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High school basketball

Area game results

[JAN. 18, 2002]   


At Mahomet

Olympia                           10  25  39    53
Mahomet-Seymour            7  21  33    41

Short 0-0-0, Gaither 4-7-15, Canopy 1-2-4, Goebel 5-0-10, Floyd 7-3-20, Prager 2-0-4, Wilcox 0-0-0, Hieser 0-0-0, Brand 0-0-0.

Totals 19-12-53

At Warrensburg

Mount Pulaski                  11  20  22    31
Warrensburg                    29  53  63    77

Maske 0-0-0, Sanders 3-0-6, Faith 2-0-5, Rucks 4-4-12, Reesley 0-0-0, Jason 3-0-6, Howe 0-2-2, Stoll 0-0-0.

Totals 12-6-31

College basketball

Illinois State Women vs. Evansville

[JAN. 18, 2002]   

Illinois State                     29   28     57
Evansville                         31   39     70

Donovan 2-0-4, White 1-4-6, Larson 6-0-12, O'Brien 2-2-7, Reichle 3-0-7, Harakas 4-5-13, Harnisch 0-0-0, Huston 2-0-6, Nickerson 0-0-0, Kitschinski 1-0-2.

Totals 21-11-57

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Illinois State-Southwest Missouri State pre-game notes

[JAN. 18, 2002]   

From Illinois State

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High school basketball

Area game results

[JAN. 17, 2002]   From Havana Classic


Hartsburg-Emden     11  24  35  50

South Fulton            10  24  35  49

Hartem Stags stats: Westen 0-0-0, K. Leeesman 3-8-14, Anderson 3-0-6, Olson 0-0-0, Gleason 5-1-13, Jones 0-0-0, Wrage 3-6-12, Sherwood 2-1-5.

Three-pointers: Gleason, 2.

College basketball

Lincoln College vs. John Wood

[JAN. 17, 2002]   At Quincy


Lincoln College        31  53    84

John Wood             38   40   78

Lincoln Lynx stats: Clark 3-0-8, Fowler 4-0-9, Turner 7-3-18, Sams 5-2-12, Hollyfield 4-1-11, Roberson 5-8-18, Kehr 0-3-3, Major 0-0-0, Bowen 2-0-5.

Three-point field goals: Clark 2, Hollyfield 2, Fowler, Turner, Bowen.

Deren, Creighton shoot down Illinois State

[JAN. 17, 2002]   NORMAL — Brody Deren went 7-of-10 from the field, notching 16 points and five blocked shots to lead Creighton past Illinois State, 63-56, in Missouri Valley Conference men’s basketball action Wednesday in Omaha, Neb.

Illinois State (6-11, 2-4) was led by Baboucarr Bojang, who had 15 points. Shawn Jeppson also reached double digits on the evening, scoring 14. Creighton improves to 10-5 overall and 5-1 in the Valley. McKinney ended the game with 10 points, while Tyler Michael Lindeman also dished out 10.

After a solid and equal first half, the score was tied 31-all during the break. The game remained fairly even through the first 10 minutes, until Creighton broke out to an eight-point lead, its biggest of the game, at the 10:16 mark. The Redbirds pulled to within one after a jumper by Jeppson with four minutes remaining, setting the score at 55-54.


[to top of second column in this article]

The Bluejays pulled ahead, however, leading by three, 59-56, with just over a minute left in the game. Shedrick Ford had the chance to bring the Redbirds within one but banked a jumper from the top of the key. The missed shot followed by two Redbird turnovers led to Tyler McKinney’s 3-point basket that put the Jays up by six, securing the win.

The Redbirds shot 47 percent for the game while Creighton shot 46 percent. Out-rebounding the Jays by four, the ’Birds had a team total of 29 to CU’s 25.

Illinois State returns to action on Saturday when Southwest Missouri State comes to Redbird Arena for a 7 p.m. game.

[Erica Fricke, assistant director of media relations, athletics media relations, ISU]

High school basketball

Area game results

[JAN. 16, 2002]   


At Lincoln

Jacksonville                      10  26  46    53
Lincoln                             12  26  37    50

Bunch 1-0-3, Dawson 3-0-6, Robbins 3-2-9, Ingram 2-0-6, Froschauer 2-0-4, Moore 1-1-3, Schonauer 0-1-1, Carey 7-0-18.

Totals 19-4-50

College basketball

Lincoln Christian College vs. Moody Bible College

[JAN. 16, 2002]   At Chicago


Lincoln Christian                 22   43     65
Moody Bible                      35   17     52

Clark 5-10-20, Raymer 2-0-6,  Below 3-6-13, Broadfuehrer 1-0-2, Turney 1-0-3, Okusami 4-1-9, Grooms 4-4-12.

Totals 20-21-65


Lincoln Christian                 23   14     37
Moody Bible                      33   21     54

Robbins 3-0-6, Urton 3-0-6, Szostek 1-1-3, Wertin 3-2-8, O’Malley 0-2-2, DeVore 1-0-2, Jewell 5-0-10.

