Northfield New Trier West HS “Cowboys”

New Trier West High School
Northfield, IL

The History of New Trier West High School

Northfield (population: 5,389) is located 17 miles north of downtown Chicago, a few miles inland from Lake Michigan in Cook County. The community is small in land mass (only 2.8 square miles), but has grown since its’ incorporation in 1927 when it was known as Wau Bun (which is an Indian word for “Dawn,” to remember a Pottawatomi Indian chief who camped in the area around the late 1700’s). The name change to Northfield came that same year when an electric utility inventor by the name of Samuel Insull built a railroad station in the village called Northfield, and the residents there adopted that name for the community to show their proximity to Chicago.

The roots of Northfield go back to around 1850 when Mary Young and two of her daughters settled in farm land that was surrounded by swamps, due in part to the Skokie Lagoons & the middle fork branch of the Chicago River. Because of the difficulty of families trying to get to and from church services in neighboring communities or to the Lake Michigan beachfront, the early settlers of Northfield were called “river folks” as they had to travel thru the swampy land. Family names such as Donovan, Brachtendorf, and Metz began moving to the area as early as 1855, along with blacksmith John Happ from Winnetka when the railroad’s creation there led to a decrease in business.

Northfield grew from 320 residents in 1930 to its’ present-day total of 5,389 in 2000, with most of those folks coming in the 1950’s as the Edens Expressway (Interstate 94) was built. In addition to the Edens, US 41, Happ Road, Willow Road, the Tri-State Tollway (I-294), along with rail service from Amtrak & Metra help people come and go into the community. Northfield is known for its variety of homes to the park districts that serve the community, and over half of the homes are situated on one-acre lots, which still allows for property owners to have horses on their land inside the community.

The academic history of the community is believed to be that it has been tied to the New Trier district, based in Winnetka which opened in 1901. Due to an enrollment of over 4,000 at New Trier High School in 1962, voters approved the purchase of bonds to purchase 46 acres in Northfield for a second high school in Northfield, which would open in 1967. Freshmen and sophomores began to attend New Trier West in 1965 before the new building was built, as the school built up its enrollment in an effort to become a four-year school by the time the first class graduated in 1968.

New Trier West stayed open as a four-year institution until 1981, when the school board decided to merge New Trier East & West together, due to decreasing enrollments. It was decided to use the Northfield campus for freshmen only, while the remainder of the student body was at the Winnetka campus. This arrangement lasted thru 1985, when the enrollment continued to drop and allowed all students to be in just one building. The New Trier West building was turned into a community recreation center, and also served as a senior center, a dormitory for corporate business (such as Kraft Foods, who is headquartered in Northfield), a public swimming pool, and an alternative high school. However, the enrollment downswing turned around and in 2001, the building returned to being a freshmen-only campus for New Trier High School. It also houses the administrative offices for the New Trier school district.


Year opened:                             1965

Building opened:                        1967

First class graduated:                 1968

Last four-year class graduated:    1981

Now used as:                             Freshmen attendance center for New Trier HS

School colors:                            Blue & White

School nickname:                       the “Cowboys”

School song:                              FIGHT COWBOYS, FIGHT!

Submitted by BRIAN RICE


Fight cowboys fight, Fight on for Blue and Gray,

Fight Cowboys fight, Our team will lead the way,

Join in cheers for our school, proud we’ll always be,

Loyal sons of New Trier, making History,

Fight Cowboys do your best bringing honor to New Trier West.


Being that the school sits in a part of Cook County that is known for its wealth, New Trier West offered nearly every sport and extra-curricular activity that the IHSA offered a state title. In this writers’ opinion, if the IHSA offered a state championship in tiddlewinks, New Trier West would have had a team for that, too.

On the boys’ side, basketball, wrestling, swimming, football, tennis, track, cross-country, golf, and soccer were offered, while it had badminton, field hockey, track, tennis, swimming, and track for the girls. The school also had teams in chess, debate, and speech that also excelled.

We feel that there had to been teams in baseball, volleyball, and softball, but there was no information found on the IHSA website ( or thru a publication written by 1968 West graduate Mark Braun that chronicled the history of the school’s athletic department at the following address: If you have information, please contact us at the addresses listed below.


Without question, one of the biggest strengths at either New Trier West or East was their outstanding swimming and diving programs. Eight teams came home with top 10 finishes at the state finals & there were a number of tankmen that competed in the final event of their speciality that brought home medals. Andy Veris came home with six individual medals, three of which were for being State Champion.

