Daily Archive : Thursday December 12, 2013


    Madhu Krishnamurthy

    Two U-46 high schools ranked among best for 2013

    Two Elgin Area School District U-46 high schools made the list of best schools for 2013 of two national magazines. U.S. News and World Report named Elgin High School among the Best High Schools for 2013. Meanwhile, Newsweek named Bartlett High School to its list of America’s Best High Schools for 2013.

    Ethan Schoenfeld, 9, of Libertyville makes a snow angel after visiting with Santa Claus in Cook Park during Dickens of a Holiday Festival on Saturday in Libertyville.

    MainStreet Libertyville’s Dickens of a Holiday Festival

    Seasonal festival goers enjoyed the final day of the Dickens of a Holiday Festival on Saturday in Libertyville’s Cook Park.


    2014 budget likely to keep Elgin water/sewer rates flat

    A consultant’s report suggests increasing Elgin’s water and sewer rates each year for the next five years. The proposed 2014 budget, which the city council is expected to approve Dec. 18, includes no water and sewer rate increases next year.

    Florentino Bucio

    Two teens charged in attempted robbery of Elgin home

    A 17-year-old Elgin teen and a 16-year-old male juvenile were arrested and charged with attempted residential burglary after trying to gain entry to a house through a first floor window, police said Thursday. Police said at 2:18 p.m. Wednesday, they responded to the 300 block of Jefferson Street after a neighbor called 911 to report that two male subjects were trying to open windows on a house.

    Police and tactical officers respond to a hostage situation near Arlington Heights Road and Palatine Road Thursday night. Here officers walk toward Wheeler Street.

    Arlington Hts. cop shot responding to domestic incident

    An Arlington Heights police officer was shot in the neck as a dramatic hostage situation unfolded Thursday evening on the village’s north side — which ended when the shooter was killed by gunfire and the hostage escaped unharmed.


    Palatine woman indicted on federal fraud charges

    A Palatine woman is one of two executives with a Chicago real estate development company indicted Thursday on fraud charges, federal prosecutors announced. Caroline Walters, 53, of Palatine, and Laurance H. Freed, 51, of Chicago, each are charged with seven counts of bank fraud, one count of mail fraud, and five counts of making false statements to banks in a 14-count indictment released Thursday.

    Aurora police Sgt. Bill Rowley talks with 2-year-old Abby Schmidt during a reunion Thursday in Aurora. Rowley used CPR to save Abby's life after she was severely injured in an October crash.

    2-year-old girl's family reunited with Aurora cop who saved her life

    A 2-year-old girl and her family were reunited Thursday with the off-duty Aurora cop who saved Abby Schmidt's life after she was involved in a horrendous traffic accident. Sgt. Bill Rowley kept little Abby alive until paramedics arrived. “Not more than a few hours go by in a day where I don't think about how grateful I am,” Abby's dad said.

    Thamsanqa Jantjie, the man accused of faking sign interpretation while standing alongside world leaders like U.S. President Barack Obama at Nelson Mandela’s memorial service, said Thursday he hallucinated that angels were entering the stadium, has schizophrenia and has been violent in the past.

    Fake signer at Mandela event says he hallucinated

    The sign language interpreter at Nelson Mandela’s memorial says he suffers from schizophrenia and hallucinated and saw angels while gesturing incoherently just 3 feet away from President Barack Obama and other world leaders, outraging deaf people worldwide who said his signs amounted to gibberish.

    North Korean leader Kim Jong Un passes his uncle, Jang Song Thaek, left, after reviewing a parade of thousands of soldiers and commemorating the 70th birthday of the late Kim Jong Il in Pyongyang, North Korea, in this Feb. 16, 2012, file photo.

    North Korea executes leader’s uncle as a traitor

    North Korea said Friday that it had executed Kim Jong Un’s uncle as a traitor for trying to seize supreme power, a stunning end for the leader’s former mentor, long considered the country’s No. 2.

    Hours before the House voted to pass the budget deal, Speaker John Boehner repeatedly denounced Tea Party-aligned organizations for their opposition, saying they were seeking to further their own objectives, not those of the Republican Party or the country. Also seen here is House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan.

    Budget peace breaks out — after Boehner tough talk

    Battle-fatigued and suddenly bipartisan, the House voted Thursday night to ease across-the-board federal spending cuts and head off future government shutdowns, acting after Speaker John Boehner unleashed a stinging attack on tea party-aligned conservative groups campaigning for the measure’s defeat.

    With days to go before an important deadline, the state of Illinois is launching a long-delayed TV advertising blitz on Friday telling people to “enroll now” for insurance coverage under the nation’s health care law.

    Illinois TV ads push health insurance

    With days to go before an important deadline, the state of Illinois is launching a long-delayed TV advertising blitz on Friday telling people to “enroll now” for insurance coverage under the nation’s health care law.

    William “Bill” Blohm

    Elgin librarian remembered for genealogy passion

    William “Bill” Blohm loved the challenge of genealogy and helping people find their roots and their families as a librarian at Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin. Blohm, 62, of Carpentersville, died suddenly on Thanksgiving Day at Advocate Sherman Hospital in Elgin after feeling ill at work the day before, his wife said. Funeral services were held earlier this month.

    Newly released federal figures, as of Nov. 30, show more people are picking private insurance plans or being routed to Medicaid programs in states with Democratic leaders who have fully embraced the federal health care law than in states where Republican elected officials have derisively rejected what they call “Obamacare.”

    Feds try to smooth bumpy health care transition

    Anticipating more health care disruptions, the Obama administration Thursday announced a batch of measures intended to help consumers avoid lapses in their care and coverage as the president’s overhaul takes effect in January.


    Mt. Prospect arborists want to spread word about trees

    “Urban forestry” may not be a common topic of conversation in the suburbs, but Mount Prospect leaders would like to change that. In the wake of a report that showed that the village’s tree management is producing positive results, local arborists are making themselves available for community presentations. They want to spread the word about the benefits the village enjoys because of its...

    404 Larkdale lane in Mount Prospect

    Images: Daily Herald Holiday Lights Entries
    Images of Entries in the Daily Herald Holiday Lights Contest. See the addresses of the entries and take a tour of the fabulous displays!

    Roscoe Ebey Citizen of the Year co-recipients Lorraine Stahl, far left, and Christine Propheter are flanked by Richard Ebey, son of the award’s namesake, and Kane County Sheriff Pat Perez during a ceremony Thursday in St. Charles. Lea Minalga of St. Charles also shared in the award.

    3 earn Kane sheriff’s Roscoe Ebey award

    Lorraine Stahl and Christine Propheter, who started a Neighborhood Watch program, and drug counselor Lea Minalga received the Roscoe Ebey Citizen of the Year award on Thursday. The award, named after an Aurora man and World War II veteran killed in a home invasion, is Kane County Sheriff Pat Perez's highest civilian honor.

    The FBI is offering a $5,000 reward for information on a suspect dubbed the “Hooded Bandit,” accused of at least five robberies in the suburbs since February 2013.

    FBI offers $5,000 reward for information on “Hooded Bandit”

    The FBI is offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to the identification and arrest of a bank robber they’ve dubbed the “Hooded Bandit.” Authorities said the suspect, who is pictured in bank surveillance images with a hood covering his head, is believed to have committed at least five bank robberies in the suburbs since February.


    Arlington Heights students give back to families in need

    Students and staff from Thomas Middle School in Arlington Heights collected money and gifts for the village’s Adopt-A-Family program over the past few weeks. Fundraising started mid-November and the presents and money were presented to the village this week, along with an additional $2,000 check Baird & Warner’s Northwest Suburban office in Arlington Heights.

    Elgin police leave Gifford Elementary School Thursday after investigating a student bringing a loaded handgun to school.

    Romeoville man charged after student brought his loaded gun to Elgin school

    Elgin Police are investigating a 7-year-old male student at Gifford Elementary School bringing a loaded handgun to school Thursday morning. The 9 millimeter loaded handgun was found in the student’s backpack, police said. A search of the school revealed no further weapons, police said.


    Fox Valley police reports
    Lavell Cochran, 24, of Carpentersville, was charged with misdemeanor retail theft Saturday after police said he stole $233 in merchandise from the Macy’s inside Spring Hill Mall in West Dundee.


