Meadows' Greifenstein heading to Elmhurst

 
 
Updated 3/4/2019 6:54 PM
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  • Lily Greifenstein

    Lily Greifenstein

Next year, you can add another Mid-Suburban East all-area guard to the Elmhurst women's basketball team.

Senior Lily Greifenstein, who helped Rolling Meadows to a the Mid-Suburban League championship, recently committed to the Bluejays program, which already includes former Hersey standout Kelly Weyhrich.

A sophomore, Weyhrich leads the Bluejays with 98 assists this winter.

"We've been training together for years," Greifenstein said. "I love Kelly. We've been in contact for a while. I'm super excited to be joining her there. I wish it wasn't just two seasons. We've got to make those two years count."

The Mustangs counted on Greifenstein to produce in important big games. She had a knack for coming up big in key games, including a season-high 30 points against Hersey in a game that kept the Mustangs in first place in the MSL East.

"Lily consistently produced over the last two years and played her best on the big stage," said Mustangs coach Ryan Kirkorsky of Greifenstein, who averaged 12.2 points with 71 rebounds, 40 assists and 36 steals.

Greifenstein has wanted to play on the big college stage for years.

"It's always been a dream to play in college," she said. "I've put in so much work since I was much younger. I have to thank all of my AAU coaches, my high school coaches Nick (assistant Nick Nichols) and Kirk (Kirkorsky) and all the people in my family for pushing me to do my best."

Kirkorsky said Greifenstein is a great example of a player who has earned all her success.

"I'm so proud for Lily," Kirkorsky said. "She loves the game and put in a great deal of work on her own to become the player she is. She has had a tremendous career as a Mustang and I'm looking forward to watching her at Elmhurst."

Greifenstein plans to study nursing.

"I absolutely love the coaching staff at Elmhurst," she said. "The school is close to home and I'm kind of a home body. And they have a real good nursing program which attracted me to the school."

Softball

Georgia Southern freshman pitcher Jess Mazur (Fremd) has thrown 28⅔ innings from four starts and nine appearances for a 2-1 record and 1 save.

Mazur has cracked the Sun Belt Conference Top 10 in ERA (2.25) and batting-average against (. 208).

Weindruch retires

National Sporting Goods Association Director of Public Affairs Larry Weindruch retired March 1.

Weindruch, who serves as President of the National Ski & Snowboard Retailers Association, was a familiar name in the Daily Herald sports section for many years.

Weindruch's award-winning sports journalism career includes seven years as a daily newspaper reporter and columnist in Davenport, Iowa, two years as associate editor of Inside Sports magazine, and 28 years as a sports correspondent for the Daily Herald.

He was recognized by the Illinois Wrestling Coaches and Officials Association as Media Person of the Year in the early 1990s and covered several other high school sports including football, basketball, boys volleyball and boys track & field.

Weindruch also served as NSGA's director of communications, as a media spokesperson with several national television news appearances, representing the sporting goods industry.

During the span of 33 years at NSGA, he drew on his sports journalism background. Weindruch fulfilled the roles of publisher, editor and publications manager, and overseeing the association's member magazine and newsletters.

Men's basketball

Lake Forest College senior forward Danny Sotos (Conant) shared team scoring honors with 19 points in the Foresters 68-64 win at St. Norbert College for the championship of the Midwest Conference tournament.

The Foresters, directed by former Leyden coach Ken Davis, advanced to the NCAA Division III Tournament for the first time in school history.

Davis, in his fifth year as the Lake Forest coach after serving seven as an assistant, was in charge at Leyden for six years during which one of his teams was ranked No. 1 in the Daily Herald poll.

Women's basketball

Alabama-Birmingham senior Deanna Kuzmanic (Wheeling) scored 12 points and added 8 assists without a turnover as she went out in style on Senior Night in a 68-45 win over UTEP.

Kuzmanic closed the home portion of her storied UAB career, having started all 122 games since her freshman year.

She ranks 16th all-time in program history in points (1,461), while ranking second on the team in scoring (12.3) this season, the 15th best mark in Conference USA.

Kuzmanic ranks fifth in the conference in assists per game (4.0), eighth in 3-point field goal percentage (38.1 percent) and second in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.9).

• Oakton sophomore guard Liz Stangel (Willows Academy) was named to the National Junior College Athletic Association Region IV Division II (District D) all-region first team and the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference all-conference second team.

The Owls' co-captain led the team with 388 rebounds (14.9 rebounds per game), good for second in the nation. Stangel's rock steady play also included averaging 14 points, 2.2 steals and 2.2 assists per game.

"Liz is very deserving of these accolades,' said Oakton coach Melissa Pearson. "She is the hardest working athlete I have ever been around. Not only does Liz strive to always improve, she is a positive and motivational leader."

Stangel was selected as the college's female student-athlete of the month in December. She was a standout goalie for the Oakton women's soccer team in the fall with a 0.98 goals-against average and 56 saves. During the fall 2018 semester, she earned a 4.0 GPA.

"Liz is currently looking at her options to transfer to play basketball and continue her nursing education," Pearson added. "I am extremely proud of her for all her accomplishments."

Baseball

Augustana junior pitcher Chris Refka (Palatine) is 1-0 with a 4.50 ERA in two starts after the Vikings wrapped up their first swing through Florida with a 7-1 record.

Vikings freshman Matt Helms (Palatine) has 2 doubles to tie for the team lead.

Coach Greg Wallace's club will return to the Sunshine State for four games in Fort Myers from March 7-10 as part of the Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic.

• Email Sports Notes items to jleusch@dailyherald.com

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