Three Amigos Riding High for Deerfield Softball

Friends since fourth grade, trio lead Warriors

The three amigos will soon be making their final ride soon for Deerfield High School.

Megan Buranosky, Emily Shanker and Nicki Chamberlain-Simon have been stalwarts on the Deerfield softball team for the past two seasons. But the trio, who are also tri-captains, have been friends since fourth grade.

They will lead the Warriors into the New Trier Regional at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday against Glenbrook South.

“We met playing travel softball,” said Shanker, who plays third base for the Warriors. “And we became good friends since. The three of us do so much together.”

“It is not just softball,” said Chamberlain-Simon, who plays shortstop and has been a three-year starter. “We are in a lot of the same clubs and have AP classes together. We are just very good friends.”

“We have been together as long as I can remember,” said Buranosky, who plays catcher for the Warriors. “We have been best friends for almost 8 years. I love them and I can’t imagine playing softball without them.”

Not only has the group left their mark on the softball field, they have excelled academically as well.

The Three Warriors Will Attend Top Colleges

Chamberlain-Simon is the editor of the school newspaper and will attend Rice University next fall. She plans to major in a biomechanical engineering.

Shanker played on the volleyball team last fall. She will attend Northwestern University to study engineering.

Buranosky, who is sidelined with a concussion now, missed all of last season with a back injury. She will attend Michigan and hope to follow both of her parents into medicine.

“It is obvious that these three have their brains going in the right direction,” Deerfield coach Susan Johnson said.  “They are involved in AP classes and clubs. And they are the best of friends. They just get along so well and it is great for the rest of the team to see that. They set the example outside the classroom as well. They are just nice people.”

The leadership skills that three have developed has shown on the softball diamond where they were elected tri-captains.

“I have been coaching for 30 years,” Johnson said. “In those years I can count on one hand, without using all my fingers, how many times I have had 100 percent of all the kids electing the same captains. That’s pretty special that every single kid looks to the three of them as our leaders.”

The Pre Game Dance Continues

The trio has continued the Deerfield tradition of the “dancing circle” before games. While Buranosky, Shanker and Chamberlain-Simon are with Coach Johnson at the home plate meeting, the team forms a circle and dances before each game.

“It was important to keep that tradition going,” Shanker said. “Our dynamic is to keep things totally silly and loose.”

“We want this team to do well and have fun at the same time,” Chamberlain-Simon said. “We know how important that is.”

But the Warriors can also play ball with Shanker and Chamberlain-Simon being selected to the Central Suburban League North Division’s all-conference team.

Deerfield is 14-15 on the season, but won all six of the games during the team’s spring trip to Disneyworld in March.

The three amigos will play as long as they can together and go as far as they can in the State Tournament. Then, there will be graduation May 29 at Ravinia. From there, the amigos will have the summer before riding off into the sunset in different directions for college.

“It will be sad for all of us,” Buranosky said. “But I know we will be talking to each other nonstop. With cell phones and social networking, we can stay in touch.”

 And there will also be Thanksgiving break when they will all be home and can ride together again as college freshman.

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