Totals 16-5-37

Lincoln College vs. Indian Hills

[JAN. 16, 2002]   At Centerville, Iowa


Lincoln College                  35   24     59
Indian Hills                         36   42     78

Fowler 2-1-5, Turner 6-2-15, Kehr 1-0-2, Sams 5-1-12, Major 1-0-2, Hollyfield 9-0-23.

Totals 24-4-59

Illinois blows out Iowa 77-66

Cook and Williams dominate the Hawks

[JAN. 16, 2002]   Illinois and Iowa met in Champaign on Tuesday night in a nationally televised Big Ten conference game. Both teams entered the game with surprising 2-2 conference records and feeling the game was a "must win." Illinois entered the game on a high, having beat Michigan on Saturday in Champaign 94-70, while Iowa entered the game coming off a 77-66 home loss to Indiana on Sunday. Both teams were trailing undefeated Indiana and Ohio State in conference play.

A literal "Sea of Orange" greeted the Hawkeyes of Iowa Tuesday night in Assembly Hall. Illinois jumped out to a quick 9-4 lead as Lincoln’s Brian Cook started the game with an alley-oop dunk and finished the run with a 3-point basket.


Several of college basketball’s biggies were on hand Tuesday night, including Dick Vitale and Andy Katz, to witness the battle between the hated Big Ten rivals.

The game featured two of the young rising stars in the coaching profession, Steve Alford and Bill Self. Alford is in his third season at Iowa after previously resurrecting programs at both Manchester College and Southwest Missouri State. Self, on the other hand, is in his second season at Illinois after successful stops at Oral Roberts and Tulsa. Both coaches were great players in very successful programs: Alford winning a national championship while at Indiana and Self making all-Big 8 recognition while playing at Oklahoma State.

Illinois jumped out to a 19-9 lead with 11:37 remaining in the first half, prompting Alford to burn his first timeout. Freshman Luther Head completed an alley-oop dunk from Frank Williams to give the Illini their first double-digit lead of the game, and the crowd was absolutely out of control. With chants of "Baby Bobby" and "Sit Down Alford" directed at Alford and echoing in the background, there was no doubt whom the hometown fans had selected as public enemy number one.

An intentional foul by Iowa sophomore Sean Sonderleiter at the 8:14 mark of the first half created a near brawl, as all 10 players on the court quickly came the defense of their teammates. Senior Robert Archibald nailed both free throws, and Illinois appeared poised to run away with the game. Illinois’ lead swelled to 14 as Cook hit his second 3-point basket of the game to take the Illini lead to 33-19 just before the four-minute mark of the first half.

However, the Hawkeyes refused to fold and began to attempt to chip away at the Illinois lead. Illinois held just a five-point lead at the half, 36-31, after Iowa’s Pierre Pierce nailed a 3-point basket at the buzzer. Iowa finished the first half on a 12-3 run, with two Illini starters on the bench with foul trouble. Freshman Nick Smith picked up three fouls, and both Robert Archibald and Sean Harrington were whistled for their second fouls prior to the eight-minute mark, forcing both players to the bench. Frank Williams also picked up his second foul in the first half, with around two minutes left.

Cook led Illinois in scoring at the half with 10 points, and Williams was halfway to a triple double, with five points, five rebounds and five assists. Iowa was led in scoring in the first half by Indiana transfer Luke Recker, who tallied nine points.

Just seconds into the second half, Iowa cut the Illinois lead to two after Glen Worley hit a 3-pointer, but Illinois responded with an 8-0 run to extend the lead back to double digits, prompting Alford to burn another timeout at the 17:06 mark of the second half.


[to top of second column in this article]

Illinois controlled most of the second half and took advantage of a "free-for-all" attitude by the three officials calling the game. Iowa, a team which prides itself on physical play, seemed almost offended that Illinois was willing and able to match them blow for blow. On several occasions Alford came close to receiving a technical foul during repeated protests to the men in stripes.


Williams played like an all-American for much of the night and was never better than in a four-possession series where he dunked, created a steal, fed Cook for a dunk on a no-look pass and, after another steal, scored a layup to extend Illinois’ lead back to 14, 53-39, at the 12:55 mark. Williams finished the game with 16 points, seven rebounds and nine assists. Illinois was able to extend their lead to as many as 20 in the second half as they destroyed the visitors from the northwest. Illinois finished with an 11-point victory, and sent 16,500 Illini fans home happy.


Illini news and notes

•  Illinois has won four of their last five games against the Hawkeyes.

•  Iowa features four players from the state of Illinois on their roster:

  • Ryan Hogan, Deerfield

  • Rod Thompson, Galesburg

  • Pierre Pierce, Westmont

  • Marcellus Sommerville, Peoria

•  Illinois’ game against Iowa is the second of three straight Big Ten home games — Illinois returns to action next Wednesday against Wisconsin, looking to avenge an earlier loss in Madison on Jan. 5.

•  Williams was close to a triple double, finishing with 16 points, seven rebounds and nine assists. The last triple double in Illinois history was by Sergio McClain last year at home against Michigan, when he finished with 10 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists.

•  Cook finished with 21 points, leading four Illini into double figures (Williams, 16; Archibald, 11; Bradford, 16).

