Articles filed under Pohl/Ferrarin

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  • Ferrarin: St. Charles East grad NCAA Woman of the Year finalist Oct 16, 2014 5:36 PM
    Alexa Baltes's road from dribbling basketballs in the basement at age 2 to winning the NCAA Division III women's national championship two years ago was as much about hard work as it was natural talent. “She was literally the player that would catch your eye, because she just worked so hard,” Illinois Wesleyan basketball coach Mia Smith said. Hard work on and off the court has made Alexa among nine finalists for the NCAA Woman of the Year award.

  • Elite Conant student insists baton twirling is a sport Sep 18, 2014 5:30 AM
    Competitive baton twirler Chase Dorn knows full well that some people don’t think of her sport as, well, a sport. The 17-year-old from Elk Grove Village, recently named Illinois' Distinguished Young Woman for 2015, knows better. “It’s a sport because it takes just as much agility and training and coordination and fitness as any sport — as soccer, as basketball, as cheerleading, as dance,” the Conant senior said.

  • Wheeling siblings have World Cup dreams Jun 19, 2014 5:16 AM
    As the World Cup plays on the Brazil this month, young soccer players from across the suburbs are dreaming that they might one day represent their country on the international stage. For siblings Luis and Alondra Arreola of Wheeling, those dreams might just come true. Both are soccer standouts who've already caught the eye of national team recruiters from the U.S. and Mexico.

  • Pingree Grove immigrant learns to excel at ECC May 15, 2014 5:22 AM
    Alejandro Molina Hoyos' family fled violence and turmoil in their native Colombia more than a decade ago to start over in the United States. Despite the many challenges he's faced since, Alejandro's hard work and perseverance have made him a respected leader among his peers. “My goal is to have the ability to give someone the same experience I had, have someone really enjoy their time in college and really develop themselves professionally."

  • Bolingbrook teen finds patterns of success across fields May 1, 2014 5:30 AM
    Timothy Zhou excels at music, math and chess. While that may seem like an unusual combination, the Bolingbrook teen is quick to explain the three disciplines are much more similar than people may think. "There is beauty in patterns and logic which plays into not just chess and math, but also music," he says.

  • Mount Prospect teen wins Wolves scholarship Apr 24, 2014 6:02 AM
    Those who know Tim Gruensfelder agree on two things: He never lets anything stop him, and he never shows how much his battle with a rare tumor might affect him on any given day. Despite his challenges, Tim is an All-American wheelchair athlete, accomplished archer, honors student and active volunteer for many causes. “I just do what I love to do,” he says.

  • Barrington chess champ among nation’s best young players Apr 3, 2014 5:30 AM
    Playing chess is all about being like a fox, 10-year-old Shreya Mangalam likes to say. “I always try to do tricks that people can’t really see,” said Shreya, a fifth-grader from South Barrington. The tactic has paid off for Shreya, who is the top-rated female chess player under 16 in Illinois, and the third-rated girl under the age of 10 in the entire country.

  • Barrington teens help kids in Guatemala Feb 20, 2014 6:15 AM
    From inspiring fellow students to engage in service, to giving new homes to poor families in Guatemala, two Barrington sisters have been spreading a lot of good around the world lately. Twins Courtney and Ashley Quigley, 17-year-old seniors at Barrington High School, are the organizers of “Hope's in Style,” a student-led fashion show that raises money to help build homes for poor families in Guatemala.

  • Suburban man gives a voice to the special needs community Feb 6, 2014 5:20 AM
    Communication is Daniel Smrokowski's biggest passion, but it's also his biggest struggle. The 25-year-old Westmont man is the founder and executive director of Special Chronicles, which produces podcasts, news and opinion pieces featuring the voices of people with special needs. "People need to hear our stories and our abilities," Daniel says.

  • Teen entrepeneur from Elgin takes on music industry Jan 23, 2014 2:15 PM
    At age 15, Breje Whitt was playing onstage with a nationally renowned Christian rock band. At 17, the Elgin teen started his own DJ, sound and lighting company. Where he goes next is anyone’s guess, but one thing is for sure — music is going to be his life. “Music is what I want to do, but I don’t know where it’s going to go,” said Breje, a senior at Westminster Christian School in Elgin.

