Note from coach Mertens

LZFB Players and Parents,

LZFB is participating in this year’s Purple “Polar” Plunge on Saturday, March 3rd at Lake Zurich’s Breezwald Park.  The Purple Plunge is a local non-profit cancer charity dedicated to making an impact in our community by plunging into icy cold Lake Zurich and raising funds to increase awareness and provide aid and support to cancer survivors, their families, and caregivers in our community.

I hope we can count on the LZHS football family to participate this year!  Simply register online While registering, search for LZHS Football to join our team.  The fee for each person registering is $20.  Once registered, any high school student is eligible for one of two $500 scholarship!! There is no pressure to do any additional fundraising from there, but it is always appreciated.

I ask that all players who register wear their blue, playoff shirt to take the plunge!

There are details for everything on their website,, but here are a few highlights:

  • Since last year’s plunge, Purple Plunge has been able to help 16 local families who are fighting cancer by offsetting some of the day to day expenses that are often forgotten during treatment.  Purple Plunge has been able to provide groceries, gas, house cleaning, train tickets, and money to help pay bills.
  • Dueling Pianos by Felix and Fingers (  These guys are awesome and will be taking song request for donations starting at 9:00AM
  • To help kids with Cancer,  Purple Plunge is partnering with Camp One Step and having a Supply Drive for their camps.  Check out the list camp-one-step.  Every item you bring you will get a free raffle ticket.
  • As always there will be a Raffle and LIVE Auction for things like in home catered gourmet dinner for 12 and a time share for 1 week at Grand Solmar   resort in Cabo San Lucas!
  • The Purple Plunge understands this importance of students being involved in their community and helping local charities.  That is why this  year they are unavailing The Purple Plunge Scholarship!!!  I have attached a separate letter detailing information on this. .

Thank you,

Coach Mertens

LZ Bears football recognition

In recent years, the District 95 Board of Education has made sure that at its monthly recognition it also recognizes athletic teams that bring home state trophies.  The football team was scheduled to be recognized at the Board’s December 21st meeting.  However, because of the size of the team and because of the large attendance at the regularly scheduled monthly recognition, our library does not have enough room to accommodate everyone being recognized.  We don’t want to make such recognition a burden for football families or for other families who are being recognized. 
In order to provide the football team the recognition it is due for a record-breaking year, we are scheduling the football team’s recognition for the January 11, 2018 Board meeting.  At that meeting the Board will be able to publicly spotlight the team’s accomplishments and allow team members and coaches to speak in support of the team.  We will also have some time for refreshments immediately afterward.

Congrats to the Lake County all-area team!


Matthijs Enters           Lake Zurich

The “Legend of Enters” might grow and grow as the years go by. The senior tight end made catches that the Lake Zurich football faithful won’t soon forget. “Matthijs had the best hands on the team,” Lake Zurich coach Luke Mertens said. “His acrobatic catches will go down in Lake Zurich football folk lore for years to come. Playing a position in tight end that isn’t usually known for its play-making ability, Enters was second on the team in receptions (38) and receiving yards (677) and tied for first in receiving touchdowns (9).” A rare two-way player for the Bears, Enters also made big plays on defense as a linebacker in third-down situations.


Ian Fitzgerald              Lake Zurich

The Lake Zurich offense was the most prolific in the area and players behind the scenes such as Fitzgerald were critical. The 6-foot-6, 300-pound senior offensive lineman was the biggest player on the Bears’ roster. “Ian proved to be one of the biggest reasons for the offensive successes this season,” Lake Zurich coach Luke Mertens said. “When in doubt, we knew who to run behind. By nautre of the postion, Ian is overshadowed by the higher-profile positions, however Ian has proven to be one of the most key offensive players over the past two seasons. Ian is the type of player I want: leads by actions, not words.”


Austin LePage             Lake Zurich

Opposing quarterbacks threw passes in LePage’s vicinity at their own risk. The junior cornerback certainly had a nose for the ball, and for interceptions. LePage rolled up a school-record 10 interceptions on the season. “Despite being one of the smallest players on the field, Austin’s play makes him one of the biggest players on our defense this year,” Lake Zurich coach Luke Mertens said. “Many teams made a decision to attack Austin through the air and all he did was respond with a school-record of interceptions. He also had 25 tackles. Last year, Austin was the sophomore team quarterback, but he has transitioned seamlessly into the corner position.” LePage was also a punt returner for the Bears this season.


