For the Cary-Grove
girls volleyball team, it's 56 and counting. The Trojans, ranked No. 4 in the MaxPreps Xcellent 25 presented by the Army National Guard, will try to extend their win streak to 58 this weekend in the Class 4A state tournament at Illinois State University in Normal.
"It's a fantastic accomplishment to go back downstate," Cary-Grove coach Patty Langanis told the Chicago Sun-Times.
Among the Trojans' stars: Team captains Kelly Lamberti
, who had 11 kills in a Supersectional win over Lincolnshire Stevenson, and Colleen Smith
, who had 29 assists.
Cary-Grove, 40-0 this season and the defending 4A champion, will play Edwardsville (31-8) at 9 p.m. Friday. The winner will meet LaGrange Lyons or Elmhurst York in Saturday's title match.FOOTBALL: HIBEN SETS STATE RECEIVING MARKMark Hiben
of Glenbard West (Glen Ellyn)
caught 12 passes for a
state-record 319 yards and four touchdowns, helping the Hilltoppers
advance to the Class 7A quarterfinals with a 42-28 win over Lincoln-Way
East. He broke the state record, which was safe for nearly 30 years, by
two yards; Hinsdale Central's Pete Bylsma had 317 receiving yards in a
1971 game against Evanston.Click here to view MaxPreps' Illinois football playoff brackets.3 football games to watch* Maine South (Park Ridge) (9-2) at Stevenson (Lincolnshire) (11-0), 7 p.m. Saturday:
Two-time state champion Maine South meets an unbeaten in the Class 8A quarterfinals. The Hawks have won nine straight since a rocky 0-2 start. Quarterback Matt Alviti
is one of the team's rising stars; he has thrown for seven touchdowns and more than 600 yards in two playoff victories.* Catholic Academy (Joliet) (10-1) at Richwoods (Peoria) (11-0), 1 p.m. Saturday:
Illinois recruit Josh Ferguson
leads Joliet Catholic into the 5A quarterfinals. He had touchdown runs of 61 and 54 yards in last week's 49-7 win over Sterling.* Lyons (LaGrange) (10-1) vs. Mount Carmel (Chicago) (9-2), 7 p.m. Friday, Gately Stadium:
The Caravan, whose alums include Washington Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb, are in the state quarterfinals for the 22nd time in 25 years. A 10-yard touchdown run in overtime by Michael Banks
last week carried Mount Carmel past Neuqua Valley and into the quarterfinals.3 big football performances
quarterback Robert Gregory
threw for 300 yards and five
touchdowns, and rushed for two touchdowns in a 55-50 win over Schaumburg
in the Class 7A playoffs. The Wolverines have won 11 straight.
Notre Dame recruit DaVaris Daniels
of Vernon Hills scored three
touchdowns, including one on an 87-yard run, in a 37-22 win over Tinley
Park. The Cougars (10-1) will play host to No. 1 seed Maple Park
Kaneland (11-0) in the Class 5A quarterfinals at 1 p.m. Saturday.
kicker Matt Saitta, a soccer player who is on the football
team this year for the first time, kicked a 32-yard field goal that
skimmed off the post and through the uprights for a 10-7 Class 4A win
over Geneseo. The victory was a school-record 10th for Sandwich.1 football storyline from Chicagoland
* Chicago's football-rich western suburbs lost two well-known football
coaches to resignations. Hinsdale Central coach Mike DiMatteo, who won
more than 60 games in nine seasons at Central and Lake Zurich, resigned
following a 4-5 season and his first non-playoff year at Central. Dennis
Lueck, head coach at Glenbard East for 20 years, resigned following a
3-6 season. He led Glenbard East to the state semifinals in 1999.1 BIG PERFORMANCE AND 1 STORYLINE FROM CROSS COUNTRY
* Sandburg (Orland Park)
runner Luke Verzbicas
repeated his Class 3A boys cross country championship, winning this
year's race in 13 minutes, 54 seconds at Detweiler Park in Peoria. He is
the second runner in 23 years to break the 14-minute mark in the race.
* The team title for York (Elmhurst)
in the Class 3A boys cross country
championships was the 27th state championship for coach Joe Newton.
"This man is the Vince Lombardi, the Joe Paterno of running," York Mayor
Pete DiCianni told Chicago Trib Local. DiCianni was a cross country
runner at York more than 20 years ago. York's domination in cross
country included five straight state titles from 2002 through 2006.1 BIG PERFORMANCE FROM BOYS SOCCER
* Senior attacker Homero Jordan's goal in the second overtime lifted Boylan (Rockford)
to a 3-2 win over Libertyville in the Class 3A boys soccer championship game played in Naperville. The Titans finished 25-1-3, winning the first boys soccer state title in school history.Paul Bowker, an online and newspaper sports journalist for 25 years and the author of two Major League Baseball books, covers the Chicago area for MaxPreps. He may be reached at email@example.com.