    Tri-Cities police reports
    Someone cut the net on a 12-foot by 6-foot soccer goal and turned on the water spigots outside a home on the 0S900 block of West Burnham Lane near Geneva between 9 a.m. Sunday and 9 a.m. Tuesday, according to a sheriff’s report.


    Naperville man shot in Aurora

    A 25-year-old Naperville man was shot in the upper abdomen Wednesday, apparently while talking to someone in a car on Aurora’s East side, authorities said. Police said the victim was transported to an Aurora-area hospital where his condition was stabilized.


    Free self-defense seminar in Des Plaines

    A free self-defense seminar will take place from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m Friday, Dec. 13 at the Lattof YMCA in Des Plaines. An officer from the Illinois State Police will provide free self-defense techniques and discuss ways to stay safe, officials said.


    Slow pace of contract talks frustrates Prospect Heights, Mount Prospect educators

    Teacher-contract talks have gone more slowly than expected in Prospect Heights Elementary District 23, a situation that has frustrated both sides. The negotiations are proceeding with the help of a federal mediator, and the recent goverment shutdown delayed talks, officials say. Meanwhile, talks continue in nearby Mount Prospect Elementary District 57, also with the help of a federal mediator.

    The Thodos Dance Chicago group performed at Libertyville High School on Thursday.

    Dancers entertain and educate at Libertyville High School

    Members of the Thodos Dance Chicago company performed an array of pieces for students from Libertyville and Vernon Hills high schools Thursday. The visit was part of a two-part project that also has a Thodos choreographer working with Libertyville High students on pieces they will perform later in the year.

    Ronald Brainer

    Hoffman Estates man charged with attempted arson

    A 21-year-old Hoffman Estates man is being held on charges of attempted arson after authorities say he concocted a bomb comprised of various aerosol containers and wooden matches. Ronald J. Brainer had his bond set at $50,000 Thursday. He was also ordered held on $20,000 bond for violating his conditional discharge for domestic battery.

    Frank Urbina

    2 former employees sue Fox Lake for political retaliation

    Two former Fox Lake employees are suing the village and Mayor Donny Schmit, alleging they were fired from their jobs in retaliation for their political support of Schmit’s opponent in the 2013 spring election, according to a federal lawsuit filed Thursday.

    A traveler on Delta Airlines waits for her flight in Detroit. As federal regulators consider removing a decades-old prohibition on making phone calls on planes, a majority of frequent air travelers oppose such a change, a new Associated Press poll found Wednesday.

    Debate on plane phone calls moves on, gets bigger

    Just because it’s safe to use cellphones on a plane, it doesn’t mean that passengers should call just to say hello. That argument played out across Washington Thursday as one government agency moved a step closer to removing its prohibition of in-flight calls while another considered a new ban of its own.


    State police launch concealed carry website

    The Illinois State Police on Thursday launched website to provide the public with information regarding the Concealed Carry application process. The Concealed Carry License (CCL) website is being launched in advance of the Jan. 5 application posting date to provide citizens with additional information that will assist with eligibility requirements, application fees, training requirements,...

    Judson University President Gene C. Crume Jr., dressed as Buddy the Elf, has Gavin Buckland, Layne Anderson (both from Iowa) and Josh Huntington of New Jersey recite the code of elves in the Lindner Tower dorms while they enjoy milk and cookies during the annual “Storm the Dorms” Wednesday night.

    Buddy the Elf delivers Christmas cheer to students at Judson U.

    Dressed as Buddy the Elf, Judson University President Gene C. Crume Jr. spread Christmas cheer to students studying during finals week as he and his helpers passed out milk and cookies during the annual "Storm the Dorms" event Wednesday night.

    A Wheaton man and a Chicago woman were the top finishers in Wheaton’s second annual Reindeer Run 5K.

    Wheaton man wins city’s Reindeer Run 5K

    A Wheaton man and a Chicago woman were the top finishers in the second annual Reindeer Run 5K Dec. 7 in Wheaton. Sponsored by the Wheaton Lions Club and Wheaton Park District, this year’s race attracted 613 registered runners.


    Foreclosure mediation program launched in Lake County

    A free mediation program has been launched to help Lake County homeowners faced with foreclosure.


    Schaumburg police release enforcement campaign results

    Schaumburg police issued 16 speeding tickets and 58 seat belt violation citations from Nov. 18 to Dec. 18 during a special traffic enforcement campaign conducted with the assistance of a grant funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and administered by the Illinois Department of Transportation. Officers working the enforcement campaign were assigned to patrol throughout the...


    Stevenson survey results released:

    Stevenson High School students overwhelmingly approve of the counseling services provided by the school’s student services division, according to newly released survey results.


    Naperville traffic crackdown nets arrests

    Naperville police say they made numerous arrests and issued even more citations during their “Click It or Ticket” traffic enforcement effort that ran from Nov. 18 to Dec. 1 and was sponsored by the I


    Improv Playhouse presents ‘Seussical’:

    Performances of the Improv Playhouse Libertyville Showstoppers Production of the Broadway Junior Musical “ Seussical” are Friday, Dec. 13 at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 14 at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 15 at 2:30 p.m. at the Round Lake Beach Cultural and Civic Center, 2007 Civic Center Way, Round Lake Beach, the group announced in a release.


    Beach passes offered:

    For the first time, unlimited passes to the beach at Independence Grove Forest Preserve are being offered, Lake County Forest Preserve District officials announced in a news release.


    Traffic shift for Route 21/137 project:

    Weather permitting, traffic on Route 137 and Route 21 (Milwaukee Avenue) in the Libertyville area will be placed in a new configuration Friday to complete remaining medians on all four legs of the intersection.

    Sandra Hoston

    Former heroin addict to give ECC graduation speech

    Sandra Hoston's life was on a downward spiral from years of abusing alcohol and heroin starting in her late teens. At 16, Hoston was pregnant with her first child. Soon after graduating from a Chicago high school, Hoston started hanging out with the wrong crowd and began abusing heroin to fit in. “I was addicted for 25 years,” said the now 51-year-old Elgin resident. Hoston went back...

    Maxy Makil of Naperville walks toward the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe as the temperature climbs out of single digits at Maryville in Des Plaines Thursday.

    Deep freeze hits suburbs

    Bitter cold temperatures and freezing winds are blanketing the area, and experts are telling people to bundle up with multiple layers before heading outside today.

    Mary Lou Wehrli

    Three DuPage candidates face battle to stay on March ballot

    Three DuPage County candidates, including two seeking countywide seats, could be kicked off the March primary ballot if residents opposing their candidacies can prove mistakes were made on their nomination papers.

    Chom Peloquin

    4 women arrested in Crystal Lake prostitution sting

    The Crystal Lake Police Department, working Wednesday with the McHenry County Sheriff's Police, Kane County Sheriff's Office and agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement, shut down a trio of city businesses officials said were really fronts for prostitution, and arrested four women on similar charges. All four, three from China and one from Korea, were charged with prostitution and with a...

    Coyotes have killed three dogs in less than two weeks in Wheaton.

    Coyotes kill three dogs in Wheaton

    At least three small dogs have been killed by coyotes in less than two weeks in Wheaton, police said Thursday. Authorities are cautioning residents that coyotes become more visible at this time of year because food is scarce and young coyotes are leaving their families.

    Europa, a moon of Jupiter first discovered by Galileo, has long been a subject of interest to scientists because of the presence of water there. Water is believed to be a necessary ingredient for life to exist.

    Geysers spotted on Jupiter’s moon Europa
    The search for life in the solar system took a turn Thursday with the announcement that Europa, a moon of Jupiter first discovered by Galileo, shows signs of water geysers erupting from its south pole.

    Amber Kraus

    Former Grant High teacher pleads not guilty in sex case

    A former Grant High School teacher denied during an arraignment hearing Thursday in Lake County court that she had sex with a student. Amber Kraus, 30, formerly of the 0-100 block of Belvidere Road in Grayslake, pleaded not guilty to criminal sexual assault and two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse in front of Lake County Judge James Booras.


    Northwest suburban police blotter

    Thieves stole a briefcase containing a laptop computer, iPad, and several endorsed business checks between 5:30 and 5:45 p.m. Dec. 11 out of an office building lobby, 171 W. Wing St., Arlington Heights. The victim left the briefcase there while getting a car from the parking lot. Value was estimated at $4,750.