1966             Dave Lopater             100 breaststroke—6th place


1967             Relay Team               200 medley relay—6th place

                    Byron McDonald        100 butterfly—5th place

Dave Lopater             100 breaststroke—6th place

1968           8th in State            Coach Jim Spreitzer

                    State Final Team Standings

1   Hinsdale Central                       191

2   Winnetka New Trier East           136

3   Evanston Township                   127.5

4   Dolton Thornridge                     110

5   Moline HS                                 83

6   Peoria Richwoods                      81

7   Rock Island HS                         69

                    8   Northfield New Trier West       52  

9   Skokie Niles East                      43

10   Danville HS                                34


                    Relay & Individual Placers

Team Relay               200 medley relay—3rd place

                    Byron McDonald       100 butterfly—2nd place


**Bryon McDonald went on to the University of Michigan and swam.  More notably, he swam in the 1972 Olympics in Munich against Mark SpitzByron swam for team Canada and took 6th in the 100m Butterfly finals!!


1972           6th in State            Coach Jim Spreitzer

                    State Final Team Standings

1   Hinsdale Central                     213

2   Peoria Richwoods                   115

3   Winnetka New Trier East           99

Evanston Township                   99

5   LaGrange Lyons                       80

                     6   Northfield New Trier West      72  

                     7   Rockford Guilford                      59

8   South Holland Thornwood          38

9   Moline HS                                36

10   Deerfield                                   27


Relay & Individual Placers

Team Relay               200 medley relay—5th place

Team Relay               400 freestyle relay—6th place

Andy Veris                 200 freestyle—4th place

400 freestyle—4th place

1973           5th in State            Coach Jim Spreitzer

                    District Champions

                     State Final Team Standings

1   Hinsdale Central                     215

2   South Holland Thornwood          89

3   LaGrange Lyons                       88

4   Moline HS                                81

                      5   Northfield New Trier West      75  

                      6   Winnetka New Trier East           70

7   Peoria Richwoods                     66

8   Rockford Guilford                      49

9   Arlington Heights St. Viator       40

10   Evanston Township                   36


Relay & Individual Placers

Team Relay              400 freestyle relay—4th place

Andy Veris               200 freestyle—STATE CHAMPION!!! (Time: 1:43.368)

                    Andy Veris               400 freestyle—STATE CHAMPION!!! (Time: 3:42.749)

1974           5th in State           Coach Jim Spreitzer

                   State Final Team Standings

                    1   Hinsdale Central                     239

2   Winnetka New Trier East           92

3   LaGrange Lyons                       82

4   Arlington Heights St. Viator       77

                    5   Northfield New Trier West      61  

                    6   Peoria Richwoods                     58

Moline HS                               58

8   Rock Island HS                        56

9   Peoria Central                          40

10   Dolton Thornridge                     35

Relay & Individual Placers

Team Relay              400 freestyle relay—4th place

Bob Chandler             50 freestyle—5th place

Andy Veris              500 freestyle—STATE CHAMPION!!! (Time: 4:47.164)

Andy Veris               200 freestyle—2nd place

1975           6th in State           Coach Jim Spreitzer

                   State Final Team Standings

1   Hinsdale Central                   307

2   Oak Park Fenwick                  86

3   Winnetka New Trier East         79

4   Moline HS                              74

5   Evanston Township                 73

                    6   Northfield New Trier West    62  

                    7   Rockford Guilford                    57

8   LaGrange Lyons                     56

9   Springfield HS                        36

10   Harvey Thornton                      34

Dolton Thornridge                   34


Relay & Individual Placers

Team Relay             400 freestyle relay—5th place (Time: 3:18.711)

(Chandler, Fischer, Iida, O’Donnell)

Pete Fischer           50 freestyle—STATE CHAMPION!!! (Time: 21.621 seconds)

Pete Fischer           100 freestyle—5th place (Time: 48.588)

Bart Day                 100 breastroke—6th place (Time: 1:30.703)


1978           Tied for 7th in State           Coach Jim Spreitzer

                    State Final Team Standings

1   Hinsdale Central                  190

2   Oak Park Fenwick               120

3   St. Charles HS                      73

4   Winnetka New Trier East        61

5   Mt. Prospect Prospect           52

6   Wilmette Loyola                    39

7   Rockford Guilford                   34

                          Northfield New Trier West   34  

9   Darien Hinsdale South            31

10   Oak Park-River Forest            30


                    Relay & Individual Placers

Team Relay            200 medley relay—2nd place (Time: 1:40.16)


