Lacrosse coming to Oswego high schools for girls and boys

Huntley’s Leah Holmberg, left, and Katie Ferrara, right, battle Crystal Lake Central’s Colleen Dunlea in varsity lacrosse at Huntley Wednesday.

Oswego School District 308 plans to add boys and girls lacrosse as a new high school sport starting in the fall.

At the March 18 school board meeting, board members voted unanimously to add boys and girls lacrosse as an ISHA sport starting in the 2024-25 school year.

At the March 18 meeting and at the Feb. 26 board meeting, parents and students spoke in support of adding lacrosse as a high school sport. Superintendent Andalib Khelghati said he was appreciative of their efforts.

“When we work together, when we find mutuality around opportunities that can invest and support our students, we’re going to be better for it,” he said.

Oswego resident David Julian had previously addressed school board members about his wish to see lacrosse added as a high school sport.

His two children currently attend Traughber Junior High School. He would like to see his children have the chance to play lacrosse when they enter high school.

“I have no horse in this race as of today,” Julian said in addressing board members. “I’m looking further down the road for it to be an opportunity for my kids to continue what they feel is their dream.”

Lacrosse was added as an IHSA sport in 2016-17. There currently are 96 lacrosse boys teams and 82 lacrosse girls teams throughout the state.

“There are five teams in our conference that offer this and many more are thinking about adding this as well because of the growth of the sport,” Dan Arntzen, the district’s executive director of high school instruction and K-12 assessments, had told school board members.

He spoke about the benefits of providing additional sports options at an IHSA level.

“The opportunities present themselves to grow our students in a lot of different ways,” Arntzen said. “There are opportunities for other sports to be added that would provide our students opportunities that would be great for them and great for their maturity as well.”