    This handout photo provided by The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) shows Arctic sea ice earlier this year. The Arctic took a bit of a break from its rapid melting this year. But a federal Arctic report card says global warming is still massively altering the top of the world.

    Mild 2013 cuts Arctic a break, warming woes remain

    The rapid melting in the Arctic eased up this year. But the government says global warming is still dramatically altering the top of the world, reducing the number of reindeer and shrinking snow and ice, while increasing certain fish and extending the growing season.

    This photo provided by Taco Bell shows a new advertisement for Doritos Locos Tacos shells. PepsiCo Inc., which owns Cheetos, Fritos, Tostitos and other snacks, found enormous success in 2012 after teaming up with Taco Bell to create Dorito-flavored taco shells. And it has since been looking for other ways to create restaurant dishes featuring its popular snack.

    Are more Dorito-flavored foods on the way?

    Dorito dust may be the new salt for more restaurant chains. PepsiCo Inc., which owns Cheetos, Fritos, Tostitos and other snacks, found success last year after teaming up with Taco Bell to create Dorito-flavored taco shells. And it has since been dreaming up other restaurant dishes featuring its popular snacks.

    Diana Atkisson of Elmhurst thinks layering is the key to staying warm as she endures frigid temperatures Thursday while waiting for a bus in Wheaton.

    Frigid temperatures mean early start to Naperville’s ice skating season

    There is a positive side to the recent frigid temperatures: Naperville's outdoor ice skating season is off to an early start.


    Atlanta man faces multiple charges after fleeing Elmhurst cops

    A man is being held in DuPage County jail after smashing into eight cars while fleeing police following a dispute with his girlfriend in Elmhurst. He faces charges of possession of a fraudulent driver’s license, aggravated assault against a police officer, domestic battery, fleeing and eluding police, attempting to obstruct justice, leaving the scene of an accident and driving without a valid...


    Community Foundation now accepting grant applications

    The Lake County Community Foundation, an affiliate of The Chicago Community Trust, announces the 2014 grant cycle is now open and online.


    Let adult children know when your home is no longer their home

    At some point, our Ken Potts says, adult children need to understand that they're responsible for themselves and it's no longer their parents' job to feed them or give them a home. But children don't always get the message, leaving parents wondering how they should handle things.

    Picasso’s 1914 cubist drawing L’homme au Gibus, Man with Opera Hat, is presented at Sotheby’s auction house in Paris Thursday Dec. .

    Charity to raffle a Picasso for 100 euros ($138)

    For aspiring art collectors everywhere, there is hope. Sotheby’s Paris is giving away a $1 million masterpiece by Pablo Picasso for just 100 euros ($138) in an unusually affordable charity raffle Wednesday. The 1914 work “Man in the Opera Hat,” which features vivid shapes in opaque gouache paint, dates from the Spanish master’s cubist period.

    Joseph Ali, 27, of Huntington Beach shows off an 18 pound California spiny lobster he caught with his hands while free diving, without tanks, near the pier Monday night Dec. 9, 2013. One of the lobster’s spiny antennae broke off in the struggle to the surface.

    Swimmer nabs monster lobster off California coast

    HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. — Joseph Ali says onlookers thought he was drunk when he dove into the nighttime waters around a Southern California pier. But he came away with a monster of a lobster and the catch of a lifetime.

    House Republicans signaled support Wednesday for a budget deal worked out a day earlier, a plan narrowly drawn but promoted as a way to stabilize Congress' erratic fiscal efforts, avert another government shutdown and mute some of the partisan rancor that has damaged Americans' attitudes about their lawmakers. Suburban lawmakers are divided on the issue.

    Local lawmakers divided on federal budget deal

    A bipartisan collection of suburban federal lawmakers backs the latest federal budget deal struck in Washington, but others are waiting until closer to a possible House vote today to make a decision. Approval would avoid another budget battle that led to a government shutdown this year, and some local lawmakers say they support the agreement at least partly for that reason.

    Running back Justin Wallace has earned All-New England Football Conference honors all three of his years at MIT.

    Fremd grad stars on field and in classroom at MIT

    Justin Wallace is thriving both in the football field and in the classroom at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Besides developing into a player his coach calls one of the best small-college running backs in the country, the Palatine native is taking part in research that could change the way satellites operate in space. “I think he does stand out among MIT students,” one...

    Visit dailyherald.com/contests/holidaylights to vote for your favorite display.

    Cast your vote in the holiday lights contest

    Voting has begun in the Daily Herald's holiday lights contest. One random voter will win a Toro snowblower.

    ComEd wants to extend a 345,000-volt power line between a substation near Byron and a substation near Wayne. The line would travel about 57 miles across Ogle, DeKalb, Kane and DuPage counties.

    County could push ComEd to bury Grand Prairie Parkway lines

    Kane County officials are drafting a resolution opposing the current plan for ComEd's Grand Prairie Gateway project. The resolution will call on ComEd to bury the proposed new power lines that will run through forest preserve and along the property lines of homes. ComEd says it can bury the lines, but the cost would be "significant."


    Dawn Patrol: Bitter cold blasts Chicago; Car crashes into creek

    Bitter cold freezes Chicago area; Car lands in Huntley creek after crash; Supportive housing developers sue Palatine; Antioch superintendent to resign in June

    Wauconda officials are considering creating a special taxing district to spur commercial redevelopment in town.

    Wauconda to vote on tax breaks for developers

    A proposed special taxing district designed to encourage commercial development in Wauconda could clear its final hurdles next week.

    Liz Corry

    District 200 ready to get community’s input with ‘Engage200’

    Wheaton Warrenville Unit District 200 officials expressed excitement during Wednesday’s board of education meeting about the start of a new, in-depth community engagement process called Engage200. The district announced earlier this week the initiative is being called Engage200 and former Wheaton City Council member Liz Corry and District 200 parent Scott Brown have been selected to serve as...


    Naperville tweaks carillon jobs

    The documents that define who maintains two of downtown Naperville’s best-known amenities — the Riverwalk and the Millennium Carillon in Moser Tower — are set to get an update early next year, and the role of one group previously involved with caring for the carillon is becoming less formal.

    Arnie Biondo has been named executive director of the DuPage County Forest Preserve District. He will assume his new duties in January.

    New DuPage forest preserve leader looks to shape district’s direction

    After being named executive director of DuPage County Forest Preserve District, Arnie Biondo says his focus will be to ensure that he and forest preserve commissioners are heading in the same direction. “My key role is taking the vision of the forest preserve board and helping to put that into action,” Biondo said.



    Lake Park overcomes WW South

    The Lake Park wrestling team won its first DuPage Valley Conference battle against Wheaton Warrenville South 47-22 on Thursday night in Roselle.

    New York Giants safety Antrel Rolle (26) pushes on the helmet of Bears quarterback Jay Cutler (6) during the second half of a game in Chicago.

    Nice that Bears have decided on QB even if fans haven’t

    Stop the speculation: the Bears have their quarterback.Whether that is a good thing is still to be determined, though.


    Thursday’s wrestling scoreboard
    Here are the varsity boys wrestling results from Thursday as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Thursday’s girls gymnastics scoreboard
    Here are the varsity girls gymnastics results from Thursday's events, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Thursday’s girls bowling scoreboard
    Here are the varsity girls bowling results from Thursday's events, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Thursday’s girls basketball scoreboard
    Here are the results from Thursday's varsity girls basketball results as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Thursday’s boys swimming scoreboard
    Here are varsity boys swimming results from Thursday's meets, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Thursday’s boys basketball scoreboard
    Here are the results from Thursday's varsity boys basketball results as reported to the Daily Herald.

    Kateri Stone of Montini, center, takes one to the net during the Wheaton Warrenville South vs. Montini girls basketball game at the Schaumburg tournament Friday. Olivia Linebarger, left, and Erin Zappia were attempting to block the shot.

    Planting the seeds of a loaded tourney

    If Montini coach Jason Nichols has one goal for the Montini Christmas Tournament, he wants it to be considered the girls version of Proviso West’s highly regarded boys holiday tournament.


    Metea Valley gets after it defensively

    Last season Jenny Voytell was another talented tall player for the Metea Valley girls basketball team.