1979           6th in State           Coach Jim Spreitzer

                    State Final Team Standings

1   St. Charles HS                      169

2   Hinsdale Central                      88

3   Winnetka New Trier East          67

4   Darien Hinsdale South              59

5   Moline HS                               57

                     6   Northfield New Trier West     55  

7   Oak Park Fenwick                   51

8   Evanston Township                  48

9   Quincy Senior                         46

10   Arlington Heights Arlington       34


                    Relay & Individual Placers   

Team Relay           200 medley relay—5th place (Time: 1:41.031)

(Peter Gavin, Kevin Malak, Steve Nichols, Russell Young )

Team Relay            400 freestyle relay—5th place (Time: 3:15.063)

(Mike Leonhardt, Steve Nichols, Robert Shatkin, Russell Young)

Russell Young        100 butterfly—6th place (time: 53.190)


1980           3rd in State           Coach Bruce Woodbury 

                    District Champions

                     State Final Team Standings

1   St. Charles HS                           165

2   Hinsdale Central                         114

                      3   Northfield New Trier West          68  

4   Naperville North                            67

5   Decatur MacArthur                       66

6   Evanston Township                       62

7   Winnetka New Trier East               53

8   Arlington Heights Arlington            39

9   Schaumburg HS                           38

10   Darien Hinsdale South                   36


                     Relay & Individual Placers

Team Relays           200 medley relay—6th place (Time: 1:41.74)

(Paul Connolly, Maurey Dwarkin, Mike Leonhardt, Kevin Malak)

400 free relay—3rd place (Time: 3:15.39)

(Jim Byrne, Mike Leonhardt, Steve Nichols, Rob Shatkin)

Steve Nichols          200 Individual Medley—5th place (Time: 2:00.94)

Mike Leonhardt       100 freestyle—6th place (Time: 47.89)


If you want to talk about dynasties, then look no further than the golf program at New Trier West. The Cowboys were among the state’s top ten schools seven times in 10 years, and placed two individuals among the top 10 medalists,

1969               Tied for 5th in State                     Coach Tom Timmis

                        District Champions

                         State Final Standings

1   Belleville West                      628

2   St. Charles HS                     630

3   Joliet West                           633

4   Homewood-Flossmoor           634

5   Galesburg HS                       639

                               Northfield New Trier West  639  

                          7   Champaign Central                646

8   Glen Ellyn Glenbard West      647

Freeport HS                          647

Park Ridge Maine East          647


                        Individual Medalist

                        Lee Gurley tied for 15th in state (156 score)


1970               Tied for 7th in State                    Coach Tom Timmis

                        District Champions

                         State Final Standings

1   Homewood-Flossmoor          618

2   Belleville West                     628

Waukegan HS                     628

4   Galesburg HS                      629

Champaign Central               629

Joliet West                          629

                          7   Northfield New Trier West  630  

Park Ridge Maine East         630

9   Quincy Senior                      632

10   Dixon HS                             634


                        Individual Medalist

                          Phil Kenny tied for 8th (152 score)


1971               6th in State                                  Coach Mel Sheets

                        District Champions

State Finals Standings

                         1   Belleville West                       600

2   Quincy Senior                        610

3   Champaign Central                 612

Galesburg HS                        612

5   Homewood-Flossmoor            616

                         6   Northfield New Trier West   621  

7   Addison Trail                         629

8   Deerfield                               630

9   Springfield HS                       631

10   Mt. Prospect Prospect           633


                         Individual Medalist

                           Phil Kenny second overall

                            (144 score, one stroke behind Gary Ostrega of Bensenville Fenton)


1972               2nd in State!!!                               Coach Mel Sheets

                        District Champions

                        Sectional Champions

                         State Finals Standings

1   Galesburg HS                          603

                         2   Northfield New Trier West      607  

                         3   Northbrook Glenbrook North      613

Pekin                                      613

5   Belleville West                         616

6   Urbana HS                               618

Naperville HS                           618

8   Lombard Glenbard East            619

9   Homewood-Flossmoor             621

10   Kankakee McNamara              622

Rockford Guilford                    622


                        Individual Medalist

                         Robert Beaudine tied for 15th in state (151 score)  


1974               Individual Medalist

                           Jeff Bruce tied for seventh (158 score)


1975 (sprg)     District Champions                      Coach Mel Sheets      


1975 (fall)       4th in AA State                           Coach Mel Sheets

                        State Final Standings

1   Rockford Guilford                  638

2   Belleville West                      640

3   Mundelein Carmel                 649

                        4   Northfield New Trier West  655  

5   Aurora West                         656

Hinsdale Central                   656

7   Skokie Niles North                661

Decatur MacArthur                661

9   Chicago Heights Bloom         668

10   Lisle Benet                           670

Homewood-Flossmoor          670



1976               3rd in AA State                           Coach Mel Sheets

                        State Final Standings

1   Mt. Prospect Prospect           632

2   Homewood-Flossmoor            637  

                        3   Northfield New Trier West   644  

4   Naperville North                      646

5   Buffalo Grove                         649

6   Lombard Glenbard East          650

7   Joliet West                            652

8   Hillside Proviso West             653

9   New Lenox Lincoln-Way         655

10  Quincy Senior                        662  


                       Individual Medalist

                         Jeff Bruce tied for 10th in state (158 score—six strokes back)


