The Oak Park and River Forest High School boys volleyball team rolled past St. Patrick 25-20, 25-17 in an OPRF Sectional semifinal May 27.
The Huskies (20-6), the top seed in their sectional, face Payton Prep for the title May 30, after Wednesday Journal’s print deadline. A victory would mean a third consecutive trip to the IHSA state finals at Hoffman Estates on June 2-3.
In the Prosser Regional title match May 25, OPRF defeated Chicago Latin 25-16, 25-12. Peter Zurawski had eight kills, four digs, and two blocks; Quinn Borzath had 16 assists; Ralph Bennet three kills and six blocks; and Ryan Montroy five kills to lead the Huskies.
Fenwick High School put up a valiant fight against St. Patrick May 25 in the title match of the St. Patrick Regional. After dropping a tough first set, the Friars staged a late rally to win the second. But the Shamrocks pulled away in the final set to prevail 25-21, 25-27, 25-13.
“We ran out of gas at the end,” said Fenwick coach Kate Whitman. “Having to fight back in set two kind of made us do so. We were a little tired and unsure of ourselves in the final set. But overall, I’m proud of how the team played today.”
Fenwick (11-15) led the first set 17-11, but St. Patrick closed it on a 14-4 run as the Friars had several receiving errors.
“That’s been one of our problems this season,” Whitman said. “We go on a run and get things going good for a while, but then we struggle receiving serves and things go the other way.”
The second set was Fenwick’s turn to make a charge. The Friars trailed the Shamrocks 15-8 but then went on a 16-8 run to earn set point. St. Patrick fought off two of them, but senior Charlie DiFranco’s ace gave the set to Fenwick.
However, the energy expended in the Friars’ rally seemed to take its toll in the third set. Leading 7-6, the Shamrocks ran off seven consecutive points to pull away for good.
Aidan Butler had 19 assists, three kills, and an ace to lead Fenwick. Daniel Hardy and Will Griswold each added five kills; Dario Santoy and Sean White four kills apiece; and Brian Riggs 10 digs for the Friars.
Butler, Griswold, and James Dubanowich were named to the Chicago Catholic League White Division All-Conference Team.
Fenwick loses nine seniors, including Butler, DiFranco, Dubanowich, Hardy, and Santoy.
“These seniors are going to be very sorely missed,” Whitman said. “It’s a big senior group, but it’s nice to know that we’ve got a young core coming back with three sophomores and a junior in the starting lineup.”
That young core will be led by sophomores Griswold and Riggs. Whitman anticipates those two, along with sophomore Aidan Soule and White, a junior, taking another step forward next year.
“Will and Bryan were phenomenal,” Whitman said. “They’re going to step up next year and be really strong.”
OPRF boys tennis 18th at state
The Oak Park and River Forest High School boys tennis team finished in a tie for 18th with 6 points at the IHSA state tournament May 25-27.
In singles, sophomore Eli Stein won his opening match over Brayden Bartecki of Marist 6-1, 6-4. However, he lost in the second round 0-6, 2-6 to Barrington’s Deven Carse, then dropped his consolation match to David Motorga of Prospect 5-7, 2-6.
In doubles, the Huskies’ senior duo of Trevor Wilson and Gabriel Wolter won the opener 6-1, 7-5 over Divyye Chawra and Andy Yu of Neuqua Valley. After losing 1-6, 2-6 in the second round to Glenbrook South’s Bryce Abban and Alex Denizov, the pair was victorious in the next two consolation-round matches, a 6-0, 5-7 (10-5) over Spencer Kastin and Konrad Piotrowski of Deerfield, and 6-3, 6-2 over Ryan Dell and Will Pangallo of Lincoln-Way East.
Wilson and Wolter’s run ended with a 2-6, 6-3, 7-10 defeat to Naperville North’s Dovydas Jasinauskas and Nathan Lee.
OPRF girls lacrosse
The OPRF girls lacrosse team lost its New Trier Sectional semifinal match to the host Trevians 17-3 on May 24.
Grace Koch, Hannah Simon, and Harper Thompson each scored a goal for the Huskies (13-7). Simon totaled a team-leading 130 points (80 goals, 50 assists) this spring. Koch had 96 points (60 G, 36 A), Thompson had 44 goals and Rachel Simon 43 goals.
Hannah Simon, along with Thompson, headline a list of 17 returning players for OPRF next season.