Evan Lewandowski     Lake Zurich

While winning the numbers game, Lewandowski also almost helped Lake Zurich win a state championship. It was a record-breaking year for Lewandowski as he helped the Bears get to the Class 7A state championship game. The senior quarterback, a Class 7A all-state selection, now holds school records for single-game passing yards (320 yards vs. Lake Forest this season), passing yards for a season (2,786 this season), touchdown passes for a season (29 this season), career touchdown passes (42), career passing yards (4,223) and career completions (271). “Evan has re-written the school’s record books,” Lake Zurich coach Luke Mertens said. “In addition to being our starting quarterback and team captain, Evan serves critical roles in our kicking game as our punter and holder for our field goal unit.” Lewandowski averaged about 36 yards a punt, which is second all-time.


Payton Powell             Lake Zurich

Powell was Lake Zurich’s burner, and a favorite target of quarterback Evan Lewandowski. “Having Payton on the field always gave us a deep threat,” Lake Zurich coach Luke Mertens said of his senior wide receiver. “It seemed like whenever we needed a play to be made, Payton made it for us. He flipped the momentum in the Zion-Benton, Warren and St. Rita games with his play-making ability.” Powell had 42 receptions for 781 yards, both team highs. He also hauled in 9 touchdowns, which tied for first on the team. Powell also served as a kick returner for Lake Zurich, averaging 25 yards per return. He also ran in a kickoff return for a touchdown.


Jack Sanborn               Lake Zurich

Sanborn wasn’t just one of the best linebackers in the area, he is being recognized as one of the best in the country. A senior who has committed to play next year at Wisconsin, Sanborn is a Butkus Award Finalist. “That places him as one of the top linebackers in the entire nation,” Lake Zurich coach Luke Mertens said. “He is arguably the best linebacker in school history. He is one of the best examples of what coaches want from student-athletes. He is humble, respectful and always hard-working.” Sanborn, named Class 7A all-state, rolled up more than 100 tackles on the season, with 4 tackles for loss. He also had 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery and 1 blocked kick.


Joey Stutzman             Lake Zurich

Some players are just gamers. They show up to the games, but perhaps they aren’t that serious about practice. Stutzman is a gamer at games, and at practices. “Joey is the heart and soul of our team, both in practice and on game days,” Lake Zurich coach Luke Mertens said. “People always comment to me how hard Joey plays. I wish those same people could watch him practice because he amps it up even more Monday through Thursday.” Stutzman, a senior, rolled up 1,383 total yards as Lake Zurich’s lead running back. He also scored a total of 16 touchdowns on the season. A rare two-way player for Lake Zurich, Stutzman was an impact player at linebacker. He had 40 tackles, 5 for a loss. Also, he had an interception, which he returned for a 13-yard touchdown and a fumble recovery, which he returned for a 61-yard touchdown.



All-area roster


Tabor Alemu               Mundelein       LB        Jr.

Zaire Barnes                Carmel RB/S    Sr.

Brendan Bazar             Libertyville      RB       Sr.

Peter Brewster           Grayslake C.    WR      Sr.

Travis Bronstein          Stevenson       DB       Sr.

Alex Capstick               Stevenson       WR      Sr.

Zach Carter                  Grayslake N.    LB        Jr.

Matthijs Enters           Lake Zurich      TE/LB  Sr.

JM Etienne                  Stevenson       RB       soph.

Ian Fitzgerald              Lake Zurich      OL        Sr.

Branden Gallimore     Antioch            QB       Sr.

Ethan Greenfield        Lakes               RB/LB  Sr.

Andrew Hare              Antioch            DB       Sr.

Jake Johnson               Lakes               QB       Sr.

Micah Jones                Warren            WR      Sr.

Austin LePage             Lake Zurich      DB       Jr.

Evan Lewandowski     Lake Zurich      QB       Sr.

Austin Martineau        Grayslake N.    QB       Jr.

Maema Njongmeta    Stevenson       LB        Jr.

Payton Powell             Lake Zurich      WR      Sr.

Hunter Price                Antioch            FB        Sr.

Ian Schilling                Warren            QB       Sr.