1977               9th in AA State                           Coach Mel Sheets

                        State Final Standings
1   Winnetka New Trier East       616

                         2   Palatine Fremd                     620

3   McHenry                              625

4   Moline HS                            626

5   Freeport HS                         628

6   Hinsdale Central                   633

7   Springfield Griffin                   635

8   Homewood-Flossmoor           637

9   Northfield New Trier West  639  

10   Franklin Park East Leyden     645


                       Individual Medalist

                       Jeff Bruce tied for 13th in state (154 score)


NT West’s tennis team was a contender for the state title, year-in and year-out, from the time that the IHSA offered a state tournament until the school closed its doors, and they didn’t close until they won the state championship in the school’s final year of existance.

1972              Individual Medalists               Coach Vivian Frazier

Sue Graham                                  singles—STATE CHAMP!!!

                       Mary Brower & Kathy Karzen         doubles—2nd place

1973              2nd in STATE!!!                      Coach Vivian Frazier

                       State Final Team Standings

                        1   Oak Park-River Forest              17

                        2   Northfield New Trier West     12  

                        3   Hinsdale Central                      10

4   Lake Forest HS                         9

Winnetka New Trier East           9

6   Rock Island HS                         8

South Holland Thornwood          8

Aurora West                             8

9   Arlington Heights Arlington         7

10   Dixon HS                                  6

                       Individual Medalists

                        Kathy Karzen                                 singles—2nd place

                        Donna Crane & Debbie Mautner    doubles—5th place


1974              4th in State                            Coach Vivian Frazier

                       State Final Team Standings

1   Oak Park-River Forest           19

2   Hinsdale Central                   14

3   Rock Island HS                    12

                        4   Northfield New Trier West    9  

                        5   Aurora West                          8

Winnetka New Trier East        8

7   Kankakee Eastridge               5

Park Forest Rich East            5

Lake Forest HS                     5

Barrington                              5


                        Individual Medalists

                         Kathy Karzen                                 singles—2nd place

                         Colette Bennett                              singles—3rd place


1975              3rd in State                            Coach Vivian Frazier

                       District Champions

                        State Final Team Standings

1   Oak Park-River Forest            17

2   Rock Island HS                     10

3   Northfield New Trier West     9  

4   Hinsdale Central                      6

Crystal Lake HS                      6

Aurora West                           6

Barrington                              6

Evanston Township                 6

9   Lake Forest HS                      5

10   Elmhurst York                        4

Wheaton-Warrenville               4

Park Forest Rich East             4  

                             Winnetka New Trier East         4

                             Oak Lawn Community             4


                        Individual Medalist

                         Colette Bennett                              singles—2nd place   

1976              Tied for 7th in State                     Coach Vivian Frazier

                        District Champions

                         State Final Team Standings

                          1   Hinsdale Central                    14

2   Winnetka New Trier East         9

Crystal Lake HS                     9

4   Lake Forest HS                      7

5   Arlington Heights Arlington       6

Lincolnshire Stevenson            6

7   Oak Lawn Community             5

                               Northfield New Trier West    5  

                               Peoria Richwoods                   5

Elmhurst York                        5


1979              4th in State                                  Coach Vivian Frazier

                       State Final Team Standings

                        1   Hinsdale Central                    19.5

2   Lincolnshire Stevenson           15.5

3   Winnetka New Trier East        13.5

                        4   Northfield New Trier West   13  

5   Galesburg HS                        12.5

6   Park Ridge Maine East             8.5

Lisle Benet                              8.5

8   Rockford Guilford                      8

9   Sterling HS                              6.5

Springfield HS                          6.5

                       Individual Medalists

                        Mary DeBartolo & Cathy Van Pelt   doubles—4th place


1980              STATE CHAMPIONS!!!                  Coach Vivian Frazier

                       District Champions

                        State Final Team Standings

                         1   Northfield New Trier West     20.5 

                         2   Hinsdale Central                      19

3   Barrington                               10

4   Lisle Benet                               9

Galesburg HS                           9

6   Homewood-Flossmoor               8

Libertyville                                8

8   Northbrook Glenbrook North       7

Arlington Heights Arlington         7

10   Chicago Mather                         6.5


                        Individual Medalists

                         Maeve Quinlan                           singles—2nd place

                         Mary DeBartolo & Lisa Gollub    doubles—3rd place

                         Carrie Bruce & Debbie Wise      doubles—5th place 


In only five years of IHSA-sponsored competition, New Trier West wound up with a top 10 finish at the state finals four times, on the strength of their doubles play. As you can tell, four teams wound up in the quarterfinals at state.

