Mike Kreiser (pictured below) and his Lake Park teammares are the No. 1 seed at St. Charles East.
Last year, Waubonsie Valley coach Al Lagger asked outgoing IHSA assistant executive director Sue Henrichsen about possible changes to the state tournament to provide balance to what is clearly an imbalanced system.
"She said they (the IHSA) were not interested in crowning a state champion," Lagger said. "They were interested in geographic representation. So I told her that maybe they should call it a 'geographically representative' tournament, because it certainly is not a state tournament."
The annual IHSA "geographically representative" boys volleyball tournament gets under way on Monday, May 24 with regional quarterfinals, and one does not have to look far to find some early pairings that make you go "huh?"
How about...Glenbard West and Hinsdale Central in a regional semifinal at Hinsdale Central?
Or Downers Grove North and Naperville North in a regional final at Addison Trail?
Or Providence and Lincoln-Way North in a regional final at Lincoln-Way North?
On the other hand, you have....
Lake Park virtually unchallenged at the St. Charles East sectional?
Oak Park, which went 2-3 at the Tiger Classic, getting the No. 1 seed at Whitney Young?
Naperville North, which went 4-1 at the Tiger Classic, getting the No. 5 seed at Glenbard East?
Three of the top five seeds at Whitney Young are Public League teams?
You want inequity?
Choose one: Sandburg, Marist, Lincoln-Way Central or Providence. All four ranked in the top 10. Only one will advance to Hoffman Estates.
Choose one: How about Wheaton Warrenville South, St. Francis, Downers South, Downers North, Naperville North, Glenbard East. All four in the top 20. All but one will be sitting on the sidelines June 4-5.
If a "state tournament" is what you want...try Wisconsin.
The Public League playoffs get under way with 16 games on Tuesday, May 11. Payton is the No. 1 seed, followed by Young, Lane Tech and Lincoln Park. Second round games are Thursday May 13.
The Public League quarterfinals will be played at 4:00 and 5:00 p.m. on Monday, May 17 at Juarez and Little Village high schools. Semifinals will be played at 4:00 and 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 19 at Senn.
The championship game is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 21 at Attack Athletics.
In addition to being the top seed in the Public League tournament, Payton is the third seed at the Whitney Young sectional behind Oak Park and St. Patrick.