EAST SUBURBAN CATHOLIC
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Coach: Ray Krawzak (second year)
Last year: 7-11-4, lost to Highland Park in Class 3A regional semifinal
Top players lost: Kevin DeLaMar, Steven Feely, Jacob Gromala, Billy Kloss, Peter Kolb, Tomy Paslaski, Shea Ronayne, Mike Scheer
Top players returning: Adam Cloe Sr. MF/F (Drake), Jeremy Jenich Sr. D, Timmy Karich Sr. MF, Evan Potter Sr. MF, Keenan Walsh Sr. MF
Newcomers: Drew Miller Sr. GK, Jack Titterton Jr. D, Scott Cloe So. MF, Ryan McKernan So. F
Other notable players: Erik Barraza Sr. F, Nick Groenke Sr. D, Phil Homa Sr. MF/F, Jake Johnson Sr. GK, TJ Johnson Sr. D/MF, Evan Potter Sr. MF, Nick Principe Sr. D/MF, Erik Berrones Jr. D/MF, Justin Ehren Jr. D, Braco Lasso So. MF
Outlook: The Corsairs opened the season by reaching the finals of the North Shore Shootout and could be a front-runner in the ESCC. All-conference senior Adam Cloe returns along with his sophomore brother Scott. "This team is made of many experienced seniors," coach Ray Krawzak said. "I expect them to be strong leaders. We have a handful of juniors, so we will be looking for the underclassman to step up and play."
FOX VALLEY FOX
Coach: Steve Feldman (first year)
Last year: 9-7, lost to Grayslake North in Class 2A regional semifinal
Top players lost: James Garcia (Goshen), Phil Longenecker (Goshen)
Top players returning: Steven Anderson Sr. GK, Nate Cercuone Sr. MF, Alex Stickler Sr. MF, Isaac Longenecker Jr. D, Johnny Madrid Jr. MF, Joey Mudd Jr. F
Newcomers: Connor Gosell So. GK, Ben Sizelove So. D, Leo Orzco Fr. MF
Other notable players: Jacob Swearingen Sr. D, Nick Nayersina Sr. D, Anthony Betancourth Jr. D, Jackson Frey Jr. MF, Joel Carreon So. MF, John Moroney So. D, Paul Kulis So. F, Chris Quiroz So. MF
Outlook: Steve Feldman takes over for Mike McCaulou, who shifted over to Vernon Hills this fall. Feldman has been with the program for the last eight years as an assistant coach. He should be able to pick up where McCaulou left off. "The goals for my boys are to be composed on the ball and improve our first touch," Feldman said. "We'll be a possession team, but at the same time possess the ball with a purpose of attacking. We want to make sure that the boys are always confident and know that they can beat any team that we play. Our goals are to win conference and win our regional, as well."
Coach: Adam DeCaluwe (eighth year)
Last year: 10-15, lost to Harvard in Class 2A sectional semifinal
Top players lost: Colin Grever (Dubuque), Baruk Perez-Vera (College of Lake County), Andrew Rohrer (Principia)
Top players returning: Jake Hensley Sr. MF, Andres Thedorf Sr. D, Gavin Amburn Jr. F, Lucas Buckels Jr. D, Zach Kottmer Jr. MF, Dean Jones Jr. GK, Fernando Sanchez Jr. F, Chris Zamora So. MF
Newcomers: Danny Wilson Jr, D, Dylan Harmon Jr. D, Klye Hensley So. MF, Cole Karabinus So. F. JC Thomas So. D
Other notable players: Zach Harmon Sr. D/MF, Nabojsa Markovic Sr. GK, Nicholas Nikolov Sr. D, Nick Rice Sr. D, Marcelino Velazquez Sr. MF, Michael O'Reilly Jr. MF
Outlook: The Knights lost a number of experienced players to graduation and will rely on youth to step up to fill roles. "Graduating nine players from last year's roster means that a lot of our good young players have a good chance to step and take on larger roles," coach Adam DeCaluwe said. "There's a good core of remaining players that will help lead the team this season. The newcomers are all great kids that will undoubtedly work hard and commit to what we need in order to find success."