•  Alford is now 1-4 lifetime as a coach against Illinois.

•  This was the only regular-season meeting of the teams this year; however, a strong possibility exists that the teams could meet in Indianapolis for the Big Ten tournament.

[Greg Taylor]

’Birds ready to build on success

[JAN. 16, 2002]   NORMAL — Steph Reichle’s approach to rebounding in Illinois State’s 64-57 overtime upset of Missouri Valley Conference leader Creighton reflects what she and her teammates hope to do on this weekend’s road trip to play Evansville and Southern Illinois.

"Once I got a couple of rebounds, I wanted them all," said Reichle, whose career-high 17 rebounds against the Jays were the second-highest Illinois State total in Redbird Arena’s 13-year history. "This team is hungry that way. We got a big win. Now we’re ready to build on that."

Evansville, 7-8 overall and 2-3 in the Valley, is led by reigning Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Week LaTasha Austin. The senior guard leads the Aces with 14 points per game, 4.7 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 3.7 steals per game. She has stepped up her production over the past three weeks since the Aces lost Valley Player of the Year candidate Shyla McKibbon-Puelston to a career-ending knee injury.

"Losing McKibbon is huge for them," said Redbird coach Jenny Yopp, whose Redbirds are 3-11 overall, 1-4 in the Valley. "But they are still a veteran team (six seniors). Now, they have become just a little more perimeter-oriented, but their posts (Jamie Gray and Jenna Hayes) still are outstanding threats."

Evansville is coming off a split of the Wichita State-Southwest Missouri State road trip, having upset the Shockers 70-67 before dropping a 66-54 decision at SMS on Monday. Austin had 36 points on the trip, including 24 at WSU.

A year ago, the Redbirds beat Evansville twice — something only Drake and Southwest Missouri accomplished besides the ’Birds. Yopp believes her experienced players should feel confident playing in Roberts Stadium (7 p.m. start).


[to top of second column in this article]

"The win there last year should give us added confidence," said Yopp, whose team will be without 2000-01 scoring leader Sharon Blade, who likely will miss two weeks with a foot injury. "We will miss having Sharon on the court, but it’s an opportunity for other players to step up."

One of those is senior Kristi Larson, who led the ’Birds with 14 points in the win over Creighton and has been shooting well recently. Two who figure to see more court time in Blade’s absence are freshman Michelle Harakas and junior Stacey Nickerson.

"This team has proven it can come together," said Larson. "Against Creighton, we did what it took to win. Sharon plays a big role for us. Now, it’s up to me and Michelle and Stacey Nickerson to step up even more."

The Redbirds continue their road trip at Southern Illinois, where Illinois State has won just once in its last 15 visits, taking a 59-58 squeaker on a Jenny Schmidt scoop shot with 0:00.2 remaining. The Salukis, 4-10 overall and 0-5 in the Valley, have lost their last seven in a row.

"We’ve proven we can get in the (conference) race with our win over Creighton," said Yopp. "We just have to prove we can put some great efforts together for wins."

[ISU news release]


Illinois State-Evansville women's pre-game notes

[JAN. 16, 2002]   Thursday, January 17, 2002, at 7 p.m.; Roberts Stadium, Evansville, Ind.

[Click here to view background information (in Adobe Acrobat)]

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College basketball

Illinois State-Creighton pre-game notes

[JAN. 15, 2002]   

From Illinois State

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From Creighton

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Illinois-Iowa pre-game notes

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Blade to miss two weeks

[JAN. 15, 2002]  Sophomore Sharon Blade will likely miss two weeks of play for the Illinois State women's basketball team because of stress-related problems in her left foot.  

The 6-foot-2 center from Peoria has had recurring problems with her feet, including a stress fracture which caused her to miss the entire 1999-2000 season. Illinois State’s leading scorer in 2000-01, Blade had emerged from a shooting slump to score in double figures in her last two games.

Initial examination revealed no stress fracture, but further tests are scheduled for Wednesday. The Redbirds are scheduled to play Thursday at Evansville and Sunday at Southern Illinois.

Redbird coach Jenny Yopp said her team would miss Blade’s contributions, but understands the need for her to be sidelined and hopes rest will be beneficial.

"This is a challenge that will Sharon will have for as long as she plays basketball," said Yopp. "It’s a big loss for us, particularly since Sharon had been playing well recently. Other players will have to step up."

The Redbirds are 3-11 overall and 1-4 in the Missouri Valley coming off a 64-57 overtime win against conference leader and previously undefeated Creighton.

[ISU news release]


High school basketball

Area game results

[JAN. 14, 2002]   


At Washington

Olympia                   9  18  31    43
Prairie Central       
15  21  31    34

Elliot 2-0-4, Olson 1-0-2, Wise 3-1-7, Dillenburg 2-1-7, Sherman 0-5-5, Thorton 1-0-3, Schultz 1-1-3, Cheek 4-0-12.