    Naperville North’s Kawaoka enjoying adjustment

    One of the things Naperville North sophomore Anneli Kawaoka is enjoying during her first year of high school gymnastics is that it’s far more laid back than club gymnastics. Her beam routine during Thursday’s home DuPage Valley Conference meet was anything but laid back, though. Kawaoka nailed her backhand spring layout early in her routine and then was pretty much flawless through her finish, scoring an impressive 9.65 to help Naperville North pull out a 137.85 to 135.45 victory.

    Wauconda forward Dion Head goes after a loose ball with Antioch guard Hamza Abdellatif on Thursday at Wauconda.

    Lovelle lines up a Wauconda win

    Lovelle hurts. From the foul line. Joey Lovelle walked to the free-throw line time after time in the second half Thursday night, as his 16-of-18 foul shooting helped Wauconda hold off visiting Antioch 55-50 in the Bulldogs’ North Suburban Prairie Division opener.


    Mooseheart runs away with Westminster

    Short-handed Westminster Christian stayed with much taller Mooseheart until a halftime adjustment unleashed the unique abilities of 6-foot-10 senior Makur Puou in a 62-42 Northeastern Athletic Conference boys basketball victory for the Red Ramblers in Elgin Thursday.


    Gallimore, Antioch roll to victory

    Paige Gallimore had 24 points, 4 assists and 3 steals, as Antioch’s girls basketball team defeated visiting Round Lake 65-23 in North Suburban Prairie Division action Thursday night.


    Dundee-Crown battles past Cary-Grove

    What a glorious night for Dundee-Crown wrestling Thursday. The Chargers (8-2-0) opened and closed strong to defeat host Cary-Grove before a big house to earn their first Fox Valley Conference Valley Division win after a 41-19 triumph.


    Kramp, Dolan help Meadows finish strong

    The Rolling Meadows boys basketball team had been waiting for the right moment to put things together. That moment came in the third quarter at Wheeling Thursday night. “We’ve been getting better and better,” said Mustangs coach Kevin Katovich. “We just had to stick with it.” The Wildcats were the victims as the Mustangs put together a big second half to win handily 71-50 in the Mid-Suburban East.

    Elk Grove’s Dan Hadler and Hersey’s Grant Burke mix it up on the floor in the first quarter as they vie for control of the ball Thursday in Elk Grove.

    Alcazar, Elk Grove stand tall

    Bryan Alcazar is listed as a generous 5-foot-11-inch guard in the Elk Grove boys basketball program. But Thursday night the senior played like one of the bigs down low to help lead the Grenadiers to a 62-53 Mid-Suburban League East win over visiting Hersey. Alcazar finished with 11 points and 6 rebounds — nothing out of the ordinary — but all 6 of his rebounds came off the offensive glass, and all four buckets from the field came as a result of an offensive rebound. Even his 2 free throws came after an offensive board.

    West Chicago’s John Konchar is averaging 31 points a game.

    West Chicago’s Konchar making his mark

    West Chicago boys basketball coach Bill Recchia still owns the Wildcats career scoring mark of 1,461 points between 1979-83. He saw one of his scoring marks fall last week, and if senior John Konchar continues at his pace of 31 points a game, Recchia will be only too happy to see that career record fall as well.


    Harvest Christian falls

    Cornerstone Christian 70, Harvest Christian 62 (OT): Despite a game-tying bucket from Brett Cramer at the end of regulation, four starters fouled out in the extra session and Harvest (2-4) sent Cornerstone to the line 35 times in the Lions’ nonconference road loss. John Vislisel poured in 28 points to go with 9 rebounds and Noah Fox added 10 points and 2 rebounds for the Lions.


    Fremd survives OT test from Conant

    Although unbeaten, Fremd just wants to keep improving. The Vikings took a step in that direction, scoring a narrow escape in a 38-36 Mid-Suburban West basketball win Thursday night at Conant in what coach Bob Widlowski called “a tremendous Mid-Suburban League battle.”

    San Diego Chargers linebacker Thomas Keiser (90) reacts after intercepting a pass by Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) in the fourth quarter of an NFL football game, Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013, in Denver.

    Chargers stun Broncos 27-20

    DENVER — Peyton Manning wanted more rest. He got plenty Thursday night thanks to Philip Rivers and a San Diego defense that slowed down Manning and handed the Broncos an unexpected and harmful loss.Rivers threw two touchdown passes to Keenan Allen and kept the Chargers’ offense on the field for nearly 39 minutes in a 27-20 stunner over the Broncos, whose easy road to the AFC West title and top seeding in the conference got an unexpected jolt.Disorganized on defense and never able to crank things up on offense, the Broncos gained 13 yards on the 13 plays they ran after taking a 10-3 lead late in the first quarter. That covered four fruitless drives during which they went three-and-out three times and picked up a total of one first down. By that time, San Diego led 24-10, and though the Broncos (11-3) had overcome double-digit deficits four times this season to win, it wasn’t happening this time. They pulled within seven and Manning got the ball on the Denver 3 with 5:50 left. He moved the Broncos 30 yards in two plays with the help of a penalty. But the Chargers’ maligned defense produced some pass rush and forced a bad throw, which linebacker Thomas Keiser picked off at the Denver 33.The Chargers (7-7) got a field goal to go up 10. Denver answered with a field goal but couldn’t recover the onside kick and the Broncos lost to an AFC West foe for the first time in 11 games. Manning’s final numbers were decent — 27 for 41 for 289 yards and two touchdowns — but padded during desperation time. As most veterans do, especially this time of year, he griped about the short turnaround between a Sunday and Thursday game, the likes of which every team has to make at least once every season. Now, he’ll get 10 days to rest and chew on this loss — the first regular-season defeat at home for Denver in 14 tries, dating to last September against Houston, back when Manning was still getting his footing in Denver and the Texans, who happen to be Denver’s next opponent, were still good. The short week didn’t bother the Chargers, who gained some confidence when they scored the final 14 points in a 28-20 loss to the Broncos last month. Doesn’t hurt that they’re coached by Manning’s former offensive coordinator, Mike McCoy, who won the opening coin toss and boldly deferred, giving the Manning the ball first. Manning used to say that he always felt on the same page with McCoy and nothing really changed this time. Normally, it’s Manning dissecting an opposing defense, standing at the line and figuring out what it’s planning on doing before it does it. This time, it was the other way around, certainly in part because McCoy knows how Manning likes to do things. Chargers defensive backs knocked down two Manning passes at the line of scrimmage, they wrapped up on Denver’s receivers, holding those much-coveted yards after catch to a minimum after so many of Manning’s typically short timing routes. Not having to worry about Wes Welker, out with a concussion, they blanketed the other receivers and turned fourth-stringer Bubba Caldwell into Manning’s prime target. A good bet. Caldwell led Denver with six catches for 59 yards and two touchdowns, while none of the other Denver receivers did much harm. Denver’s previous low in scoring was 27 points against the Chiefs. The defense, meanwhile, was poor once again — not Super Bowl material on this night. The most telling sequence came in the third quarter when Rivers moved the Chargers from their 1 to midfield over 13 plays. Denver committed two costly penalties — an offside when San Diego had the punt team out on fourth-and-4, then a 12-men-on-the-field that set up first-and-5 and allowed the Chargers to burn more clock. Though they didn’t score, they ate 8:20 off the clock and flipped the field. The Broncos never recovered and now, they must sweat out the race in the AFC.


    Big second half puts Streamwood over Elgin

    Getting your first conference win can be a difficult thing to do. It gets a lot easier when you score three points more in one quarter than you have all game. Streamwood was able to score 26 points in the third quarter and jump ahead to an 18-point lead as the Sabres picked up their first win in the Upstate Eight Conference River Division, beating Elgin 65-50 Thursday night in girls basketball action at Elgin’s Chesbrough Field House.


