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Quick Read

Quick read: St. Charles North springs into action early

St. Charles North softball players needed their pep Monday morning. The North Stars, who advanced to the Class 4A supersectionals in 2015, began spring tryouts at 5:30 a.m.
St. Charles North softball players needed their pep Monday morning. The North Stars, who advanced to the Class 4A supersectionals in 2015, began spring tryouts at 5:30 a.m.

Daylight Saving Time descends upon us March 13, and the early clubhouse leader for the group most in need of the extra hour is the St. Charles North softball team.

North held its first tryout workouts from 5:30 to 7 a.m. Monday as spring sports practices began for seven IHSA sports – badminton, baseball, boys tennis, boys and girls water polo, girls soccer and softball.

North Stars pitchers and catchers were scheduled for an afterschool session, as well, but the early bird practice was for players at all levels. Call it an inadvertent team bonding exercise. And a boon for Tom Poulin’s busy schedule; he coaches North softball and boys basketball, the latter of which opened its Class 4A postseason run at the St. Charles East Regional on Monday night.

Boys volleyball practices begin March 7, the same day boys and girls water polo teams are eligible for the first games of the season. Games for other spring sports begin March 14 and March 21.

North softball’s earliest scheduled start time for a contest this season is 10 a.m.

‘Big change’ spurs Kedzie: Confidence. Victories. Muscle tone.

In no particular order, those were things that escalated for Kaneland junior 106-pound wrestler Austin Kedzie this season, paving the way for a runner-up finish as the Class 2A state tournament concluded Feb. 21

Kedzie’s impression on his teammates also grew, and not just because he drew more eyeballs as the last Knight remaining in the tournament at the University of Illinois’ State Farm Center in Champaign.

“He’s made a big change this year,” said Kaneland 170-pounder Riley Vanik, a fellow state qualifier. “The past couple years, he’s been a little undersized. He hasn’t been able to make the weight since he’s so small. This year, there’s a lot of confidence. I think something clicked in his head that he could put up with these kids. He’s a true 106-pounder. He has the technique. He’s just going out there and competing now.”

Brooks is back ... sort of: The Cubs remain aligned with South Bend as Class-A, Midwest League player-development contract partners, but that agreement has little bearing on operations at the major league level.

To that end, former Cougars right-hander Aaron Brooks joined the Cubs as part of last week’s trade that sent outfielder Chris Coghlan to the Oakland Athletics. Both the Cubs and A’s are former Cougars parent clubs, as are the Kansas City Royals, who drafted Brooks in the ninth round of the 2011 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. One year later, Brooks made 27 starts with the Cougars, going 9-12 with a 4.98 ERA and 120 strikeouts over 1532/3 innings.

• Kevin Druley is sports editor of the Kane County Chronicle. He can be reached at 630-845-5347 or kdruley@shawmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at @KevinDruley.

Daylight Saving Time descends upon us March 13, and the early clubhouse leader for the group most in need of the extra hour is the St. Charles North softball team.

North held its first tryout workouts from 5:30 to 7 a.m. Monday as spring sports practices began for seven IHSA sports – badminton, baseball, boys tennis, boys and girls water polo, girls soccer and softball.

North Stars pitchers and catchers were scheduled for an afterschool session, as well, but the early bird practice was for players at all levels. Call it an inadvertent team bonding exercise. And a boon for Tom Poulin’s busy schedule; he coaches North softball and boys basketball, the latter of which opened its Class 4A postseason run at the St. Charles East Regional on Monday night.

Boys volleyball practices begin March 7, the same day boys and girls water polo teams are eligible for the first games of the season. Games for other spring sports begin March 14 and March 21.

North softball’s earliest scheduled start time for a contest this season is 10 a.m.

‘Big change’ spurs Kedzie: Confidence. Victories. Muscle tone.

In no particular order, those were things that escalated for Kaneland junior 106-pound wrestler Austin Kedzie this season, paving the way for a runner-up finish as the Class 2A state tournament concluded Feb. 21

Kedzie’s impression on his teammates also grew, and not just because he drew more eyeballs as the last Knight remaining in the tournament at the University of Illinois’ State Farm Center in Champaign.

“He’s made a big change this year,” said Kaneland 170-pounder Riley Vanik, a fellow state qualifier. “The past couple years, he’s been a little undersized. He hasn’t been able to make the weight since he’s so small. This year, there’s a lot of confidence. I think something clicked in his head that he could put up with these kids. He’s a true 106-pounder. He has the technique. He’s just going out there and competing now.”

Brooks is back ... sort of: The Cubs remain aligned with South Bend as Class-A, Midwest League player-development contract partners, but that agreement has little bearing on operations at the major league level.

To that end, former Cougars right-hander Aaron Brooks joined the Cubs as part of last week’s trade that sent outfielder Chris Coghlan to the Oakland Athletics. Both the Cubs and A’s are former Cougars parent clubs, as are the Kansas City Royals, who drafted Brooks in the ninth round of the 2011 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. One year later, Brooks made 27 starts with the Cougars, going 9-12 with a 4.98 ERA and 120 strikeouts over 1532/3 innings.

• Kevin Druley is sports editor of the Kane County Chronicle. He can be reached at 630-845-5347 or kdruley@shawmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at @KevinDruley.

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