Totals 14-8-43

At Lincoln

Springfield Southeast        18  32  50    61
Lincoln                             14  35  50    64

Farmer 5-2-15, Komick 1-0-3, Schonauer 5-0-14, Schrader 3-5-12, Welch 2-0-4, Young 6-4-16

Totals 22-11-64



At Springfield

Lincoln                            4  11  30    46
Sacred Heart-Griffin      
11  21  34    52

Dawson 5-3-14, Robbins 2-1-5, Ingram 2-2-7, Carey 3-2-10, McFadden 2-3-7, Verderber1-1-3.

Totals 15-12-46

At Galesburg

Sherrard                 10  10  15    24
14  34  43    45

Floyd 4-0-11, Prager 1-0-2, Wittmer 1-0-2, Nachtigall 1-0-2, Short 3-1-7, Hieser 1-0-2, Brand 2-0-4, Gaither 2-1-6, Canopy 2-0-4, Goebel 1-0-2, Litwiller 1-1-3.

Totals 19-3-45

Olympia                       13  25  30    42
Peoria Notre Dame      10  17  33    47

Wilcox 0-0-0, Floyd 6-1-15, Prager 0-1-1, Wittmer 0-0-0, Nachtigall 0-0-0, Short 0-0-0, Hieser 0-0-0, Brand 1-0-2, Gaither 9-0-18, Crabtree 0-0-0, Canopy 2-2-6, Goebel 0-0-0, Litwiller 0-0-0.

Totals 18-4-42

College basketball

Lincoln Christian College vs. Great Lakes CC

[JAN. 14, 2002]   


Great Lakes               36   27       63
Lincoln Christian        56   48      104

Clark 12-2-30, Raymer 4-2-10, Johnson 1-2-4, Below 11-2-26, Brodfuehrer 4-2-10, Turney 2-0-5, Okusami 6-1-13, Grooms 3-0-6.

Totals 43-11-104


Great Lakes               22   27     49
Lincoln Christian        41   34     75

Robbins 7-1-17, Urton 2-0-4, Szostek 2-0-4, Wright 11-0-25, Wertin 1-1-3, O’Malley 5-3-13, Jewel 4-1-9.

Totals 32-6-75

Cook leads Illinois to
victory over Michigan

[JAN. 14, 2002]  Lincoln product Brian Cook bounced back from two sub-par games to lead Illinois to a 94-70 Big Ten conference victory Saturday afternoon in Champaign. Cook started fast, scoring six of his game-high 20 points in the first three minutes of action as Illinois exploded to an early 8-0 lead against the Wolverines. The victory evens Illinois’ conference mark at 2-2 as they look ahead to a huge game Tuesday night against rival and nationally ranked Iowa. Cook also grabbed six rebounds and dished out three assists as Illinois shot an unbelievable 68 percent from the field for the game.

Senior Robert Archibald contributed 19 points and nine rebounds as Illinois dominated the game from the inside against the smaller, but quicker visitors from Michigan. Two other Illini players reached double figures in scoring: All-American Frank Williams dropped in 14 points and freshman Luther Head had 13 points for the Illini. Lavell Blanchard led Michigan in scoring with 17 points. Illinois will face the Wolverines again this season, in Ann Arbor, Mich., on Thursday night, Feb. 7.

The game Saturday was the first of three consecutive home games for the Illini, as they attempt to re-enter the conference title chase. After unexpected losses on the road to Wisconsin and Purdue, Illinois seemed to regain some measure of confidence Saturday against Michigan. Illinois will attempt to sustain this newfound passion, but Tuesday’s game will be difficult, against a talented Iowa team picked by many to challenge Illinois for the Big Ten championship. Iowa is led by a pair of talented seniors: former Indiana star Luke Recker and Reggie Evans, the premier power forward in the conference. Tuesday’s game time is set for 8 p.m., and the game will be televised nationally on ESPN.



[to top of second column in this article]

Illini news and notes

•  Illinois made 34 shots from the field Saturday on an amazing 28 assists.

•  Frank Williams did not start for the second time this season because he showed up late at the Assembly Hall on Saturday.

•  Michigan was able to gather 14 offensive rebounds while the Illini were able to get only four boards on the offensive end, a stat that did not please coach Self.

•  Senior Lucas Johnson was back at practice on Friday and stated he will play on Jan. 23 against Wisconsin, although he hoped to get some time Tuesday against Iowa.

•  Senior Damir Krupalija is also hoping to return to action against Iowa.

•  Michigan coach Tommy Amaker is now 0-3 lifetime against Illinois, with both previous losses coming as the head coach at Seton Hall, including last season’s overtime thriller at the Assembly Hall.

•  Cook finished the game with just two fouls but did have to sit the final eight minutes of the first half after picking up his second foul.

•  Coach Self and the Illini players are urging all fans planning to attend Tuesday’s game against Iowa to wear orange. Rumor has it Self may break out his orange sports coat once again — let’s hope not!

[Greg Taylor]

Bojang leads Redbirds to 68-56 win over Indiana State

[JAN. 14, 2002]  NORMAL — Baboucarr Bojang scored 13 of his team-high 15 points in the first half as Illinois State defeated Indiana State 68-56 on Saturday in Missouri Valley Conference action at Redbird Arena.