    DePaul beats Florida Atlantic 81-70

    Cleveland Melvin scored 19 points and DePaul beat the Florida Atlantic Owls 81-70 on Thursday night at Allstate Arena in Rosemont, giving the Blue Demons their 1,400th win in program history.Sandi Marcius added a career-high 19 points and 12 rebounds, while Billy Garrett added 14 for the Blue Demons, who had lost three of four. DePaul (5-4) also started a stretch of three games in seven days, which picks up Sunday when it hosts Chicago State and then Houston Baptist on Wednesday.Melvin recovered from a rough outing last Friday against Arizona State, when he shot 2 of 12 for seven points in DePaul’s 78-56 loss. On Thursday, he shot 7 for 13 for the Blue Demons, who were 32 of 61 (52.5 percent) as a team during their first game in six days.Brandon Young, DePaul’s leading scorer, was back in the lineup after missing last Friday’s game with a sprained ankle and had 12. Marcius, a senior forward, topped the career high he set Dec. 1 against Oregon State when he scored 15 points on 6 of 6 shooting Florida Atlantic (3-7) was led by Pablo Bertone’s 30 points, and Jackson Trapp had 17. The Owls had won two straight over Central Florida and Jacksonville after six consecutive losses, but couldn’t push their winning streak to three despite shooting 45.5 percent. Bertone, the reigning Conference USA player of the week, hit 11 of 22 and couldn’t help the Owls overcome a 38-29 rebounding deficit before fouling out with 11.7 seconds remaining. Florida Atlantic was also looking for its first win somewhere other than its Boca Raton campus, but dropped to 0-7 away from home. DePaul, meanwhile, is trying to reverse the program’s decline but reached a milestone Thursday. A one-time power, the Blue Demons extended their all-time record to 1,400-905. They haven’t been to the NCAA tournament since 2004, and aren’t expected to contend for another this season out of the new-look Big East.On Thursday, they overcame a slow first-half start but still managed to lead going into the break.Florida Atlantic took an eight-point lead with 6:08 left in the half on a Bertone free throw, but the Blue Demons ended the period on a 17-8 run, capped off by Melvin’s tip-in of his own layup to beat the buzzer.DePaul took its first double-digit lead with 2:37 left on Garrett’s 3-pointer, but the Owls got to within seven on a Bertone three-point play 21 seconds later. That, though, was as close as Florida Atlantic got.

    Brandon Saad celebrates scoring a goal against Florida during the third period on Sunday during the Hawks’ 6-2 victory.

    Hawks showing off their firepower

    With 19 goals in the last three games, the Blackhawks are showing why they have the top offense in the NHL. The Hawks are coming off wins of 6-2 over Florida and Dallas, and a 7-2 drubbing of Philadelphia on Wednesday. “It’s a credit to our team game,” said Patrick Sharp, who has 4 goals in the last three games. “We know we’ve got guys in here who can put up big numbers and score goals. When we’re playing well in all three zones that’s when our offense usually clicks.”


    Bulls game day
    Bulls vs. Milwaukee Bucks at the Bradley Center, 7:30 p.m. FridayTV/radio: Comcast SportsNet/ESPN 1000-AMAt a glance: Three days after Milwaukee’s scintillating 78-74 win at the United Center, we’ll be treated to a rematch. The Bucks (5-17) rode the momentum of that victory to a 109-77 home loss to San Antonio on Wednesday. Center John Henson had 25 points and 14 rebounds in the win over the Bulls, while PG Brandon Knight added 19 points. SG O.J. Mayo is Milwaukee’s top scorer on the season at 14.4 ppg. It’s possible the Bulls could have PG D.J. Augustin in uniform for this one.Next: Toronto Raptors at the United Center, 7 p.m. Saturday — Mike McGraw


    Larkin trips up St. Charles North

    Larkin 62, St. Charles North 58: Nichole Davidson’s game-high 25 points wasn’t enough for the North Stars (3-5, 1-2), who watched senior Victoria Patterson and freshman Marlee Ryles combine for 43 points in the Royals’ Upstate Eight River Division win in Elgin. Patterson scored 9 of her 22 in the third quarter alone, when Larkin (2-5, 1-1) extended a 2-point halftime lead to 9. Ryles was 10 of 12 from the free-throw line and finished with 21 points. Alyssa McGhee (13 points) sank 4 3-pointers for the Royals.


    Beyak’s boost helps Prospect win at Buffalo Grove

    Kyle Beyak made sure that Prospect’s slow start Thursday in Buffalo Grove didn’t turn into a full stop. Beyak scored 11 of his 13 points in the first half as the Knights forged ahead to pull out a 50-39 victory over the Bison. “He has done that in most games this year,” Prospect coach John Camardella said. “He made great drives to the rim and hit threes for us when we needed him to.”


    Proviso’s best effort sinks Leyden

    Proviso East girls basketball coach Ezra PridGeon stressed the importance for his Pirates to play four quarters in every game, regardless of the opponent. “We must play hard every second and every minute of every quarter,” he said. Everything seemed to click for the Pirates on Thursday night in Northlake. With 6-foot senior forward Tia Barlow scoring 14 points and 6-0 junior forward Jasmine Levy reaching double figures with 11 points, Proviso East used a solid all-around effort to defeat the Eagles 69-22 in the West Suburban Gold match.


    Schaumburg locks out Palatine

    The numbers just didn’t add up for Palatine in the first half at Schaumburg. Most of that was due to a stifling Saxons ‘D.’ The Pirates managed only 3 field goals in the first two quarters, went 2-for-7 at the free throw line and 0-for-8 from 3-point range to trail 26-8 at intermission. Schaumburg didn’t let up from there and claimed a 47-30 Mid-Suburban West boys basketball victory Thursday.


    Batavia cruises by Waubonsie Valley

    Batavia jumped to a 25-6 lead after one quarter on its way to an 63-39 victory at Waubonsie Valley on Thursday in an Upstate Eight Conference crossover.

    Allison Hansen of Glrenbard East goes up for a rebound during the Glenbard East at Naperville Central girls basketball game Thursday.

    Glenbard East breaks long DVC drought

    Glenbard East was looking for a sign. It came Thursday night in Naperville. The Rams won their first DuPage Valley Conference girls basketball game in two years, defeating Naperville Central 49-40 and giving the young Rams evidence their program is improving before they leave the conference at the end of the school year.

    DeKalb’s Matt Macarus takes the win over Kaneland’s George Strang in the 152 pound match on Thursday, December 12.

    DeKalb cools off Kaneland

    Despite losing seven starters to graduation, including Class 2A state champion Danny Goress, the Kaneland wrestling team was off to an impressive start. The Knights defeated perennial Northern Illinois Big XII East power Sycamore in a thrilling dual meet at Northern Illinois’ Convocation Center last week. But DeKalb has its own storied pedigree in the sport.


    Bartlett surprises South Elgin

    Facing an experienced South Elgin squad, the Bartlett girls basketball team knew it needed a team effort. Hosting the first meeting between the Upstate Eight Conference Valley Division rivals, the Hawks got 21 points from Kaitlin Brohan and 14 off the bench from Lauren Janczak as Bartlett (5-5, 2-0) earned a 63-54 win over the Storm (4-4, 1-1) on Thursday.

    Photos from the Glenbard East at Naperville Central girls basketball game Thursday, Dec. 12.

    Images: Glenbard East vs. Naperville Central girls basketball
    Naperville Central hosted Glenbard East Thursday, Dec. 12 for girls basketball.

    Images from the Antioch at Wauconda boys basketball game on Thursday, Dec. 12.

    Images: Wauconda vs. Antioch boys basketball
    The Wauconda Bulldogs hosted the Antioch Sequoits for boys basketball action on Thursday, Dec. 12.

    Patrick Kane, left, smiles as he talks with Nick Leddy (8) during a game against Phoenix on Nov. 14. Kane has taken his game to another level this season and has a legitimate chance to lead the league in scoring.

    Kane having MVP-type season for Hawks

    Patrick Kane has always maintained he thought he could win the NHL scoring title someday. Maybe this is the year. With points in 19 of the last 20 games, including 10 multi-point efforts, Kane has 42 points and trails Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby by 1 in the chase for the Art Ross Trophy, which goes to the player who leads the league in scoring. Kane is playing the best hockey of his career, which says a lot for a guy who at age 25 has already won two Stanley Cups, the 2013 Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP and the 2008 Calder Trophy as rookie of the year.

    Bears head coach Marc Trestman said Thursday he expects Jay Cutler to perform well on Sunday. Trestman said Cutler will start against Cleveland in his first game since injuring his ankle on Nov. 10.

    It’s official: Cutler to start Sunday for Bears

    Bears coach Marc Trestman made it official following Thursday afternoon’s practice inside the Walter Payton Center: Jay Cutler will start at quarterback Sunday against the Browns in Cleveland. “I expect Jay to play efficiently and play well on Sunday,” Trestman said. “That’s why he’s going to be up.”

