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ST. JOSEPH — The green rectangular sign hangs above the entrance to the St. Joseph-Ogden locker room.
The SJO boys’ basketball team has had a clear view of the memento from last year’s Class 2A state tournament since coach Brian Brooks attached it the wall before practices began.
It’s a reminder of where the Spartans went last year. Peoria.
Nate Michael came out last Tuesday doing what Nate Michael does best: shooting the basketball.
His first three-point attempt came 18 seconds into St. Joseph-Ogden’s Class 2A regional semifinal game.
He made it.
Before two minutes had elapsed, the senior sharpshooter had hit two more from long distance as the fifth-ranked Spartans built their lead to 10-0.
The last Sangamon Valley Conference boys basketball game St. Joseph-Ogden played will leave a lasting memory.
Winning conference titles usually do.
The Spartans wrapped up their second straight SVC regular season championship with a thrilling 61-58 win last Friday night at rival St. Thomas More. SJO will move to the revamped Okaw Valley Conference next school year.
The end of the regular season didn’t treat the Villa Grove/Heritage boys basketball team too kindly. At least as far as wins.
If one would have looked at the beginning of last week and had to pick one St. Joseph-Ogden wrestler to win a state medal, Wesley Kibler’s name probably wasn’t the first to come to mind.
That’s not a knock against Kibler, a sophomore at 195 pounds.
Rather senior Austin Hedrick, a three-time state qualifier who had placed fourth in 2013 at 152, seemed a solid choice.
The senior leadership came through for St. Joseph-Ogden when it counted the most in Saturday’s Sangamon Valley Conference Tournament game at Parkland College.
With 31.1 seconds left and SJO leading 59-56, Brent Schluter scored what would be the biggest of his team-high 22 points on a traditional three-point play.
Like almost all sports teams during the winter season, the Villa Grove/Heritage girls’ basketball team has had to deal with schedule changes because of the weather.
The St. Joseph-Ogden girls’ basketball team ended its tenure in the Sangamon Valley Conference on a high note Thursday night, defeating Paxton-Buckley-Loda, 57-46, at St. