Oblong High School senior Camryn Travis signed a letter-of-intent recently to play softball at Lake Land College next season. Travis (front center) is pictured with her parents, Janice (left) and Kerry (right), while in back are: (L-R) Oblong assistant coach Danielle McCoy, Lake Land head coach Nic Nelson, Lake Land assistant and pitching coach Denny Throneburg and Illiana Dream Seams travel coach Jason Clark.
The third time was the charm for Oblong High School's boys' basketball team.
After losing the first two meetings with county rival Hutsonville-Palestine this season, the Panthers finally broke through Friday night and celebrated Senior Night with a 59-54 win over the Tigers in a Little Okaw Valley Conference Southeast Division game to close out the regular season.
"We finally got them," OHS head coach Ryan Cheek said. "After they got us twice on neutral courts, we knew we had to protect our house and we were able to come out and do that."
"Credit Oblong with the way they played," HHS-PHS head coach Mike Billingsly said. "We knew it was going to be a close game and that our execution had to be good. I thought it was, but theirs was just a little better."
Each team won two quarters, but Lincoln Trail College's women's basketball team won theirs by larger margins than Southwestern Illinois College did, which allowed the Lady Statesmen to pick up a 68-61 win in the Great Rivers Athletic Conference contest Saturday afternoon (Feb. 17).
Closing out the regular season on the road against a strong opponent is tough enough, but doing it without your leading scorer is even more difficult.
Unfortunately that was the task facing Robinson High School's boys' basketball team Friday night (Feb. 16), as the Maroons were without senior Walker Sandschafer, who suffered an ankle injury in Tuesday night's win at Marshall.
Without Sandschafer, the Maroons struggled to generate much offense and the end result was a 55-39 loss at Sullivan, Ind., in a non-conference contest.
One sign of a successful program is having players continue to play in college and that's something Oblong High School's softball program is doing on a regular basis.
The latest to do so is senior pitcher Camryn Travis, who recently signed to continue her softball career at Lake Land College.
"It feels pretty great," Travis said. "I've accomplished something I've been working toward for a long time."
"She's had a really good high school career and I look for big things from her again this year," OHS head coach Galen Slover said. "I'm excited for her to go up there. I think she'll just keep getting better and better."
Late in the season, it doesn't matter how you win games, as long as you win.
Robinson High School's boys' basketball team can attest to that following Tuesday night (Feb. 13)'s Little Illini Conference game at Marshall.
The Maroons took the best shots the host Lions had to offer, battled through some adversity and put together a late rally to pick up a 61-53 win on the road in conference play.
"I'll take an ugly win over a pretty loss anytime," RHS head coach Mack Thompson said. "The kids just kept playing and battling through everything. That is the beauty of this group. They don't ever give up."
A strong start helped Oblong High School's boys' basketball team grab a lead they would not relinquish, as the Panthers rolled to a 67-37 win over Martinsville in a Little Okaw Valley Conference Southeast Division contest Tuesday night (Feb. 13).
Oblong led throughout, grabbing an 11-4 lead after one quarter, then outscoring Martinsville 22-9 in the second quarter for a 33-13 halftime advantage. The Panthers then outscored Martinsville 17-12 in each of the final two quarters to complete the rout.
"It felt good to be back on our home floor and it showed, as we came out hungry and ready to play," OHS head coach Ryan Cheek said. "We knew we had to attack their zone and get to the rim and we did just that, as a majority of our points came from inside the paint. Our big guys played the best game I've seen all year out of them. At times we got rushed and turned the ball over, but we were able to make it up on the defensive end."