By Pat Brozynski

The wait is over for Jean Field, IC Catholic Prep

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wolf.jpgCaroline Wolf is one of four starters who won't be back for Benet next year when the Redwings go for their third state title in four years.

Jean Field waited 29 years to get back to the state championship game. In 1984, the Knights won the longest championship match in state history, 15-5, 15-5, 12-15, 14-16, 15-9, over Stewardson-Strasburg to claim their second Class A state title.

Field said even after all that time, the memories are still fresh.

"It's indescribable," Field said. "We talk about the 1981 and 1984 state championship teams. Two of our coaches were on the 1984 state championship team. We actually watched the game Friday night.

"It never gets old," she added. "The memories of those players. They wrote down things they remembered for these guys to enjoy. It's something they're going to remember for the rest of their lives.

"This is the best you can do in high school sports ... to get to the state championship and hopefully do well."


Mother McAuley slipped to No. 8 in's latest Century Club National Rankings prior to winning the Class 4A state championship Saturday.

St. Francis moved up to No. 12, while New Trier (91st) and Crystal Lake South (93rd) also moved up after advancing to the state tournament last weekend, while Benet checked in at No. 96 after not being ranked most of the season.

Dropping out were former No. 87 Naperville North, former No. 89 Plainfield North and former No. 98 St. Charles North.

Teams on the bubble (listed alphabetically) were: Boylan (Rockford), Breese Central, Crystal Lake Central, Geneva, Glenbard South, Glenbard West, Keith Country Day, Lake Zurich, Lincoln-Way Central, Lincoln-Way North, Marist, Mater Dei, Montini, Naperville North, Nazareth, Normal Community, Oak Park, Plainfield North, Sandburg, Springfield, St. Charles East, St. Charles North, Stevenson and Waubonsie Valley


In case you missed them, here are the final Chicago Sun-Times rankings for the 2013 season:

Sun-Times Girls Volleyball Top 10 teams
(Records through November 16. Preseason rank in parenthesis)

1. Mother McAuley (1) 40-2
2. St. Francis (2) 39-3
3. Benet (4) 36-6
4. New Trier (5) 33-4
5. Crystal Lake South (10) 37-5
6. Glenbard West (9) 34-4
7. Naperville North (NR) 34-5
8. Plainfield North (3) 33-5
9. Waubonsie Valley (7) 30-8
10. IC Catholic (NR) 36-6

Others: Payton 27-13, Sandburg 30-8, Marist 28-10, Geneva 29-10, Lake Zurich 35-5, St. Charles North 32-6, St. Charles East 31-7, Lincoln-Way North 30-7, Stevenson 31-8, Montini 30-4.


Quote of the week:

"It's pretty unreal. I'm so proud of my team, and I'm really happy that we finished our business. We were so pumped going into it (the match against Benet). We just came out ready to play defense. We were ready to go. We knew we had it in us. Oh, my gosh, I'm so happy for my mom and for all of the coaches. Every single person on this team deserved it." - Mother McAuley's Ryann DeJarld.


IC Catholic's Rory Manion cut her chin during Game 1 of the Knights' 25-22, 25-17 semifinal victory over Deer Creek-Mackinaw. But six points into Game 2, she tossed the makeshift bandage the coaching staff improvised.

"I slammed my chin on the ground diving for a ball," she said. "I kept trying to push (the tape) down, but my sweat was pushing it off. It was a rough time. I was like, 'Is it done bleeding yet?' I was trying to hide it. It didn't work too well. It was just crazy."


Whitney Young and Rolling Meadows, two teams that are in the top five of the Sun-Times rankings, headline the 2013 Mac Irvin Diabetes Awareness Classic at 3:15 p.m. on Saturday, December 7 at Elgin Larkin.

Young returns 6-5 senior center Khaalia Hillsman and 5-11 senior forward Taylor Brame from last year's third-place Class 4A finisher and welcomes 5-8 sophomore guard Kiara Lewis, who missed all of last year with injury.

Rolling Meadows returns six of its top seven from last year's Class 4A runner-up including point guard extraordinaire Jackie Kemph, sharpshooting Northwestern recruit Alexis Glasgow and 6-2 forward Jenny Vliet.


Whitney Young will host the 2013 ChiTown Showdown on Friday-Saturday, December 13-14.

Friday's games feature Champaign Central vs. Harlan at 5 p.m.; Proviso East vs. Morgan Park at 6:30 p.m.; and Huntley vs. Whitney Young at 8 p.m.

Saturday's schedule has Mother McAuley vs. North Lawndale at 11 a.m.; Bolingbrook vs. Crete-Monee and Phillips vs. South Shore at 12:30 p.m.; Vernon Hills vs. Trinity and Bloom vs. Kenwood at 2 p.m.; and C. Miller vs. Joliet Catholic and Christ the King vs. Hyde Park at 3:30 p.m.

Fremd plays Marian Catholic at 5 p.m.; St. Thomas More plays Whitney Young at 6:30 p.m.; and Rolling Meadows plays Milwaukee Riverside at 8 p.m.

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It's sad that the state volleyball finals were last weekend and they weren't carried live by any of the networks. I've been told that they will be shown this weekend but it's a little too late. I guess football trumps volleyball because you could watch a few of the high school games even though their finals are two weeks away.

Shame on Comcast for airing the Wisconsin and Indiana state volleyball finals live but not the Illinois games!

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