Carmel senior Sam Duprey, who made 71 tackles last fall for the Corsairs football team, plans to tackle the books at Millikin University this fall.
But while majoring in education, the East Suburban Catholic Conference all-conference defensive end will also continue his football career for coach Patrick Etherton and assistant Dan Potempa, a former Carmel assistant coach.
"We are very excited that Sam will be attending Millikin," Etherton said. "Sam comes from an outstanding high school program and we feel the familiarity of having coach Potempa as a high school coach will help Sam adjust to football at Millikin."
Etherton said he expects Duprey to compete at the linebacker position this fall.
"We are very excited to have a player from such a great high school program and an outstanding conference," the coach added. "Sam is the type of hard-nosed player that we need at Millikin University to help compete for College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin championships."
Last season, Duprey also had 9 tackles for a loss, 1 sack and 1 fumble recovery.
Augustana junior second baseman Kurt Schmidt (Grayslake) was named to the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin all-conference first team.
Schmidt hit .349, tied for the conference lead with 2 triples and was perfect in 8 stolen base attempts to rank third in the league.
Senior Victoria Ito, one of one of the top liberos in the state this season, has been rewarded by signing a letter of intent on May 4 to play Division I volleyball at Wisconsin.
"Playing Division I volleyball has definitely been a dream of mine since I started playing," Ito said. "I knew I had the capabilities to play D-I but finding the right school was the true challenge. Things just seemed to work out perfectly with Wisconsin and I am so thankful for the opportunity.
"I chose Wisconsin because it is a highly-competitive school academically and athletically. And it gave me the opportunity to continue my volleyball career at an even higher level."
Ito started playing volleyball when she was 12 years old.
With the encouragement of her mother, Ito went out for the sixth-grade team at St. Mary in Buffalo Grove.
"I owe thanks to my mom who encouraged me to participate so I could experience the team atmosphere and see if I enjoyed the sport," Ito said. "My parents have been so supportive of me and allowing me to play season after season.
"Every single coach I have had at my high school and with Rolling Thunder Volleyball Club has been inspiration to me. They are always pushing me to better my skills and to get me to the next level."
Ito served as a libero for Rolling Thunder for four consecutive seasons and played three years on retiring coach Marianne Mendoza's varsity volleyball team at BG.
Ito can't think of any other position she'd rather play than libero.
"I love it so much because it gives me an opportunity to take control of the back row and the defensive aspect of the game," Ito said. "Passing is the heart of the game and being a key part of that is something that I can't get enough of. I love it for the unbelievable saves that make hitters frustrated."
And Ito made more than her share of incredible saves in the Bison back row.
She has also done her share in the classroom, serving as a National Honor Society student, Spanish Honor Society member and All-Academic student athlete for 2012.
Ito has been an honor-roll student all four years and plans to major in kinesiology and eventually go into pre-occupational therapy.
Helping the cure
The 12 Mid-Suburban League softball programs raised $5,262.84 to help the cure for non-Hodgkins lymphoma.
Dennis Lynch, the father-in-law of Fremd coach Jim Weaver and Palatine coach Jeff Manz, died March 9 after battling non-Hodgkins lymphoma for 10 years.
The Fremd and Palatine programs raised $2,818.74 of the total amount.
"We thank everyone so much for the amazing support of this very important cause, and a special thanks to Brenda Schwantz for heading up this event for us," Weaver said. "It was an amazing job."
Notre Dame freshman Maddie Conlin was part of the Irish rowing team that claimed its ninth consecutive BIG EAST championship, winning five of six grand finals on Mercer Lake. The Irish finished with 111 team points to secure a 14-point victory.
Conlin, the 2011 Daily Herald Athlete of the Year (swimming, basketball, soccer) was part of the Irish crew of coxswain Mikaela Prego, Kathryn Monahan, Stephanie Winsch and Anna Sliwinski which qualified for the grand final in the top spot after posting a 7:30.76 in the prelims. In the final heat, the Irish pulled away for an open-water victory after crossing in 7:44.378.
Women's track and field
Illinois State senior Becky Anderson (Prospect) finished her career with a personal best 5-8¾ high jump and third-place finish at the Missouri Valley Conference outdoor meet.
• Notre Dame junior Rebecca Tracy (Barrington) won the Big East Conference 1500 meters in a time of 4:22.71.
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