Northern Star




Northern Star

Northern Illinois University’s student news organization since 1899


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The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

NIU womens basketball teams huddled together to celebrate after Tuesdays match against Lindenwood University. Though viewership has steadily increased, womens sports deserve more coverage. (Ryanne Sandifer | Northern Star)

COLUMN: Women’s sports coverage needs change

By Sana Polizzi, Sports Reporter | December 7, 2023

Even when history is made, women’s sports still fall into the shadow of their counterparts in men’s sports. The 2023 WNBA Finals were the most watched finals for women’s basketball in 20 years, averaging 728,000 views throughout the entire tournament....

Members of NIU Hockey salute the crowd after the teams 5-3 loss to Midland University on Oct. 27. The Huskies have dropped 20 of their 21 games so far this season. (Courtesy of NIU Hockey)

COLUMN: NIU Hockey needs a wake-up call

By Alex Crowe, Assistant Sports Editor | December 6, 2023

DeKALB – If you told me in August that I would be sitting here writing a column about the infuriating ineptitude of NIU Hockey, I probably would have laughed in your face. I would have pointed out how the team is enacting a “new standard” motto...

Senior midfielder Camilo Estrada receives a pass in mens soccers match against Loyola-Chicago on Sept. 26. Despite a loss in the MVC semifinals, heroic performances from the Huskies defense is a building block for the future. (Scott Walstrom | NIU Athletics)

COLUMN: Reviewing men’s soccer’s surprising season

By Kalin Schaefer, Sports Reporter | November 27, 2023

After being eliminated from the MVC Tournament by Western Michigan University, there is a lot to be said about the NIU men’s soccer season.  A season that came with many offensive struggles also saw exceptional defense and goalkeeping. In their...

A graphic shows the logos of each Mid-American Conference school. Sports Reporter Skyler Kisellus jokingly discusses which MAC mascots he could defeat in hand-to-hand combat. (Eddie Miller | Northern Star)

COLUMN: Fighting every MACscot

By Skyler Kisellus, Sports Reporter | November 16, 2023

Throw everything you know about sports rankings out the window. The Associated Press Top 25, March Madness seeding, forget it. Instead, wouldn’t it be infinitely more interesting to see how you, dear reader, would fare in a melee battle against these...

Senior goalkeeper Jakub Rojek protects the net during NIUs mens soccers game against Aurora University on Sept. 4. The Huskies will need Rojek to keep up his strong play in order to make the MVP tournament. (Scott Walstrom | NIU Athletics)

COLUMN: Men’s soccer’s offense must prove itself

By Kalin Schaefer, Sports Reporter | October 23, 2023

After a loss at Western Michigan University and a win at home against Belmont University, NIU men’s soccer has two games left in the regular season.  Looking to end the season with a .500 win percentage, the Huskies (5-7-1, 2-3-1 MVC) are in sixth...

Senior midfielder Eddie Knight (19) dribbles past Auroras defenders, going in for his second goal in the first half on Sept. 4. Knight is tied for the team lead in goals with three. (Nyla Owens | Northern Star)

COLUMN: Men’s soccer entering crucial stretch

By Kalin Schaefer, Sports Reporter | October 16, 2023

After a disappointing start to the season, it appears that the tide is turning for the NIU men’s soccer team.  Winning the first game of the season against Western Illinois University seemed to be a promising start, but the Huskies then went on...

Freshman forward Jeff Shirkey battles for the puck against a Kent State defender on Sept.15. The Huskies have struggled to open the season, losing their first eight games. (Courtesy of NIU Hockey)

COLUMN: How NIU Hockey can turn its season around

By Alex Crowe, Assistant Sports Editor | October 11, 2023

To say the start of the 2023-2024 season has been a disappointment is a massive understatement for NIU Hockey, who have yet to win a game with a quarter of the season in the books. A season that began with so much optimism – due to the eight new...

Junior running back Antario Brown (1) attempts to run the ball while getting his shirt pulled by Southern Illinois senior linebacker Zach Burrola (10) during the Huskies game against Southern Illinois University on Sept. 9. (Nyla Owens | Northern Star)

COLUMN: Takeaways from NIU football’s blowout win

By Zachary Bertram, Senior Sports Reporter | October 11, 2023

DeKALB – NIU football (2-4, 1-1 MAC) earned its first win since the season opener at Boston College with a 55-14 rout of the University of Akron Zips on Saturday. The Huskies offense exploded for eight touchdowns and 571 total yards.  “We’re...

The Chicago Blackhawks logo and the Toronto Maple Leafs logo are split down the middle. Assistant Sports Editor Alex Crowe and Sports Reporter Sana Polizzi debate which of the two franchises is currently moving in a better direction. (Ria Pathak | Northern Star)

Look Both Ways: Are the Leafs a better franchise than the Blackhawks?

By Sana Polizzi and Alex Crowe | October 4, 2023

THE TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS ARE THE BETTER TEAM By: Sana Polizzi The Toronto Maple Leafs are better than the Chicago Blackhawks. During the 2022-2023 season, the Leafs were the superior team with almost twice as many wins as the Blackhawks. Toronto...

Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields (1) runs the football while Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Trent McDuffie (22) attempts to tackle him on Sunday in Kansas City. Sports Reporter Eddie Miller details how the Bears can recover from a 0-3 start to the 2023 season. (Charlie Riedel | Associated Press)

COLUMN: Bears in need of answers amid horrid start

By Eddie Miller, Sports Reporter | September 29, 2023

Starting the year 0-3, the Chicago Bears have fallen to be one of the worst – if not, the worst – teams in the NFL. Given the circumstances, it is nearly impossible for the organization to turn this season around, but there are some viable options.  Coming...

NIU junior defensive specialist/libero Jada Cerniglia serves the ball during a Sept. 8 match against DePaul University during the DePaul Invitational at McGrath-Phillips Arena in Chicago. Cerniglia has nine service aces on the 2023 season, tied for second place on the Huskies. (Tim Dodge | Northern Star)

COLUMN: In defense of NIU volleyball

By Skyler Kisellus, Sports Reporter | September 19, 2023

Two wins, 10 losses and rock bottom in the MAC standings. Not a great start to a season by any stretch of the imagination.  That is where the NIU volleyball team stands through 12 matches, all against non-conference competition. This column was...

Quarterback Ethan Hampton looks for an open receiver to pass to during a play in the second quarter of the Huskies matchup against the Rockets on Sept. 30, 2022 at Huskie Stadium. (Marco Sotelo Avila | Northern Star)

COLUMN: Run game and defense issues remain

By Zachary Bertram, Senior Sports Reporter | September 18, 2023

DeKALB – NIU football (1-2) was a step slow in all three facets of the game in its 35-11 loss against the University of Nebraska Cornhuskers (1-2) Saturday. The Huskies offense was the most glaring issue, totaling just 149 scrimmage yards. The defense...