Wednesday, August 10, 2011
District 135 softball camp is a hit with students from 5-8 grade. It's not all about winning. Rather, it's about working together.
Lori Haskett is a physical education teacher at Orland Junior High, but since the official start of school isn't for another week, she's using her whistle to help teach softball fundamentals. When Haskett first started working in Orland nearly 10 years ago, junior high softball was a slow-pitch game. The girls didn't see the heat until they moved on to high school. Two years later, Haskett launched a softball camp. The program has been speeding forward ever since, just like the pitching, producing talents such as Lexi Bryant and Jori Boren. "The camp gets them ready for their junior high experience should they try out for the team," Haskett said. "We teach the basic fundamentals of the game, and it's district-wide. We get grades 5-8 coming…
Saturday, August 6, 2011
Ashley Conrad and Sara Olsen, best friends at Sandburg High School and rivals in college, always rooted for each other when they were playing softball in the Big Ten.
Earlier this week, Patch reported the story of two Sandburg teammates and best friends who parted ways to play collegiate softball at different schools, one at Illinois, the other at Indiana. Despite the rivalry between the two Big Ten schools, when Sara Olson and Ashley Conrad played each other, they still wished each other the best of luck, even if they did not always admit as much to their Illini or Hoosier teammates. Conrad shared her feelings. "Although it definitely is a rivalry between the two schools, I don't ever think it was between Sara (Olson) and me," she said. "Yes, we wanted our teams to win, but we always wanted each other to do well and got excited for one another when we did. "I remember a game my freshmen year (2008) …
Friday, June 24, 2011
The 10-under Moppet Georgia Bulldogs team slugged past the Moppet North Carolina Tar Heels 15-3 to win the league championship.
They play in the Moppet League. And they're adorable. But don't be confused. The girls who play softball on coach Ron Badon's 10-under team in the Orland Youth Association aren't old enough to remember The Muppet Show. So, what's a moppet? The word is used to describe any small child, particularly in Britain. Small doesn't describe the way these girls play ball, though. Badon's girls play a big brand of softball. He led his Moppet Georgia Bulldogs team to its second straight league championship earlier this week. The Bulldogs defeated the Moppet North Carolina Tar Heels 15-3. Badon's team consisted of Kayla Augdahl, Grace Badon, Jillain Balaskas, Samantha Barrett, Amanda Flowers, Jennifer Horras, Courtney Maloney, Maggie Manthey, Stephanie…
Thursday, June 23, 2011
Playing pro softball close to home with the Chicago Bandits eases Alisa Goler's pain following a disappointing end to her Georgia career.
After the University of Georgia women’s softball team fell just short of its third straight trip to the College World Series, Lincoln-Way East graduate Alisa Goler wasn’t sure how she was going to deal with the pain from her collegiate career concluding. Playing for the Chicago Bandits helped her cope. Just six days after the Bulldogs lost their best-of-three series to Baylor in the Super Regional, Goler was making her professional debut June 4. “I’m happy it worked out like this,” said Goler, who was selected in the third round of the 2011 National Pro Fastpitch Senior Draft with the 12th overall selection. “It’s just been a great experience and made my transition from not making the World Series a lot easier.” The NPF, formerly known as …
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Three-time All-America selection Alisa Goler helps Bulldogs earn first two College World Series appearances.
While watching the Women’s Softball College World Series on television with her father as a child, Alisa Goler made a bold proclamation for a 7-year-old. “I told my dad that I was going to play there one day,” said Goler, a Frankfort native and 2007 Lincoln-Way East graduate. Goler backed up her prediction and is in the midst of a remarkable softball career. She’s currently in her first season with the Chicago Bandits of the National Pro Fastpitch league after an All-American career at the University of Georgia where she experienced two trips to the World Series. Goler’s journey to the professional ranks began at an early age. “My mom and dad bought me a tee when I was 2 and I started hitting the ball,” Goler said. “I guess they saw a …
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Griffins softball coach Katie Meader was part of the 1997 state championship team at Lockport. She played collegiate ball at Loyola.
