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October 23, 2011 / cpsgirls

Northside, Jones- Regional Champions

Northside Champions

Northside’s girls won their first ever IHSA Regional

2A was the place to be for CPS cross country teams Saturday, as Jones and Northside won their first ever IHSA Regionals.

Jones won handily, scoring 25 points to defeat U-High. Dhia Dean of Kenwood finished 2nd overall, running the first mile with eventual winner Sara Currci of U-High before settling down and cruising the last two miles.  Kenwood, Muchin, and Dunbar also qualified full teams. There were only 43 runners in this meet, so everyone qualified for Sectionals.

Northside scored 49 to defeat Resurrection. Mather also qualified by finishing 5th. Von Stuben just missed, finishing 8th. Von does send Patricia George,Melissa Solano, and Claudia Munoz to Sectionals.

Over at Schiller Woods, Payton finished 2nd behind Fenwick’s perfect score of 15.  Lake View, Little Village, and Noble Street were able to qualify on the basis of just being able to field a team.

A tragedy was averted when Kelvyn Park’s Karla Perez was sent the wrong way and ended up running about 3/4 of a mile the wrong way on the course before re-routing herself and finishing in 27th place.  Perez was in 6th place prior to being sent the wrong way by a course marshal who believed she was being a slower runner covering an earlier portion of the course.  Perez was the first individual qualifier, as Kelvyn Park was unable to field a full team.  Freshman Kiata Atkins of Orr and Sophomore Maxery Cerda of Senn also qualified.

Over at Riverside Brookfield, Kennedy and Hancock were able to qualify by finishing 5th and 6th.  Annette Herrera had a sub par race, finishing 20th, but should be able to regroup for sectionals next week.  Individually, all the qualifiers came from the CPS.  There were only 6 teams in the meet.

The joke of all the regionals was the Illiana Christian Regional where only 24 runners competed.  Failing to show for the Regional was Julian and Fenger, and everyone who did show up was able to qualify including 3rd place Morgan Park.

In 3A, Lane and Whitney Young finished 2nd and 3rd to qualify for the Niles West Sectionals.  Both teams appeared to run mostly alternates, as top runners were held out with the exception of Lane’s Carina Coss and Jackie Bynes.  The lane duo finished 2nd and 8th overall respectively.

Lincoln Park and Stienmetz also qualified, as there were only seven complete teams. Taft took all the individual qualifying spots with Kassie Prusko, Jocelyne Mendoza, Alyssa Wendt, and Sarah Clinard moving on.

At Lyons, Curie and Hubbard finished 8th and 9th, but send individuals in Liza Camacho, Laura Gomez, and Berenise Vega of Curie and Areij Hasan Hubbard and Abigail Jaimes of Hubbard.

October 22, 2011 / cpsgirls

Follow up

The aftermath of layoffs by the CPS to sports administration is over and here is what’s left over.

It appears that only 3-4 administrators were let go. Among those mentioned were Cyrus McGinnis, Juan Espinoza, Micky Pruitt (unconfirmed), and Rick Szukala.

Reportedly, Rham Emmanuel is looking to bring in some of his own people to run sports admin sometime in the near future.

October 21, 2011 / cpsgirls

Sports Administration Dismantled

Word came down today that several people from sports administration were let go, possibly everyone in the department. More details later.

October 21, 2011 / cpsgirls


Elizabeth O'Conner of Northside Prep

Elizabeth O'Conner of Northside is a big reason why Northside may win its first girls IHSA Regional this Saturday.

This Saturday marks the start of the IHSA series with the Regional meet. Since the expansion to three classes, the regional meets have been considered a joke, especially in the Chicago area. In an effort to make the Regional meets more competitive, the IHSA condensed the meets into three regionals per sectional. Unfortunately, a shift in the Classes this summer moved many teams from 3A to 2A, and in return the regional meets are once again a joke, especially in the meets where the Chicago Public School teams are involved. Here’s a look at what is in store for the Regional Meets where CPS teams are involved.


