Hindenburg excited about volleyball future at New Orleans
Back in the early days of Fremd girls volleyball, Lane Hindenburg's mother Sue was an outside hitter for the Vikings' varsity team.
Standing 5-foot-8, Sue was the tallest player on the team.
"Volleyball has definitely changed," she said.
And Sue's daughter Lane sure changed a lot of matches in favor of the Vikings for the past four seasons with her powerful spiking abilities.
The 6-foot outside hitter developed into one of the top attackers in the Mid-Suburban League over the last four seasons and recently made a commitment to play Division I volleyball at the University of New Orleans, where she plans to study psychology.
"The atmosphere on campus and off was awesome and I feel like I wouldn't get the same experience anywhere else," Hindenburg said about her decision. "I didn't want to choose a school just because of volleyball -- I wanted to make sure I got a unique experience that I can take with me for the rest of my life."
Hindenburg said she felt very comfortable with the current players on the Privateers' roster.
"The girls on the team were very welcoming when I visited and Coach V (Millicent Van Norden) was extremely nice," she added. "She is moving the program in a very positive direction. It also helps that my best friend (McHenry setter Zoe Lindsey) will be playing there as well."
Hindenburg has been playing volleyball since the age of 10.
"Since my mom used to play volleyball, we would always pick up the ball and hit it around in our backyard," Lane said. "Since I really liked it and I was pretty tall for my age, my mom decided to have me start playing club."
Sue Hindenburg, a schoolteacher, worked with one of the coaches from Sky High.
"So that was where we went and I've been playing ever since," Lane said. "My parents would always bring up playing in college as an option. I would always say I wanted to but I didn't know that I really wanted to play until I was in high school."
Hindenburg, a two-time all-area selection, became only the second four-year starter for the Fremd program over the past 18 years.
She put down a team-high 316 kills this fall, finishing with 768 for her career. "Lane worked incredibly hard her senior year and our success this season had a lot to do with that work," said Fremd coach Curt Pinley after the season. "She was part of 100 varsity wins. You cannot replace that. You can only move forward. I am just thankful she has been part of our program."
Hindenburg credits Pinley and all her coaches throughout her career in helping her become an elite player.
"Nick Vassos, who I had as a club coach and who is the junior varsity coach at Fremd, was especially helpful for being extremely supportive and always saying it like it is," Hindenburg said. "I also credit my trainer Marcus Robinson for making me more mentally and physically tough, my orthopedic surgeon Dr. Sean Odell for repairing the tear in my labrum and making my shoulder stronger, and of course my parents for all the support they've given me."
Hindenburg missed six months after her sophomore season due to the shoulder surgery.
"I became even more driven to continue my volleyball career after that," she said.
And she can't wait to continue her career in New Orleans at the D-I level.
Butler freshman Eric Leonard (Fremd) was chosen to the Big East's all-rookie team. He played in 14 matches for the Bulldogs this season, including 12 as a starter, and he finished sixth on the team in shots (15).
He scored his first collegiate goal in Butler's 2-1 victory over Evansville in September.
Leonard began playing soccer at Palatine Celtic Soccer Club and competed the last 10 years at Sockers FC Chicago in Palatine.
He continues his studies in Biomedical Engineering.
Butler finished the season with a 6-7-5 record, including victories over No. 7 Marquette and No. 11 Providence. The Bulldogs were eighth in the final Big East regular-season standings.
Leonard suffered a torn ACL in the last game of the season but reconstruction surgery went well and he is rehabbing and looking forward to next season.
Illinois College freshman Melissa Solorio (Elk Grove) led all scorers with a career-high 32 points in a 100-89 loss to Knox in the Midwest Conference game.
Solorio also scored 19 points for the Lady Blue (4-3, 2-1) in a 70-41 win over visiting Lawrence University.
• Lake Forest sophomore forward Brie Majkowski (Wheeling) led the Forresters with 14 points and 7 rebounds in a 52-37 victory over visiting Lawrence University.