Illinois State, 6-10 (2-3 MVC), had four players score in double figures. Shedrick Ford and Shawn Jeppson had 11 points apiece, while Randy Rice chipped in 10 points for the ’Birds. Bojang also posted his fifth double-double of the season with a game-high 11 rebounds. Andy Strandmark also came of the bench to chip in eight points and seven boards.

The Sycamores were led in scoring by Terence Avery with 22 points. Marcus Howard was the only other player for Indiana State to score in double digits, with 11 points. Djibril Kante led the Sycamores on the boards with seven rebounds.

Indiana State, 3-11 (1-4 MVC) had the lead for the majority of the first half until Jeppson made a layup with 1:50 remaining that gave the Redbirds a 27-26 advantage. A jumper by Howard gave the Sycamores the lead again, 28-27, but Bojang converted on a 3-point play and scored on a tip-in at the buzzer to give the ’Birds a 33-30 lead heading into halftime.


[to top of second column in this article]

The second half opened with two quick Sycamore baskets by Djibril Kante and Avery, but Rice sparked an 18-5 run over the next seven minutes to give Illinois State a 12-point lead, 51-39. The Redbirds led by as many as 17 points in the second half.

Illinois State heads to Omaha, Neb., on Wednesday, Jan. 16, to play another Valley game against Creighton.

[Todd Kober, Illinois State University director of media relations]


Redbirds edge Creighton in OT for first Valley win

[JAN. 14, 2002]  NORMAL — Steph Reichle hauled in a career-high 17 rebounds and Kristi Larson scored 14 points as the Illinois State women’s basketball team upended league-leading Creighton in overtime Saturday night at Redbird Arena.

The Jays, 9-5 overall and 4-1 in the Valley, were the undisputed Missouri Valley Conference leaders before the game, but dropped their first league game despite placing three players in double figures.

Christy Neneman led the way with 17 points. Traci Jones added 10 while Laura Spanheimer chipped in 10, but the Jays shot just 23 percent from the field and made just 5-of-27 three-pointers.

Reichle, of Lincoln, knew the ’Birds had their hands full on defense.

"We knew they were No. 7 in the nation in 3-point shooting. We knew they were leading the league, but we fought hard on defense and made them work," said Reichle, whose rebounds were the second-best total by an ISU player in Redbird Arena history. CU had a 51-47 rebounding edge, including 32 offensive boards.

The Redbirds, 3-11 and 1-4 in the Valley, were led in scoring by Larson while Taren O’Brien added 13 and Sharon Blade collected 10 points.

ISU took the lead in overtime on two free throws by O’Brien followed by a Larson bucket and finally an O’Brien field goal with 2:31 left to put ISU safely ahead.

Even though Creighton got off to a 2-of-12 shooting start, the Jays led 4-0 before ISU got two free throws by Larson, a bucket by White and a layup by O’Brien to lead 6-4. Creighton went on a 17-2 run featuring two 3-pointers by Spanheimer to take a 21-8 advantage at the eight-minute mark.

The Redbirds kicked it in at that point, starting with a Beth Huston 3-pointer with 7:52 left and ending with O’Brien’s 3-pointer, finishing an 18-4 run which gave the Redbirds a 26-25 lead with 1:20 left.

Spanheimer’s layup and Kristi Neneman’s free throw put Creighton ahead 28-26 at the intermission.


[to top of second column in this article]

Seven Redbirds scored in the first half, led by O’Brien’s seven points. Reichle didn’t score but had seven rebounds. CU shot just 27 percent, but led, thanks to eight second-chance points because of 14 offensive rebounds.

Reichle put the ’Birds ahead 49-47 with 1:56 left in regulation on a driving left-handed layup. Neneman hit two free throws with 1:47 left to tie the score, and Traci Jones put the Jays ahead five seconds later with a jumper after a turnover. Kristi Larson’s jumper from 12 feet tied the score again at 51-51 with 1:20 left.

Huston grabbed a loose ball on Creighton’s next trip, and White was fouled with 58.7 left but missed the front half of a one-and-bonus. CU missed with 35 seconds left and ISU called time out at 0:28.6. ISU and CU both missed shots that could have won the game in regulation time.

Kim Hover hit a free throw to put CU ahead 52-51 to start the overtime, but Reichle answered with a layup with 4:22 left. Jones hit a free throw to tie the score again 11 seconds later. O’Brien put ISU ahead with 3:44 left on a pair of free throws and Creighton turned the ball over on its next possession. Donovan’s layup put ISU up by four with 3:25 left. O’Brien beat the shot clock with a layup with 2:31 left to put ISU up six, but Jones drained a 3 to cut it in half. Blade’s jumper put ISU back ahead 61-56 with 1:03 left, and a layup by Katie Donovan with 13 seconds left boosted the Redbirds to a seven-point lead.

"This team doesn’t get too low in its lows and I don’t think we’ll get too high with this win, but we stuck with the game plan and expected to win," said Redbird coach Jenny Yopp, whose team stopped a four-game losing streak.

[Erica Fricke, assistant director of media relations, athletics media relations, ISU]

High school basketball

Area game results

[JAN. 12, 2002]   


At Stanford

Prairie Central        8  20  30    42
Olympia                 8  16  22    33

Cheek 1-0-3, Sherman 1-0-2, Elliott 1-4-6, Olson 3-4-10, Wise 2-0-4, Schultz 4-0-8.