LaGrange (Lyons) Regional (9 Teams)

Burbank (Reavis)
Chicago (Curie)
Chicago (Hubbard)
Darien (Hinsdale South)
Downers Grove (North)
Downers Grove (South)
Hinsdale (Central)
LaGrange (Lyons)
Summit (Argo)

Curie and Hubbard have an outside chance at finishing in the seventh, but they both will have to run much better than they did at the City meet.Curie finished 17 points ahead of Hubbard at City, but it looks as though this will be a Suburban dominated Regional. The only shot either of them have of advancing will be to take on Reavis. Individually, Liza Camacho of Curie should make it, as should teammate Laura Gomez. Hubbard Sophomore Hasan Areij should make it as well.

Chicago (St. Ignatius College Prep) Regional (10T)
Berwyn-Cicero (Morton)
Chicago (Foreman)
Chicago (Lane)
Chicago (Lincoln Park)
Chicago (Schurz)
Chicago (St. Ignatius College Prep)
Chicago (Steinmetz)
Chicago (Taft)
Chicago (Whitney Young)
Franklin Park-Northlake (Leyden)

This will have a rematch of Lane and Whitney Young. Look for both of these teams to take this meet lightly as they both should qualify fairly easily. St. Ignatius poses the only real threat to taking home the Regional title from either of these teams. If Lane were to win it, it would be their first IHSA Regional title ever. Whitney Young won the Regional in 2008 & 09. Stienmetz and Lincoln Park, the 9th and 10th place finishers from City, should also make it into the top seven and qualify for Sectionals.


Oak Park (Fenwick) Regional (10T)

Chicago (Clark)
Chicago (Juarez)
*Chicago (Kelvyn Park)
Chicago (Lake View)
Chicago (Little Village)
Chicago (Noble Street Charter/C. Bulls)
Chicago (Orr)
Chicago (Payton)
Chicago (Senn)
Chicago (Westinghouse College Prep)
Oak Park (Fenwick)

Look for Fenwick to run away with this Regional. After that, CPS teams should take the next six spots as that’s all that remain. Payton, Little Village, and Kelvyn Park should finish 2nd, 3rd, and 4th although the Chicago Bulls Charter School could sneak ahead of Kelvyn Park. In the individual race, Karla Perez of Kelvyn and Ellie Vachuska of Payton should finish in the top five.

Chicago (Mather) Regional (11T)

Bensenville (Fenton)-
Chicago (CICS/Northtown)
Chicago (Mather)
Chicago (Northside)
Chicago (Resurrection)
Chicago (Sullivan)
Chicago (Von Steuben)
Elmwood Park
Norridge (Ridgewood)
River Forest (Trinity)
Wilmette (Regina Dominican)
This will be hosted on the blazing fast (short?) Legion Park course. On paper, this appears to be the tightest of all the Regionals in which the CPS has teams entered. Things should be very close for the title between Ressurection, Regina, Mather, and Northside. Currently, Northside has the momentum having just put together their top Sophomore team, which finished 3rd at City, and has superstar Mary Coomes back. They should expect to be considered the favorites. If anyone is going to give them a tough challenge, it will be Regina. Expect the Four teams listed above to qualify for Sectionals along with Fenton, Ridgewood, and Trinity. Individually, look for Hannah Witczack of Resurrection to run at the front, followed by Elizabeth O’Connor, Madison Weathersly, and Mary Coomes of Northside. Anne Planek of Trinity and Kate McDonough of Regina will also be up front.

Chicago (University) Regional (8T)

Chicago (De La Salle)
Chicago (Dunbar)
Chicago (Hyde Park)
Chicago (Jones)
Chicago (Kenwood)
Chicago (Noble Street Charter/Muchin)
Chicago (Noble Street Charter/UIC)
Chicago (University)

This meet is a battle between Jones and host U-High. U-High has one advantage in Sarah Curcci, an All-State runner who can win with this race. She will be pushed by City Champion Dhia Dean. After those two, there will not be much of a race. Jones’ Miranda Shaver, Katie Gerhart, and Ellen Buttita should all finish in the top 10 in this meet.If Gaby Gonzales or Beattine Foster has a big race, Jones can win.They may also get some help from Freshman Jennifer Geary. After that, it’s about who won’t qualify. At this point, it appears to be Hyde Park which failed to field a team at City.

