Young Broncos throw an early surprise party

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When Barrington met Sandburg Saturday at the Bison Battle in the second of back-to-back-to-back matches for the Broncos, both teams were shorthanded. But Barrington overcame the absence of senior opposite Kyle Darch to surprise the Eagles 25-21, 23-25, 25-18.

Senior Matt Logue led Mid-Suburban West favorite Barrington with 11 kills, 6-foot-5 junior Jeff Hochstein added eight kills, 6-8 junior Tommy Leonard had six kills and nine blocks and junior Taylor Ganzer, three weeks removed rom basketball, dished out 26 assists.

“It was us playing and competing as a team,” said junior libero Austin Czarnecki, who had nine digs and was 19-of-19 in serve receive in the match. “When we play with high energy and work together, we are a pretty good team.”

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Sandburg setter Scott Fifer, a 6-2 junior transfer from Marist, will miss another week with a torn meniscus in his knee. But the Eagles should get back 6-5 outside Andrew Muys (flu) and 6-2 rightside Kevin Groeper this week.

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Perennial city contender Lincoln Park competed in the Bison Battle Saturday at Buffalo Grove. Although the Lions went 0-4, they took an improving Lake Zurich team to three games and gave Glenbrook North all it could handle in a 25-17, 25-22 loss.

“The reason we came out here was to play good competition,” Lincoln Park coach John Davis said. “In order to be the best, you have to play the best. A tournament like this will only help us get better and get our program some exposure.

One Lincoln Park player who needs no exposure in 6-foot-7 Nicholas Ali, who has committed to Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona.

“This is Lincoln Park’s first real big tournament,” Ali said. “For a lot of these guys, it’s completely new experience. But it’s good for them to see all of this.”

When Ali arrives next fall at Grand Canyon, a private Christian school with an enrollment of 25,000, he will not be the only Chicago area player on the Antelopes’ roster. Ali will join Minooka’s 6-4 sophomore opposite Robbie Brannick and Waukegan’s 6-7 junior Ed Ricker.

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The annual Tiger Classic hosted by Wheaton Warrenville South begins Thursday with the first of two days of pool play. Thy top seeds (in no particular order) are: WW South, Sandburg, Marist, Buffalo Grove, Naperville North, New Trier, Glenbrook North and Lincoln-Way Central.

Rounding out the 24-team field are: Lincoln-Way East, Naperville Central, Glenbrook South, Andrew, Lake Park, York, Waubonsie Valley, St. Rita, Oak Park, Evanston, Stagg, Moeller (Ohio), Brother Rice, Wheaton North, Oak Lawn and DeSmet Jesuit.

Among the more intriguing first-round matches are Marist and Glenbrook South Thursday at 5:00 p.m. on Court 4, Sandburg and Lake Park Thursday at 5:00 p.m. on Court 2, and Glenbrook North and Brother Rice Friday at 5:00 p.m. on Court 1.

Among the players to watch are: Glenbrook North’s 6-foot outside Glen Song, Brother Rice’s 6-4 outside Dan Weishar, Glenbrook South’s 7-foot outside hitter Lucas Rytel, Marist’s 6-5 middle Jim Mead, and Waubonsie Valley sophomore setter Luke Furman.

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