By Bob Balgemann


MACHESNEY PARK – Harlem’s varsity baseball team was in the middle of its hoped-for march to the NIC-10 championship when the Illinois High School Association was deciding seeds for the upcoming state tournament.

The Huskies were selected No. 1 among 10 teams that are competing in two sub-sectional tournaments beginning Monday (May 23).

That means they will get a bye and play the winner of an opening-round game pitting DeKalb, the sixth seed, and 10th-seeded Jefferson.

The semi-final round contest involving Harlem will be played Wednesday at Belvidere North. The regional championship game is set for 11 a.m. Saturday, May 28, also at Belvidere North.

Other teams vying at Guilford and North are No. 2 seed Hononegah; third-seeded Huntley; fourth-seeded Algonquin Jacobs; fifth-seeded Belvidere North; seventh-seeded Rockford East; eight-seeded Guilford; and ninth-seeded Auburn.

The second round of competition going to the Huntley sectional involves a large group of suburban teams, led by top-seeded Crystal Lake Prairie Ridge.

The rest of the field includes Crystal Lake South, Cary-Grove, Barrington, McHenry, Grant, Dundee-Crown, Crystal Lake Central, Elgin and Elgin Larkin.

Those sub-sectional games are being played at Barrington and Cary-Grove.

Softball regionals also are under way next week with Harlem being the third seed among 10 teams playing at Huntley and Rockford East.

The Lady Huskies will take on No. 6 Jacobs at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday (May 25) at Huntley. The title game will be at 3 p.m. May 28, with the champion moving on to the Belvidere North sectional.

Competing against the Lady Huskies are the No. 1 seed, DeKalb, and No. 2 Huntley. The rest of the group is made up of fourth-seeded Belvidere North; No. 5 Hononegah; No. 7 Rockford East; No. 8 Guilford, No. 9 Auburn; and No. 10 Jefferson.

Barrington, which eliminated Harlem in the sectional finals last year, 4-0, is the No. 1 seed at the Dundee-Crown regional.

If the Fillies and Lady Huskies win their regionals they would meet at 4:30 p.m. May 31 in the opening round of the Belvidere North sectional. The other game at North would pit the winners of the East and McHenry regionals.

The sectional finals would be played June 4, with the winner going to the Barrington super-sectional. Barrington finished fourth in the state last year.

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