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PODCAST: Mike Nieto talks with former Gavit star Rich Blastic

PODCAST: Mike Nieto talks with former Gavit star Rich Blastic

Former Gavit and Wabash College football and baseball star Rich Blastic, now plant manager at Huhtamaki in Hammond, talks with Times sports writer Mike Nieto

July 10, 2014 12:00 am

Baseball teams can use video for coaching purposes

They say old-time managers like Casey Stengel managed by the seat of his pants.

July 08, 2014 8:00 pm
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Rich Kallok

WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Rich Kallok

Like many success stories, Rich Kallok's coaching career started by coincidence.

July 07, 2014 7:30 pm
Mount Carmel wrestler Bryce Brill is The Times Illinois Male Athlete of the Year

Mount Carmel wrestler Bryce Brill is The Times Illinois Male Athlete of the Year

Bryce Brill cracks a grin when people ask him if he knows how to spell "success."

July 05, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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PODCAST: Mike Nieto talks with New Orleans Saints running back Pierre Thomas

PODCAST: Mike Nieto talks with New Orleans Saints running back and former T.F. South star Pierre Thomas.

July 03, 2014 12:00 am
Crete-Monee's Stringer to play football at Indiana

Crete-Monee's Stringer to play football at Indiana

Crete-Monee senior linebacker Omari Stringer has committed to Indiana University.

July 01, 2014 8:00 pm Photos

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WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Rich Blastic runs Huhtamaki packaging plant

WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Rich Blastic runs Huhtamaki packaging plant

HAMMOND | When Rich Blastic walks into a store or sees someone carrying drinks from a restaurant, a sense of pride comes over him.

June 30, 2014 7:30 pm Photos

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Illinois Lutheran's Mark Kjenstad is the Times Baseball Coach of the Year

Illinois Lutheran's Mark Kjenstad is the Times Baseball Coach of the Year

STEGER | Illinois Lutheran baseball coach Mark Kjenstad spent more time pacing the floor at night than he did pacing in the dugout during one of the Chargers games.

June 28, 2014 6:00 pm Video Photos

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Illinois Lutheran's Sam Geraci is the Times Baseball Player of the Year

Illinois Lutheran's Sam Geraci is the Times Baseball Player of the Year

STEGER | It caught the ear of Illinois Lutheran baseball coach Mark KJenstad when his 6-year-old son Ryen got everyone's attention at Veterans Park in Steger.

June 28, 2014 6:00 pm Video Photos

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Thomas sends message to youth

Thomas sends message to youth

LANSING | When T.F. South football coach Tom Padjen calls his former player Pierre Thomas a superstar, he stresses that it is not just because he is a star NFL running back for the New Orleans Saints.

June 27, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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Podcast: MIke Nieto talks with Mount Carmel's David Dobinrich

Mount Carmel's David Dobinrich talks with Mike Nieto about playing in U.S. Cellular Field

June 27, 2014 12:00 am

NIETO BLOG: Thomas a fun camp

It as hard to tell who was having more fun at the Pierre Thomas skills camp at T.F. South Tuesday -- the young campers or Thomas?

June 26, 2014 10:00 pm
ILLINOIS PREP NOTES: Public vs. private prep sports debate continues

ILLINOIS PREP NOTES: Public vs. private prep sports debate continues

Is the line about to be drawn in the sand again?

June 26, 2014 5:45 pm Photos

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Marian's Friel is state's top lacrosse goal scorer

Marian's Friel is state's top lacrosse goal scorer

Celeste Friel remembers the day she broke the Illinois girls lacrosse single-season state goals record.

June 26, 2014 5:00 pm Photos

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Marc Condotti is new H-F boys hoops coach

Marc Condotti is new H-F boys hoops coach

Homewood-Flossmoor didn't have to look far to name its new boys basketball coach.

June 24, 2014 7:00 pm
Campers score big at Pierre Thomas camp

Campers score big at Pierre Thomas camp

LANSING | Despite the rain pelting him and the campers, Pierre Thomas stood outside of T.F. South's football stadium Tuesday afternoon and posed for pictures and signed autographs for campers.

