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Boys Volleyball: Three things learned

1. Eisenhower is on the rise. While Oak Forest and Richards appear the early favorites in the South Suburban Conference, Eisenhower (6-2) has emerged as the dark horse. Setter Lukasz Kupiec is capable of dishing to an array of athletic attackers, and libero Alec Esparza, a three-year starter, is one of the better back-row players in the area. Eisenhower set the school record with 20 wins last season, but coach Stan Natonek thinks this is his best lineup yet.

2. Give some love to the back row. Stagg libero Sean Runyon is a kill eraser. He set the school record with 317 digs last season, and the senior captain has picked up where he left off, earning all-tournament honors at the Argo Invitational. Runyon, Eisenhower’s Esparza and Lincoln-Way East’s Josh Phalen are liberos to watch. Phalen tied the school record with 24 digs Monday against Brother Rice.

3. The table is set. Sandburg’s Ian Zalewski switched from his spot on the right side to the starting setter role last season after a teammate was injured. Zalewski hasn’t looked back since. He was one of six setters at the Wheaton Warrenville Tiger Classic to notch all-tournament honors. The Eagles (8-3) finished 11th of 24 after going 3-2, but their defeats came via defending state champ Downers Grove South and DeSmet, a state quarterfinalist from Missouri.

Logan Malloy



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