Area Roundup: News on Oak Lawn's Hansen, new St. Laurence coach Nye and soccer seeds

  • Written by Jeff Vorva

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Last year, Oak Lawn native Marc Hansen was named to the American Volleyball Coaches Association All-America first team as a junior.

This year, he made the second team.

To outsiders, that may sound like a downturn from 2016 but the former Oak Lawn Community High School star changed positions and spent a lot of time in the front row this year after three years of mostly back row work. He had just 31 kills and seven blocks in 75 career matches before moving to outside hitter this season.

Hansen had 257 kills and a .320 hitting percentage and added 32 blocks for Carthage this season. He still found his way to make big plays in the back row as he racked up 147 digs.

Carthage was one of the top teams in the country in NCAA Division III play but was shocked in the semifinals of the Midwest Collegiate Volleyball League tournament and did not receive a bid to the nationals, despite finishing 20-3.


Nye joins St. Laurence staff

Another coach with heavy Brother Rice ties was added to St. Laurence’s staff.

Former Brother Rice football coach Steve Nye will serve as the Vikings’ defensive coordinator and was hired as a dean of students. The move was announced shortly after former Brother Rice basketball star Jim Sexton was named as the Vikings’ basketball coach.

Nye brings more than a quarter century of high school teaching and administrative experience to the Burbank school. He comes to St. Laurence from Montini Catholic High School, where he helped revamp the school’s disciplinary systems and procedures as the school’s dean. He has previously served as assistant athletic director and assistant admissions director at York High School and Brother Rice.

“I’m thrilled about the opportunity to join the St. Laurence family,” Nye said. “It is a unique time to join a school with such a storied history and exciting vision for the future.”

A resident of the Beverly neighborhood and member of Christ the King parish, Nye also brings a strong coaching background to the Viking Football team.

He served as the offensive line coach and run game coordinator for Montini, who won the 2015 IHSA 6A Football Championship and were finalists in 2014. Nye was Brother Rice’s head football coach for 13 seasons until 2012. He led the team to a state semifinal appearance, three state quarterfinal appearances and ten state playoff appearances.

“Coach Nye’s history of winning football games complements our Viking tradition well,” said St. Laurence Football Coach Harold Blackmon. “As someone who knows the Chicago Catholic League, I am confident that he will help us build on our recent success.”

Nye replaces coach Bobbie Howard, who will coach at the sophomore level as he pursues his master’s degree.

St. Laurence made it to the state semifinals two years in a row. They made it that far in Class 5A in 2015 and Class 6A in 2017.

 Soccer seedings

The last time an area girls soccer team made it to the Illinois High School Association state tournament finals was 2010, when Sandburg finished second in Class 3A.

The coaches around the region are not confident anyone will get that far this year, if the seedings are any indication.

At the Sandburg sectional in Class 3A, the hosts drew the third seed behind Lincoln-Way East and Andrew. Stagg is sixth, Mother McAuley eighth, Shepard 10th and Oak Lawn 17th in the 17-team tournament.

In Class 2A, Marist is hosting a sectional and the hosts are also seeded third behind Lemont and Tinley Park. Evergreen Park is seventh and Richards is eighth.

In Class 1A, Chicago Christian is seeded third in the Manteno Sub-Sectional and Queen of Peace is fourth out of nine teams.