By Pat Brozynski

Illinois girls impact national recruiting rankings

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strong> has released its list of the top 30 recruiting classes in the country, and Illinois and Wisconsin, both loaded with top talent from Illinois, are among the top 10.

Illinois is ranked No. 3 with a class that includes 6-foot-3 outside hitter Jocelynn Birks from state champion Lyons and Decatur Lutheran's 6-2 outside hitter Morganne Criswell. The Illini also landed 6-6 rightside/middle hitter Elizabeth McMahon from Lakota West (West Chester, Ohio).

"Birks has elevated herself into the upper echelon of outside hitters in the country, and Criswell is a great athlete who could have the most potential of the group,"'s John Tawa said. "She's been unstoppable for Illini Elite this spring."

Wisconsin checked in at No. 7 behind Glenbrook South's 6-4 outside hitter Ellen Chapman and DeKalb's 6-foot setter Courtney Thomas.

Northwestern, which landed 5-11 setter Hannah Crippen from Plainfield North and Marist's 5-7 libero Caroline Niedospial, was listed among the highest honorable mention group, while Bradley, with Chicago Christian's Madison Kamp and Lemont's Courtney Keefe, was high honorable mention.


Great Lakes Volleyball Center is sponsoring the annual National Junior Classic this weekend, May 28-30, with the 17s and 18s age groups played at Great Lakes and the 15s and 16s at the Schaumburg Convention Center.

For more information, go to

Benedictine University and the Great Lakes Center are teaming up to sponsor a series of summer camps at Benedictine's newly-renovated Dan and Ada Rice Center this summer.

The camp schedule is:

July 5-13 -- Setting Academy I ($850 overnight, $600 commuter)
July 14-18 -- 1st Contact Academy (Pass-Dig-Serve) ($500 overnight, $350 commuter)
July 19-23 -- Setting Academy II ($500 overnight, $350 commuter)
July 24-26 -- Setting Collegiate ($295 overnight, $250 commuter)
July 24-26 -- Attacking & Passing Collegiate ($295 overnight, $250 commuter)
July 24-26 -- Libero Collegiate ($295 overnight, $250 commuter)
July 24-26 -- Middle Blocker Academy ($295 overnight, $250 commuter)
July 27-29 -- All Skills Junior High ($325 overnight, $245 commuter)
July 27-29 -- HIgh School Girls Attacking and Passing ($325 overnight, $245 commuter)
July 27-29 -- Boy's Attacking and Passing (all ages) ($325 overnight, $245 commuter)

For more information, call (630) 898-6400 or visit

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This page contains a single entry by Back Row published on May 25, 2011 2:18 PM.

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