Senior scores 35 goals, finishes with 98 to set school record
Tucker Jahns told his middle school bus driver of his clear intentions.
That bus driver?
She happened to be Kaneland soccer coach Scott Parillo’s wife.
“He said: ‘I’m going to make the varsity [team] my freshman year,’” Parillo said. “My wife would tell me that all the time.”
Jahns was no stranger to the Kaneland program. His older brother, Trevor, played varsity. Tucker himself served as a sideline ball boy for the varsity games as a middle schooler.
Come Tucker Jahns’ freshman year, it took no time for all to see what was coming for the program. Jahns scored six goals that first year.
“Coming in, I didn’t expect to see much playing time at all,” Jahns recalled, citing injuries to upperclassmen. “At the beginning of the season, we always stack up against some tough teams. ... [Parillo] put me in ... to see how I’d do. From there, once we had the injuries, I gained my starting spot right away.”
Jahns quickly made an impression with Parillo.
“You could see the potential,” Parillo said. “Even his brother said, ‘Oh, yeah, he’s going to be better than me.’”
Jahns, a four-year varsity forward, concluded his career by breaking Kaneland’s all-time scoring record for both the boys and girls programs with 98 goals. Jahns broke it during his second to last match, a 2-1 victory over Wheaton Academy in the Class 2A regional final.
Kaneland alum Emily Heimerdinger previously held the school’s career scoring mark with 97 goals. In addition to that record, Jahns broke his own single-season scoring record with 35 goals this season, eclipsing the 33 he scored as a junior.
For his accomplishments, Jahns has been named the 2019 Kane County Chronicle Boys Soccer Player of the Year.
“They’re just stepping stones to keep making myself better,” said Jahns, who will play collegiately at Wisconsin-Whitewater. “For my purpose, I’m a little disappointed I couldn’t get to 100 goals. That would’ve been a great milestone. Every year, I hope to keep getting better, breaking my own record and setting them.”
Aside from his scoring ability, there’s more than meets the eye to Jahns’ success on the pitch.
“He’s just nonstop,” Parillo said. “He just goes and goes and goes. He won’t give up.”
It’s something Parillo feels is great for younger players, Jahns’ teammates and opponents to witness.
“Because they know that they’ve got to get rid of that ball quick if he’s close by,” Parillo said. “He’s going to go after it. He’s just tenacious like that. It’s not just him scoring, it’s defensively as well.”
Jahns is the first one at practice, Parillo said. Even before practices during the summer, Jahns would beat Parillo.
“As talented as he is, you wouldn’t know it,” Parillo said. “There’s no arrogance about him or anything like that. He’s always helping out the kids that are younger. He’s been a great captain for two years. It’s a shame he’s not a sophomore, so I could have him for a couple more years.”