While it might not quite compare with winning a state championship or earning all-state recognition, the high school teams, athletes and coaches chosen to be honored at the “Night of Champions 3” event comprise a special group.
On Tuesday, June 20 (between 6 p.m.-9 p.m.) at Lund Auditorium at Dominican University, 7900 Division St. in River Forest, the Riverside-Brookfield Landmark in conjunction with Wednesday Journal and Forest Park Review will host the annual sports party.
The event is free and open to the public
Elite category winners and All-Star selections hailing from Riverside-Brookfield High School, Lyons Township High School and Fenwick High School will be recognized either on stage or on poster boards provided by Minuteman Press of Oak Park.
On the Landmark side, elite category winners include: Male Team of the Year, LTHS swimming; Male Athlete of the Year (co-recipients), Spencer Walker, LTHS swimming and Kyle Fitzgerald, RBHS baseball; Coach of the Year (Female Team), Doug Schultz, RBHS softball; Female Team of the Year, LTHS tennis; Female Athlete of the Year, Lehari Yelanmanchili, LTHS tennis; Hall of Fame recipient, Tom McCloskey, RBHS boys basketball; Most Inspirational Athlete, Joey Swallow, RBHS football/wrestling; Breakout Athlete of the Year, Jacob Kaminski, Fenwick football/wrestling.
“I think it’s cool how are surrounding communities know and support one another at a wonderful event like Night of Champions,” LTHS boys swimming coach Scott Walker said. “That’s why athletics is such an important part of kids’ growth. I always talk about how one day the competition will end but the friendships will last a lifetime.”
Fitzgerald added: “I’m looking forward to this event. It sounds pretty awesome. I love playing baseball and to be recognized for my work on the field is very gratifying.”
“Night of Champions 3” will begin at 6 p.m. with a pre-awards show social reception for about 45 minutes. Guests are welcome to spend time right outside the theater in the Lund Auditorium lobby where refreshments/snacks, sponsor tables and a raffle will be available.
Live music will also be provided by Chicago West Community Music Center in Lund Auditorium if guests opt to gather there before the show (no food or drinks allowed in the auditorium).
At 7 p.m., the show will start with co-hosts RB Landmark Sports Editor Marty Farmer and Oak Park radio show personality Doris Davenport. In addition to presenting the elite category award winners with plaques, guest speakers Fenwick grad/Northwestern basketball star Scottie Lindsey and former Major League Baseball player Mike Huff will address the crowd.