    Cross country has helped Wauconda forward Ricky Sidlowski prepare for the basketball season.

    In the long run, two sports suit Wauconda’s Sidlowski

    Wauconda center Ricky Sidlowski keeps a beard during basketball season. But it's not the beard that gets him double takes during cross-country season. It's Sidlowski's 6-foot-6 frame. The cross-over is unusual for someone of his size, but Sidlowski says that being a cross-country runner in the fall has made him a better basketball player in the winter.


    Prospect’s band of brothers serves notice

    In last season’s Mid-Suburban East boys swimming race, it came down to the last dual meet of the year, hosted by Prospect. Buffalo Grove pulled out a tight victory in that meeting to claim the division crown. By quirk, the same two teams met in their MSL East season openers Thursday, again hosted by Prospect. Apparently, Prospect had been looking forward to the opportunity.

    Bears quarterback Josh McCown (12) prepares to pass against the Dallas Cowboys during the first half of an NFL football game, Monday, Dec. 9, 2013, in Chicago.

    McCown has no problem returning to bench

    Bears quarterback Josh McCown knew there was nothing he could do to hang on to the starting job once Jay Cutler returned from an ankle injury. Now that Cutler is back, McCown accepts the situations, which is what makes him such a valuable backup and teammate.

    The Bulls’ Tom Thibodeau bluntly dismissed speculation that he might consider coaching the New York Knicks in the near future.

    Thibs on Big Apple rumor: That’s just B.S.

    The New York Knicks aren't going to swoop in and hire Tom Thibodeau as head coach. He just signed a contract extension with the Bulls. But if things turn sour this season, just about anything could happen.


    Houston joins NWSL as 9th team

    HOUSTON — The National Women’s Soccer League has announced the addition of its first expansion team — the Houston Dash. The team will be owned and operated by the Houston Dynamo of MLS and will begin play in the 2014 season next spring. The National Women’s Soccer League has eight other teams, including the Chicago Red Stars franchise, which plays its games at the Benedictine University Sports Complex in Lisle.The NWSL is set to play a 24-game schedule in its second season starting in April. The Dash will play at BBVA Compass Stadium, where the Houston Dynamo play their MLS games. The Dash will host 12 home games next season.

    All 32 NFL teams have been on Eastern Illinois’ campus to evaluate QB Jimmy Garroppolo this fall. The Rolling Meadows product will lead his team against Towson today into the Football Championship Subdivision quarterfinals.

    EIU on a roll behind Babers, QB Garoppolo

    In Dino Babers’ world there is no pretty good. There is only good and everything else. “Don’t even use the PG word,” the high-energy head coach at Eastern Illinois said. He laughed, but he wasn’t joking. The second-seeded Panthers (12-1, 8-0 Ohio Valley) are very good. They’re getting ready to play today in the Football Championship Subdivision quarterfinals against seventh-seeded Towson (11-2, 6-2 Colonial Athletic). EIU’s only loss was by 4 points on the road at MAC powerhouse Northern Illinois (12-1).

    Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning throws against the Tennessee Titans during the first half of an NFL football game on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013, in Denver. (AP Photo/Chris Schneider)

    Who should take home fantasy awards?

    With the season winding down, it's time for readers to have their say in this year's fantasy football awards. Who should be the MVP? Biggest surprise? Biggest bust? Vote by sending John and email and give him a few reasons behind your selections.

    Dundee-Crown’s Melissa Barker brings the ball down the court against Cary-Grove last week.

    New Trier top seed at Dundee-Crown

    The Christmas tournament season is upon us and the pairing were released Thursday for the 31st Charger Classic at Dundee-Crown, as well as the Bill Neibch Falcon Classic at Wheaton North and for the Montini Christmas tournament. At Dundee-Crown, undefeated New Trier is the No. 1 seed, while Evanston, Prospect and Barrington also drew top four seeds.

    The White Sox have obtained 24-year-old catcher Adrian Nieto from the Washington Nationals as a Rule 5 draft pick.

    Sox select Cuban catcher in Rule 5 draft

    Looking for a potential upgrade behind the plate, the White Sox selected catcher Adrian Nieto from the Washington Nationals' organization Thursday on the first round of the Rule 5 draft.


    Good health on wish list for Stevenson's Green

    As others wish for fancy gifts and gizmos this month, Cameron Green will likely put something a bit more practical at the top of his Christmas wish list. He’d like a thumb’s up from his doctor.

    Burlington Central’s Duncan Ozburn gets ready for a rebound against Elgin Tuesday night.

    Surging Bartlett ready to battle South Elgin

    New-look Bartlett (6-1, 0-1) hopes to parlay its early season momentum into a home win against South Elgin (3-2, 1-0) when the Upstate Eight Valley rivals clash Friday at 7:15 p.m. The Hawks have been an early season revelation following the graduation of eight seniors. The program’s only returning players were Justin Busch, a reserve point guard last season, and Ryan DeCanio, a shooter who joined the varsity as a sophomore in the final month of the 2012-13 campaign.


    Borcia helping Libertyville hit it big

    Libertyville's hitting it big, thanks in part to the terrific play of 6-10 Joe Borcia.

    The St. Charles East and St. Charles North Drill Teams, pictured Saturday night before the schools’ boys basketball game, raised $100,000 this fall at their annual Kick-A-Thon.

    St. Charles Kick-A-Thon raises record $100,000

    Nancy Vance still sounded a little verklempt earlier this week as she described Saturday’s Kick-A-Thon check presentation by the St. Charles East and St. Charles North Drill Teams.

    Miami traded right-handed hitting outfielder Justin Ruggiano, above, to the Cubs for left-handed hitter Brian Bogusevic.

    Cubs swap outfielders with Marlins

    The Cubs closed out the winter meetings with a trade, but hardly a blockbuster. They sent left-handed hitting outfielder and Chicago-area native Brian Bogusevic to the Marlins for outfielder Justin Ruggiano, who bats right-handed. The Cubs also lost four minor-league players in the Rule 5 draft.


    The recruiting games — and gamesmanship — are here to stay

    At the highest levels, the recruiting game can be unsavory and unsightly. It's more obvious now with more exposure to the process, but the truth is, it's never been a very wholesome part of high school sports.


    Mike North video: Kobe Bryant is tough stock
    Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant's early return from his torn Achilles is truly amazing, and solidifies him as like hard serve ice cream, while Bulls guard Derrick Rose's return has to be considered more like soft serve.

    Liza Fruendt

    Girls basketball: Week 2 MVPs

    Batavia’s Liza Fruendt has been chosen as Daily Herald MVP for her basketball performances last week. The Missouri State-bound senior scored 31 points to help the Bulldogs snap a losing streak to Geneva that had spanned six years.

    John Konchar

    Boys basketball: Week 2 MVPs

    West Chicago senior John Konchar has been chosen as the Daily Herald’s boys basketball MVP for his performances last week. Konchar produced 37- and 42-point games to help the Wildcats to a 2-0 conference start.

    Images from the Libertyville vs. Stevenson boys basketball game on Wednesday, Dec. 11.

    Images: Libertyville vs. Stevenson basketball
    The Libertyville Wildcats hosted the Stevenson Patriots for boys basketball action on Wednesday, Dec. 11.


    Marian Catholic stops St. Viator

    Defending Class AA state champion Mariann Catholic (5-1) improved to 2-0 in the East Suburban Catholic Conference with a 70-35 victory over visiting St. Viator on Wednesday night in Chicago Heights. The Lions slipped to 5-4 and 0-1 in the ESCC.


    Carmel tops Marist in double OT

    Cassidy Kloss scored 18 points, Kathleen Felicelli added 17, and Carmel Catholic’s girls basketball team outlasted visiting Marist 66-61 in double overtime Wednesday night.

    Bears head coach Marc Trestman hasn't wavered in his confidence with quarterback Jay Cutler.

    Gusty Trestman stands by his man — Cutler

    Marc Trestman is leaving himself open to charges he's one of the NFL's dumbest head coach by going back to Jay Cutler as the Bears' starting quarterback. At the same time, making the move will tab him as one of the gutsiest.