Riverside (R.-Brookfield) Regional (11T)

Burbank (Queen of Peace)
Chicago (Bowen)
Chicago (Gage Park)
Chicago (Hancock)
Chicago (Kennedy)
Chicago (North Lawndale Charter)
Chicago (Perspectives Charter/Leadership) [Coop]
Chicago (Simeon)
LaGrange Park (Nazareth Academy)
Lombard (Montini)
Riverside (R.-Brookfield)

Another one for the Suburbs. Kennedy should finish 4th behind Montini, host Riverside Brookfield and Nazareth Academy. Queen of Peace will keep Kennedy honest. After that it’s a wash. Perspectives averaged 20:00 for 2 Miles in the Open Race at City and should qualify with that. Savannah Caballero of Hancock finished 25th at City, under 21:00, and should qualify for Sectionals as an individual. Annette Herrera will be the top finisher for all CPS runners. She finished 12th at City and could make a run for a state qualifying spot. North Lawndale hasn’t fielded a team all year, and Bowen, Gage Park, and Simeon did not field a full team at most meets, let alone city.

Lansing (Illiana Christian) Regional (8T)

Calumet City (Thornton Fractional North)
Chicago (Fenger)
Chicago (Harlan)
Chicago (Julian)
Chicago (Morgan Park)
Dolton (Thornridge)
Evergreen Park
Lansing (Illiana Christian)
Really only 6 teams here. Fenger and Harlan may or may not have a full team. Even more dissapointing is the Jazzmyne Moore of Fenger ran over 26:00 for three miles at City and was thier top runner and will be getting a pass to Sectionals. On the bright side, Morgan Park will be competitive for 2nd place (Illiana Christian is State Ranked). For this regional to be even remotely interesting, you need to invite a Circus to come out and perform and have the runners run through hoops of fire and let the spectators take pop shots at the runners with paintball guns. That may not even be fair.

October 17, 2011 / cpsgirls

What is being said…

Last week I sent out an email to Coaches asking for their opinion after writing about Hanson Stadium being under served.

Here is some of the feedback that was received.

CPS would be better off without Sports Administration and all of their various rules and lack of professionalism and as your article pointed out, horrific use of donated and budgeted monies.

This weekend, I just had a conversation with my father-in-law trying to explain to him how a football team in the Second City football conference qualifies for the state tournament….which is far different than any of our close suburban schools. It is possible, that our football team could not make it to IHSA football tournament as we could have a great record, but still finish third in our conference if the teams ahead of us had better records in our conference.

Speaking of conferences, there isn’t a consistent conference in the city of Chicago, as they all change – and they change multiple times because they follow how well the schools do at each individual sport. It is possible for a CPS high school to be in a really competitive basketball conference, which has completely different schools than the conference they play in for football (because the football team is OK) and those conferences could be completely different from another sport where their team is horrible or heck, could not be in a conference because they are just starting the sport!

Another thing….our football team recently went to Eckersall Stadium an hour and a half early to warm up and be ready for our football game, and no one was there! The stadium director was late, and instead of giving both teams more time to warm-up, which should have been done to avoid injury, but the stadium director and the officials (assigned by CPS Sports Administration) insisted that the game would still start on time, even though the stadium director was almost 30 minutes late. Another piece of the puzzle…..the field was lined after our game!

My thoughts are that it would bring a ton more work on the AD’s. Some AD’s are new or just not really cut out to handle that type of a workload due to their own schedule.( classes, coaching)

Sports Admin does serve a purpose and for the years I have coached I have found and voiced many things wrong with S.A. , however without this office I feel that different issues will arise that may be more permanent than the issues that coaches are complaining about now.