Majkowski shot 5-of-11 from the field and 4-of-6 from the foul line for her second-highest scoring output of the season. She is now second on the team with 9.0 points per game.
• Millikin junior forward Alyssa Saklak (Schaumburg) was named the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin women's basketball player of the week. She helped lead the Big Blue to a 2-0 record, averaging 19.5 points and 8 rebounds.
Saklak scored 18 points on 6-of-10 shooting from the field (4-of-4 from three-point range), along with 7 rebounds and 3 steals in a 90-52 win over Robert Morris-Springfield.
She followed that with 20 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals in a 93-61 win over Fontbonne.
Millikin is now 6-1 overall, off to the program's best start since the 2005-06 season.
DePaul senior defender Sarah Gorden (Elk Grove) was selected to the NSCAA's 2014 NCAA Division I Women's All-Northeast Region First Team.
Gorden, the Big East Championship's Most Outstanding Defender, played in all 21 games of the Blue Demons' 16-1-4 campaign.
• DePaul freshman forward and Big East Rookie of the Year Alexa Ben (Schaumburg) also represented the All-Northeast Region on the third team.
Ben led the Blue Demons with 11 assists, establishing a program record. She was also third on the team with 9 goals and tied Elise Wyatt for first with 29 points.
Augustana junior quarterback Sam Frasco (Prospect) was named the Most Valuable Player for the Vikings. He was a dual-threat and led the team in rushing and passing this season, helping the Vikings finish 5-5 on the season and take fourth place (4-3) in the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin.
Despite missing one game this season, Frasco led the team in rushing with 704 yards in nine games for an average of 78.2 yards per game. Frasco also rushed for 11 touchdowns which accounted for more than 50 percent of the Vikings' rushing touchdowns this season.
Among conference players, the Vikings quarterback was the third-best rusher in the CCIW this season. The junior was also the leading passer for Augustana, throwing for 1,188 yards with 7 touchdowns and an average of 132 yards per game.
Lewis University's Andre Barnes (Prospect) and teammate Isaac Jean-Paul (Warren) captured the inaugural Great Lakes Valley Conference Indoor Track And Field 'Athlete of the Week' awards.
Barnes set a school-record with a first-place and NCAA Provisional setting finish of 47.67 in the 400-meter dash at the GVSU Early Bird to earn the GLVC Track Athlete of the Week. That time is currently the fastest in the country, regardless of NCAA affiliation.
"Andre and Isaac really got the men's team going early in the meet," said Lewis head men's track and field coach Dana Schwarting said. "Within a few minutes of each other, they both posted top marks in the country.
"You could really feel the team energized after they were done with their events. We knew what they looked like in practice, but it is a great testament to both of them, that they didn't let the nerves and excitement of the first meet get to them."
North Park's Jordan Robinson (Hoffman Estates) had a double-double of 12 points and 12 rebounds in a 61-47 victory over Kalamazoo and he also tallied a game-high 20 points in a 72-71 win over Alma.
Schaumburg High School is offering a coed holiday volleyball clinic for sixth through eighth graders on Friday, Jan. 2 and Saturday, Jan. 3 from noon to 2 p.m. The cost is $25 and athletes should register by Thursday, Dec. 18. Information and registration and waiver forms are available on the Schaumburg High School Athletic website; or contact Jeanette Pancratz at 224-653-4376 or email@example.com.
• The Conant Cougar Holiday Volleyball Camp for third through eighth grade girls will be held Dec. 22-23 at Conant High School. The camp will cost $35 and emphasizes the basic volleyball skills; serving, passing, setting, hitting blocking and game play. All campers will receive a camp T-shirt. No experience is needed.
The third through sixth grade session will be from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and seventh and eighth graders from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
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We've reached the halfway mark of the school year again.
So Sports Notes will take its annual brief break from the action and return in January for more updates on former local athletes competing on the college landscape.
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