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2007 Boys Season Preview

By Aaron Brown

 

1. FENWICK

 

CREDENTIALS: Led by an outstanding trio of seniors (John Barrett, Luke Baldwin, Tom Parolin), the Friars look to be a dominant force once again in 2007. Add the talented group of Chris Wendt, Andrew McKernin, and Chris Bonk and it will be hard to stop the Friars on the offensive end. Senior Kegan Daugherty will look to replace Chris Jones in the net, while younger players like Dan and Brian Barron should round out the lineup and provide Fenwick with plenty of depth and speed.

 

2. ST PATRICK

 

CREDENTIALS: With James Ridgeway leading the way on offense, the Shamrocks should give Fenwick their biggest challenge in 2007. Goalie Pat Szyska continued to improve last season and will definitely be one of the top goaltenders in the state in 2007. Brandon Skelton, Jeff Winter, and Steve Collins also look to contribute for the Shamrocks on both ends of the pool, while seniors Mike Morun, Tom Pederson, and Matt Bozek provide the Shamrocks with a great deal of experience and depth.

 

3. LYONS

 

CREDENTIALS: Almost all of the starters return to a team that finished third in state last year, including offensive standout Scott Nemecek. The list of strong players is seemingly endless for the Lions, including Peter Cosentino, Paul Busse, Mark Castro, and Mark Nemecek. Lyons also boasts outstanding depth with junior Kevin Tully and sophomore Peter Bruton, plus field players Connor Burke and Patrick Donovan.

 

4. BROTHER RICE

 

CREDENTIALS: Led by seniors Sean Coghlan and goalie Joe Frantz, the Crusaders will be a dangerous team in 2007. Drew Velasquez, Matt Joslyn, and Roberto Hernandez also return to help make Brother Rice a strong contender this season.

 

5. LATIN

 

CREDENTIALS: Even though the Romans lost key players from last year's squad, Grant Wilkie and Tim Wickes could make enough of a difference to get Latin back to state. Conor Allen, Tim Barry, and a potent incoming class of freshmen have the Romans thinking big things this season.

 

6. LOYOLA

 

CREDENTIALS: Nathan LeRoy has the all-around ability to lead the Ramblers to another state berth, while goaltender Adam Weissert also returns to make Loyola a tough team to score on. Seniors Matt Stonequist, Joe Toops, and Conor Dwyer also return for the Ramblers, plus junior Evan Rourke has the talent to make a major impact for Loyola this year.

 

7. NAPERVILLE NORTH

 

CREDENTIALS: Senior Alex Buck will have his chance to lead the Huskies back to state after a three-year drought. Head coach Kurt Johns also expects big things from juniors Conor Handley and Jackson Hill. North will need goalie Christian Flessnor to  play a big role in 2007. Mark Tatara, Brandon Glynn, Chris Bateman, and Landon Savino could also help fill out the starting lineup.

 

8. NAPERVILLE CENTRAL

 

CREDENTIALS: Many of the starters from Central's three-year run at state have graduated, so the Redhawks will need to rely on sophomores Tyler Kelley and Max Saltzman and seniors Jadd Shammas and Matt Stablein to keep their streak of state appearances intact. They also look for new faces like Mark Giuliani, Bobby Rickert, and Ben Reasons to contribute at the varsity level this year. Senior Ben Li and junior Zack Cejna also give the Redhawks valuable experience either as starters or coming off the bench.

 

9. NEW TRIER

 

CREDENTIALS: The Trevians have always relied on depth and speed, and with most of their team returning in '07, they could have enough to get back to state for the first time since 2004. Senior Rick Farmer leads the way, while returnees Ben Wampler, Mark Saleh, Sam Lopez, Brendan Nyhan, and new goalie David Melnick are all expected to play major roles this year. Sophomore Bill Farmer could also make the leap to the varsity level and make a big difference for the Trevians.

 

10. ST IGNATIUS

 

CREDENTIALS: Brian Jucas and Matt Middleton lead the way for the Wolfpack, a team that has continued to improve over the past few years and could challenge for a state berth in 2007. GT Wrobel, Matt Noonan, and Chris Tracz also return to give Ignatius a chance at their best season in team history. Younger players Garrett Mulchrone and Cameron Hecht could also make a big contribution this year.

 

11. SANDBURG

 

CREDENTIALS: The Eagles are always in contention each year under head coach Jim Caliendo, and Kevin Dommer should have a big year for Sandburg in 2007. Max Kryzminski and David Stachniak also return to the lineup, while Robert Pozdal could make a difference this season.

 

12. MUNDELEIN

 

CREDENTIALS: The majority of the starting lineup that led the Mustangs to the state tournament for the past two years is gone, so Mundelein will look to senior Grant Gates and juniors Ricky Lukacs and Mike McClure to lead them to a third straight trip to state. Goalie Kevin Coughlin and junior T.J. Klink should help the Mustangs as starters in 2007, and the team could be aided by the speed of senior Aaron Slattery.

 

13. STEVENSON

 

CREDENTIALS: The Patriots are led by Dmitry Simonoff, one of the top returning goaltenders in the state. Stevenson should challenge Mundelein for a berth to state with returning players like Sean Madden, Greg Spiegelman, and Kyle Seplowin making big contributions on both ends of the pool. Ali Khan could see more minutes in 2007, while younger players like Ty Kuper, Brad Feng, and Jaime Clark could be called upon at the next level for the Patriots.

