The Illinois High School Association announced Monday two Urbana girls’ basketball players from one family are ineligible to take part in athletics until March 6, the Monday after the conclusion of the girls’ basketball season.
Let’s be clear: The Chicago Cubs winning their first World Series in 108 years was one of the top sports stories of 2016 — No. 1 on The Associated Press’ list. But what about memorable moments to come out of East Central Illinois in a calendar year that will close once the clock hits midnight Saturday? Here are our 10 selections:
PORTLAND, Ore. — The Mahomet-Seymour boys’ cross-country team was ready for the hills at Saturday’s Nike Cross Nationals race in Portland. The Bulldogs also were ready for the elite competition after winning the Class 2A state title.
What they couldn’t prepare for, coach Neal Garrison said, was the incredibly muddy course, which is intentionally made that way.
All-Area first team
NAME YR. SCHOOL
Brian Butcher Sr. Mahomet-Seymour
Riley Fortune Jr. Mahomet-Seymour
Logan Hall Jr. Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond
Why he’s Coach of the Year: By qualifying for Saturday’s Nike Cross Nationals, Garrison’s Bulldogs cemented themselves as one of the top area teams in history. The Bulldogs finished with six all-staters and finished three seconds away from having all seven of their runners earn medals at the state meet.
MAHOMET — It was a feeling Andrew Walmer never wanted to experience again.
The Mahomet-Seymour cross-country runner finished a spectacular race three years ago — his freshman year — at the state meet. It came seemingly out of nowhere, but his teammates around him were disappointed.
MAHOMET — The fact his team had no confirmation last week that it would head to Portland, Ore., this weekend for Nike Cross Nationals didn’t matter. Mahomet-Seymour boys’ cross-country coach Neal Garrison didn’t want his team to put itself in a holding pattern after finishing third at the Midwest Regional, one spot away from an automatic berth.
RUNNER, SCHOOL TIME
Walmer, Mahomet-Seymour 14:40
L. Hall, ALAH 14:44
Pommier, Mahomet-Seymour 14:47
Fortune, Mahomet-Seymour 14:49
Butcher, Mahomet-Seymour 14:56
Hodge, Mahomet-Seymour 14:58
URBANA — Annemarie Michael wasn’t putting in high mileage or pounding out fast repeats as her freshman season wound down, and that didn’t sit well with her.
The current Urbana Uni High senior didn’t feel right unless she was exhausted, so tapering was difficult, even the week of the state meet.