  • Oak Brook native travels route from shy kid to Rhodes Scholar Jan 9, 2014 5:43 AM
    Vinay Nayak once was so shy that his teachers asked — not entirely in jest — for a home video to prove he was a normal, talkative boy as his mother claimed. Now relaxed and confident, the 21-year-old Oak Brook resident never forgot what it feels like not to have much of a voice. “I’ve tried to find a way to express myself and help other people find their voice too, both politically and outside of politics,” said Vinay, a senior at Yale University and one of this year’s recipients of the prestigious Rhodes Scholarship.

  • A look back at some of our most amazing Suburban Standouts Dec 26, 2013 5:47 AM
    This year we profiled dozens of young people in the suburbs who are inspiring us all through their hard work, commitment and talents. Today, we take a look back at a handful of our amazing Suburban Standouts -- from Wauconda, Cary, Buffalo Grove, Naperville and Downers Grove -- and catch you up on what they're up to now.

  • Hampshire teen gives new life to old music Dec 5, 2013 12:48 PM
    Ragtime music might conjure black-and-white images of a bygone era, but to 13-year-old Daniel Souvigny of Hampshire there’s nothing better in the world. Playing ragtime piano is all about improvising and making pieces your own, said Daniel, one of the best young ragtime performers in the country. “It feels like I finally break loose and improvise to my heart’s content. I can do anything in any point in time to any song in ragtime.”

  • Wauconda teen winning as pro go-kart racer Oct 24, 2013 11:23 AM
    Kyle Kalish looks like he's been through the wringer after finishing a go-kart race. The four-time national champion sprint racer is bruised, exhausted and mentally spent. But the Wauconda teen relishes every moment. “A lot of kids think it's a Six Flags theme park type of thing where you just drive around in circles. There's a lot more to it than that.”

  • Fremd grad makes a difference in Haiti Oct 17, 2013 5:31 AM
    Those first images of abject poverty in Port-au-Prince, Haiti — each scene teeming with people living without the most basic of human needs — are burned into Renata Wettermann’s memory. The Inverness teen knew right then her life's work would be to help the people of the Caribbean nation. She’s enrolled in the prestigious Rice/Baylor Medical Scholars Program in Houston, an eight-year program that accepts just 15 “scientifically competent, compassionate and socially conscious” students.

  • Young mountain bikers ranked 2nd, 3rd in nation Oct 3, 2013 5:42 AM
    Nathan “Nate” Knowles and William “Will” Darling may be the best of friends, but that hasn't stopped the pair from becoming fierce competitors on the national mountain biking circuit. Nate, 12, of Batavia, and Will, 11, of Vernon Hills, are ranked the second and third, respectively, best cross-country mountain bikers in their age group by USA Cycling.

  • Round Lake Beach teen enjoys brush with stardom on 'El Factor X' Sep 26, 2013 5:25 AM
    Once so shy she couldn't even sing in front of her family, Brisila Barros is still reeling from her brush with stardom over the summer as a finalist on "El Factor X," a Spanish-language version of Simon Cowell's TV franchise. The Round Lake High School sophomore spent five weeks in Mexico City filming. "I felt so special, like I wasn't even from this world," she said. "The whole thing is so humbling.”

  • Suburban wiz wants to lead women into tech world Sep 23, 2013 9:52 AM
    Cassidy Williams was the only girl in her AP computer science class at Downers Grove South High School. Now she is one of only five women majoring in computer science, along with 57 men, in Iowa State University's Class of 2014. It's a trend the Downers Grove native hopes to urge girls to change. “If we don't have women in computer science, we're only seeing half the picture,” Cassidy said.

  • Libertyville, Lincolnshire gymnasts find winning rhythm Sep 12, 2013 5:43 AM
    When watching rhythmic gymnasts Laura Zeng of Libertyville and Camilla Feeley of Lincolnshire, you’re not sure whether to be awe-struck or completely baffled as to how they do it. Each of the 13-year-olds has a promising future in the sport. "Laura and Camilla have the psychological ability to show their best when their heart is beating out of their chest,” coach Dani Takova said.

  • Elgin boy carving name for himself on national level Sep 5, 2013 5:08 AM
    Wood carving takes extraordinary patience, rigid discipline and remarkable diligence - traits not often associated with an active 12-year-old boy. Yet just seven months after taking up the craft, Elgin's Shane Cloonan already has estanlished himself as one of the best young carvers in the nation. “If you looked at (Shane's) carving, you'd be surprised that a kid made it. You'd think it was an adult,” instructor Josh Guge said.

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