Katie Meader is used to winning. She played a key role in the Lockport softball program winning its first state championship in 1997 when she was known as Katie Blackmore and contributed to the Whiteford Sharks earning a summer national championship in 1998. That winning mentality has carried over in her current role as the head coach of the Lincoln-Way East softball team the past four seasons. “I think any coach or player should start the season with the goal of getting to state,” said Meader, a 1999 Lockport graduate. “If you fall short of the goal, it’s difficult to digest. Only one team can win it all each year, but it should be a driving force in playing the game. "I just really enjoyed my time as a player at Lockport and being part …
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
A weekly video recap of the Southland's top sports coverage.
After compiling fantastic seasons, two Southland baseball teams fell just short of the ultimate goal this weekend. Oak Forest lost in the Class 3A state championship against Kaneland, and Providence Catholic dropped just its fourth game of the season, this time to Lyons Township in the Class 4A title game. To read more about the games and athletes featured in this week's Sportscast, check out the links below: Lyons Ends Providence's Title Hopes Oak Forest Falls Short in Class 3A State Title Game Verzbicas Runs Mile in Under 4 Minutes to Win NYC Race Longtime Andrew Coach Fondly Recalls 1992 State Championship Team
Saturday, June 11, 2011
Sandburg grad and Orland Hills running sensation Lukas Verzbicas repeats as Adidas Grand Prix Dream Mile champion by finishing in under 4 minutes, establishing a new personal best.
Lukas Verzbicas defended his Dream Mile title in spectacular fashion Saturday. As reported by the Chicago Tribune, the Sandburg graduate and Orland Hills resident won the High School Dream Mile at the Adidas Grand Prix in New York with a time of 3:59.71, becoming one of only four U.S. high school runners to break the four-minute mark. The Dream Mile field featured top runners from across the country. Athletes competing in the Dream Mile and Dream 100 had the chance to receive coaching from mile legend Jim Ryun and Olympic gold medalist Maurice Greene. Last weekend, Verzbicas broke the national high school record in the 2-mile run with a time of 8:29.46—five seconds better than the previous mark—while competing in Eugene, Ore. Verzbicas …
Sunday, June 5, 2011
Even with elimination staring them in the face, the Eagles refused to panic and, ultimately, were able to get the job done in a come-from-behind win over Andrew.
Sandburg coach Jim Fabianski continually bent over to collect himself after the Eagles pulled out a thrilling 2-1 sectional softball title victory over rival Andrew on Saturday. He along with the Eagle fans held their collective breath after seeing the T-Bolts take a 1-0 lead in the sixth inning and carry it into a one-out and nobody on situation in the bottom of the seventh. But it was the people who could actually control the outcome, the players, who were remained calm and kept that "been there, done that feeling" going on the Sandburg side. The Eagles never buckled. Candice Koch reached by a walk and moved to third on Lizzi Wojtowicz's double. Both girls scored on Lexi Bryant's game-winning two-run double. "We refuse to let down," …
Saturday, June 4, 2011
Sandburg 2, Andrew 1. Eagles score two runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to stun rival T-Bolts in Class 4A sectional championship game at Lockport.
Touching All the Bases: After both teams threatened to score on numerous occasions, it was Andrew that struck first in the Class 4A Lockport Sectional softball championship game on Saturday. The T-Bolts scored their only run in a 2-1 loss to rival Sandburg in the top of the sixth inning. With one out, Kelly Christner singled and then Katie Christner tripled to knock her in. Andrew was able to record the first out in the bottom of the seventh and looked to be on the verge of pulling off the upset. But the Eagles showed they still have plans of defending their state title by score two runs to win the game in dramatic fashion. Candice Koch walked and Lizzi Wojtowicz doubled, putting runners on second and third. Then, catcher Lexi Bryant won …