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updated: 10/9/2012 8:00 PM

O'Donoghue tackles leading defensive role at Augustana

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When he was at Mundelein High School, Mike O'Donoghue was a remarkably versatile weapon for coach Bob Stone at Mundelein.

The Mustangs' team captain and MVP not only played safety and running back but chipped in on special teams by returning both kickoffs and punts and doing some place-kicking as well.

On defense, the 6-foot-1, 195-pound O'Donoghue recorded an area-best 5 interceptions and more than 90 tackles as a senior.

Now O'Donoghue's defensive skills are still making him a force at the collegiate level.

The junior outside linebacker is the fourth-leading tackler for Augustana. He has made 29 tackles, recovered 2 fumbles and has 2 sacks for the Vikings.

O'Donoghue had 3 tackles in the Vikings' 31-27 loss at Elmhurst on Saturday.

Women's cross country

Veteran Augustana coach Fred Whiteside split his team on Saturday, sending senior standout Sarahbeth Jones (Warren) to compete in the Pre-National meet in Terre Haute, Indiana while the rest of the team took part in the St. Ambrose Invitational in Bettendorf, Iowa.

Jones had a tremendous outing at the Pre-National meet, which was held at the same site where the NCAA Division III national meet will take place in the middle of November. She served notice of her ability to compete at the national level by taking second individually (out of 326 runners) in 21:45.0 over the 6,000 meter course. Jones was named "Runner of the Week" for the third time this season by the College of Illinois and Wisconsin Conference.

Women's volleyball

Palatine senior girls volleyball standout Taylor Fricano is the perfect example of the old cliché "if you don't make it the first time, try again'.

And in Fricano's case, a third time.

She did not make the seventh and eighth grade girls volleyball teams at Sundling Junior High in Palatine.

However, her basketball coach at Sundling (Rich Stocker)_ who she calls the "greatest basketball coach out there" _ had other ideas for Fricano's future.

"My inspiring and motivating junior high basketball coach, who I hold dear to my heart and give so much respect to, persisted to tell me to try out for volleyball," Fricano said. "When I didn't make the teams (at Sundling) he told me to do volleyball camps and get better. I was extremely hesitant.

"But he talked me and my mom into putting me into the freshman summer volleyball camp at Palatine High School. That changed everything."

Freshman Palatine girls volleyball coach Mike Campbell saw the potential in the 6-foot Fricano and the rest is history.

She rapidly improved her game for three years and before her senior season, Fricano made a verbal commitment to play for Dayton, where she may study psychology or law but is still undecided.

"It was that camp and that motivation from coach Stocker that gave me the chance that changed my life," Fricano said. "I made the freshman A team, thanks to the great eye for potential that belonged to coach Campbell. But the main reason, I started playing volleyball was solely due to my fantastic junior high basketball coach, Rich Stocker. I cannot thank him enough for all he's done for me. He pushed me to try new things and kindled the fire."

Fricano is the leading attacker for Palatine's volleyball team which has won its first MSL division crown since 1997.

2012 Fall Nike Clinic

Maine West girls basketball coach Derril Kipp will be a featured speaker at the 2012 Fall Nike Championship High School Basketball Clinic at Glenbrook North High School from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. Sunday.

The Nike Championship Basketball Clinic features coaches from fourteen states in the three-day clinic beginning Friday. Registration begins Friday at 4 p.m. or you can register online at


• Sophomore Justin Wallace (Fremd) rushed 17 times for 96 yards and 3 touchdown and had 2 receptions for 24 yards as he helped to lead MIT (3-2) to a 28-7 victory over PlymouthState.

@$ID/[No paragraph style]:Cross country

Missouri freshman Tyler Schneider (Conant) finished 27th in the prestigious 31 team Greater Louisville Classic. Tyler finished the 8K in a time of 24:23.54 and was named SEC Cross Country Freshman of the Week.

Schneider's outstanding race not only earned him a 66-second improvement from his Mizzou debut at Iowa State but he was also the third freshman across the line.

• Notre Dame senior Rebecca Tracy (Barrington) finished 1st in the 34 team National Catholic Championships held at Notre Dame on Sept. 14. Rebecca ran a personal best 5K time of 17:11.8.

• Please email Sports Notes items to or FAX to (847) 427-1173.

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