Totals 12-8-33

At Springfield

Hartsburg-Emden        15  24  41    53
Springfield Ursuline      14  27  33    50

Ko. Leesman 0-3-3, Ke. Leesman 0-2-2, Fletcher 2-1-6, Anderson 1-1-3, Gleason 8-6-25, Jones 1-0-2, Wrage 4-0-8, Sherwood 2-0-4.

Totals 18-13-53

At Chatham

Lincoln                  10  20  30   51
Glenwood             11  18  31    42

Farmer 4-4-15, Gallagher 0-0-0, Komnick 1-0-3, Schonauer 4-0-8, Schraber 7-0-19, Welch 0-0-0, Werner 0-0-0, Young 2-2-6.

Totals 18-6-51


College basketball

Redbirds play host to league-leading
Creighton in women's basketball

[JAN. 12, 2002]  NORMAL -- To Redbirds coach Jenny Yopp, perhaps the most important thing her Illinois State basketball team can do to get ready for its Sunday night encounter with Missouri Valley Conference leading Creighton is 'nothing.'

Well, if you consider rest as 'doing nothing.'

According to Yopp, the biggest reason the Jays are the only unbeaten team in Valley play is their energy.

"They are a high-energy team which will pressure the ball and push their offense the entire game," said Yopp. "They haven't played since [an 84-47 win over defending Valley champs Southwest Missouri State] Sunday and we just had a tough game (Thursday) against Drake. For us to beat Creighton, we will have to match their energy. For us to match that energy, we'll have to be well-rested."

The 'Birds, 2-11 overall, 0-4 in the Valley, dropped a 70-58 decision to Drake on Thursday, courtesy of a 19-0 Bulldog run in the first half. Stacey White led balanced Redbird scoring with 12 points. Sharon Blade had 11, Taren O'Brien had 10 while Katie Donovan had nine points and seven rebounds.

Yopp said fans, both at Redbird Arena and watching on regional television, should count on lots of energy and spurts.

"For the fans, this will be an extremely exciting game to watch because Creighton plays the way we would like to play," said Yopp. "It promises to be a fast-paced game by both teams."

The Jays, 9-4 overall, 4-0 in the Valley, are led by Dayna Finch who comes off the bench with 12.5 points per game. Christy Neneman, Traci Jones and freshman Laura Spanheimer, younger sister of former Redbird nemesis Krissie Spanheimer, all are at or near double-figure scoring averages. Finch leads the Valley in three-point field goals with 43.


[to top of second column in this article]

Even though Creighton has won nearly 60 percent of its conference games since entering the Valley in 1992, the Jays are still searching for their first Valley title under the coaching leadership of former Creighton star Connie Yori.

"Christy Neneman is their leader," said Yopp. "She can play any position on the court. Spanheimer is another versatile player. But really, they have such depth and play with such energy, you can't just focus on one or two and be successful."

The game, which tips off at 8:05 p.m., will be broadcast live on Fox Sports Midwest, MetroSports in Kansas City and Cox Cablevision in Omaha. Fox Sports Chicago will show the game on replay at 2 a.m. Sunday. It also will feature a halftime ceremony retiring the jersey of former USA Olympian, professional player and Redbird all-American Charlotte Lewis, who played at Illinois State in the mid-1970s.

Yopp understands what Lewis, who starred for former Redbird coach Jill Hutchison, means to the Illinois State program.

"I have tremendous respect and admiration for Charlotte not just as a basketball player, but as a person who overcame hardships and met personal challenges with respect," said Yopp. "So many times, she could have given up. Not only did she persevere, but her coach and the people around her at Illinois State never let her give up on herself. Those kinds of things that make it an honor to coach at Illinois State. At Illinois State, the tradition is not only to give young people a chance, but to be persistent in supporting and helping them."

[ISU news release]

Illinois State vs. Creighton women's basketball pre-game notes

[JAN. 12, 2002]   

[Click here to view background information (in Adobe Acrobat)]

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Illini vs. Michigan men's basketball pre-game notes 

[Click here to view background information (in Adobe Acrobat)]

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Mayfield’s Mutterings…

Spectacular weekend for
local and national sports

[JAN. 14, 2002]   If you are a sports enthusiast, then this past weekend was a thing of beauty for you, with local high school and college teams playing and winning, as well as our big state universities following suit.  There were professional football playoffs with implications for two of the three most watched teams in our area, the Chicago Bears and the St. Louis Rams.  And those are just a few of the things that were happening.  I wish I could follow Michael Keaton’s recipe in the movie: Multiply and divide myself into at least another three people (although my wife might disagree with that) so I could attend a lot more events.  There was so much action and activity this last weekend that I don’t even know how to start this column.  So, let’s just dig in.

Team of the week

Payne and I attended the LDC rally Saturday morning along with hundreds of other concerned parents, workers and area residents.  My heart goes out to all of the parents, grandparents and other family members.