1977               4th in State                                  Coach Flo Malizola

              District Champions

                         State Final Team Standings

                          1   Arlington Heights Arlington        23

2   Oak Lawn Community               19.5

3   Winnetka New Trier East           14

                          4   Northfield New Trier West        9.5

                          5   Mt. Prospect Prospect                8

Orland Park Sandburg                 8

7   Riverside-Brookfield                     7

Elmhurst York                            7

9   Oak Park-River Forest                 6

Carol Stream Glenbard North       6


1978               Tied for 9th in State                         Coach Flo Malizola

                        District Champions

                         State Final Team Standings

                          1   Arlington Heights Arlington          19

2   Park Ridge Maine South             12

3   Deerfield                                    11

4   Winnetka New Trier East            10

5   Hinsdale Central                          8

6   Elmhurst York                             7

7   Homewood-Flossmoor                  6.5

8   Mt. Prospect Prospect                 6

9   Rolling Meadows                         5.5

Waukegan East                          5.5 

                               Northfield New Trier West         5.5 

                               Palatine HS                                5.5


1979              Tied for 6th in State                         Coach Flo Malizola

                        State Final Team Standings

                         1   Arlington Heights Arlington       19

2   Deerfield                                 14.5

3   Winnetka New Trier East          10.5

4   Palatine HS                              9.5

Riverside-Brookfield                   9.5

                         6   Northfield New Trier West      7  

Elmhurst York                          7

8   Oak Forest                               6.5

9   Waukegan East                        6

Springfield Sacred Heart            6

Chicago Lourdes                       6

Burbank Reavis                         6

Barrington                                 6


                         Individual Medalists

                         Dede Alstrom & Emily Kirsch        doubles—5th place


1980               Individual Medalists                        Coach Flo Malizola

                        Sara Lenhart & Stefanie Nelson    doubles—3rd place


1981               6th in State                                     Coach Flo Malizola 

                        District Champions

                         State Final Team Standings

                          1   Arlington Heights Arlington       17.5

2   Elmhurst York                         13

Winnetka New Trier East         13

4   Deerfield                                 11

5   Oak Park-River Forest              10.5

                          6   Northfield New Trier West       9.5 

7   Palos Heights Shepard               7.5

8   Palatine HS                               7

Oak Lawn Community                7

10   Oak Lawn Richards                    6.5

Hinsdale Central                        6.5


                         Individual Medalists

                          Anne DiCesare & Kathryn Scannell   doubles—4th place

                          Shannon Wilson & Carrie Bruce        doubles—5th place



The Cowboys had just one coach in their school’s history and it was under Mel Sheets’ tutelage that New Trier West succeeded as one of the state’s better class AA schools, especially from 1977-80 with four consecutive trips to the Sweet 16. NT West compiled a record of 228-131 (.635 percentage) in the 15 years it was open as a separate school from New Trier East.

1966-67   6-  9  first season                                     Coach Mel Sheets

1967-68 11-  9                                                         Coach Mel Sheets

1968-69 16-  5                                                         Coach Mel Sheets

1969-70   9-11                                                         Coach Mel Sheets

1970-71 13-11                                                         Coach Mel Sheets

1971-72   8-13                                                         Coach Mel Sheets

1972-73 14-10                                                         Coach Mel Sheets

1973-74 18-  8                                                         Coach Mel Sheets

1974-75 15-  7                                                         Coach Mel Sheets

1975-76 14-  8                                                         Coach Mel Sheets

1976-77 21-  6  AA Elite Eight Finalists                   Coach Mel Sheets

                          AA Regional Champions                          

                           Waukegan East AA Sectional Champions

                            Evanston Supersectional Winner

                             Defeated Chicago Gordon Tech, 69-55

                              Elite Eight Finalist

                               Lost to Springfield Lanphier in state quarterfinals, 62-59


1977-78 28- 3   AA Elite Eight Finalist                   Coach Mel Sheets

                          AA Regional Champions

                           Waukegan East AA Sectional Champions

                            Evanston Supersectional Winner

                             Defeated Chicago Gordon Tech, 77-63

                              Lost to Collinsville in state quarterfinals, 7156


1978-79 23- 5   AA Sweet Sixteen Qualifiers        Coach Mel Sheets 

                          AA Regional Champions             

                           Waukegan East AA Sectional Champions

                            Lost to Maine South in Evanston Supersectional, 65-64

(Maine South eventual AA champions)