    Chicago-based Boeing said Thursday it will establish technology research centers in Alabama, California, Missouri, South Carolina and Washington.

    Boeing to shift research jobs to South, Midwest

    Chicago-based Boeing announced Thursday that it is shifting hundreds of jobs to Alabama, Missouri and South Carolina as part of a restructuring of its U.S. research operations over the next two years. The aerospace company said the reorganization will result in fewer research jobs in Washington state and California.

    CEO of Hilton Worldwide Christopher Nassetta, center, poses in a Hilton robe after his company’s IPO began trading on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Thursday. Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. is the world’s largest hotel group, with 665,667 rooms across 90 countries and territories.

    U.S. stocks fall for a third straight day

    The stock market fell to its lowest level in a month Thursday as investors worried that the end may be nearing for the Federal Reserve’s support for the economy.

    John Mendel, executive vice president of sales for American Honda, unveils the 2013 Honda Accord Coupe concept during the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January 2012. New cars and trucks sold in the U.S. last year got a record high average of 23.6 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving.

    U.S. cars and trucks hit record gas mileage in 2012

    New cars and trucks sold in the U.S. last year got an average of 23.6 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving, a record that came mainly through improvements to engines and transmissions, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

    Retired U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Thomas Gipson, of Atlanta, right, has his resume looked over by Ralph Brown, a management and program analyst with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, during a job fair for veterans at the VFW Post 2681,Marietta, Ga.

    How states fared on US unemployment benefit claims

    The number of people applying for U.S. unemployment benefits rose 68,000 to a seasonally adjusted 368,000 last week. It’s the biggest increase in first-time applications in more than a year, a troubling sign if the trend lasts. But the increase likely reflects the difficulty adjusting for delays after the Thanksgiving holiday.

    The former Sawyer-Kelley mill in Huntley could be demolished if the village and a developer can reach agreement. The developer is proposing razing the 19th century structure at 11801 Main St. and erecting a one-story, multi-tenant, 5,400-square-foot commercial building in its place modeled on the architecture of the late 1800s.

    Historic downtown Huntley mill could be razed

    The Huntley village board has authorized staff members to enter into negotiations with a developer to raze the 19th century Sawyer-Kelley mill and erect a one-story, multi-tenant commercial building. “We were hoping that it could be redeveloped in some way that could save the building,” said Lonni Oldham, vice chairwoman of the Huntley Historical Preservation Commission, and a member of the Huntley Historical Society.

    The global airline industry forecast Thursday a jump in profits to $19.7 billion next year, helped by falling jet fuel prices, rising travel demand and cost-cutting.

    Airlines forecast profits to jump to record high

    The global airline industry forecast Thursday a jump in profits to $19.7 billion next year, helped by falling jet fuel prices, rising travel demand and cost-cutting. The Geneva-based trade association for the world's airlines said the strong outlook — well above its expected net profit of $12.9 billion this year and $7.4 billion in 2012 — would be its biggest absolute profit ever.

    House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis.and Senate Budget Committee Chair Patty Murray, D-Wash., on Capitol Hill in Washington.

    Analysis: For once, gridlock takes a seat

    Sit down, gridlock. After years on the bench, compromise is taking a turn in Congress, however briefly, in the form of a budget deal that is modest in size yet marks a major step away from brinkmanship. It's a different model for America's divided government, nothing like the version pressed by the tea party adherents who stormed to power in the House three years ago.


    Feds shut 52 unsafe bus companies; six in Illinois, Indiana

    Federal bus safety regulators have shut down 52 companies -- including five in Illinois and one i Indiana -- in what they describe as a major nationwide crackdown on unsafe outfits, including lines whose drivers had suspended licenses or worked routes of more than 800 miles without rest.

    All those blue United Center signs can stay right where they are. The home of the Chicago Bulls and Chicago Blackhawks is going to keep its name for a long time.

    United Center to keep name for another 20 years

    All those blue United Center signs can stay right where they are. The home of the Chicago Bulls and Chicago Blackhawks is going to keep its name for a long time. United Airlines, the facility's two main tenants and United Center Joint Venture announced Wednesday that they had reached a 20-year extension for the naming rights for one of North America's largest arenas.

    Two Chicago aldermen want to force coffee shops, restaurants, schools and other frequent users of Styrofoam and other polystyrene food containers to stop using them.

    Aldermen propose ban on Styrofoam food containers

    Two Chicago aldermen want to force coffee shops, restaurants, schools and other frequent users of Styrofoam and other polystyrene food containers to stop using them. Aldermen Edward Burke and George Cardenas proposed an ordinance Wednesday that would require a switch to more eco-friendly products instead of the polystyrene products.


    Machinists give Boeing 777X proposal for Wash.

    On the second day of talks between Boeing Commercial Airplanes officials and Machinists union leaders, the union said Wednesday it presented a preliminary proposal for a contract that would mean much of the work on the Chicago-based company’s new 777X jet would be done in the Puget Sound region.


    Labor group sees progress at major Apple supplier

    A labor group monitoring three Chinese factories that make iPhones and other Apple products says once-oppressive working conditions have steadily improved in the last 18 months, but more must be done to reduce the amount of overtime that employees work.


    Higher security fee set to boost travel costs

    The cost of flying is headed higher now that Congress has agreed on a budget deal. The proposed deal, expected to pass in the next several days, would more than double the $5 security fee on most round-trip tickets, to $11.20 per ticket. The higher fee begins on July 1.


    NW Ind. commission to vote on proposed highway

    A northwestern Indiana planning board is expected to vote on whether to move forward with building the proposed Illiana Expressway that would connect Interstate 65 near Lowell with Interstate 55 south of Chicago.

    Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan has sharply criticized corporate requests for tax breaks and says he’s unlikely to support deals for companies that pay little in taxes.

    Madigan: Unlikely to back corporate tax breaks

    Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan has sharply criticized corporate requests for tax breaks and says he’s unlikely to support deals for companies that pay little in taxes. The influential Democrat also said in a statement Wednesday he wants to review how Illinois decides who gets incentives.

    While foreclosures remain a concern in select states, the number of U.S. homes entering the path to foreclosure or winding up repossessed by lenders has fallen to levels not seen in more than six years.

    Fewer U.S. homes entered foreclosure path in Nov.

    While foreclosures remain a concern in select states, the number of U.S. homes entering the path to foreclosure or winding up repossessed by lenders has fallen to levels not seen in more than six years. The trend is the latest sign foreclosures are becoming less of a national factor on the housing recovery and more of a state and metropolitan-area concern.

Life & Entertainment

    Bob Barker, the veteran game show host of “The Price is Right” from 1972 to 2007, was invited back by current host Drew Carey on Thursday to celebrate Barker’s 90th birthday.

    Bob Barker celebrates 90th birthday on ‘Price’

    Bob Barker’s 90th birthday present is urging one more contestant to “come on down” from the audience on “The Price is Right.” The veteran game-show host, at the helm of “The Price is Right” from 1972 to 2007, was invited back by current host Drew Carey on Thursday to celebrate the milestone birthday.


    Short & Sweet guest critic Ed Moon reviews Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical™, hosted by Diana Martinez

    Short & Sweet critic for the day, Ed Moon, shares his perspective on the musical Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer with host Diana Martinez.


    Short & Sweet guest critic Karen Whalen reviews Elf the Musical, hosted by Diana Martinez

    Short & Sweet critic for the day, Karen Whalen, shares her perspective on Elf the musical with host Diana Martinez.

    What will become of Joe Morton, left, and Tony Goldwyn on ABC’s “Scandal”? Find out tonight.

    During ‘Scandal’ hiatus, Morton will await fate

    It’s going to be a long, cold winter for the gladiators, and perhaps even longer for actor Joe Morton, who plays the debatably diabolical dad Rowan Pope to his political-fixer daughter, Olivia (Kerry Washington). After the “Scandal” episode airing tonight, the series won’t return with fresh installments until late February — a scheme to avoid holiday-time ratings doldrums and also dodge competition from the upcoming Winter Olympics.


    50 Shades the Musical: Bring on the sequel!

    Diana Martinez describes her experience seeing the musical sketch-comedy-parody of the novel, 50 Shades of Grey.

    Will Arnett, left, and Jason Bateman star in “Arrested Development.” Bateman was nominated for a Golden Globe for best actor in a comedy series for his role in the series.