My dad was a lifelong, hard-working, blue-collar worker most of his life, and that work ethic that he has passed on to me has always allowed me to provide for my family.  So my thoughts also go out to the hundreds of LDC employees, which include some of my neighbors.

I wish that I were smart enough to think of a solution to this problem.  My biggest concern is for the LDC residents.  I have been happy to see many people stand in the gap and give a voice to those without a voice.  If you speak and act for those who truly are defenseless, then you are really making an impact with your life, and I can only admire that.

While I’m sure there are many area teams in several different sports that are worthy of  “team of the week” status, none can outweigh the LDC in my mind this week.  So, to you, LDC residents… You get this week’s game ball.  And give the assist to the parents and workers who are fighting this thing tooth and nail trying to keep LDC’s doors open.  I sense almost unanimous community support for all of you.

Redbirds sweep two

For most of this season, one of ISU’s most pleasant surprises has been the play of Lincoln’s true freshman, Gregg Alexander.  Gregg has sometimes led the team in scoring; while at other times he has led them in floor burns!  He has the lowest turnover ratio in the entire Missouri Valley Conference.

But Saturday, he did not use the University-proclaimed “Lincoln Day” to show off his talents.  Oh sure, he still contributed big buckets at big times, but his line of six points and five rebounds might not turn the heads of the uninitiated.  But, the biggest stat that he brings to the Redbirds is his ability to help his team get the W’s.  He has a champion’s mind and a warrior’s heart and because of that he will always be one of my favorite players.

Perhaps his attitude is catching on with his teammates.  Take, for instance, the game Saturday with the reigning MVC champions, the Indiana State Sycamores.  Gregg makes great post entry feeds to Baboucarr Bojang and to Shedrick Ford, leading them to 15 and 11 points respectively.  But his impact on junior Andy Strandmark might be even more important.  I am of the mindset that if ISU is to have a good season, a lot of that could depend on the play of Strandmark.  Hopefully, he has been inspired by the play of Alexander, because he came off the bench Saturday and contributed eight points and seven rebounds in a performance that ISU coach Tom Richardson termed “terrific.”

A crowd of 5,790 (which included somewhere between 50 and 100 Lincoln residents -- my rough count) were rockin’ the "Bird House," especially at the end of the first half and early in the second half.  The Birds closed out the first half to take a 33-30 lead into the locker rooms but did the real damage a few minutes later.  Early in the second half, ISU went on an 11-0 run to take a 48-37 lead.  They were never seriously threatened after that.  ISU had previously lost six in a row to the Sycamores.

A key stat in the game was the fact that ISU out-rebounded Indiana State 41-30 and grabbed 18 offensive boards.  The win takes the Redbirds to a record of 6-10 (2-3 MVC), and Indiana State slipped to 3-11 (1-4 MVC).  Indiana State was led in scoring by an Illinois product, Terrance Avery, with 22 points, and Marcus Howard added 11.

In women’s action, there must have been some confusion.  Lincoln’s Steph Reichle must have thought that the upcoming Lincoln Day for her was actually Saturday night.  Why do I say that?  Reichle exploded with 17 rebounds — the second best rebounding performance ever seen in Redbird Arena!  Her 17 caroms helped propel the Lady Redbirds to a shocking 51-47 rebounding edge that enabled the ladies to shock the Creighton Lady Bluejays 64-57 in overtime before a rowdy crowd of 2,653 wound-up spectators.  The shocking loss was the first for Creighton in conference play and was the first Valley win for ISU this season.

Nice going, Steph and Gregg!  We are proud of you, as we are of all of our former students, whether there is a day to proclaim your roots or not!

Railers winning again

Those who don’t know much about IHSA basketball were wondering, “What’s wrong with the Railers?” after they suffered back-to-back losses.  What they didn’t know was that both losses came to the teams that were ranked No. 1 in the state at the time we played them.  And if you take away the first quarter of the game against Lanphier, it might have had a little bit different outcome.  I’m not suggesting that we would have beaten them, but it is a lot easier to play with a 15-point lead than it is to play with a three-point lead.  It will be interesting to see what type of strategy the Railers employ next time those two teams meet.

Lincoln turned in two great performances this past weekend.  First they rode a fourth quarter explosion from Derek Schrader to a nine-point victory over Chatham-Glenwood.  Then they had a gritty, gutsy win over Southeast that they probably had no business winning.  When athletic teams that possess great overall team speed and quickness lose to teams that they should beat, it can boggle the mind.  Once again the Railers have come out of nowhere and find themselves alone and in sole possession of second place in the Central State Eight!


[to top of second column in this article]

Even though SE’s Tony Wheatley erupted for 24 points, the Spartans could not stop a Railer quartet of Cory Farmer with 17 points, Eric Young with 16, Adam Schonauer with 14 and Schrader with 12.  Schrader had a couple of big steals late in the fourth quarter to help the Railers to a 64-61 win in a game the Railers should have never won.  It must be the mystique of the Railer coaching staff.  Or maybe it’s the magic of Roy S. Anderson gymnasium.  Whatever it is, SE dipped to 11-5 overall and 4-3 in CS8, while Lincoln improved to 12-4 and 5-2.

