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St. Viator lacrosse star Goss commits to Siena
By John Leusch | Daily Herald Columnist
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Published: 9/27/2010 10:50 PM

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While the high school sport of lacrosse may not get the same media attention as football, baseball and basketball, its athletes can have the same aspirations to play at the major collegiate level.

Stevenson's boys lacrosse program has produced seven Division I players in the last five years - with players moving on to Harvard (Jason Duboe), Virginia (Jared Puzes), Syracuse (Matt Harris), the University of Albany (Jack Huber, Max Huber and Kevin Harris) and Hartford (Tim Engel).

Fifth-year St. Viator boys coach Bill Sanford (59-24 record), whose Lions have won the last three Mid-Suburban Conference championships and earned a top-10 state ranking each of those seasons, recently had his second player in as many years make a verbal D-I commitment.

The first was St. Viator 2010 co-MVP Matt Barry, a native of Palatine, who is playing at the University of Denver.

The second is senior midfielder Brian Goss, who started playing lacrosse as a Lions freshman and has committed to Siena College in Albany, N.Y.

He earned all-conference recognition in the Mid Suburban as a sophomore and first team all-conference last year in the newly formed Catholic League.

Sanford said Goss chose Siena over several other D-I and D-III schools. Goss drew the attention of a lot of coaches this summer while playing in tournaments on the campuses of Rutgers University, the University of Massachusetts and a tournament called Ultimate Performance in Baltimore.

"Brian's greatest asset is his speed with the ball in his hands, and I think coaches recognized that he has a different gear that not many guys can get to," said Sanford, who also has several former players competing for Division III lacrosse teams.

Sanford said Goss was not all that quick as a freshman or sophomore.

"But he works and works and works," Sanford said. "Once he learned how to throw and catch, his love for the game really took over and he has been working at getting to the next level ever since."

Making it to the next level has been enhanced with the rise of traveling club teams, similar to AAU in other sports.

"The traveling clubs have helped these kids gain exposure during the summer and fall when college coaches line the fields of tournaments from New England down to Maryland," Sanford said. "Chicago has experienced tremendous growth and there are a lot of college coaches looking this way for athletes."

Reports indicate that lacrosse may still not challenge the top 10 sports in terms of high school participation, but it is rapidly expanding.

For both boys and girls, it has been reported that lacrosse is among the top three quickest-growing sports in terms of school sponsorship and student-athlete participation.

Both sports are now ranked 11th nationallly in participation, and girls' lacrosse should reach the top 10 in a few years.

Football

North Dakota State defensive end Scott Stoczynski (Hoffman Estates) recorded his career high in tackles (7) in a 35-9 win over Morgan State. Scott was credited with 2 solo tackles, 5 assists and 1 quarterback hurry.

In a 38-16 victory over South Dakota, Stoczynski was credited with 5 tackles (1 solo and 4 assists).

• Washington (Mo.) junior Nick Hillard (Fremd) earned University Athletic Association athlete of the week honors.

Hillard made a team-high 8 tackles in the Bears' 37-7 loss at No. 6 Wittenberg University. He also had 2 tackles for loss, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. Hillard leads the team and is second in the UAA with 31 tackles.

• Concordia wide receiver Michael Egebrecht (Buffalo Grove) was named offensive player of the week in the Northern Athletic League.

He tied a single-game school record with 14 catches in Concordia's win over St. Scholastica for a total of 162 yards. Egebrecht started the scoring with a 6-yard touchdown reception and later scored on a 31-yard catch.

Swimming

There will be a fundraiser for Special Olympics called "Swimming for Special Olympics" at Wheeling's home meet Sept 30. T-shirts will be sold for $10, and a 50/50 raffle will be held.

"This is our first time doing this, and my senior swimmers really wanted to do something for the community," said Wildcats coach Dick Mortensen.

Cross country

For the first time this season, the North Central College men's cross country squad is the nation's No. 1-ranked team.

The Cardinals rise to the top spot coincided with an impressive showing at the Illinois Intercollegiate Championships on Friday when they finished second in a 32-team field.

Michael Spain (Schaumburg) claimed top individual honors at the meet, winning the 8,000-meter race by a three-second margin as he crossed the tape in 24:23.

Volleyball

Carthage junior Drewann Pancratz (Schaumburg) was named a College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin player of the week.

Pancratz was named to the all-tournament team at the DePauw University Tiger Invitational, where the Lady Reds lost 3-0 in the title match to No. 1 Washington University (Mo.). Pancratz averaged 8.36 assists per set in the event. Earlier in the week during a 3-0 win over Augustana, Pancratz averaged 7.33 assists per set. The former Daily Herald All-Area honorary captain is an exercise and sports science major.

• Off to its best start since 2006, Memphis improved to 9-3 with wins over Jackson State and Northwestern State at the UCA Sugar Bear Classic.

Memphis is led by the offensive attack of Altrese Hawkins (Hoffman Estates). Hawkins leads the club with 167 kills (3.80 k/s) and a .322 attack percentage. She is rated in the top 10 in Conference USA in both categories.

Basketball

The Fremd feeder boys basketball tryouts will take place Oct. 18 and 19 at the Palatine Community Center. Fifth and sixth graders try out from 7-8:15 p.m.. Seventh and eighth graders try out from 8:15-9:30 p.m..

For more information, please check the web site at www.fremdfeederboys.com or contact Tim Henry at TeachMentorCoach@aol.com.

Men's soccer

Illinois Wesleyan senior goalkeeper Frankie Gorg (Hersey) was named the CCIW defensive player of the week.

He allowed 1 goal in a double-overtime 1-1 tie against 18th-ranked Washington University (Mo.) and recorded Wesleyan's first win of the season, a 1-0 victory over defending UAA co-champion Chicago.