Because permafrost kept Northwestern's softball team from playing on its own diamond in Evanston, the Wildcats were grateful to have the opportunity to open its Big Ten schedule with Wisconsin in The Ballpark at Rosemont last weekend.
For former Buffalo Grove standout Andrea DiPrima, it was a homecoming of sorts.
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DiPrima's final game at the high school level came in a senior all-star game at the Chicago Bandits stadium in June of 2011.
DiPrima made the most of her second opportunity on the artificial carpet in Rosemont as she went 2-for-3 with 1 run in the Wildcats' 4-2 win on Friday.
It was the second game of a twin bill. The Wildcats won the opener 8-6 in 8 innings as DiPrima also had a hit.
DiPrima, who batted clean-up in all three games, then had an RBI double in a 7-5 loss on Saturday.
The Wildcats are off to their best start in DiPrima's three seasons.
After taking the series from the Badgers 2-1, Northwestern is 17-6 overall.
"Our whole team, top to bottom, has been amazing," said DiPrima, who had an amazing career batting average at BG where she finished at .522 (16th all-time in the IHSA record books at the time).
"It's so much fun to play behind everyone. If the top of the order doesn't get the job done, the bottom half comes through, and vice versa. We are really in a good place right now as a team."
DiPrima is in a good place, too, with her bat.
Going into the Wisconsin series, she was batting .350 with 21 hits, 5 doubles and 12 RBI.
In high school, DiPrima finished with 227 career hits which at the time placed her seventh on the all-time IHSA list.
"The biggest difference from high school is that the game is much faster in college," said DiPrima, who is playing right field. "The pitching is faster, and the ball comes at you faster in the field. It's all adjustments you learn to make from your coaches."
The Wildcats went 15-5 while playing tournaments in Arizona, Louisiana, California and Florida.
"We had a great preseason against good competition so it really prepared us," DiPrima said. "We are go grateful to be able to play here (The Ballpark at Rosemont). We've been really excited to start the Big Ten Season."
And DiPrima started it where she ended her high school softball career.
Area fans will also remember softball wasn't the only sport DiPrima played at Buffalo Grove.
She also scored 1,000 points in her basketball career.
Washington University (St. Louis) senior forward Chris Klimek (Fremd) was named to the 2014 National Association of Basketball Coaches' Division III All-America third team.
Klimek is the 19th men's basketball student-athlete in school history to earn All-America honors.
"What an exciting way to end your college basketball career," said Washington coach Mark Edwards on the school's website. "The NABC all-American Team is voted on by the coaches and reflects the high esteem they held for Chris.
"It is an honor well deserved and I am proud at what he has meant to Washington University basketball. He was a special player on a special team."
Klimek, a first-team D3hoops.com and NABC all-Midwest Region selection, averaged 16.5 points and 7.0 rebounds and led the University Athletic Association in field-goal percentage (. 613).
He was also third in the UAA in rebounding (7.0) and fifth in scoring (16.5) and blocked shots (0.9). Klimek was named the 2014 UAA Player of the Year, and earned first-team all-UAA honors for the second-straight year.
He scored in double figures in 23 of 27 games played, and became the 21st player in school history to join the 1,000-point club with 23 points against the University of Rochester Feb. 7. He started 74 of 76 games in his career and ranks 19th on the all-time scoring list with 1,125 points. A three-time all-UAA and all-Midwest Region selection, Klimek finished his career ranked third in school history in field-goal percentage (. 579).
Washington finished this 14 season with a 24-3 overall mark and won the UAA Championship with a 14-0 record. The Bears also made an appearance in the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the third-straight year.
Bradley sophomore Allison Walsh (Prospect) improved her score for the third consecutive round, firing a 3-over par 75 on the final day of the final day of the Plantation Inn Intercollegiate in Crystal River, Fla.
The 75 was Walsh's lowest round of the spring.
Bradley finished 11th overall in the team standings and Walsh tied for 23rd overall at 230.
Millikin freshman pitcher Max Paolicchi (Schaumburg) was named a College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin baseball player of the week.
Paolicchi, a psychology major, earned his first win of the season by pitching 7 innings in a 5-2 win over Lakeland. He gave up no earned runs, struck out six and walked only two in his first collegiate start.
Missouri-St. Louis freshman Lauren Logan (Palatine) is batting .333 (4-for-12) for the Tritons (14-2) with 5 runs, 2 doubles and an RBI.
Augustana's Austin Marrison (Palatine) scored a goal in the Vikings' 20-1 home-opener. Augustana improved to 2-2.
Augustana freshman Maggie DelVecchio (Barrington) had an assist in a 20-10 win at Adrian which improved the Vikings' record to 4-0.
Carthage College senior point guard Stephanie Kuzmanic (Wheeling) was named "D3hoops.com" Central Region "Player of the Year."
Kuzmanic was ranked fifth among CCIW scoring leaders (14.8 points per game), first in assists (7.21 per game), eighth in free-throw percentage (. 768) and 11th in blocked shots (0.52 per game). Kuzmanic also was selected to the 2014 WBCA Division III Coaches' All-America Team.
Auburn redshirt junior Dan Stringfellow (St. Viator) had 10 birdies in 36 holes to finish the first day of the Jason Duffner Tiger Invitational seven under par. His final round was even par to give him a score of 219, good for fourth place for the number 28 ranked Tigers.
Miami University sophomore goalie Ryan McKay (Fremd) saved all 32 shots by North Dakota as the Redhawks (15-19-3) won 3-0 in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference Frozen Faceoff.
Augustana's Becca Sund (Palatine) was part of the distance medley relay team that won at the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin Indoor Championships hosted by Illinois Wesleyan. The Vikings took fourth place.
Augustana freshman Lauren Goggin (Buffalo Grove) is 15-6 for the second most singles victories on the team. Her twin Dana (Buffalo Grove) checks in at 12-8. The Goggins are 14-7 while playing at number one doubles.
Women's pro basketball
Chicago Sky coach and general manager Pokey Chatman, will hold open tryouts in an effort to build the team's roster for the upcoming season.
Under the WNBA's new collective bargaining agreement, each team has the opportunity to add one additional player to its roster for the 2014 season. Tryouts will be held on Sunday, April 13, 2014 from 9 a.m. to noon at Sachs Recreation Center in Deerfield.
An opportunity like this does not come around often, so if you think you have what it takes to make the Sky roster, what are you waiting for? Space will be limited. Visit www.chicagosky.net to reserve your spot today. For more information on the open tryouts, call 866.SKY.WNBA.
Augustana sophomore Ethan Koch (Prospect) was second (9:05.03) in the 3000-meter run of the Vikings' own 'Early Spring' opener where they defeated Harper College and Ashford University for the team title.
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