The spring sports season saw a slew of memorable moments for Lisle High School athletes. Here are some of the biggest highlights for the Lions, including a baseball state title.
12: Total runs the Lions allowed against their seven playoff opponents. Four times they allowed just one run, including both games downstate.
Highlight: The Lions went 2-4 in their final six games of the regular season, but turned it on at the right time and enjoyed a seven-game winning streak – their longest of the season – to claim the Class 2A state title. Senior pitchers Alex Ventrella and Ryan Van Volkenburg led the way. The batting lineup, featuring Ventrella, Van Volkenburg, fellow seniors Brian Czyl, Jordan Herman and Adam Grego, and juniors Cliff Krause, Kevin Coppin, Bailey Welch and Jake Oard, produced 45 runs during the postseason to bring home Lisle's first state trophy. All that after April's flooding left the home field at Community Park under several feet of water.
0: Number of wins the Lions had in March as all four scheduled games were canceled due to weather.
Highlight: Lisle had one of the more arduous softball seasons in the area this spring, and it wasn't because the Lions struggled to find their consistency. After their field and many of the players' homes were flooded in the April rains, it was a miracle the Lions got back on the field. But they did precisely that, and in the five days after the peak of the storms April 18, they went 5-1 and won four games by eight runs or more.
BOYS TRACK & FIELD
12.87: Seconds by which the 4x800 relay improved its time from the sectional meet to the state meet.
Highlight: Lisle made sure its presence was known at the state meet as the 4x800-meter relay team of senior anchor Ryan Kilroy, juniors Ben Buchelt and Jeff Chan, and freshman Alex Lange ran in the finals race on the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend. With a time of 8:22.52, they just missed out on an all-state finish, but that time was nearly 13 seconds faster the one they clocked when they finished second at the sectional meet the previous week.
.780: Lisle's winning percentage in the Interstate Eight Conference as the Lions finished tied for second place.
Highlight: Through a spring that brought dismal weather, canceled games and a slew of injuries, Lisle's girls soccer team remained competitive. With dangerous scorer Skyler Tomko, versatile midfielder Ashleigh Zurek and keeper Vanessa Roach leading the way, the Lions finished with a 14-8 mark and went 7-2 in conference. Four of those eight losses came to Francis Parker and Manteno (two each), which were two of the final eight teams left standing in the Class 1A playoffs.
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