I’m not sure how sports admin affects other sports, but as far as swimming goes, we are disappointed year after year.
First of all for some reason, CPS feels the need to let sports ad take care of coaches payroll. Checks are sure to come months after the paperwork is filed, and are often lost or forgotten. Frustrating as this may be, coaches are not in this business for the money, and we can cope.
The cuts already made to the office have required their employees to be loaded with too many responsibilities, when it seemed that they were already barely competent doing their originally assigned jobs. The aquatics coordinator has been put in charge of at least three other sports as well as a CPS football stadium. This causes much of his time and effort to be taken from our sport, while we as coaches work harder than ever to keep it functional.
Also, it seems that there isn’t really much that the office does for the sport outside of scheduling. Swimming already has a “Coaches Committee” in place that would be able to, and be willing to complete all the scheduling for each season on its own time. We already hold seasonal meetings to discus problems that came up, and potential issues to come. Sports administration is barely involved in these meetings, and certainly is not needed.
One thing myself and other coaches of the more elite swimming programs in the CPS often discus is the need to compete on the same level as suburban and catholic schools. Perhaps we should look at how these conferences deal with similar issues. Obviously, these schools have a larger budget to deal with, and less of a financial disaster, but it may be worth looking into.
Another thing to look at would be what type of money we would be looking at if sports admin was eliminated. We could take some funds saved and purchase equipment, hold clinics for swimmers, etc.

My question would be what is Sports Administration? I would think that the Coaches and AD’s are the reason the 2 sports that I coach are improving. No need for an administration if they can’t even put the funds together that was given to them for improvements. Oh, how I love Chicago and the corruption even in our school system!

I think Sports Admin is needed. The coordinators are very helpful and resourceful. They are the connection between IHSA and the coaches.

CPS Sports Administration helps with a lot of things in regards to helping with athletic offerings. Not just management and assisting new Athletic Directors, as turnover is evident, but with security and venues as many schools do not have the capacity nor resources to allow our students to compete in a safe neutral environment. Sports Administration is a necessity for efficiency in afterschool programming.

October 16, 2011 / cpsgirls

Northside Wins City Relays

Women’s City Relay Championship – 10/15/2011
Team Rankings – Through Event 11
Women – Team Scores
Place School Points
1 Northside College Prep Northside College Prep 300
2 Whitney Young High School Whitney Young High School 286
3 Payton/Jones College Prep Payton/Jones College Prep 224
4 Lane Tech College Prep Lane Tech College Prep 220
5 Curie High School Curie High School 218
6 Von Steuben M S C Von Steuben M S C 146
7 Lincoln Park High School Lincoln Park High School 134
8 Taft High School Taft High School 114
9 Westinghouse College Prep Westinghouse College Prep 96
10 Morgan Park High School Morgan Park High School 94
11 Kennedy High School Kennedy High School 70
12 Lake View High School Lake View High School 50
13 George Washington High School George Washington High School 20
14 Hubbard High School Hubbard High School 14
14 North Grand High School North Grand High School 14
16 Juarez High School Juarez High School 12
16 Kenwood Academy Kenwood Academy 12
18 Kelly High School Kelly High School 10
19 Simeon Career Academy Simeon Career Academy 4
20 Lindblom M S A Lindblom M S A 2

October 15, 2011 / cpsgirls

Exciting City Championships

Mady Lenzini, Danielle Schroeder, and Hannah Lee with the City Championship Shield.

It was a great day for City Championships as the CPS saw a conclusion to conference play in Volleyball and Cross Country.

In Cross Country, it was close, but Lane pulled of its second straight victory over Whitney Young, winning 34-39. Joanna Podosek lead the way for Lane, finishing 2nd.

Dhiaa Dean of Kenwood won the individual title, running 18:31 for 3 Miles.

Just before 2 Miles it was (left to right) Joanna Podosek, Dhiaa Dean, Shianne Baggett, and Veronica Roznyek.

Lane also won the Sophomore Division, while Whitney Young won the Freshman and JV divisions.


At the City Volleyball Championships, Walter Payton made the most of it. The first game was very tight, going back & forth, but Whitney Young won the first game 25-22.

The second game started to look like Young was going to blow the game open before Payton took a time out and came back to tie the game. Eventually, Young was able to pull it out and come away with the victory 25-19.