne was a member of the 200 freestyle relay and 400 freestyle relay teams that placed third at the conference meet, posting school-record times in both events. Horne also swam personal-best times in the 100 freestyle and 200 freestyle, placing 14th and 15th, respectively.

No-hit Latal

North Park senior Casey Latal (Fremd) fired her first no-hitter and came to within one batter of recording the first perfect game in school history.

The hard-throwing right-hander blanked visiting University of Chicago 3-0.

It was the second no-hitter in Vikings' history, and the first complete-game, seven-inning shutout.

Lancaster honored

Siena softball freshman Alyssa Lancaster (Schaumburg) won her first career conference weekly award, taking home the MAAC Rookie of the Week honor. Lancaster helped the Saints to five conference victories in their six games this week.

Lancaster was the only Saint to record a hit in all six games during Siena's 5-1 week. The freshman batted .474 and drove in 6 runs. In the upset win against first-place Fairfield, Lancaster recorded the lone hit for the Saints, but ended up driving in what would become the winning run of the game. In the series against Rider, she batted .571 (4-for-7) including a two-out two RBI double to break a 3-3 tie in the sixth.


Knox junior Erik Smoy (Hoffman Estates) helped lead the Prairie Fire to four wins in five games last week, including back-to-back doubleheader sweeps of rival Monmouth College.

Smoy was a major contributor in the wins and was named the Prairie Fire Performer of the Week.

The highlight for the junior outfielder was a 5-for-10 performance at the plate, including a grand slam, with 8 RBI and 2 runs scored during the 10-2 and 18-7 triumphs at Monmouth. He was 3-for-7 with 1 RBI and 2 runs in the two games against the Scots at Blodgett Field.

Smoy, who has an 11-game hitting streak, had 10 hits in 22 at bats (. 455 average) with 1 home run, 11 RBIs and 4 runs in five games. He is ranked in the top five in the Midwest Conference in hits (36) and RBI (29), and his .383 batting average is seventh in the league.

Tyler Jones commits

Leyden senior Tyler Jones who was 26-12 this season, has signed an NCAA Division III letter of intent to wrestle for the Lakeland College Muskies.

Jones' emergence in the varsity lineup this year for the first time in his career made him a staple in the Eagles program.

He is being recruited to wrestle 157 next year for the Muskies.

Jack Asquini commits

Buffalo Grove senior Jack Asquini has announced his decision to attend Augustana to play for coach Rob Cushman's Vikings.A 5-foot-9, 210-pound linebacker, Asquini was a two-year letter winner at Buffalo Grove and a Mid-Suburban League all-conference selection for coach Mike DiMatteo and the Bison last fall.

He also was a Daily Herald Cook County suburban all-area honorable mention selection.

Asquini recorded 110 tackles, forced 4 fumbles and blocked a pair of kicks.

As a junior, he was in on 61 tackles, including 47 solo stops and six for a loss. He had 1 sack, forced 1 fumble and recovered one as well.

John Hamann scholarship

The John Hamann Golf Outing will be held on June 13 at Maple Meadows Golf Club in Wood Dale.

The John Hamann family awards at least two $1000 scholarships to Willowbrook seniors every year in memory of its beloved father who taught at Willowbrook for 34 years and coached for 38 years. A $1,000 scholarship is awarded to one senior male and one senior female every spring.

There will be a 1:30 p.m. shotgun start and cost is $100 per person and $400 per group.

Visit johnhamannscholarship.org for more information and to sign up.

Nick Ricciardi commits

Wheeling baseball captain and starting catcher Nick Ricciardi will play at Elmhurst College next season.

"Their coach loves Nick's versatility as he can catch, pitch, and play second or third base for them next season," said Wildcats coach Jason Wieder. "Nick is having a great senior season thus far hitting .313 with a .415 OBP in the No. 2 hole. His fielding percentage is .970 behind the plate and he was 3-for-4 last week throwing out runners trying to steal on him.

"I am very proud and excited for Nick and his future at Elmhurst. He is a great kid."

Jamie Lloyd commits

Palatine three-sport athlete Jamie Lloyd has committedto play lacrosse at Carthage next season.

Lloyd currently is leading Palatine in goals, total points and is one of the top leaders in assists in the state of Illinois.

"I'm really excited about her joining our program," said Carthage coach Lauren Hume. "I think with her ability she'll be able to be a real asset for us.

"The nice thing about her is that she is such a well-rounded player. She can be a threat going to the goal, as well as feeding the ball."


Carthage senior Krystina Leazer (Elk Grove) pitched a 5-hit shutout for a 2-0 victory over Elmhurst in Game 1 of a twin bill. Leazer (15-3) also picked up the save in a 6-3 win in Game 2.

Trivia answer

Fremd standout Dee Dee Deeken, who was the honorary captain for the 1984 Cook County Daily Herald all-area team, was inducted into the IBCA Hall of Fame in 2009.

• Please email Sports Notes items to jleusch@dailyherald.com or FAX to (847) 427-1173.

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