Girls Volleyball: Mother McAuley ranked No. 3 on Prepvolleyball.com Top 100 national poll
BY PHIL BROZYNSKI For Sun-Times Media September 2, 2014 8:48PM
Mother McAuley starters line up for the national anthem before the match against Loyola at Mother McAuley, Tuesday, October 1st, 2013, in Chicago. | Gary Middendorf/For Sun-Times Media
Updated: September 3, 2014 2:14AM
Prepvolleyball.com counted up its list of the top 100 high school teams in the country, and two Chicago-area schools cracked the top 10: No. 3 Mother McAuley, which finished the 2013 at 40-2 and No. 2 in the country, and No. 8 St. Francis, which was 39-3 and No. 13 in 2013.
“The Macs won the Illinois 4A title for the first time since 2004 last fall and will be heavy favorites again with six returning starters with strong work ethics and an unyielding desire to three-peat,” Prepvolleyball.com’s John Tawa said.
“Coach Jen DeJarld will trot out a whole host of familiar names this year, led by her daughter, senior outside hitter Ryann DeJarld. Headed to Notre Dame to play defense, the elder DeJarld is an outstanding and steady six-rotation talent.
“The Mighty Macs also have two scary fast middles in Kelsey Clark and Kayla Caffey, who will terrorize opponents with their quick attacks. Maggie Scanlon on the right and Kennedy Arundel on the left are two other fine scoring choices for first-year varsity setter Jane DeJarld,” Tawa added.
Tawa predicts St. Francis will three-peat in 2014 before the IHSA imposes its “success factor” in 2015 and the Spartans are bumped up a class.
“St. Francis has a legendary coach in Peg Kopec but is otherwise very young, with only two seniors, middle Mary Boken and libero Lisa Mordell, projected as impact players,” he said. “The Spartans boast the state’s best player, junior outside hitter Molly Haggerty, and the power hitter will carry the team far.
“But there are other big-time talents as well in the form of the Malloy twins, Kamryn and Laney,” Tawa added. “Sophomores, Kamryn can really score and Laney can set as well as hit. One last player to watch is junior setter Dani Messa, who is much improved.”
Last year’s Class 4A runner-up Benet, which checked in at No. 86 in Tawa’s final 2013 rankings, was ranked No. 80 heading into the 2014 campaign.
McAuley’s Ryann DeJarld and St. Francis’ Haggerty were named to the 2014 MaxPreps Preseason Volleyball All-American Team.
DeJarld finished with 197 kills, 265 digs and 72 aces last year. Haggerty had 30-6 kills and 66 blocks.
Three players from Joliet Catholic recently announced their college commitments, according to Prepvolleyball.com.
Keegan Fornoff, a 5-8 senior setter, and Madeline Grimm, a 5-9 senior outside hitter, who both play for UNO volleyball club, have committed to Southeast Missouri State. Mary Murphy, a 5-10 senior setter who plays club for Sports Performance, has committed to Western Michigan.
Lincoln-Way North finished the first week of the season 5-1, falling in the finals of the Plainfield North tournament to No. 5 Sandburg, 25-18, 26-24.
Where does the Phoenix go next?
“We’re still not sure about our offensive system,” North coach Mary Brown said. “It’s early in the season. I’m not sure if we’ll be playing a 5-1 or a 6-2. We switched that up a little bit (during the final against Sandburg).”
Rachel Burkman was leading the Phoenix with 37 kills through their first six matches, followed by Ally Cappel with 34 and Valen Manns with 24 kills and 11 blocks. Samantha Ritter had 91 assists and 22 digs through six matches. Amanda Rockrohr had 38 assists.