NORTH SUBURBAN LAKE
Coach: Michael Schmitz (seventh year)
Last year: 7-10-3, lost to Stevenson in Class 3A regional semifinals
Top players lost: Ian Hesch, Kevin Loch, Matt Montemayor, Will O'Brien, Ryan Roach, Danny Suerth, Ryan Wagoner
Top players returning: Braven Baccardi Sr. GK, Tim Burroughs Sr. F, Kevin Cihlar Sr. D, Mike Doheny Sr. MF, Miguel Hernandez Sr. F, Mike Savio Sr. GK, Jack Abry Jr. MF, Collin Foote Jr. D, Ian Murray Jr. MF, Dan Ross Jr. D
Newcomers: Adam Griffith Sr. MF, Conor O'Kane Sr. MF, Eric Thurston Sr. D, Kyle Brandt Jr. D, Jacob Karbowski Jr. MF, Adam Swinhart Jr. MF, Nate Rathe So. MF, Ian Root So. D, Scott Shadrick So. MF/F
Other notable players: Collin Foreman Jr. D
Outlook: The Bears have a number of seniors who provide leadership and skill. All-sectional junior Dan Ross returns in the back along with all-conference senior Miguel Hernandez up front. "We are excited about the season," coach Michael Schmitz said. "We have a good mix of seniors, juniors with experience and sophomores. We look forward to competing, playing hard, playing together and having fun."
Coach: Andy Bitta (28th year)
Last year: 17-3-1, lost to Stevenson in Class 3A sectional final
Top players lost: Austin Bitta (Carthage), Tyler Gillespie (Wisconsin-Whitewater), Ryan McKenzie (Valparaiso), Phillip Williams (Wisconson-Whitewater), Ralph Zehtner (Lewis)
Top players returning: Lloyd Chatfield Sr. F, Tanner Sanks Sr. D, Alec Schory Sr. GK, Carlos Schultz Sr. MF, Nick Vogel Sr. MF, Alex Lucas Jr. MF, Alex Prillman Jr. D
Newcomers: Kenny Gallagher Fr. MF, Mike Quigley Fr. MF
Other notable players: Matt Bertler Sr. MF, Ryan Dawson Sr. MF, Bailey Gallagher Sr. MF, Kyle Kohl Sr. D, Alex Lucas Sr. MF, Scott Metzger Sr. D, Ethan Miller Sr. D, Ricky Mundrane Sr. MF, harlie McKeon Sr. D, Kiki Savatic Sr. D, Sean Tilton Sr. D, Sam Kratzer Jr. D, Sam Muchmore Jr. GK, Ryan Pacholski Jr. D, Kevin Reilly Jr. D, Alex Stiber Jr. MF, Trey Toohey Jr. MF, Thomas Vondrak Jr. MF, Liam O'Connel So. MF
Outlook: The Wildcats return 17 seniors to defend their NSC title. All-sectional forward Lloyd Chatfield leads the way. "This team has a lot of depth and good players," coach Andy Bitta said. "We need the players to be unselfish. (If they are), this could be a very good team."
