Moraine athletics wrap

  • Written by Maura Vizza

Cyclones tennis team headed back to nationals

  Next May, Moraine Valley College tennis players will experience the joy of six.
  While Paris in the spring appeals to many, spending time in Tyler, Texas, instead will be just fine with the Cyclones. That’s the site of the 2014 National Junior College Athletic Association national tournament, and it’s where Moraine is headed for the sixth time in program history.
  The Cyclones punched their latest ticket to the NJCAA event by placing second in the Region IV Tournament on Oct. 12. Moraine hosted the two-day event, and eight of its nine entries won a first-round match.
  Leading the way were singles players Claudia Maka (No. 4) and Tricia Poremba (No. 6), each of whom emerged as a champion. Maka won her title match by coming from behind against an opponent who had defeated her during the regular season.
  Both Poremba, who was unbeaten this fall, and Maka earned all-region recognition.
  Finishing as runners-up were Alexa Armon (No. 3 singles) and Lindsey Walker (No. 5 singles), while the doubles tandems of Maka-Kelley Grzych (No. 2) and Walker-Poremba (No. 3) both took third. Walker pushed hard before suffering a 6-4, 6-4 loss in her singles encounter.

Perfectly placed

  • Written by Ken Karrson

Mustangs stage another great escape

  Jacquet McClendon’s football future will probably be at wide receiver, but he’s presently making foes miserable as a defensive standout.
  The Evergreen Park senior is still doing much as a pass-catcher to warrant attention; his five receptions versus Eisenhower Friday night, for example, included two that went for touchdowns. McClendon also gained a total of 121 yards.
  However, when the Cardinals threatened to erase the last part of what had once been a 21-0 Mustangs lead, it was McClendon coming to Evergreen’s defensive rescue late in the fourth quarter. His interception thwarted Eisenhower’s final possession with under a minute to go and preserved the Mustangs’ 21-13 South Suburban Conference Red win that kept their ledger perfect.
  McClendon had performed a similar act of thievery near the end of a Week 5 clash with Richards, and that steal nailed down Evergreen’s 35-34 triumph back then. Amazingly, the Mustangs (7-0, 4-0) have collected five of their six on-field wins to date by single digits, four of them by no more than two points.
  And even in its biggest victory, 21-10 over Oak Lawn, Evergreen had to fight back from a 10-0 halftime deficit.

Southern comfort

  • Written by Ken Karrson

Crusaders keep momentum going vs. Irish

  As the southernmost school among Chicago Catholic League institutions, Bishop McNamara has frequently taken advantage of travel-weary opponents.
  A trip to Kankakee typically requires at least 90 minutes even for those schools closest to Bishop Mac geographically, which meant that Brother Rice had to avoid any bouts of fatigue if it wanted to have a realistic chance of subduing a decent Fightin’ Irish gridiron squad Friday night.
  Crusaders coach Brian Badke admitted that “Bishop Mac’s not an easy place to play,” but Rice had two big things going for it: momentum and something important for which to play. A record-setting victory over St. Joseph one week before had created the former, as it snapped a four-game Crusaders skid and kept them alive for a Class 8A playoff berth.

Tigers get Adam-bombed

  • Written by Ken Karrson

QB leads Chargers to huge win over Joliet West

Call Stagg’s weapon of choice Friday night the Adam bomb.
  The description fit Chargers quarterback Adam Pilota in more than one way. Not only did the senior blow up any chance visiting Joliet West had of claiming a SouthWest Suburban Conference Blue victory, but he accomplished that by being the architect of several big plays, including three long touchdown passes — more commonly known as “bombs” in gridiron vernacular.
  The most impressive aerial hookup was one between Pilota and Jack Duffner, which covered 80 yards and came soon after the Tigers had wasted a prime scoring opportunity of their own by fumbling the football into the Stagg end zone. The Chargers’ ensuing recovery resulted in a touchback that preserved a 13-7 lead, which was then increased by the Pilota-Duffner duo.

In this case, it’s ‘Argo-nots’

  • Written by Ken Karrson

Bulldogs run roughshod over Argo, secure playoff berth

  Richards players understood Argo’s pain. Then they proceeded to add to it.
  A week after dropping a gut-wrenching one-point verdict to South Suburban Conference Red leader Evergreen Park — just as the Bulldogs had in Week 5 — the Argonauts were forced to try and remedy themselves against Richards. That proved to be mission impossible.
  The Bulldogs had to journey to Summit Friday night, but being the road team was about the only thing that didn’t directly benefit them. Its visitor status was of little consequence, however, to Richards.
  Foremost among the Bulldogs’ batch of home wreckers was a defense that completely stifled an Argo offense that had amassed 44 points versus Evergreen and averaged slightly more than five touchdowns per contest through the season’s first six weeks. Against the Bulldogs, the Argonauts netted only 42 total yards, a number that was greatly affected by minus-58 rushing yards on 18 carries.