Varsity girls basketball teams throughout Woodstock celebrated their seniors last week during the last home games of the regular season.
Woodstock High School honored 12th-graders Gabriella Scolio, Diana Spokas and Lena Vogel with posters and photos displayed during a 50-39 loss to Marengo Feb. 9.
“Senior Night is always a special night,” said WHS coach Jen Nichols-Hogle. “It is a night to honor our seniors and their dedication to the Woodstock basketball program.”
The team also hosted a recognition that night for freshman basketball coach Jay Fuller. It was his 25th season coaching girls basketball at WHS.
“This season has brought a lot of fun surprises. We have become a very solid team and have really bought into a winning mentality … only losing four games since winter break,” Nichols-Hogle said.
Across town at Woodstock North High School, the team honored its seniors Feb. 7, but its focus was on the memory of Steve Rick, the school’s assistant principal who died of cancer Feb. 4.
“It was an emotional week,” said Thunder coach Mike Lewis. “I am very proud of how the girls handled themselves. They understood that in life there are things that are much bigger than them, and they wanted to put the focus on Mr. Rick and his family first and put the seniors second.”
WNHS dropped the Feb. 7 game to Burlington Central, losing 47-36.
“My favorite part of the game was being able to get the seniors Maddie Busch, Madison Butler, Riley Kotyza, Lulu Nicks and Paiton Lawrence that last ovation as they walked off of that floor the last time,” Lewis said.
Members of the freshman team said they are going to miss the seniors.
“The seniors would sit on the bench with us and cheer us up,” said freshman basketball player Kelsie Goetz.
At Marian Central Catholic High School, the Lady ’Canes lost to two-time defending state champions Benet Academy 61-41, but the night was not short of highlights for the team’s seniors, who were celebrated by the school.
Seniors Jackie Chmiel, Mikayla Knuth, Emily Radecki and Grace Shukis each played basketball throughout their four years at Marian Central. All four also contributed to the game. Knuth had eight points, Shukis had three points, Chmiel had two points, and Radecki had five rebounds.
“The seniors are a great group. They are dedicated, hard-working, and really understand what it means to be a teammate. I will definitely miss all of them,” said head coach Tony Powe.
WNHS ended the regular season 12-15 overall and 6-6 in the Kishwaukee River Conference. WHS finished in third place in the KRC, going 10-16 overall and 7-5 in conference play.
Marian moved to 10-16 on the season (1-6 East Suburban Catholic Conference).
Regional play begins this week for WHS, WNHS and Marian Central.