Last season, the Oak Park and River Forest High School boys soccer team had a terrific postseason run, reaching the IHSA Class 3A Barrington Supersectional before falling 1-0 to Fremd on a late goal.

This year, the Huskies (14-3) hope a grueling schedule has prepared them well enough to make another extended stay in the state tournament.

“This team has really worked on improving on itself and not being satisfied with where they are,” said OPRF coach Jason Fried. “They have improved each week as individuals and as a team, which is great to see.”

Junior Easton Bogard became the OPRF’s all-time leading goal scorer earlier this season, surpassing Drew Golz’s previous record of 50 goals. He has 56 for his career, including a team-high 18 this season, along with 12 assists.

The Huskies have also received contributions from senior Colin Hayes (13 goals), sophomore Bryce Richards (12 goals) and senior Jadyn Hsieh-Bailey (11 goals).

Moreover, the defense and goalkeeping have been consistently strong for OPRF all season. Led by defenders Isaac Cummings, Tukura Hess and Ezra Plotkin and goalkeeper Christian Dussias (0.89 goals-against average), the Huskies have posted eight shutouts and allowed just 13 goals this fall.

OPRF is the No. 3 seed in the Glenbrook South Sectional and enters the postseason on an eight-match winning streak, outscoring its opponents 40-4 during that stretch.

“We’ll need to play our best soccer to get out of the sectional,” he said. “If you don’t come into the game with respect for your opponent, then the result won’t go your way.”

The Huskies opened regional play Oct. 18 against No. 14 seed Lincoln Park at Leyden Township. Assuming a win, OPRF is scheduled to meet either Maine South or the host Eagles for the regional title on Oct. 21 at 4 pm.

Fenwick seeded 3rd in Notre Dame Sectional

Fenwick High School is seeded third in the Class 2A sectional it’s hosting, and the Friars (6-9-2) opened regional play Oct. 18, after the Landmark’s print deadline, against No. 19 seeded CICS/Northtown. Should Fenwick win, it will face either Senn or the host Schurz for the regional title Oct. 21 at 5 p.m.

“We have a really good outlook,” coach Craig Blazer said. “We’re healthy, and I think we’ve learned a lot throughout the season. The guys are excited to play.”

Sophomore Ian Martinello leads Fenwick with eight goals and 13 points. Classmate Jake Brecknock has seven goals and 13 points, while senior Frank Felice has five goals and 11 points.

In goal, keepers Dominick Ballarin, Jaxon Entler and Finnegan Williams have combined to post seven shutouts. Williams has a goals-against average of 1.86.

“Our guys have been through a little bit of everything this season, both positive and negative,” Blazer said. “Individually and collectively, we’re getting better, and I think they have a lot more soccer in them.”

Fenwick reached the sectional finals last fall, losing 4-3 to Notre Dame. The Friars defeated the Dons this season, but are seeded behind them. 

“You’re going to end up playing good teams,” he said. “We’re just looking to take things one half at a time. We want to work hard for each other every day, and from there we want to play the way we train and get good results.”

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