It’s hard to believe, but the conference season is already upon is. Since we like to believe we’re experts here at Illinois Preps Insider, we take a stab at predicting what the final standings of the CSL North will look like.
Deerfield has always been an extremely solid program, but they have never been able to claim sole possession the CSL North title.
The Warriors not only the top end talent, but a really nice depth to their teams as well and should only improve throughout with some talented underclassmen in the fold as well.
2. Glenbrook North
It is so difficult to pick against GBN as they are arguably the most consistent boys volleyball program in the entire state (Yes that includes Wheaton-Warrenville South).
Even in a “down year” it’s probably pretty silly to pick against the team who has won a share of the CSL North 20 out of the last 22 years, but right now a healthy Deerfield looks to be the better side.
Now with that being said, GBN will undoubtedly improve over the course of the season, but can they get off to a good enough start to where they don’t have to play catchup?
3. Vernon Hills
Vernon Hills coach Chris Curry admitted that the usually solid Cougars had a very down year in 2017.
Though nobody on the outside looking in is expecting Vernon Hills to reach the heights of 2011 and 2015, they are much improved from last season and are able to compete with most other teams on any given night, as shown with their win over GBS earlier this season.
4. Highland Park
There is certainly a noticeable gap between the top half of the CSL North and the bottom half of the CSL North.
Highland Park comes into the year as a bit of an unknown after enduring one of their worst seasons in recent memory, but they did show some flashes in the Warren Invitational in their match against Stevenson, despite missing a couple of starters.
5. Maine East
Maine East is in full rebuild mode after winning two regionals in the last three years. The Demons lost all but one starter (Andreas Kotsifas) from last years team, including all-area 6’9″ middle hitter Michael Boduch.
Luckily for Maine East there is a ton of talented sophomores, but they are still only sophomores. Expect Maine East to get gradually better as the year progresses, but as of now they are still a couple years away.
6. Maine West
It feels weird putting Maine West last considering the success they’ve had in the CSL North in almost all other sports, but boys volleyball has always seemed to lag behind.
The Warriors have a new coach in Mike Obrill, and while a fresh face can be a very good thing, it will probably take at least a year before his system and style is completely implemented to change the Maine West boys volleyball culture.