The game may have severely hurt SE’s seeding chances, but, at the same time, it may have secured a top-four seed for the Railers.  Actually a No. 2 or No. 3 seed would probably be the most advantageous for the Railers heading into postseason play, but there’s a lot of work to be done before the seeding meeting later this month.

LCC on a roll

With LCC’s thrashing of Great Lakes on Saturday, that should make them something like 12-8.  A narrow 82-80 loss to perennial superpower Kentucky Christian on Thursday would have made the picture even brighter.

Lincoln did have a huge come-from-behind upset over Greenville College last Monday at Greenville.  Down by three with 1.2 seconds to play, the Panthers triple-teamed Lincoln superstar Matt Clark.  That enabled former U-High product Joel Searby to slip unnoticed to the far corner where he calmly sank a long 3-pointer to tie the game and send it to an extra session.  Once there, LCC refused to lose and may rapidly be becoming a dangerous postseason club.  Could this be the first LCC basketball team ever to make the Elite Eight?  Stay tuned!

The Angels, on the other hand, are closing in on .500.  That may not mean much to you, but the ladies are in their first year with new coach Amanda Bowman and seem to be jelling quite nicely.  Lincoln’s Brittany Robbins had 17 points Saturday in the Angels’ win over Great Lakes.  Former Lady Railer Steph Urton also handed out six assists.

Boyhood favorites advance in NFL playoffs

It’s not every year that your boyhood favorites make it to the playoffs in any sport, but this year I have a few to pick from.  As a kid, my dad took me to several 49er and Raider games.  San Fran was a real surprise team this year, and I did not expect them to win a playoff game, but was just glad that they got there.  Oakland, on the other hand, was picked by many to win the Super Bowl last year.  Maybe this year will be their year.

I also went to a few Rams games when I was little, but never backed them like I did the Bay Area teams.  The experts are predicting Pittsburgh  and St. Louis, and they might be right.  Local fans seem to be split on either St. Louis or Chicago.  No matter what happens, it should be exciting.

Lincoln’s Tony Semple, who wears No. 62 for the Detroit Lions, says that those choices are as good as any.  He spoke to Greg Taylor and me Saturday night on the new classic rock radio station and had several key playoff insights.

The most astute one was that teams preparing for the playoffs are usually planning to go up against a team that runs a 4-3 defensive alignment.  That’s where they have four down linemen on the line of scrimmage and three linebackers.  When a team employs a 3-4 set, you wouldn’t think that would make that much difference.  Tony set us straight on that and demonstrated how wrong you would be if you thought that.

According to Semple, that changes everything:  blocking assignments, blitz packages, reads — basically everything.  He added that the last thing you want to do is to change your stuff against a 3-4 after you’ve been going against a 4-3 all season long.

Outstanding stuff, Tony!  And good luck to you and the Lions in the draft and in your free agent signings.  Here’s hoping that you guys are able to turn it around next season.  Also, thank you once again for taking the time out to talk to the community on the radio the other night.  We are proud of you and the fact that you are representing us everywhere you go.  If you get a chance while you are here, come on out to the new LCC gym and check out our weight room to give us your thoughts on it!

There’s a lot more stuff to cover, but I am too tired to go on.  We would still like to hear from wrestling coaches and swimming coaches, and from all the other sports with the results of your most recent matches.  Here’s hoping that all of you have the New Year started in a great way.

[Jeff Mayfield]



Redbird athletics announce 'Take
a child to the game' day promotion

[JAN. 8, 2002]  NORMAL The Illinois State men's and women's basketball teams are inviting youth, ages 18 and under, to Redbird Arena Jan.12 and Feb.15 for "Take a Kid to the Game" day where a child accompanied by an adult can attend a game free of charge.

The special promotion begins this Saturday when the men match up against the Sycamores of Indiana State at 4:05 p.m. Any adult who buys a regular price game ticket will receive a free youth ticket for a child 18 years and under.


The same special will take place for the women's basketball game on Feb. 15 when Illinois State faces Evansville at 7:05 p.m.

Anyone with questions can call the Illinois State Athletic Marketing Office at (309) 438-7429.

[ISU athletic media relations release]

Lincoln Day scheduled at Redbird Arena, twice

[JAN. 7, 2002]  NORMAL Residents of Lincoln will have the opportunity to support a native son, Gregg Alexander, and daughter, Steph Reichle, as the Illinois State Athletics Department will sponsor Lincoln Day at Redbird Arena on Jan. 12 and 26.

On Jan. 12, the Redbird men’s basketball team will host defending league champion Indiana State in Missouri Valley Conference action. Tip-off is slated for 4:05 p.m. The women’s team faces conference champion and NCAA Final Four participant Southwest Missouri State on Jan. 26 at 2:05 p.m.


Tickets are $6 for the men’s game, $3 for the women’s and are available in Lincoln at these local businesses: CEFCU, Kroger, Woods and Bates, Jim Xamis Ford, Woody Jones Insurance and Coy’s Car Corner. They can also be purchased by calling the Redbird Arena ticket office at (309) 438-8000.

[Todd Kober, ISU director of media relations]

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