    List of nominees for 71st Golden Globe Awards

    Nominees for the 71st annual Golden Globe Awards, announced Thursday in Beverly Hills, Calif., by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.

    “12 Years a Slave” was nominated for a Golden Globe for best motion picture drama on Thursday.

    ‘12 Years,’ ‘Hustle’ lead Globes nominations

    The searing historical epic “12 Years a Slave” and the con-artist caper “American Hustle” lead the 71st annual Golden Globes with seven nominations each. The nominations announced Thursday morning in Beverly Hills, Calif., by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association suggested “American Hustle” and “12 Years a Slave” — one outlandish and farcical, the other grimly accurate may be this year’s Oscar favorites.

    Bryan Cranston, left, as Walter White is up for a best drama actor starred along with Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman in “Breaking Bad,” which was nominated for a Golden Globe for best drama series on Thursday. The 71st annual Golden Globes will air on Sunday, Jan. 12.

    HBO leads TV categories with 9 Globe nominations

    HBO led all television networks with nine Golden Globe nominations on Thursday while Netflix, which didn’t exist as an original programming source until February, snagged six nominations — more than stalwarts ABC, CBS and NBC. Starz and Showtime also had six nominations each.

    Commander Robinson (Liev Schreiber) and a medic (Romola Garai) help an infected astronaut (Elias Koteas) in the sci-fi horror film "The Last Days on Mars."

    'Last Days' a mixed-up mess of genre tropes

    “The Last Days on Mars,” Ruairi Robinson's messed-up mash-up of horror and science fiction, starring Liev Schreiber as the commander of a mission aborted by a sudden outbreak of homicidal, reanimated decomposed astronauts. Credit the actors, who acquit themselves well despite being stuck playing living characters possessed of the depth and complexity of the formerly dead ones.

    Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman), left, and a dwarf (John Callen) go into action in Peter Jackson's fifth J.R.R. Tolkien-based adventure “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.”

    Jackson's faster-paced Middle Earth adventure still a victim of bloat

    After turning J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle Earth into a bloated, brain-numbing travelogue in “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” Peter Jackson strikes back with a sequel slightly less bloated and slightly less brain-numbing, “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.” Jackson overcompensates here by pumping “Smaug” full of graphic violence not seen in a PG-13 adventure since “Return of the King.”


    Night life events: At The Post hosting martini challenge

    Sit ringside at the Daily Herald's Martini Challenge at Elk Grove Village's At The Post; Whirlyball hosts holiday-style Beer Summit in Vernon Hills; Tavern ’45 opens in Buffalo Grove.


    Dining events: Enzo and Lucia reopens
    Northwest Italian cuisine once again reigns at Long Grove’s Enzo and Lucia Ristorante and Cafe after a kitchen fire in June temporarily closed the restaurant. Plus, Rock Bottom Brewery restaurants in the suburbs have just revealed a new seasonal menu in time for the holidays.

    The gingerbread Opera House (based on the real one in Sydney, Australia) is part of a village of gingerbread depictions of famous landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and the Washington Monument at the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani Hotel in Honolulu. The gingerbread replicas were created by the hotel’s chef, Ralf Bauer, and his team for the Christmas holidays.

    Lights, trees, gingerbread: Holiday events sparkle all over the country

    Lights, trees, gingerbread and the Grinch are among the Christmastime attractions on display around the country. From the tree at Rockefeller Center in New York City to Virginia's Ice Palace, a 30-foot ice dome with falling snow and a light show, to a 30-foot-tall Christmas tree created from 245,000 green Duplo bricks at the Legoland theme park in Carlsbad, Calif., there's something for everyone. And don't forget Honolulu's Sheraton Princess Kaiulani hotel, which hosts a gingerbread village made up of landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and Australia’s Sydney Opera House.

    Spiked Mocha Chestnut Truffles taste creamy and decadent yet have just 2.5 grams of fat.

    Spiked Mocha Chestnut Truffles
    Chestnut Truffles

    Spiked Mocha Chestnut Truffles taste creamy and decadent yet have just 2½ grams of fat.

    Turn to chestnuts for creamy, decadent truffles

    Given the richness of a chocolate truffle — a blend of chocolate, sugar and cream — it’s nice that chocolate has been found to be good for us. Still, assuming you wanted to jettison some of the calories in this treat without sacrificing a molecule of its lush flavor, where would you start? Sara Moulton turns to chestnuts for the answer.

    Pink gives her husband Carey Hart at least partial credit for the success of her Grammy-nominated “Just Give Me a Reason.”

    Pink: Give husband some credit for song’s success

    While she’s excited her ballad “Just Give Me a Reason” is nominated for the song of the year Grammy, Pink says she believes her husband deserves some credit for its success. The track, which topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for three weeks, is about holding on to a troubled relationship. “It means everything because it’s a conversation between lovers fighting the good fight, and that’s been our life,” Pink said. The 34-year-old often details their rocky relationship in her music.

    Gabriel von Eisenstein (Bo Skovhus) is befuddled by a masked Hungarian countess (actually Juliane Banse as his wife, Rosalinde) as sisters Ida (Julie Anne Miller) and Adele (Daniela Fally) look on at Prince Orlofsky’s party in the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s “Die Fledermaus.”

    Lyric’s ‘Die Fledermaus’ bubbles with comic delight

    It’s been seven seasons since the Lyric Opera of Chicago last presented “Die Fledermaus” (aka “The Bat”), the ever-popular 1874 Viennese comic operetta by Johann Strass Jr. Thanks to a lot of clever importation practices, this production will likely plaster a smile on your face. Much of what makes this comic chestnut so tasty is a slew of native German-speaking singers (many making their Lyric debut) who enliven the proceedings with a breezy air of continental authenticity.

    Walt Disney (Tom Hanks) treats "Mary Poppins" novelist P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) to a day at Disneyland in "Saving Mr. Banks."

    Fact-based comic drama poppin' with merry tale of seduction

    “Saving Mr. Banks” is a great story of seduction. Walt Disney (Tom Hanks) used charm and money to persuade “Mary Poppins” author (Emma Thompson) to sell him the book's film rights. When that didn't work, he gently employed psychological warfare to get what he wanted to fulfill a father's pledge to his daughters. And now, this becomes the basis for a heart-rending movie that seduces us all.



    Editorial: At last, an opportunity for hope on federal budget

    A Daily Herald editorial says the congressional budget agreement is clearly not ideal, but it offers real encouragement


    Giving world news a suburban context

    Columnist Jim Slusher: We may yet report direct local connections to worldwide news, but for the story of Nelson Mandela and all others like it, their value will be to supplement the lessons of an event that is, well, not exactly “just” world news.


    The gospel according to JCPenney

    Columnist Michael Gerson: By tradition, Advent is a time of quiet waiting and reflection, looking forward to a fulfillment we can’t cause or hasten. It culminates in a pregnant teenager saying: “Be it to me according to your word.” The shopping season — as evidenced by loud, repetitive commercials — is all about seizing the objects of our desires.


    Obama has become master of the spin
    An Elk Grove Village letter to the editor: With the Obama administration it seems it is never “what is,” but rather “what can we make them believe it is.” Or in a campaign situation, “what can we make them believe for the next couple months until it no longer matters.”


    Disappointed with shorter postal hours
    A Wheaton letter to the editor: As a lifelong Wheaton resident, I have always been an enthusiastic and proud supporter of our Wheaton Post Office. During the late 1940s when I attended college at DePauw, my buddies and I would return home for the holidays and help our post office deliver the heavy load of mail to our local residents.


    Life isn’t lived on a 5-inch screen
    A Glen Ellyn letter to the editor: Look around. Odds are someone is on their smartphone tweeting, on Instagram or Facebook, letting life pass them by. Sadly, this is the unfortunate truth faced with the fascination of our phones today.


    Second-class citizen under Obamacare
    A Lake in the Hills letter to the editor: I read the Dec. 2 front page story “Health website on the mend.” Who cares about the website? The product is garbage.


    Impeachment result of health care mess?
    A Sleepy Hollow letter to the editor: Many low-income people who think they secured insurance using the HealthCare.gov website may not be insured. While the president is out stumping for Affordable Care Act benefits, applicants are being victimized. Those who accessed the site, learning that they were eligible for Medicaid and submitted applications, actually are not covered.


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