Ridgewood Roundup

Tom Akers
Miranda Reed Cross Country sendoff, held at Cambridge High School on Friday to honor her running at the Class 1A cross country state finals.

Reed’s Season Crosses the Finish Line

Miranda Reed, the final Ridgewood Spartan Cross Country runner still in competition, ended her season along with 256 other Class 1A runners on Saturday, November 6th at the IHSA State Cross Country meet.

Reed toed the line with the other runners at Detweiller Park in Peoria finishing 49th out of the field of 256 runners. The sophomore broke the 19 minute mark finishing with a time of 18:59. The first place runner was Lianna Surta from Aurora Rosary High School who won the 1A title with a time of 17:21.

“We’re definitely proud of Miranda for the season she’s had this year and to end it here is just an example of how great a season she’s had. It also gives us all the encouragement to work hard in the off season so we can come down here as a full team next year.” Al Steider commented on the end of Reed’s season.

Cambridge On the Court

The Cambridge Vikings kicked off their week with a rematch against the AlWood Aces in a battle of future Spartans. Mackenzie Peck put in all nine of her points in the first half as the Vikings led by just one at the end of the first quarter but upped their lead to 12-5 at the end of the half.

Maggie Leander and Kenlee Carlson combined for 28 second half points as Cambridge pulled away in the second half winning 38 to 11. Leander had eight of her game high seventeen points in the fourth quarter while Carlson had nine of her eleven points in the third quarter to lead Cambridge to the win.

The eighth grade pulled ahead from the opening tip with Ellie Doubet putting in five of her team high nine points in the opening six minutes to help Cambridge build a 9-4 lead. The Vikings opened the game up in the second quarter outscoring AlWood 11 to 4 to take a 20-8 lead at the half.

Cambridge continued to pull away from the Aces in the second half leading by 19 at the end of the third and winning by the final score of 33 to 13. Luca Veloz added eight points and Emma Motley and Mackenzie Peck each had four points apiece.

The Vikings hosted United on Wednesday, November 3rd. The seventh grade allowed the visitors just 8 points as they amassed 41 to win the game 41 to 8. Kenlee Carlson led the Vikings with ten points, Haylee Bennett added eight points, and Maggie Leander dropped in seven. Avery Humphrey, Bella Jewett, and Mackenzie Peck each had four points in the win.

The two teams were tied after the first six minutes of the eighth grade game at twelve apiece. Cambridge then doubled the score on United to go ahead 24 to 12, Ellie Doubet had eight of her team high sixteen points in the second quarter to lead the Vikings.

Cambridge held their twelve point lead in the third quarter but the Red Storm came storming back to cut into the Viking lead. Cambridge did manage to hold on to win the game by three points 35 to 32. Addie Jewett, Luca Veloz, and Kenlee Carlson each added four points in the win.

Spartans Serve Up Awards

Head coach Brooklyn Wexell held the Ridgewood Spartans Volleyball Banquet on Thursday, November 5th. “Overall, it was a good season,” Wexell observed. “However, I think everyone on the team thinks we could have done better and can’t wait to improve on that next year.”

Team leaders were recognized during the banquet. Paige Leander led the Spartans with the most kills and the most blocks, Hallica Warren-Anderson led the team with the most digs and the most aces, and Brooklynn Jones led the team in assists.

On Tuesday, November 2nd Paige Leander was named to the All LTC second team for volleyball. Hallica Warren-Anderson was given Honorable Mention Honors as well for Ridgewood.

Team awards were also passed out with Paige Leander receiving the Most Valuable Player Award. Carmen Stahl was given the Most Improved Award and Brooklynn Jones received the Most Spirit Award.

All academic awards were also given out with the following Spartans earning the recognition: Morgan Bowers, Mya Brown, Brooklyn Johnson, Brooklyn Jones, Katlynn Jones, Lexi Kessinger, Paige Leander, Aleese Park, Carmen Stahl, Rachel Stropes, Larissa Swanson, Hallica Warren-Anderson, and Alex Watt.

Fresh Faces Will Pace Ridgewood

The only two members of the varsity Spartans Girls Basketball team returning are head coach Maggie Molek and varsity returner Hannah Maher. The Spartans lost nine seniors to graduation last year giving Molek a fresh group of faces for her varsity squad. “Graduating nine seniors really changes the dynamics of any team. I am, however, very excited to see that this group, on the floor, is very competitive with each other, they work hard and push each other every day.”

The Spartans finished second in the LTC with an overall record of 9-7, 7-2 in the conference, bid adieu to longtime varsity players Kendall Lewis, Brecken Adamson, and Brooke Jackson. The Spartans, playing in a shortened season without a tournament were left wondering what a regular season would have been like. A point not lost on Molek who is excited to have the opportunity to play a full season and see what this group of Spartans are capable of.

A pair of Ridgewood alumni, one from each school will be joining Coach Molek on the bench this season. Katie Miller, a Cambridge Alum, and Hannah Garrett, an AlWood alum will be coaching the younger Spartans as well as helping with the varsity.

Hannah Maher, the lone returning starter from last year’s squad will be joined by fellow post players Paige Leander and Hallica Warren-Anderson while Carmen Stahl will be in the backcourt for Ridgewood. “We have a very athletic, competitive team, but will be lacking in Varsity game experience with Hannah Maher being the only player who saw significant Varsity minutes last year.” Coach Molek added in assessing her team.

The LTC will be up for grabs with everyone basically in the same position having had a shortened season last year limiting a lot of team’s experience so every game for the Spartans will be important. “This will be a fun group to watch. We are excited to have fans back in the stands and hope to see people at the games!!!”

Ridgewood Golf Wrap Up

The Ridgewood Golf team put a close to their 2021 campaign. “All in all, we didn’t win as many matches as we would have liked, but we had a lot of fun!” Head coach Mitch Magnafici commented on summarizing the season.

Spartans Kyle Nimrick and Gracie Russell both earned All LTC Conference honors previously in the season. David Swanson, Josh Maher, and Gracie Russell were given Academic All Conference Honors as well.

Magnafici also handed out team awards to the Spartans. Kyle Nimrick won the low round of the season award, and Gracie Russell won the Low Scoring Average award. Nick Robbins won most improved, and Josh Maher took the leadership award.

David Swanson received the “Bombs Away” award for his ability to hit the ball a mile off the tee, without ever knowing exactly where it would end up.

Both Kyle Nimrick and Gracie Russell also qualified for the sectional tournaments with Kyle Nimrick’s qualifying in a playoff standing out as a memory Magnafici highlighted; “Having all the players and coaches from every team, lining the fairways and surrounding the green to watch was amazing. The iron shot Kyle hit over a tree onto the green during a 3 for 2 playoff in that atmosphere was incredible and something I won’t forget.”

Coach Magnafici finished by describing the impact the four seniors had on the team this season.”I can’t pay enough respect to my four seniors: David Swanson, Kyle Nimrick, Josh Maher, and Nick Robbins. We will definitely be losing some leadership for next season. Throughout the season regardless of how they played, they carried themselves with integrity. Whether they were giving a freshman teammate a ride to practice or explaining a particular ruling on the course, they continuously proved themselves to be individuals of high character.”