Getting to the North Suburban Championship game never gets old.
Vernon Hills' girls soccer team has made it there before -- they'll be there once again this spring.
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But the road for the Cougars the season turned out to be unique.
Vernon Hills wrapped up an unbeaten run against Prairie Division foes by beating host Antioch 6-0 Wednesday. The Cougars had previously beaten quality teams from Lakes, Grant and Antioch (8-6-1, 4-2) and also got past Wauconda.
"This was the best out of all of them," Vernon Hills coach Vince DeLuca said. "We've never been in a situation like that and won all of them, with three of them on the road.
"I proud of them to win four in a row to get this. This one is definitely special for us."
Erin VanDemerkt scored twice and assisted on another goal. Kaitlin Gramins also netted 2 goals, and Katherine Koczwara and Katherine Brettman had the other scores. Kimberly Amari, Heidi VanderBloomer and Kelsey Seal each added assists.
The Cougars have a spot set for next Tuesday night's NSC Championship, but the Lake Division isn't yet settled. The title game will be at Lake Zurich, Libertyville or Stevenson.
Lake Forest tied Lake Zurich 0-0 on Wednesday afternoon, leaving the Scouts out of the Lake title chase at 2-0-4.
Lake Zurich (3-1-1) hosts Libertyville (3-2) in the last Lake matchup at 10 a.m. Saturday. The winner will host the big game Tuesday. But if Libertyville and LZ tie, Stevenson (3-1-2) would host the NSC title game.
The Cougars (9-3-1) are unbeaten over their last 10 games.
"These girls have worked hard during the stretch," DeLuca said. "We lost the first three games of the season to Buffalo Grove, Lake Park and Deerfield, but all those teams are doing well. It's not like we started out with three easy opponents. That's why we started out with those teams -- we wanted to see where we were at. Then we got the ball rolling."
VanDemerkt, a freshman, increased her season scoring total to three.
"You have to make the right runs to get the ball," VanDemerkt said. "It has to be the right ball to make the right runs and make things happen.
"We've bounded together as a team. We have good talks and we've had good practices."
-- Rusty Silber
Carmel 5, Providence 1: Carmel Catholic's girls soccer team stayed hot Wednesday.
Bri Carlson scored twice, as the Corsairs defeated Providence Catholic 5-1 in New Lenox to improve to 12-1 and 6-0 in the East Suburban Catholic Conference.
Sadie Jung, Meegan Johnston and Elizabeth Bream also scored. Erin Johnston (Meegan's sister) added a pair of assists, while Annie DiVenere and Kayla Handel also assisted on goals.
Lake Zurich 0, Lake Forest 0: Eleanor Daleske made 7 saves for host Lake Zurich (6-6-3).