John Leusch

Staff Writer
  • Phone(847) 427-4448
  • Emailjleusch@dailyherald.com
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John Leusch is the senior prep writer on the Daily Herald staff.

After working in the Arlington Park public relations department while in college and serving one summer as an agent for a jockey at the racetrack, Leusch began at the Daily Herald in the fall of 1980 as a sports agate clerk and one year later began covering high school sports.

He was hired full-time in 1984 as the prep sports writer for Lake County when the Daily Herald expanded to that region. He has been the Daily Herald's main Cook County girls prep writer since 1988 and one of the senior high school writers in the state.

In 2003, he received an Illinois Girls Coaches Association Appreciation Award and in 2009 was chosen as "Newsperson of the Year" by the Illinois Coaches Association for girls softball.

Leusch has also covered Arlington Park racetrack for the Daily Herald since 1990, and he has covered every Arlington Million since then. He has been appeared on ABC 7's Sunday morning show to discuss racetrack issues and Arlington Park. He also has appeared as a guest on many of the track's in-house programs and for "Breakfast at Arlington."

Leusch also has been the ghost writer for weekly columns by Kentucky Derby winning trainer Carl Nafzger and Hall of Fame jockey Pat Day.

A native of Mount Prospect, where he still resides, Leusch graduated from Loyola University with a degree in communications. He attended St. Viator High School in Arlington Heights, where he wrote for the school newspaper and served as the football team's manager for four years, earning a "Manager of the Year" award his senior year.

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Pociejewski right at home in UIC’s softball lineup

Jul 20 2017 | 9:03 pm - Kayla Pociejewski, one of the all-time leading home run hitters in Maine West softball history, is coming back home. After studying her freshman year of college at Arizona State, Pociejewski has joined the Illinois-Chicago softball team where she...

Softball: Barrington’s Peterson commits to Northwestern

Jun 26 2017 | 5:01 pm - Barrington’s Kendall Peterson, the only child of Jennifer and Perry Peterson, has committed to attend and play on Northwestern’s softball team beginning in the fall of 2019. She has has been a two-year starter for Barrington and will...

Spellman Stakes returns as Arlington Park honors St. Viator champs

Jun 15 2017 | 2:04 pm - The third annual Mike Spellman Memorial Stakes will return on Saturday at Arlington Park, the same day when track officials will honor St. Viator’s baseball team by naming the fifth race for the Class 3A state champs.

Softball: Home run derby a hit for Lira, MSL senior stars

Jun 12 2017 | 10:50 pm - Due to a shortage of softball players, the 23rd edition of the Mid-Suburban League Senior All-Star Game became a home run derby contest, with Conant’s Ally Lira taking first place at Barrington’s Fields of Dreams.

Softball: Winning finish as Barrington tops Marist

Jun 10 2017 | 10:44 pm - Barrington’s softball team posted a 7-6 come-from-behind win over Marist in 9 innings on Saturday in the Class 4A third-place game at the EastSide Centre in East Peoria. The Fillies finished at 37-4, tying the 2007 team (second in the Class...

Northwest athlete of the year: Dual abilities served Fremd standout Adrian

Jun 09 2017 | 8:50 pm - Fremd’s Missy Adrian excelled in both basketball and soccer, and she’s the Daily Herald’s choice as Northwest female athlete of the year.

Softball: Barrington falls short against Oak Park-River Forest

Jun 09 2017 | 11:08 pm - Barrington’s 5-1 loss to Oak Park in Friday’s Class 4A softball state semifinals was not all the surprising considering the Huskies (36-1) came into the game as the defending 4A state champs with wins in 61 straight games over teams...

Softball: Barrington hopes upset is in the cards

Jun 08 2017 | 6:58 pm - Barrington’s softball team is making its first visit back to East Peoria since it took fourth place in 2015. The Fillies (36-3) will face Oak Park (35-1), ranked in No. 1 in the Illinois Coaches Association state poll, in Friday’s 3...

Softball: Northwest all-area team

Jun 08 2017 | 12:17 pm - Introducing the Daily Herald’s Northwest all-area softball team, featuring players from the Mid-Suburban League plus Maine West and St. Viator.

Softball: When it comes to pop, Barrington's Jacobsen is tops

Jun 08 2017 | 12:31 pm - Junior catcher Abbey Jacobsen had a difference-making season for Barrington and has earned the captaincy of the Daily Herald’s Northwest all-area team.

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