Coach: Ernie Billittier (third year)
Last year: 8-9-4, lost to Fremd in Class 3A regional semifinal
Top players lost: Josiah Ochoa (Concordia), Alejandro Terrazas (Roosevelt)
Top players returning: Carlos Huaracha Sr. MF, Eric Morales Sr. D, Armando Gomez Jr. F, Lino Garcia Jr. MF, Mason Homsey Jr. F
Newcomers: Donnie Kvien So. GK, Yann Nsoga So. MF, Edson Suaste So. MF
Other notable players: Jacob Diaz Sr. D, Efren Mancilla Sr. D, Andy Will Sr. D, Chuy Alba Jr. D, Pepe Gonzalez Jr. MF, Juanjo Jahen Jr. D, Yoshio Jimenez Jr. MF, Jessie Ramirez Jr. GK, Hector Ruiz Jr. MF, Stephen Wald Jr. MF
Outlook: The Mustangs may lack a lot of varsity experience, but they boast depth, as evident by the fact they had seven players score in a win over Carmel this week. All-conference senior Eric Morales returns in the back. "We are a young team with a lot of enthusiasm," coach Ernie Billittier said. "As a program. we are looking to take steps forward and be competitive in conference as well as the state series. The seniors we have provide a solid leadership foundation and will be important in maintaining our team-first approach to the season."
Coach: Mark Schartner (28th year)
Last year: 19-5-1, fourth in Class 3A state, lost to Sandburg
Top players lost: Chris Boutros, Ross Comitor (Aurora), Hayden Ford, Joe Huegener, Justin Johnson, Jeremy Klinestein, Quentin Low (DePaul), Jared Moelart (Ekert) Ryan Puszka, Alex Smith, Niimi Toshiki (Rice), Mike Weinstein
Top players returning: Mike Dobin Sr. D, Max Klaber Sr. MF, Jacob Krause Sr. D, Cesar Navarro Sr. F, Kamal Starks Sr. D, Jimmy Wang Sr. MF, Dean Lim So. D, Kizuki Nimi So. MF
Newcomers: Sam Batko Sr. F, Barak Vaisler Sr. D, Mithchell Gullet Jr. F, Colbi Illian Jr. MF, Ethan Marx Jr. MF, Sam Swirm Jr. D, Jonathan Weissman Jr. GK, Cooper Colvig So. MF/F, Dennis Katsman So. MF/F, Jermey Klaber So. MF, Thomas Ricchio So. D, Matt Treiber So. D, Avery Delgado Fr. F, Jake Nunez Fr. MF
Outlook: The Patriots placed fourth in the state last year with a senior-dominated team. Their young players are ready to keep the winning going. The Patriots turned in a second-place finish in the season-opening Glenbrook South invite. "We have the youngest team in my tenure," coach Mark Schartner said. "We have good speed and hardworking boys."
Coach: Jason Ahonen (sixth year)
Last year: 22-5-3, Class 3A state champion
Top players lost: Daniel Szczepanek (Marquette), Sean Kirwan (Eastern Illinois), Timmy Pieper (Eastern Illinois), Auner Solis (College of Lake County), Nick Wegnrzynowicz (Eastern Illinois)
Top players returning: Karl Bappert Sr. MF, Rafa Macias Sr. MF, Elijah Parker Sr. D, Nick Haas Jr. MF, RJ Hill Jr. GK
Newcomers: Hector Salazar Sr. D/MF, Andrew Schulz Sr. D, Lucas Geib So. F
Other notable players: Dylan Montgomery Sr. GK
Outlook: Last fall, the Blue Devils became the first team from the NSC to win a state title. A highly talented group graduated, but the return of all-conference midfielder Rafa Macias and 12 players, in total, should make Warren competitive again. "We have high hopes for this year's group," coach Jason Ahonen said. "We will look different on the offensive side of the ball but our keeping/defense will be a strength. We're confident that we have talent on this roster to have a another successful year."
NORTH SUBURBAN PRAIRIE
Coach: Marni Polakow (sixth year)
Last year: 10-9-3, lost to Lakes in Class 2A regional semifinal
Top players lost: Nick Brito, Andrew Burton, Josh Hallett, Carson Moore, Erik VanTreek, Christian Vargas
Top players returning: Danny Lonski Sr. D, Tommy Tritschler Sr. GK, Thomas Furlong Jr. MF, Iven Hernandez Jr. F, Krystian Streit Jr. F
Newcomers: Logan Bouker Jr. F
Other notable players: Jon Bohmann Sr. Bobby Miranda Sr. Jeremy Pasterz Sr. Danial Wood Sr. Brandon Schwarz Sr, Danny Helgesen Jr. JR Lonergan Jr. Gabriel Lopes Jr. Eric Pederson Jr. RJ Ruano Jr. Danny Brito So, Jordan Keller So., Lucas Semitka So.
