Winter sport season rundown

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Boys Basketball

By Chris Werner

Sports Editor

After a third place finish in 2018, the boys basketball team played in the final game of the IHSA basketball season in 2019.

“Following [last year] up, there was a target on our back as a team that got down state the year before,” coach Mike Ellis said. “The guys met and exceeded expectations all the way to a state runner-up finish.”

The Kits advanced to their second straight final four and faced the defending champion Belleville West Maroons in the Class 4A title game.

Although Evanston could not come out on top in the final contest, falling 71-59, the team’s 32 wins this season were among the most in ETHS history.

Girls Basketball

By Chris Werner

Sports Editor

The girls basketball team’s depth was on display as they won 21 regular season games while battling injuries for nearly all of the 2018-19 season. Junior guard Tyler Mayne was the only player to start every game for Evanston.

At full strength, the Kits played their best in the postseason. They took Maine West, who would become the state champs and finish undefeated, to overtime in a season-ending 55-50 loss.

“I think, for everything we wanted to achieve, being conference champs again, making it back to the sectionals and losing to the eventual state champions, the season was nothing to hang our heads about,” coach Brittanny Johnson said. “We accomplished a lot and did a lot of great things.”

Boys Bowling

By Sophia McCandlish

Sports Captain

As boys bowling ended 2017 with tremendous success, they looked to carry that momentum into the 2018 season. Expectations were not met, in head coach Harold Bailey’s eyes.

Although they sent a whole team to sectionals this season, state escaped their grasp when they placed 13 out of 15 teams at the sectional. Even though the Kits didn’t meet the presumptions of the coach, one of Bailey’s goals were met.

“We didn’t want to send individuals to sectionals, we wanted to send a team and this year we did that.”

Most of their sectional success came from sophomore Aidan Cella and junior Joe Leibforth, both scoring a 1,053 series.

Girls Bowling

By Zach Myers

Staff Writer

After a remarkable season that included qualifying for sectionals for the first time in school history, girls bowling finished their season 9-4 and had four all-conference selections.

“Juniors Asya Wright, Genevieve Christon, Freshman Raivyn Summers, along with captain and four year varsity starter Zoe Landolt were all-conference selections,” head coach Ray Austin said.

Fencing

By Gordon Redfield-Gale

Staff Writer

While the fencing team may have been young, they did not lack in size or talent this season.

After grabbing two sixth place finishes at the Great Lakes Junior Varsity Championship, the squad has high hopes for next year.

With no graduating team members, team captain Wyatt Hubbard expects solid growth next season.

“We can only go up,” Hubbard said. “I expect a lot of returning members, so I’m really excited for next season.”

This young group has the potential to be one of the best teams in the conference next winter.

Figure Skating

By Zach Myers

Staff Writer

On March 30 in Brighton, Michigan, the Evanston figure skating team won its second straight national championship.

“This has been the most exciting year for our team,” coach Jana Reynolds said. “It was exhilarating winning nationals last year but defending our title took it to a whole different level.”

This year’s victories in the high, intermediate and low combined points competitions came a year after the team won both the low and intermediate divisions in 2018.

National championship trophies could be returning to Evanston in 2020 as well, as eight of the nine national competitors plan to be back on the team next season.

Girls Gymnastics

By Chris Werner

Sports Editor

Girls gymnastics surpassed last year’s season high for points in a meet in their second competition of the season and scored their highest team total in 10 years when they tallied a 131.475 later in the season.

Junior Jamie Otwell and freshmen Ava Axelrood and Katherine Luna advanced to the sectional round of the IHSA tournament but couldn’t reach the state finals.

“We have a very young team, with more than half of our girls as underclassmen,” head coach Meghan Koons said. “I am very excited to see what this team is capable of over the next few years. I am extremely proud of our entire team and look forward to what the future holds.”

Boys Hockey

By Zach Myers

Staff Writer

Boys hockey skated their way to a successful season highlighted by defeating Loyola Academy and finishing atop their division.

Next year they look to repeat their success, with most of the team returning as they are graduating only 6 seniors from this season.

Sophomore Campbell Wagener knows that to be competitive next year, when the season roles around, they will have to train hard.

“We are on the ice at least four times a week. We also have off the ice training to work on conditioning,” Wagener said.

Girls Hockey

By Chris Werner

Sports Editor

This season was full of changes and improvements for the Evanston girls hockey program.

New head coach, Don Howard, took over only three weeks prior to the first game of the year as former head coach Hannah Belowski announced she wouldn’t be returning for her second season.

“[Howard] has really changed the whole dynamic of our team,” junior Olivia DiPadova told The Evanstonian in November. “He made it clear that this is the year for change and major improvements, which motivated us as a whole.”

Boys Swimming

By Michael Barthelemy

Sports Captain

The boys swim and dive team added to their long history of dominance this season, placing number 22 in state competition.

The team finished with a record of 7-2 in head-to head meets and a second place finish in both the CSL and Sectional meets.

“I would say we exceeded our expectations for sure. What was really exciting was getting second at conference,” coach Kevin Auger said. “This is the first time we have beaten New Trier in conference in 13 years, so that was pretty exciting.”

The Kits did not just have success as a team, but did in individual competition as well. Senior divers Henry Goodman and Trevor Nelson each finished with top finishes at the state competition, as Goodman placed 11 and Nelson placed third.

Wrestling

By Zach Myers

Staff Writer

It was an incredible season for boys wrestling this year, as they qualified sophomore Ricardo Salinas and seniors Rafael Salinas and Ramin Abraham qualified for state competition. Abraham won the state title in the 220 pound weight class.

While Ricardo is the only returning member of the state team, he and the rest of the team are already training for next season.

“As a team, we’re still staying competitive by going to tournaments and stuff like that,” Ricardo said. “The main focus right now is learning new techniques.”