June 24, 2014 7:00 pm Video Photos

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WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Jeff Stur has a 'Golden Eagle' eye view of things

WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Jeff Stur has a 'Golden Eagle' eye view of things

Jeff Stur knew he would have to have some creativity if he wanted to work in the sports marketing and media relations field.

June 23, 2014 7:30 pm Photos

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Catholic League All-Stars hold off Public League at U.S. Cellular Field

Catholic League All-Stars hold off Public League at U.S. Cellular Field

CHICAGO | Once the awe of playing at U.S. Cellular Field wore off and all the pregame photos were taken by family members, the Catholic League and Public League All-Stars battled the heat and one another.

June 20, 2014 7:30 pm Video Photos

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NIETO BLOG: Good to see Sandifer coaching at T.F. North

It is always a good thing to see when a former player returns to his or her prep alma mater to coach.

June 19, 2014 10:00 pm
Domer not admitted to Illinois

Domer not admitted to Illinois

Mount Carmel running back and 2013 Times Offensive Player of the Year Matt Domer has been denied admission to the University of Illinois.

June 19, 2014 8:00 pm Photos

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St. Francis de Sales' Simmons is a self-made hitter

St. Francis de Sales' Simmons is a self-made hitter

It will be like Christmas in June for St. Francis de Sales' senior Kemari Simmons when he steps onto the field at U.S. Cellular Field today for the Catholic League vs. Public League All-Star Game.

June 19, 2014 6:30 pm Photos

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Morgan excited to take over Washington football program

Morgan excited to take over Washington football program

Mark Morgan waited a long time for his first head football coaching job and the longtime assistant with various programs is anxious about taking over at Washington High School on Chicago's East Side.

June 18, 2014 7:00 pm

Podcast: Mike Nieto talks with former West Side boys basketball coach Ike Brown

Mike Nieto talks with former West Side boys basketball coach Ike Brown on his coaching career.

June 18, 2014 6:00 pm
Sam Agyarko out as Thornwood athletic director

Sam Agyarko out as Thornwood athletic director

Sam Agyarko is out as the Thornwood High School athletic director.

June 17, 2014 7:00 pm
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Former West Side basketball coach reflects on his career

WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Former West Side basketball coach reflects on his career

GARY | When former West Side boys basketball coach Ike Brown goes through his stacks of memorabilia, which includes several plaques on the wall of his home, the things that he cherishes the most are the letters he receives from his players.

June 16, 2014 7:30 pm Photos

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Sandifer to be named T.F. North girls basketball coach

Sandifer to be named T.F. North girls basketball coach

It looks like it will be double duty for LaShaunda Sandifer.

June 16, 2014 7:30 pm

Thoughts from the Class 1A state baseball championship

Even the Illinois Lutheran baseball team didn't think it would win the state title via the 10-run rule.

June 12, 2014 10:00 pm

Podcast: Mike Nieto talks with Illinois Lutheran baseball player Sam Geraci

Mike Nieto talks with Illinois Lutheran baseball player Sam Geraci on winning the Class 1A state title

June 11, 2014 8:00 pm
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Neville set for next challenge

WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Neville set for next challenge

Imagine having the chance to compete for a former Olympian?

June 09, 2014 7:00 pm
Monticello tops Beecher for third place

Monticello tops Beecher for third place

EAST PEORIA | The only tears on the Beecher players' faces Saturday at EastSide Centre were from the raindrops that pelted them after their 6-1 loss to Monticello in the Class 2A third-place game.

June 07, 2014 9:30 pm Photos

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Beecher has plenty to build off of

EAST PEORIA | Despite coming up short of winning the program's third state softball title, Beecher has a good team coming back next year.

June 07, 2014 9:00 pm
Illinois Lutheran baseball team wins Class 1A state title

Illinois Lutheran baseball team wins Class 1A state title

PEORIA | In a postseason of close games, the final one for Illinois Lutheran was anything but.

June 07, 2014 7:45 pm Video Photos

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Sager takes advantage of opportunity in biggest game

Sager takes advantage of opportunity in biggest game

PEORIA | Until Saturday, Illinois Lutheran's John Sager had just 14 at-bats and four hits.

