Bulletin board: IBCA honors area coaches
NORMAL — Nearly three dozen area basketball coaches from all levels will be honored Saturday at the annual Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame banquet. In all, 34 area coaches — or coaches with area connections — will be among the 311 from the state who will be feted at Illinois State University’s Bone Student Center.
Eight of the coaches to be recognized are coaches of area boys’ high school teams, including Champaign Central’s Wayne McClain (Class 3A). Being honored in 2A is St. Joseph-Ogden’s Brian Brooks as well as former Chrisman coach Shawn Nugent, now at Paris, and former Villa Grove coach Jason Welch, now at Bloomington Central Catholic.
The 1A selections are St. Thomas More’s Matt Kelley, Arthur-Lovington’s Dale Schuring and Salt Fork’s Andrew Johnson along with Monticello native Tom Eller, now at Heyworth.
Ten high school girls’ coaches will be recognized, including former Mahomet-Seymour coach David Yates in Class 4A (now at Fremd) and Urbana native Laura Sellers, (now at Normal U-High) in Class 3A. The Class 2A group includes former St. Thomas More coach Chris Mennig as well as Watseka’s Rebecca Swigert and Sullivan’s Sheri McCain. Prairie Central graduate Debbie Coffman (now at Bloomington Central Catholic) is another honoree.
In Class 1A, the area elite features Cissna Park’s Stephen Summers, Arcola’s Nancy Stiff, Iroquois West’s Kristie Arie and Fisher’s Ken Ingold.
Six junior high girls’ coaches are on the list, including Schlarman’s Keith Peoples for his work with the school’s eighth-grade and seventh-grade state championship teams. Monticello’s Shelly Beery and Oakwood’s Jeff Ford are other eighth-grade coaches to be honored. St. Matthew coach Steve Behrensmeyer and Watseka's Barry Bauer are the other area seventh-grade coaches to be recognized.
Ten area junior high boys’ head coaches made the cut, including eighth-grade coaches Tony Worthington, from Rantoul, Mike Stokowski, from Monticello, Jeff Alexander, from Hoopeston Area, and Demetric Hightower, from Danville North Ridge.
The seventh-grade coaches to be honored are Gifford’s Mitch Pruemer, Cissna Park’s Vincent Lober, Fisher’s Jake Palmer, Gibson City’s Bruce Hendricks, Monticello’s Alex Chapman and Champaign Franklin’s Eric Immke.
In addition, five junior college coaches from the state will receive awards, including Parkland College women’s coach Mike Lindemann, who is a co-director of Saturday’s Illinois Marathon.
Area schools pull rank
Five area schools are ranked among the state’s Top 20 in this week’s Illinois Coaches Association softball state poll.
In Class 2A, Monticello is ranked 11th and St. Joseph-Ogden is 20th. In Class 1A, Fisher is rated sixth, unbeaten Salt Fork is seventh and LeRoy is 14th.
It’s postseason time
The spring’s first postseason series starts Friday, when bass fishing sectionals are held at 22 lakes. Argenta-Oreana is the host for a 12-school event at Clinton Lake. Among the competing schools besides the Bombers are Cerro Gordo, Clinton, DeLand-Weldon, Monticello and Sullivan.
Eleven schools will participate at Danville’s Lake Vermilion. They are Atwood-Hammond, Bement, Champaign Central, Georgetown-Ridge Farm, Heritage, Mahomet-Seymour, Oakwood, Paris, St. Joseph-Ogden, St. Thomas More and Unity.
LeRoy is the lone area representative in the 12-school Lake Bloomington Sectional.
Qualifiers advance to the state finals, which are scheduled May 9-10 at Carlyle Lake. A maximum of three boats will advance to state from each sectional. This is the sixth year for the one-class IHSA-sponsored tournament. A total of 236 schools are participating.
Bulldogs to stay teammates
MAHOMET — Two Mahomet-Seymour football players signed letters of intent to continue their careers at Lindenwood University, an NAIA school in Belleville.
Tyler Francisco, a running back and receiver, will be joined by Bradley Gleason, a receiver.
Francisco scored 17 touchdowns as a senior. Gleason hauled in five scoring passes as a senior for a 9-2 team. Francisco plans to major in physical therapy or athletic training. Gleason will major in physical education.
Crose picks Parkland
HOOPESTON — Senior Brennan Crose, from Hoopeston Area, signed a letter of intent to continue his soccer career at Parkland College. Crose was second in the area in scoring as a senior, with 30 goals. He also had 14 assists for an 18-5 team.
Area kids on campus ...
— Freshman Emma Hoyer, from Urbana Uni High, won the discus in the Big Blue Invitational for Millikin University with a toss of 121 feet, 1 inch, which is ninth on the school’s all-time performance list. She placed fourth in the shot put (35-31/4).
— Junior Emily Sawyer, from Cerro Gordo, won the hammer throw for Millikin at the Big Blue meet with a toss of 134-8, fifth best on the school’s all-time honor roll. She was second in the discus (114-6).
— Freshman Maddie Baillon, from St. Thomas More, is playing at No. 1 doubles for Illinois State University with Phyllis Tigges. They were 12-4 overall and 5-0 against Missouri Valley Conference competition. The league meet is this weekend in Normal.
— Sophomore Stephanie Canfield, from St. Joseph-Ogden, has started all 47 games for Arkansas’ 25-22 softball team. She leads the squad with 55 hits in 155 at-bats and is 10 for 10 on stolen base attempts. Her .355 batting average and 40 runs are second among the Razorbacks.