 

14. LINCOLN-WAY EAST

 

CREDENTIALS: The Griffins return seniors Tim Lilja, Kevin Puskaric and goalie Ryan Golden to a team that finished 28-2 last season. Juniors Zach VanSwol and Andrew Chemers and sophomores Mike Reilly and Karl Zoellick also look to make an impact this season.

 

15. EVANSTON

 

CREDENTIALS: With Seniors Ben Terry and Greg Pierce plus juniors Ben McBratney and Steven Devine, the Wildkits should be a difficult team to play against this season. Senior Jack Killheffer returns in the net for Evanston, while senior Ben Vogel looks to have his best year in 2007.

 

16. WAUBONSIE VALLEY

 

CREDENTIALS: Senior Kyle Drake leads a young but talented Warriors squad in 2007. Sophomore Jim Zuponeck got a great deal of varsity experience as a freshmen and should be even better this season. Younger players like Adam Kozak, Jack Poletto, and Kurt Neaderhiser should also make an impact at the next level for Waubonsie Valley.

 

17. NEUQUA VALLEY

 

CREDENTIALS: John Mikuzis had a great first year for the Wildcats in 2006, and he could have another great offensive season to help lead Neuqua Valley in 2007. Also returning to the lineup for new head coach Martin Bell are Dylan Klossner, Ryan Jadwin, Chris Walter and Phil Kaseska.

 

18. OAK PARK

 

CREDENTIALS: The Huskies return an experienced group of seniors, including standout Mike Nickels, and they will look to challenge Lyons in the West Suburban Conference. John Kawsang, Mike Schmidt, and Scott Satinover also return to an OPRF team that continued to improve last season and could be even better in 2007.

 

19. PALATINE

 

CREDENTIALS: The Pirates remain the team to beat in the MSL, with Mitch Tucker and goalie Spencer Blackham returning. Mike Nocella and Whitaker Davis are also expected to help on the offensive end in 2007 as Palatine looks to qualify for the state tournament for the fifth-straight year.

 

20. HOMEWOOD-FLOSSMOOR

 

CREDENTIALS: The Vikings look to challenge Lincoln-Way East and Sandburg with top returning starters Dave Kuchta and Greg Nelson leading the way. Most of the starting lineup returns for head coach Tim Caldwell, including solid players like senior David Schefke and junior Jack Oliver.

 

BEST OF THE REST

21. St Rita-Junior Luke Ginger leads a well-coached team under head coach Chuck Knibbs.

 

22. Andrew-Tim Arif has the talent to make the Thunderbolts a very dangerous team once again in 2007. The T-Bolts also return seniors Mark Kircher and Matt Skender.

 

23. Hinsdale South-Lenny Wanta, Coleman Lange, and Dan Jung help lead what should be a very fast and high-scoring Hornets team.

 

24. Lincoln-Way Central-The Knights hope to reload in 2007 with players like Conner Currier and Ian Whyte leading the way.

 

25. Glenbrook South-Chris DeLetto and Andrew Schmitt have GBS ready for another solid season.

 

26. Prospect-Sean Hansen, Tim O'Grady, and Matt Reiner return to lead the Knights.

 

27. Fremd-Junior Spencer Sophie returns to lead a usually deep Vikings team in the Mid-Suburban League. Tom Banasiak, Tom French and Andrew Heidman have speed and should be strong on the offensive end in 2007 for Fremd.

 

28. York-Eric Krolikiewicz, Kent Van Horn, and Ricky Waychunas return to a Dukes squad that looks to be competitive in the West Suburban Conference.

 

29. Libertyville-Danny Lejeune, Jordan Liss, Ben Glick, and Brian Haber are back for a talented Wildcats team.

 

30. St Viator-The Lions will continue to improve with Mike Barry, Ryan Torii, and Mike Miossi in the field and Robbie Vavrik in goal.

 

OTHER TOP PLAYERS

Paul Ivnik (Lockport), Ben Bentley (Lockport), Ryan Oldendorf (Lockport), Brett Heniken (Glenbrook North), Jon Montgomery (Glenbrook North), Chris Glass (Glenbrooth North), Eric Maczko (Wheeling), Ade Nolla (Wheeling), Chad Mikesell (Hersey), Joe Armour (Hersey), Mike Covello (Buffalo Grove), Owen Fassnacht (Barrington), Chris Cornillie (Barrington), Eric Schroeder (Barrington), Mike Varga (Conant), Adam Longo (Conant), Greg Seymour (Stagg), Nathan Hicks (Stagg), Ryan Murphy (Hinsdale Central), Mike Smith (Hinsdale Central), TJ Turnock (Mt Carmel), Brenden Duhig (Mt Carmel), Ben Steadman (Lake Forest), Mike Davitt (Lake Forest), Bill Dabrowski (McHenry), Jay Wright (Bradley), Piyum Zonooz (Hoffman Estates), Robert Wood (Vernon Hills), Luke Shafer (Rolling Meadows), Jake Grosser (St Charles East), Tim Chapman (Morgan Park), Max Kakacek (Northside), Tom McClean (Deerfield), Dane Christensen (Elk Grove), Jeff Davis (Schaumburg)

 

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