(Almost) nobody laughing at state tournament pairings

SHARE (Almost) nobody laughing at state tournament pairings

Sandburg (pictured at right) won the Brother Rice Smack Attack Saturday at St. Xavier University behind tournament MVP Bill Sirotky. The Eagles defeated Glenbrook North in the finals.


Oh that IHSA. What a sense of humor.

The IHSA held its “rolling the peas” this week, which determines the pairings for the state tournaments in its various sports.

Based on the “peas,” the state volleyball quarterfinals could look something like this: Neuqua Valley vs. Young, Wheaton Warrenville South vs. Lyons, Maine South vs. Buffalo Grove, and Sandburg vs. Lake Park.

So Maine South, which finished second last year and is the prohibitive favorite to go all the way this year, would have to beat (in order) Buffalo Grove, Sandburg and Wheaton Warrenville South in order to hoist the championship trophy.

Meanwhile, either the winner of the Neuqua Valley or the Young sectionals, arguably the weakest fields in the state, would be guaranteed a trophy, while either the Evanston or Palatine sectional winner could go home empty-handed.

Furthermore, the winner of the Glenbard East sectional (Wheaton South, St. Francis or Downers Grove South), has a virtual bye into the finals, while the winner of the Marist sectional, home to the best of the south suburbs, will draw Maine South in a semifinal.

Anybody laughing yet?

Oh that IHSA.


Congratulations to St. Francis coach Mike Lynch and Addison Trail coach Tom Hubner on registering their 300th career wins this week.

Lynch is 306-89 during his 12-year career, all at St. Francis.

“It is a tribute to a lot of good players and good assistant coaches,” Lynch said.

St. Francis (18-3) defeated two top 10 teams in one day – Buffalo Grove and Loyola – for the first time in the program’s history Saturday at the Brother Rice Smack Attack.

Hubner earned his milestone win at the Addison Trail Tournament on Saturday when the Blazers defeated Wheaton Academy 25-18, 25-12. Hubner is now 301-117 in his 13-year career, which includes 10 years at Addison Trail and three at Wheaton North.


All-tournament selections at the Smack Attack included: Dan Weishar (Brother Rice), Chris Shanahan (Buffalo Grove), Bryan Noltemeyer (St. Xavier, Louisville, Ky.), Adam Lepold (Glenbard West), and Stefan VanDeGraaff and Jack Preis (Glenbrook North).

Also, Connor Wexter (Lincoln-Way Central), George Langheld (Lincoln-Way East), Reis Foster (Loyola), Garrett Dempsey (Marist), Jim Connolly and Denny Falls (Providence), Urim Demirovski (Reavis), Bill Siroky and Ryan Mabbott (Sandburg), and Joe Mordell (St. Francis).

Siroky, a 6-foot-6 junior, was named the tournament’s MVP.

The Latest
“I got a lot left in the tank,” Cease said. “I’d love to throw as much as I can, but we’ll have to see.”
Herbert more than filled in for Montgomery, running 20 times for 157 yards.
“Today was the worst one,” Cairo said of the Sox’s sixth consecutive loss.
Having a franchise quarterback matters more than anything in the NFL, and the single greatest priority for the Bears this season is to determine whether Fields is that guy. It doesn’t look promising at the moment.
After a relatively slow start in 2022 following a training camp contract “hold-in,” Smith had a breakout game Sunday — 16 tackles, two tackles for loss and a fourth-quarter interception that paved the way for victory. “[From] here on out you can expect some big things.”