All Prep Sports Content

Central'sSmith comes through with mom on mind

CHAMPAIGN – Ever since Brandon Smith, a Champaign Central senior, started wrestling, his parents have been his biggest fans.

They have been at every meet he has wrestled since seventh grade, and stood proudly beside him when he was honored during the Maroons' last regular season home meet.


Seeds planted by pair

BISMARCK – A day of marquee wrestling matches found Rayse Clendenen and Jamie Ping as the headliners.

Clendenen, a junior at Oakwood, and Ping, a senior at Unity, were the only athletes at Bismarck-Henning's Class A regional to upend No. 1-seeded opponents in the finals.


SJ-O fine at the line

CHAMPAIGN – The free throw line can be a place where palms get clammy and knees wobble.

Not so for St. Joseph-Ogden.


Central's McGill following brother's footsteps

CHAMPAIGN – You've read this one before. The Big 12 Conference champion in the 200-yard freestyle is a guy named McGill.

Before he graduated in 2006, Tyler McGill ruled that particular league race, winning all three times he entered the event.


Centennial turns table on rival

CHAMPAIGN – Even in the immediate afterglow of an exhilarating win, James Kinney couldn't help but look ahead.

All the way to next season.


Jackson: Chargers' big man gets revenge, too

CHAMPAIGN – No one had to remind Jeff Johnson what happened the last time he went up against Keith Biggers and the Champaign Central Maroons.

In fact, had Johnson awakened in a cold sweat in the middle of the night more than once since the Jan. 11 meeting, no one could blame him.


Win gives Urbana girls at least share of Big 12 crown

URBANA – In the first 31 years of girls' basketball at Urbana High School, the Tigers never have been able to call themselves Big 12 Conference champions.

You would figure after clinching at least a share of the regular season conference title by defeating Mattoon 41-34 on Thursday that the Tigers would revel in their victory.


Wells' hard work delivers success on and off the court

DANVILLE – Though high school basketball might not have the reputation as being a high-scoring affair, there is a player at Danville First Baptist who has plenty of experience putting points on the board.

Senior Matt Wells, who averages more than 22 points per game, eclipsed the 1,500-point career mark Tuesday night.


Patterson's will to succeed pushes game to new heights

RANTOUL – When Chris Wagner speaks of the remarkable growth of Rantoul senior Tyler Patterson, feel free to take the Eagles basketball coach's words literally or figuratively.

Both apply.


Central gears up for latest installment

CHAMPAIGN – When the Battle of Champaign last was waged Jan. 11, Centennial and Champaign Central played to a sellout crowd.

If that ever before happened at Centennial's 2,300-seat gym – the largest high school basketball venue in Champaign-Urbana – it was before Central athletic director John Woods started regularly attending Maroons-Chargers boys' games.