1979-80 25- 4   AA Sweet Sixteen Qualifiers       Coach Mel Sheets

                          AA Regional Champions             

                           Waukegan East AA Sectional Champions

                           Lost to Chicago Gordon Tech in Evanston Supersectional, 58-51

1980-81 11-12  Last season                                   Coach Mel Sheets


For the first four years that the IHSA offered a state tournament, the Cowboys were there to contend for the title three times, bringing home one title along with a second place finish, and advancing to the final four in a third tournament under legendary coach Robert “Sandy” Swan.


1972 16- 1-1   2nd in State!!                            Coach Robert “Sandy” Swan

                       District Champions

                        Sectional Champions

                         Final Four Qualifier

                          Defeated LaGrange Lyons in semifinals, 3-2 in overtime

Lost to Granite City in championship match, 2-1 in two OT

1973               District Champions                     Coach Robert “Sandy” Swan

1974 18- 3-1   STATE CHAMPIONS!!!               Coach Robert “Sandy” Swan

                       Sectional Champions

                        Elite Eight Qualifier

                         Defeated Granite City North in quarterfinals, 2-0

                          Edged Chicago Quigley South in semifinals, 3-2                

                          Shutout Wheaton Central, 1-0 in four OT of title match


1975 16- 4     Final Four in State!!                   Coach Robert “Sandy” Swan

                       Sectional Champions

                        Elite Eight Qualifier

                         Defeated Villa Park Willowbrook in quarterfinals, 1-0

                          Edged by Hinsdale Central in semifinals, 2-1


New Trier West not only hosted the first IHSA field hockey championships in 1975, but they were also one of the top teams in the state in subsequent seasons by winning a state title and finishing second in the six-year history of the IHSA offering a state championship.

1976   14- 2   STATE CHAMPIONS!!!     Coach Jane McNamara

                     Sectional Champions

                      Edged Farmer City-Mansfield 3-2 in quarterfinals (penalty shots)

                      Shutout Barrington in semifinals, 1-0

                       Blanked Edwardsville in championship match, 3-0


1977    8- 6    2ND IN STATE!!!               Coach Frances Camp

                     Sectional Champions

                      Edged Edwardsville in quarterfinals, 2-1 (penalty shots)

                      Shutout Farmer City-Mansfield 1-0 in semifinal

                       Lost to Schaumberg in title match, 3-0 (penalty shots)    


During the late 1960’s and early ‘70s, the Cowboys made their name by placing in the state’s top 10 twice, and Jerry Karzen took second in singles in consecutive years. We would like to find out more about the NTW netters, and hope that an alumnus or interested fan will contact us with additional details.

1968-69            Tied for 8th in State                 Coach John Schneiter

                          State Final Standings

1   Oak Park-River Forest          8

2   Hinsdale Central                  7

Winnetka New Trier East      7

4   Ottawa Township                 6

Rock Island HS                   6

6   Evanston Township              5

Libertyville                          5

8  Arlington Heights Arlington    4

Peoria Richwoods                4

Northfield New Trier West  4  


                           Individual Medalist

Jerry Karzen         Singles—2nd in State!!

1969-70            District Champions                 Coach John Schneiter

Individual Medalist

Jerry Karzen          Singles—2nd in State!!

1970-71            7th in State                            Coach John Schneiter

                          State Final Standings

1   Oak Park-River Forest           14

2   Hinsdale Central                   12

3   Highland Park                       10

4   Ottawa Township                    9

Winnetka New Trier East         9

6   Evanston Township                 8

7   Peoria Richwoods                   7

                                Northfield New Trier West    7  

                           9   Rockford West                       6

Sterling HS                            6


Individual Medalists

Rick Fink & Brad Spak    Doubles—tied for 5th in State

 Jerry Karzen                    Singles—tied for 5th in State     


The Cowboy swimming program’s successes were not limited to the boys…in fact, the girls also made some waves at the state meet with some medals won and a top 10 finish in the team standings one season. Even before the IHSA sponsored a state meet, NTW’s girls took third in the 1971 state postal meet behind Evergreen Park & Moline.

