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Aurora Central ready for another step
By John Lemon | Daily Herald Staff

Ashley Wilk provides Aurora Central with a 1-2 inside punch along with fellow senior Katilyn Rosa.


Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

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Published: 11/17/2011 11:23 PM

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Aurora Central set a school record for wins last year and won the first regional championship in school history.

What can the Chargers do for an encore?

A lot says coach Mark Fitzgerald.

"Expect to see a deep ACC team that will fight to the very end of each and every game," Fitzgerald said. "We have the most experienced team we have ever had and we have been blessed by two outstanding transfers to the school. I am honored to be working with these great kids and I am particularly fond of my seniors. We all started together at ACC four years ago and we all want to send them off to college with the most memorable basketball season they have ever had."

To do so, the Chargers will see a big bump in the schedule as last year's success has moved them up to the Suburban Christian Blue Division.

It's a good thing the Chargers have senior returning starters like Jackie Cardona, poised to become the school's all-time leading scorer, Ashley Wilk and Katilyn Rosa.

"While we will certainly be pressed heavily by these teams we feel that this level of competition will be a great help to us when we go to the state playoffs where we have been moved down to 2A," Fitzgerald said. "Our goals are to continue to grow as a program and a team and to leave it all on out on the floor. These seniors have led one of the most exciting program revivals in the area and we are looking to make 2011-12 the best yet."

Cardona, a senior guard, needs 240 points to become the school's leading scorer. Junior guard Alex DeCraene also returns to the starting lineup.

The Chargers have a great balance between the perimeter and inside game with forwards Rosa and Wilk.

"Katilyn is our team's leader both on and off the court. We are counting on (her) to dominate in the post this year," Fitzgerald said. "Ashley has been a major contributor during her last two years as a varsity starter. She is an excellent athlete and is absolutely relentless on the court. We are looking for she and Katilyn to continue to dominate the boards again this year."

Add to that mix a pair of transfers, junior wing Lisa Rodriguez from Aurora Christian and senior guard Tesa Alderman from Kaneland.

"Lisa is an outstanding athlete with unbelievable speed," Fitzgerald said. "Tesa is a high energy explosive guard with tons of offensive skills."

Seniors Kendal Adams and Jill Huseman also will be counted on as part of the Chargers' rotation.