Outlook: The Sequoits seek to raise the bar after 10 wins earned them a winning season in 2012. Juniors Iven Hernandez and Thomas Furlong both earned all-conference honors last season. Through Wednesday, Hernandez had 8 goals and 4 assists for the Sequoits, who improved to 4-1 with a win over Grayslake Central. "We expect to compete for a conference championship and regional championship," coach Marni Polakow said. "This is one of the strongest teams top to bottom that Antioch has ever had."
Coach: Bryan Mark (second year)
Last year: 4-17, lost to Warren in Class 3A regional semifinal
Top players lost: Ryan Flores (Milwaukee School of Engineering), Andreas Velarde
Top players returning: Jorge Figueroa-Hurtado Sr. MF, Timmothy Oehrlein Sr. MF, Omar Valadez Sr. MF, Adrian Avila Jr. D, Manuel Garcia Jr. F, Kevin Peralta Jr. MF
Newcomers: Daniel Lee Jr. D
Other notable players: Austin Dillow Sr. D, Camron Flores Sr. D, Angelo Hinestrosa Sr. F, Aaron Ortiz Sr. D, Joe Osmon Sr. D, Adrian Torres Sr. MF, Omar Valadez Sr. MF. Justin Ehrenhofer, Jr. D, Nick Heidenthal Jr. GK, Felipe Nolasco Jr. F, Zach Cooper So. MF, Nathan Munsterman So. GK
Outlook: The Bulldogs have replace some talent that graduated. They're aiming for double-digit victories. "We want to compete for the Prairie division title," coach Bryan Mark said. "We'd like to win a couple tournaments (Grant and Badger Invitationals). We're also in a tough Class 3A regional/sectional, but would like to advance in it."
Coach: Kevin Kullby (ninth year)
Last year: 15-5-4, lost to St. Viator in Class 2A sectional semifinal
Top players lost: Lucas Istvanek (College of Lake County), Ryan Kostreva (College of Lake County), Ramon Marin (Illinois Benedictine)
Top players returning: Jon Borzick Sr. MF, Rich Galat Sr. F, Kevin Ray Sr. GK, Cam Tsuchida Sr. D, Brian Werchek Sr. F
Newcomers: Cameron Beezley Fr. MF, Tom Cyberski Jr. MF, Parker Edwards Jr. D, Nick Dydo Fr. MF
Other notable players: Braad Callahan Sr. D, Tom Callahan Sr. D, Nate Coberly Sr. MF, Matt Goforth Sr. D, Enzo Pighini Sr. MF, Essex Robertson Sr. F, Joey Savino Sr. F, Jeff Sievert Sr. MF, Parker Edwards Jr. D, Derek Espinosa Jr. D, Cesar Murua Jr. F, Jack Monson Jr. GK, Paolo Quaranta Jr. D, Foster Dore So. MF, Zach Espinosa
Outlook: The Eagles bring back some talent from a squad that won a Class 2A regional title. "We have a good team that's talented and very capable," said coach Kevin Kullby, who entered the season with 95 victories in eight years. "But getting results and seeing where we stand among the area teams remains to be seen. My hope is the team stays healthy and focused throughout the season to allow us to go far in the state tournament."