1975           Individual Medalist

                     Karen Askey—2nd place—500 freestyle


1979 (Feb.) Individual Medalist

                     Barb LeBuhn—6th in 100-yard backstroke


1979 (Nov.) Tied for 6th in State                    Coach Bruce Woodbury

                     State Final Team Standings

                      1    Hinsdale Central                          178

2    Winnetka New Trier East              157

3    Joliet West                                    91

4    Wheaton St. Francis                      62

5    St. Charles HS                              45

6    Northbrook Glenbrook North            44

                            Northfield New Trier West           44  

8    Macomb                                       42

Glenview Glenbrook South             42

10    Evanston Township                        35

                     Relay Medalist

                      200-yard Medley Relay—6th place


1980            Individual Medalist

                      Grier McCurdy—5th place—100 freestyle


Not to be forgotten, but the Cowboy wrestlers also had something to show for their winters of work in the gym as they had five tanglers win medals, one of which was for being a state champion. Outside of the two season records listed below along with the state medalists, very little is known.



1972                  Mickey Rossetti      105 pounds—5th place

1974AA              Mickey Rossetti      112 pounds—3rd place

1976AA              Lee Goldsmith        105 pounds—STATE CHAMPION!!!

1977AA              Lee Goldsmith        112 pounds—5th place

1978AA    8-12                                                Coach Chuck Rossetti

Individual Medalist

                          Steve Rosenstein   132 pounds—5th place  

1979         9-11                                                Coach Chuck Rossetti


The Cowboys were competitive in the Central Suburban League while they were a member of the conference, winning two titles under long-time coach Bob Naughton. The best seasons in school history are listed below.

1966            First season                                           Coach Bob Malinsky

1967-68                                                                     Coach Bob Naughton

1969 4-4                                                                    Coach Bob Naughton

1970 8-0     Central Suburban League Champs        Coach Bob Naughton

1972 7-0-1  Cent. Suburb. League No. Champs        Coach Bob Naughton

1977 6-3                                                                    Coach Bob Naughton

1980            Last season                                           Coach Bob Naughton


New Trier West was competitive along with a number of other Chicagoland schools that offered gymnastics, sending several individuals to the state finals and coming back home with some medals after the scores were posted.


1973   Larry Pattis                 free exercise—3rd place

1974   Brewster McFarland   trampoline—tied for 5th place

1975   John Corritore            parallel bars—4th place

1975   Brewster McFarland   trampoline—3rd place

1980   Mike Ehrlich               floor exercise—tied for 5th place


New Trier West made their mark on the cinder tracks of the state and brought home medals against the best in Illinois at the state finals. Even in its final year, one athlete representing the school brought home a medal from Charleston for New Trier West, which was the Cowboys’ best finish ever at state.


1967        Jeff Morrison            pole vault—4th place

1968        Tom Langston          440-yd dash—4th place

1971        Relay                        880-yd relay—5th place

1971        Chris Standefer       220-yd dash—6th place

1976AA   Jim Prine                 long jump—8th place

1977AA   Jim Prine                 long jump—4th place

1977AA   Phil Darrow              1-mile run—8th place

1977AA   Rob Savage             2-mile run—7th place

1981AA   Jeff Lande                300-meter hurdles—3rd place


New Trier West’s harriers made a name for themselves in the northern suburbs of Chicagoland as they won three district titles in four years. Very little is known about the program outside of the information we found on the IHSA website.

1970 District Champions     Coach Jerry Kates

1971 District Champions     Coach Jerry Kates

1973 District Champions     Coach Jerry Parsons


The NT West lady tracksters did compete for the blue and white, although there is very little information known about their program history. According to the IHSA website, we are aware that one athlete did medal at the state meet in the school’s final year.


1981AA     Ann Fisher             400-meter dash—5th place


The New Trier West Fencing team in the 1977/78 season was runner-up ( 2nd place in state ). Thank you to Brian Rice for this bit of information!

1977-78       Team Placed 2nd At State Meet!

                   Individual Medalists

                   Tom Rice       3rd in Epee

                   Larry Cohen   6th in Foil.


New Trier West could argue with the best of them and made their cases compelling enough to win two state titles, two seconds, a fourth, and a fifth at the state finals over a nine-year period. Mike Shepard was a medalist as a debate champion in consecutive years, even though he was paired with different partners each time.

1968-69         STATE CHAMPIONS!!!   Coach Bill Sanders

                       State Final Team Standings

                        1   Northfield New Trier West       11-1  

2   Peoria Richwoods                      10-2

3   Arlington Heights Arlington           9-3

4   Highland Park

5   Oak Lawn Richards


                      Individual Medalists

                        Lawrence Kahn-Mike Shepard   Debate Champions!!


1969-70         STATE CHAMPIONS!!!   Coach Bill Sanders

                       State Final Team Standings

                        1   Northfield New Trier West        8-0  

2   Winnetka New Trier East

3   Park Forest Rich East

4   Chicago University

5   Highland Park                            


                        Individual Medalists

                         Mike Shepard-Bruce Wolfson    Debate Champions!!


