Sports

Leading the Pac: Rantoul grad Mike Mennenga one of top recruiters for Oregon men's basketball

LOS ANGELES — The memory comes flooding back in an instant.

Even through the phone, the wide grin can be felt spreading across his face as he harkens back to a fleeting moment from his childhood.

Mike Mennenga is sitting in Los Angeles traffic, the congested gridlock light years away from the flat, see-for-miles landscape of central Illinois corn and bean fields.


Leading the Pac: Former Fisher star Mitch Elkins serves behind the scenes for University of Cal men's basketball

BERKELEY, Calif. — Ten years later, head coach Deon Mennenga can still recall the exact type of player and person he had in his star guard/forward.

The person was confident, dependable and a strong leader.

“He’s a good young man. They don’t get much better,” Mennenga said.

The player was coachable, multi-talented and a serious basketball junkie.


Frerichs makes Rantoul history, notches 100th career win

RANTOUL — When Brett Frerichs checked his messages in the moments following last Tuesday’s win over Paxton-Buckley-Loda, he was a bit astonished at what engulfed his phone.


McCusker, Roseman striving to earn medals, make history for Eagles

RANTOUL — In the history of Rantoul Township High School wrestling, only two wrestlers have placed in the top four of the state tournament, only one has wrestled for a state championship, and the only year in which two Eagles earned all-state medals was 1971.


Area roundup: HOIC Tournament schedule released for boys, girls basketball

HEART OF ILLINOIS CONFERENCE BOYS’ TOURNAMENT

SATURDAY, Jan. 19

At El Paso-Gridley

Game 1 — No. 8 Tri-Valley vs. No. 9 Ridgeview, 11:30 a.m.

Game 2 — No. 4 Fieldcrest vs.  No. 13 Lexington, 1 p.m.

Game 3 — No. 5 LeRoy vs. No. 12 Fisher, 2:30 p.m.


Déjà blues: Eagles’ crushing loss to Mattoon at buzzer brings back painful memories

RANTOUL — Google “Mattoon buzzer beater,” and the first item to pop up is a YouTube video with more than 67,000 views from a boys basketball game played Dec. 27, 2012 at the Taylorville Holiday Tournament. 

Matchup? Rantoul vs. Mattoon.

Situation? Score tied 54-54.

Time left? 0.7 seconds.


Rantoul bringing back 5K

RANTOUL — Rantoul will be holding a 5K Run & Walk race at 5:45 p.m. and a 1K Kids Fun Run at 7 p.m. April 5, with the races beginning at Rantoul Township High School.


Vermilion County Tournament Preview: Armstrong boys look to rebound from two nail-biting losses

ARMSTRONG — It’s been a frustrating month for Deon Mennenga and the Armstrong-Potomac boys basketball team.

The Trojans (4-14) have not relished victory since a Dec. 11 win over Schlarman, losing eight straight, with the first six games in the losing streak coming by an average of 28 points.


Vermilion County Tournament Preview: Trojan girls look to continue recent hot run

ARMSTRONG — Projections for the second half of the season looked gloomy, at best, for Armstrong-Potomac girls basketball.

That was the consensus opinion following a dismal 46-16 loss to Salt Fork on Dec. 6 in the Trojans’ home building.

Morale was low, confidence even lower, and it looked like some wholesale rotation changes might be in the cards.


‘Having a blast’: St. Malachy basketball continues racking up Ws

RANTOUL — It has been a season filled with smiles and excitement for Rantoul St. Malachy boys basketball.

Two years after the Tigers’ seventh-grade team reached the 7-1A state tournament’s Elite Eight round, it looks like the 2018-19 seventh-graders and eighth-graders each have the potential to make a return trip to state.


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