Jack Sanborn               Lake Zurich      LB        Sr.

Charlie Schmidt          Libertyville      OL        Sr.

Joey Stutzman             Lake Zurich      RB/LB  Sr.

Martin Walker, Jr.       Warren            RB       Jr.


Honorable mention:

Lake Zurich LB             Luke Dwyer, jr.,

Lake Zurich LB             Jack Fabbrini, jr.

Lake Zurich OL            Yianni Manousaridis, sr.


Congratulations to our All-Conference players and Honorable Mentions!


Lake Zurich — Ian Fitzgerald (Sr. OL), Evan Lewandowski (Sr. QB), Joey Stutzman (Sr. RB), Matthijs Enters (Sr. TE), Jack Sanborn (Sr. LB), Luke Dwyer (Jr. LB), Austin LePage (Jr. DB), Anthony Mangano (So. DB)


Lake Zurich — Jack Fabbrini (Jr. LB), Payton Powell (Sr. WR), Yianni Manousaridis (Sr. OL)

2018 LZQB Club Board!

Thank you to those who attended last night’s LZQB Club’s Board Elections!

The results are as follows:
Doug Miller – President
Eric Maskalunas – Vice President
Renato Zanichelli – Vice President
Leslie Hill – Treasurer
Jen Grinnip – Secretary

Congratulations to all! The new Board will become effective January 1, 2018.

1018 LZ QB Club Board Elections


If you are interested in running for a board position for the upcoming year (vice-president Sophomore, vice-president junior, president needs one year board experience), please e-mail Dennis Fitzgerald at by Monday, November 13.

The Lake Zurich Quarterback Club needs you!
The LZQB Club is currently accepting applications for Board of Director and committee members for the 2017 season. Elections will be held at the November 17, 2016 meeting being held at LZHS in room 104A.
The Lake Zurich Quarterback Club (LZQBC) is a non- profit parent volunteer organization that supports the needs of the Lake Zurich High School (LZHS) Football Program.


The LZHS Football program has been successful, in not only winning football games but, more importantly, teaching our young men life lessons that will benefit them and their local communities now and into the future. The mission of the Lake Zurich Quarterback Club is to generate resources and support to assist the Lake Zurich High School Football Program.
The Board of Directors is comprised of elected Executive Officers (President and 2 vice presidents) and elected Non–Executive Officers (Secretary and Treasurer). The Board of Directors will have the authority to conduct all LZQBC business, including but not limited to entering into contracts, and receiving and disbursing money on behalf of the LZQBC as dictated by the LZQBC Bylaws.
The President will act as the LZQBC’s chief executive officer, preside at meetings, appoint committees, assure compliance with all elements of the LZQBC Constitution and Bylaws, assure all external compliance requirements are met, and will assure implementation of actions and decisions of the LZQBC Executives.
Vice President(s)
In the President’s absence, the vice president presiding is responsible for coordinating all activities being conducted by the club.  If both Vice Presidents are present, the VP with the non-graduated player in the graduating class closest to present day will be the primary coordinator.  If both VPs are from the same graduating class, then the VP with the most LZQBC experience would be the primary coordinator.

Note from coach Mertens

Sophomore/Varsity Parents,

Welcome to week 8! A much needed return home after 3 tough games on the road.

Practice this week:

  • Monday-Thursday: 3:30pm-6pm
    • Note: due to anticipated weather on Tuesday, practice may end earlier.
  • Saturday: ALL players are to report for 8:30am-11am

Friday (Varsity Dads/Mentors Night):

  • This Friday night we are honoring our varsity dads/mentors.  Varsity dads are invited to attend our pre-game dinner (3:50 in the cafeteria), pre-game meetings (immediately following dinner), and our team walk-in (approximately 7:10pm).
  • Please RSVP to me if you plan on attending dinner.  If only attending meetings and/or the walk-in, then no RSVP is needed.
  • Please consider wearing your son’s white jersey that night.

Saturday (JV Game):

  • We are playing a JV game vs. Libertyville, 9am at home


Joey Stutzman has been nominated by the Chicago Tribune High School Sports Prep editorial team for the COUNTRY Financial Athlete of the Month – October challenge.  It’s all happening NOW and polls are open, so please vote for Joey at this LINK