Coach: Hugo Tellez (fourth year)
Last year: 17-3-1, lost to Warren in Class 3A regional final
Top players lost: Lorenzo Cortez (Clarke), Abraham Murua (College of Lake County), Edgar Rodriguez (Army), Mauricio Salgado (Trinity Christian)
Top players returning: Fermin Martinez Sr. D, Jose Martinez Sr. GK, Eddie Ramirez Sr. MF, Oscar Rodriguez Sr. D. Freddie Ramirez So. F
Newcomers: Javier Coronado Sr. F, Angel Dominguez Sr. D, Josh Guzman Sr. MF, Joel Sanchez Jr. D, Irvin Torres Jr. D, Alejandro Sotelo Fr. F
Other notable players: Marcos Avelar Sr. MF, Cesar Garcia Sr. MF, Cristian Lopez Sr. MF, Christian Navarro Sr. MF, Raul Albor, Jr. MF, Marcelo Gonzelez Jr. MF, Gustavo Lopez Jr. D, Edgar Nieto Jr. MF, Adis Sator Jr. GK, Christian Gomez So. F
Outlook: The Panthers seem to reload each year. The reining NSC Prairie champions seek higher goals this year. Sophomore Freddie Ramirez earned all-conference honors last year and is a dynamic scorer. "Our expectations are to go downstate," said coach Hugo Tellez, who saw Class 3A state champion Warren stop his squad last year in the regional final. "We would like to be the first Prairie team to win the NSC. This year we have more depth at every position than we had last year."
Coach: Mike McCaulou (first year)
Last year: 9-6-3, lost to Deerfield in Class 2A regional semifinal
Top players lost: Evan Borden, David Caiolino, Michael Hayibor, Bradley McGee, Roger Ramirez, Jared Stern, Matthew Tabrizi
Top players returning: Nick Bryson Sr. D, Ryan Bryson Sr. D, Jeremy Cohen Sr. MF, Ricky Ceja Sr. F, Tony Orozco Sr. MF, David Ortiz Sr. MF/GK, Jonathan Ramirez Sr. GK, Sam Vereen Sr. D, David White Sr. MF, Bradley Burrows Jr. MF, Matt Hong So. MF, Jose Perez-Silva So. F
Newcomers: Caleb Shaw Sr. MF, Nate Peck Jr. D, Chris White Fr. MF
Other notable players: Jeremy Gonzalez Sr. MF, Thomas Kalsch Sr. D, Ilya Kravtsev Jr. F
Outlook: The Cougars showed much improvement last year. Mike McCaulou came over from Grayslake Central to replace Vince DeLuca. The Cougars return 10 seniors and displayed their potential by winning four straight games in their own Cougar Classic. A couple of all-conference players return in senior goalkeeper Jonathan Ramirez and senior defender Ryan Bryson. "We want to compete hard for an entire game all season long," McCaulou said. "The mentality of this group is to work hard every day so that the games are nothing new to them. We try playing an attractive style of soccer that gets everyone involved. So far, the boys have been giving it their all day in and day out."
Coach: Patrick Heckman (third year)
Last year: 9-10-2, lost to Prairie Ridge Class 2A quarterfinal
Top players lost: Rogelio Gonzalez, Jesus Marquez (Roosevelt), Chris Tapia and Tim Warzala
Top players returning: David Bandillo Sr. D, Alex Bueno Sr. MF, Mario Estrada Sr. MF, Tommy Fox Sr. D, Brandon Morales Sr. MF, Jake Ortiz Sr. GK, Jake Sullivan Sr. MF
Newcomers: Taylor Karnatz Sr. MF, Jake Ortiz Sr. GK, Eric Berg Jr. D, Erick Olejniczak Jr. MF, Jovanni Lazaro So. F, Alex Reyes So. D, Hector Sanchez So. MF, Alfredo Soto So. D
Other notable players: Gio Marquez Jr. F, Teddy Kolarov So. F, Max Bermann So. D
Outlook: The Bulldogs nearly posted a winning record last year and have the potential to accomplish that feat this fall. "We just want to play hard and be competitive in every game," coach Patrick Heckman said. "We have a number of new faces. We just have to come together and figure things out. Some of the young guys have shown some strength in the back and in the midfield."