1970-71         2nd in State!!!                    Coach Bill Sanders

                       State Final Team Standings

1   Evanston Township

                        2   Northfield New Trier West             

3   Evanston Township

4   Homewood-Flossmoor

5   Freeport HS

1973-74         2nd in State!!!                    Coach Bill Sanders

State Final Team Standings

1   Homewood-Flossmoor

2   Northfield New Trier West                 


1975-76         4th in State                        Coach Bill Sanders

                       State Final Team Standings

1   Dolton Thornridge

2   Glenview Glenbrook South

3   Wheaton North                          

                        4   Northfield New Trier West             

5   Winnetka New Trier East

1976-77         5th in State                        Coach Bill Sanders

                       State Final Team Standings

1   Lake Forest HS

2   Skokie Niles West

3   Wheaton North

Winnetka New Trier East

                        5   Northfield New Trier West 


Score not one, not two, but three top two finishes and a state title to boot for the Cowboys. The school certainly knew its way around the chess board, but names of team members are unknown.

1975AA         2nd in State                           Coach Bob Koonze

                       State Final Team Standings

1   Winnetka New Trier East

                        2   Northfield New Trier West   


1977AA         Tied for 2nd in State             Coach Bob Koonze

                        State Final Team Standings

1   Chicago Lane

2   Downers Grove South

Chicago St. Patrick                   

                              Northfield New Trier West             

1979AA         CO-STATE CHAMPIONS!!!       Coach Bob Koonze

                       State Final Team Standings

                       1   Northfield New Trier West   5.5, 45.0  

1   Evanston Township                5.5, 43.5

3   Hillside Proviso West             5.0, 39.5

Homewood-Flossmoor           5.0, 46.0

Granite City South                 5.0, 36.0

6   Chicago Carver                      4.5, 43.5

Riverside-Brookfield               4.5, 40.0

8   Chicago Lane                        4.0, 38.5

Edwardsville HS                    4.0, 39.0

Downers Grove North             4.0, 41.5


The NTW Speech and Drama Department was responsible in having a competitive speech program, placing in the top five of the state finals in consecutive years. One individual wound up third twice in their event as Allen Ury made them laugh in the Original Comedy category.  Linda Oddo (NTW alumnae) advises that the coach of this accomplished program was, through 1977, Mr. Bill Sanders.

1969              Tied for 4th in State          Coach Bill Sanders

                       State Final Team Standings

1   Homewood-Flossmoor               14

2   Bensenville Fenton                    13

Peoria Richwoods                     13

4   Wheaton Central                       10

Northfield New Trier West       10  

Arlington Heights Arlington         10

Dolton Thornridge                      10

8   Highland Park                             9

9   Chicago St. Ignatius                    8

Berwyn Morton West                   8

1970               SECOND IN STATE!!       Coach Bill Sanders

                        State Final Team Standings

                         1   Dolton Thornridge                   26

2   Northfield New Trier West    13  

3   Wheaton Central                    12

4   Pekin                                    10

Park Forest Rich East            10

Palatine Fremd                      10

7   Park Ridge Maine South           8

Winnetka New Trier East          8

9   Evanston Township                  7

10   Harvey Thornton                       6


1970   Allen Ury               original comedy—3rd place

1971   Allen Ury               original comedy—3rd place


The Illinois Theatre Festival is the largest, non-competetive high school theatre festival in the world. It was organized in 1976 by teachers from the Chicago suburbs. This festival is still going strong as they perform at the University of Illinois (Champaign-Urbana) and Illinois State University every other January. New Trier West High school participated in this festival from 1976 to 1981. In 1979, they performed their All-State performance Tale Spinners, and was directed by Michael and Gael Routenberg.

Other Sports

**From Brian Rice (Class of 1981):

There were Girls Softball and Volleyball teams as well as Boys Baseball but the Softball and Baseball teams seasons run so late their is not much record of them in the yearbooks. I was also Co-Captain of the Cross Country team (1980) and also Track.”


Special Thank You

To Sandy Swan and Linda Oddo for providing most of the coaches names on this page.



about the history of New Trier West High School and its activities. We’d love to hear from anyone who had information about the school, names of coaches and star athletes, prominent graduates, words to the school fight song, or even your recollections of the time you spent wearing the Blue & White of New Trier West. Please contact us by email at or by USPS at the following address. Your help is greatly appreciated in helping us preserve history.

Illinois High School Glory Days

6439 North Nava

Chicago, IL  60631

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