Kaneland midfielder Anthony Parillo keeps telling his father and coach, Scott, that all he wants to do is have a fun senior boys soccer season.
Thanks to recent recognition from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, Parillo's high school swan song has the potential to be far more.
The NSCAA tabbed Parillo as a high school All-American nominee on the heels of a junior season in which he scored a team-high 19 goals and helped the Knights to a 2A sectional final.
"Not very often that you have a possible All-American on your team," Scott Parillo said. "He's pretty humble about it. He just wants to play things out and see what happens."
Kaneland returns a strong core of talent around Anthony Parillo, including midfielder/forward Tyler Siebert and defender/midfielders Chris Van Dinther and Matt Vander Sande.
Kolin Limbrick, a 6-foot-3 senior transfer from North Carolina, adds some size to the back line in front of goalkeeper J.T. Karr, who backed up recent graduate Marshall Farthing last season.
The program saw an all-time high 74 athletes try out for teams at three levels, boosting the optimism beyond Parillo's accolades.
"Having over 70 kids try out for a school or our size is pretty nice," Scott Parillo said.
Welcome to Camp Wicinski: Veteran Geneva football coach Rob Wicinski navigated humble beginnings at the start of his career, going 3-24 at Niles North from 1994-96.
Those struggles ultimately paved the way to one of the Vikings' proud traditions: going off-campus for the first two days of fall camp.
"One day [at Niles], I was just tired of walking up the same hill to practice, just getting my [butt] kicked. I was 1-fer, 0-fer … and I was like, 'This has got to change,' " Wicinski said. "So I just, out of the spur of the moment, just one practice, I didn't even check with anybody. We just walked down to an open field down in the neighborhood and then kind of said, 'This is all right.' It kind of got their attention, and at least it was different for the coaches, because, I mean, it was old."
Wicinski took the reins at Geneva in 1999 and started going off-site to the former Broadview Academy campus in LaFox shortly thereafter. When that property was unavailable last week, he acted on two assistants' recommendations and brought the team to Good Templar Park on Geneva's east side.
Earlier influence came from former Prospect coach Brent Pearlman, who often took his Knights to downstate Rantoul for a few days to begin camp during the 2000s.
"That's not in my wheelhouse to sleep with these guys, so we decided a daily-type deal," Wicinski said. "Day camp."
Morrow on the move: Angie Morrow, one of the area’s top softball players, has transferred from Burlington Central to Kaneland, her father, Bill Morrow, confirmed.
Morrow, a junior who already has committed to Wisconsin, missed her entire sophomore season with a shoulder injury.
Morrow projects as a major addition for a Kaneland team that went 23-4 in the spring but was upset by Rosary in a 3A regional final.
• Kevin Druley is a sportswriter for the Kane County Chronicle. He can be reached at 630-845-5347 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @kevindruley.