Bulletin board: Mears headed to Beloit

Bulletin board: Mears headed to Beloit

CHAMPAIGN — Maria Mears will attend Beloit College in Beloit, Wis. She will be a member of the women's tennis team. She qualified for the state tennis tournament three times during her high school career at Centennial.

What are the odds?

Baseball and softball regionals played out last week, and 32 teams throughout the state emerged with championships in Class 1A and Class 2A. Tonight at Downs, softball teams from Schlarman and Tuscola will play one another.

The timing of the 4:30 p.m. game works well for fans of the schools who'd like to watch the baseball teams from Schlarman and Tuscola play one another at 5 p.m. Thursday at Danville Stadium.

Championship games at both locations will be played Saturday.

Viking boys qualify three

DANVILLE — In their first year of Class 3A competition, Danville's Vikings will have three competitors in Friday's state track and field semifinals in Charleston.

Matt Cleveland was the sectional champion in the 3,200 meters, with a season-best 9-minute, 41.90-second clocking, and another distance runner, Johnny Leverenz, set a school freshman record in the 1,600, qualifying with a 4:28.84 time.

Pole vaulter Cirron Clark also advanced, clearing 13 feet, 9 inches. His season-best vault (14-3) would place him among the state's top five in 3A.

Hilltoppers 8 for 8

DANVILLE — Schlarman has eight seniors on its softball roster, including the team manager, and all will go to college next fall on scholarships. Five are continuing in softball. One will play volleyball, one is going for cheerleading and one is on an academic scholarship.

"I am very proud of this fact," Schlarman coach Randy Skaggs said. "This is a great feat for our program. These are the wins that count."

The Hilltoppers who are continuing in softball, and their colleges, are: infielder Lohgan Bryant (Lincoln College); second baseman Darrian Chrzanoski (Lincoln College); shortstop Randi Cookus (Hillsdale, Mich., College) and pitcher Kelsey Sollars (Lincoln College). A fifth player, catcher Chelsea Willis, is deciding between Aurora University and Kishwaukee College.

Outfielder Lynzie Fields is going to Danville Area Community for volleyball; manager Katie Morgan is going to DACC for cheerleading; and pre-pharmacy major Kelsey Moreland earned an academic scholarship to Iowa Wesleyan.

The Schlarman students are part of a 34-2 softball program that is ranked No. 1 in Class 1A.

Tracking area leaders

Eleven area athletes in six Class 1A events and five area athletes in two Class 2A events registered sectional performances last week that rank them among the top five entering this week's state meet at Eastern Illinois' O'Brien Stadium. The 1A semifinals are Thursday, and the 2A semis are Friday. All finals are Saturday.

In 1A, Monticello's Steve Schroeder (left) is among the leaders in two events. He ranks second in the 3,200 meters and third in the 1,600.

St. Joseph-Ogden's TOM Jean ranks second in the pole vault, and the Spartans' 3,200 relay foursome of Cole Johnson, Landon Vowels, Zeke Elkins and Chas Cox ranks third.

Unity's Scott Woodard is ranked fourth in the 3,200. St. Thomas More's Nick Hess is ranked fifth in the 1,600. Tuscola's Alex Kemp is ranked fifth in the 200.

Prairie Central's Ian Briscoe and LeRoy's Austin Trease stand in a four-way tie for fourth in the high jump.

In 2A, Mahomet-Seymour's Austin Armetta is ranked in a tie for second in the pole vault. The Bulldogs' 3,200 relay of John Prillaman, Elijah Johnson, Cale McCormick and Matt Moxley ranks fourth.

Busy day for Warrior

TUSCOLA — Senior Pat Yoakum is accustomed to having a lot going on. He split time between football and golf in the fall. After focusing on basketball in the winter, he has participated in baseball and track this spring.

Thursday is his busy day.

He'll be at the Class 1A state meet in Charleston as a member of Tuscola's 1,600 relay. That will be the day's final running event, scheduled to start at about 2:30 p.m.

By 5 p.m., he is due in Danville, where Tuscola will play Schlarman in a sectional semifinal.

Depending on the outcomes at each site, Saturday could be equally busy. The state track finals are that day, as is the baseball sectional title game at Danville Stadium.

Jeff Huth and Fred Kroner

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