June 07, 2014 7:30 pm Photos

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Going to a state final is always fun for the teams who put in the hard work

People have asked what is it like for us at The Times and nwi.com when a team goes to state.

June 05, 2014 10:00 pm
ILLINOIS PREP NOTES: Sandifer expected to be new T.F. North girls volleyball coach

ILLINOIS PREP NOTES: Sandifer expected to be new T.F. North girls volleyball coach

Former T.F. North two-sport star LaShaunda Sandifer is expected to be named the school's girls volleyball coach, principal Dwayne Evans told The Times on Wednesday.

June 05, 2014 5:45 pm
Bands of brothers lead Illinois Lutheran baseball team to state semis

Bands of brothers lead Illinois Lutheran baseball team to state semis

STEGER | They all played together as boys growing up in Crete.

June 05, 2014 5:00 pm
Dykstra's bat coming up big for Vikings

Dykstra's bat coming up big for Vikings

LANSING | A month ago, Matt Dykstra and his Illiana Christian teammates didn't think they would win a regional title.

June 04, 2014 5:00 pm Photos

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However its pronounced, Ako's a knockout on the diamond

However its pronounced, Ako's a knockout on the diamond

CHICAGO | He has heard it since he was a little kid.

June 03, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Cassie Pruzin

WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Cassie Pruzin

Former Crown Point girls basketball standout Cassie Pruzin finds herself in unfamiliar sea of red these days.

June 02, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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Farmer sows the seeds to success

Farmer sows the seeds to success

Illinois Lutheran baseball coach Mark Kjenstad has many words to describe his ace pitcher Grant Farmer, but one kept coming up more than once.

June 01, 2014 9:00 pm Photos

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Mount Carmel's Thomas delivers the 'Ako' punch

Mount Carmel's Thomas delivers the 'Ako' punch

CHICAGO | Ako Thomas might as well been wearing a boxing glove instead of a batting glove.

May 31, 2014 7:00 pm

T.F. South, Crete-Monee fall in Lincoln-Way Central Regional

NEW LENOX | T.F. South made the plays when it needed to on defense and at the plate.

May 28, 2014 10:00 pm
Geraci's hot bat leading Illinois Lutheran

Geraci's hot bat leading Illinois Lutheran

If anyone needed to jump-start their grills over the weekend, they might have wanted to use Sam Geraci's bat.

May 27, 2014 6:00 pm Photos

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WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Anderson was Granderson's prep coach

WHERE ARE THEY NOW?: Anderson was Granderson's prep coach

Former T.F. South baseball coach Bill Anderson cannot help but to get on one of his former players.

May 26, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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Crete's Hickey a mentor off the field too

Crete's Hickey a mentor off the field too

When Crete-Monee coach Gene Cahan talks about Brandon Hickey being one of his leaders, the veteran Crete coach is not just talking about the senior's pitching ability.

May 25, 2014 6:00 pm Photos

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Scouting Local Illinois Class 3A & 4A Softball Regionals

(Seedings in parentheses)

May 25, 2014 6:00 pm
Calumet City honors its 'Mr. Baseball'

Calumet City honors its 'Mr. Baseball'

CALUMET CITY | The naming of the T.F. North baseball field after retiring coach Mike Kosiara is not official, nor is the title of Calumet City's "Mr. Baseball," but those who gathered Friday afternoon begged to differ.

May 23, 2014 9:00 pm Video Photos

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Homewood-Flossmoor boys basketball coach says he's retiring

Homewood-Flossmoor boys basketball coach says he's retiring

Homewood-Flossmoor boys basketball coach Jim McLaughlin said Thursday that he is retiring from coaching.

May 22, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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T.F. South beats Marian Catholic in a wild one

T.F. South beats Marian Catholic in a wild one

LANSING | On a day when T.F. South honored its seniors and those who help their renovated softball field become reality, a freshman came through in the clutch.

May 20, 2014 8:00 pm Photos

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Illiana Christian's Alexa Beezhold on fast track

Illiana Christian's Alexa Beezhold on fast track

LANSING | Illiana Christian senior runner Alexa Beezhold has an encouraging word for younger teammates who might lack some confidence.

May 20, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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