Numerous local prep volleyball programs dazzled their fans and others in 2018. Here are 10 tournaments you can catch those programs at in 2019:
1. Timberwolf Tip-Off, Aug. 26-31 — Cissna Park hosts this 12-team tournament, which will feature matches every day except for Friday, Aug. 30. Other local squads include Armstrong-Potomac, Fisher, Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley, Hoopeston Area, Milford, Oakwood, Paxton-Buckley-Loda, Schlarman and Watseka.
2. Charger Invitational, Sept. 7 — Hopefully some of the construction surrounding Centennial High will be complete by the time the Chargers welcome in various area teams for this event. Big-school squads from Champaign Central, Mahomet-Seymour and Rantoul have accepted the invite, and Monticello also will be represented.
3. Bulldog Invitational, Sept. 14 — Tons of local talent will be on display when Mahomet-Seymour hosts this tournament. In addition to what the Bulldogs have to offer, recent Murray State basketball commit Katelyn Young will appear with Oakwood. St. Joseph-Ogden also will display its wares, as will Rantoul and Urbana.
4. Clinton Classic, Sept. 14 — If a fan can hit this one and the preceding entry, that’s some big-time volleyball support. Reigning News-Gazette Player of the Year Allie Trame and St. Thomas More will appear alongside Clinton, Prairie Central and Ridgeview.
5. Watseka Invitational, Sept. 28 — Athletic director Barry Bauer and the Warriors always do well hosting big showcases. They’ll have their fill of area opponents making the trip, including Danville, Hoopeston Area, Milford, PBL and Salt Fork.
6. Paris Invitational, Oct. 5 — Though it’s a bit off the beaten path as far as The News-Gazette’s coverage area, attendees can take in the athletes of Chrisman, Tri-County and Tuscola.
7. Lincoln Prairie Conference Tournament, Oct. 7-10 — It’s the first-ever league championship for schools that split from the Little Okaw Valley Conference.
8. PBL Classic, Oct. 9 & 12 — Paxton-Buckley-Loda welcomes in a diverse group for a Wednesday-Saturday alignment. Cissna Park, GCMS, Iroquois West, Milford, Monticello and Rantoul will join the fun.
9. Morgan Buerkett Invitational, Oct. 19 — St. Thomas More’s annual event regularly brings out some of the area’s best, this year including Mahomet-Seymour and Monticello.
10. Vermilion County Tournament, Oct. 21 — When the schools out east gather, rabid fan support makes it must-see fare.