Never has Neuqua Valley had as many lacrosse players advancing to play the sport in college as this year's senior class. The club will celebrate the players' accomplishment at a signing party following the Wildcats' game at noon Saturday against Geneva at Commissioners Park in Naperville.
Midfielder Brock Haake (Augustana), goaltenders Sammy Sanko (Binghamton) and Jake Ellis (Augustana), attack Mike Turner (Adrian) and defender Austin Jordan (Alma) will be guests of honor at the Ashwood Clubhouse.
"It's great because it's my kid," said Neuqua Valley Lacrosse Club secretary Kim Haake, "but it's also all these kids."
Neuqua assistant coach and the head of its board of directors, Brian McGinnis, brought up the idea for the ceremony. Each player has invited at least one person or is bringing an item that inspired them to start playing lacrosse.
Sanko (son of Dan Sanko, who recently resigned as Lisle's football coach), for example, has invited Tom Wood, coach of the club team he started out with. Wood also is the father of Metea Valley graduate Zach Wood, now a sophomore player for Virginia.
Brock Haake is bringing former varsity lacrosse coach and current freshman coach Mark Cummings. Brock's got 12 people coming to congratulate him.
Perhaps one's a physician. In Neuqua's 6-5 win Tuesday over Glenbard West he got cracked in the cheek and it took seven stitches to zip that up. The party pizza may be tough to swallow, but not Saturday's game against Geneva.
"He'll play through it," Kim Haake said.