Catching up on big accomplishments

  • Viviana Sanfilippo

    Viviana Sanfilippo

Updated 11/6/2019 12:20 PM

Visiting Champaign last weekend for the University of Illinois' annual Father-Daughter Weekend, a student in the group came to a sudden realization that showed surprisingly advanced comprehension.

"I can't believe how fast time goes by," she said.


It seemingly goes faster as one ages. After watching former Neuqua Valley receiver Donny Navarro help Illinois' football team beat Rutgers for the Illini's third straight victory we returned home to consider this truth.

For these purposes, just three months into the 2019-2020 high school calendar, there's already a backlog of noteworthy accomplishments.

But first

Regarding current events, few could be more satisfying then Viviana Sanfilippo's accomplishment at the girls Class 3A Lake Park sectional cross country meet last Saturday.

The Addison Trail junior finished in 12th place to qualify for Saturday's state meet at Detweiller Park. In doing so Sanfilippo became the Blazers' first girl to qualify for the state meet. The West Suburban Gold all-conference runner will challenge Addison Trail's school record in Peoria.

The hall

On Oct. 18 Wheaton Warrenville South inducted six people into its Athletic Hall of Fame. Alphabetically: three-sport start Albie Harris; basketball coach Rich Jarom; volleyball player Joe Kelly; basketball coach Don McGee; soccer star Rachel Radcliffe; and three-sport star Pat Welch.

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Coach McGee once tried to convince a particular junior to try out for the Wheaton Central varsity boys basketball team. Not to honor a caring coach's confidence remains a great regret.

The hallmarks

Way back in Week 3 of Wheaton College's football season, Thunder coach Mike Swider earned his 200th victory with a 62-0 win over Millikin. Wheaton North graduate Luke Anthony completed 20 of 28 passes for 251 yards and 3 touchdowns.

In his 24th season leading the team, Swider now has 205 victories, fifth-ranked Wheaton College standing at 8-0. Swider ranks eighth among active Division III football coaches in victories. He entered the season with 197 wins, tied with University of Redlands coach Mike Maynard, who now has 204.

(Here's an interesting aside. Though Redlands is in California, Maynard is an Illinois Wesleyan graduate. His father, Marvin, or "Bud," is a member of the Illinois High School Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame. He coached at since-closed Moore Township High School in Farmers City. Thanks, Illinois High School Glory Days!)


Addison resident Erick Baumann is the athletic director and men's soccer coach at Dominican University in River Forest, his alma mater.

On Oct. 12 in a 10-0 win over Lakeland his Stars delivered Baumann's 400th victory. He became the 21st coach in Division III men's soccer history to reach that mark and is one of eight active Division III coaches with at least 400 wins. As of Tuesday he was up to 405.

Baumann has never had a losing season in 25 years; his team hasn't dipped below a collective 3.0 grade-point average since 2006.

Well-earned respite

Led by Neuqua Valley graduate Jack Vercautren's fourth tournament win of the fall, on Oct. 5 the College of DuPage men's golf team won the Region IV tournament by 66 strokes at PrairieView Golf Club in Byron. The Chaparrals' lineup also includes Naperville North's Nick Sullivan and Lake Park's Jake Dianovsky.

Coach Jason Hyatt, the NJCAA Division III national champion in 1998 for College of DuPage, won his sixth regional title and eighth regional coach of the year honor.

He's a teaching pro at the Chaparrals' home course of Cantigny in Wheaton. His team will have plenty of practice time there. With its regional performance COD advanced to the NJCAA Championship in Chautauqua, New York -- June 2-5, 2020.

Twitter: @doberhelman1

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