Bloch enters elite group
ARGENTA — Senior Kandie Bloch, from Argenta-Oreana, on Monday became the third girl in Macon County history to score 2,000 points in a prep basketball career. The Illinois track recruit is not No. 1 at her own school. The all-time Macon County leader is 1986 A-O graduate Karin Nicholls with 2,200 points. Also ahead of Bloch is 2012 Decatur Lutheran graduate Jerica Hawkins, with 2,151 points.
After Monday’s game, Bloch has 2,026 points. The Bombers play Thursday at Tuscola and then open postseason play next Monday against Cerro Gordo in the Decatur St. Teresa Class 2A Regional.
The all-time News-Gazette girls’ scoring record is held by 1997 Shiloh graduate and current Raiders assistant Missy Barrett Tingley (2,809 points). She is followed by former Bismarck-Henning athlete Kandy Lindsey, a 1999 graduate, with 2,650 points.
Fierro makes choice
URBANA — Area soccer Player of the Year Miguel Fierro, from Urbana, gave an oral commitment to continue his career at Olivet Nazarene University.
“I felt I could fit in perfectly there,” he said, referring to a 14-4-5 team that advanced to the second round of the NAIA tournament last fall. He also considered Wheaton College.
Ex-Illinek helps Knox
GALESBURG — Senior Lizzy Warner, an Urbana Uni High graduate, helped Knox College record an all-time top-10 performance in the distance medley relay in an indoor track and field meet last weekend at Illinois Wesleyan University. With Warner, a team captain, running the 800-meter leg, Knox won the event by more than 12 seconds, posting a 14-minute, 16.71-second time, the 10th best in school history. In the women’s team chase, Knox placed fifth among 13th competing schools.
Judah athlete set to sign
CHAMPAIGN — Nick Berger, from Judah Christian, will sign a letter of intent Friday to play golf next school year at Parkland College. As a senior, Berger tied for the area’s best nine-hole average, finishing the season at 37.5.
He tied for 12th at state in Class 1A, with a 76 after the second round of the annual IHSA event was canceled by rain.
M-S, Unity, B-H wrestling hosts
The first step of the wrestling postseason starts Saturday with regionals. The top three finishers in each weight class at all of the 16 regionals in 1A, 2A and 3A will qualify for sectionals.
Sessions at Bismarck-Henning’s 1A site as well as at LeRoy’s 1A site will start at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. Unity will have sessions at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m., also in 1A.
In 2A, Mahomet-Seymour’s nine-school event will have sessions at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. Also in the M-S field are Bloomington, Centennial, Central, Danville, Eisenhower, Rantoul, Urbana and the Westville/Salt Fork/Georgetown-Ridge Farm cooperative team.
Clinton is the lone area team besides the Panthers competing at LeRoy.
Unity’s list of entrants also includes athletes from Argenta-Oreana and Monticello.
Bismarck-Henning’s eight-school event features only schools from the area: Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley/Fisher, Hoopeston Area, Oakwood/Armstrong-Potomac, Paxton-Buckley-Loda, Prairie Central, St. Joseph-Ogden and St. Thomas More will join the host Blue Devils.
Ex-Eagle Britt excels
Rantoul graduate Travis Britt, the 2012 All-Area Boys’ Basketball Player of the Year, has played a pivotal role in helping the Coffeyville (Kan.) Community College men’s basketball team jump to a 19-1 record heading into the Ravens’ game tonight against Kansas City Kansas Community College. Britt is averaging 6.2 points a game, sixth on the team.
Rogers plays on for late grandfather
Armstrong-Potomac’s Wade Rogers called his grandfather, Larry Long, one of his closest friends.
When Long, 72, died unexpectedly of a heart attack Jan. 9, the news hit the Trojans senior guard especially hard. He had just seen him less than 24 hours earlier when Long attended Rogers’ Jan. 8 game against Bismarck-Henning.
A-P played at Iroquois West on Jan. 10, and Rogers didn’t miss the game. He hasn’t missed any since, either.
“I knew he wouldn’t want me to miss a game just because of him,” Rogers said. “He didn’t want anybody to fuss over him. I knew he would want me to play for him.”
A-P coach Mike Twidwell said he wasn’t surprised by Rogers’ decision to play so soon after his grandfather’s death.
“I definitely think it has helped him very much cope with it just because of how involved his grandfather was and how much he loved coming out to watch (Wade play),” Twidwell said. “It’s one of those things where he knows that he’s going to give everything he has because he’s being watched from his grandfather up above.”
Long worked with the U.S. Postal Service for 51 years in Champaign, and his route took him through the heart of the University of Illinois. Rogers said they estimated Long walked 2 million miles during his career as a mail carrier.
”He was the most laid-back, simple man you could ever meet in your life,” Rogers said. “You get him in an Illini shirt and his blue jeans, and that’s all he needed. He was my hero. He’s helped make me who I am and shown me how to be a good person.”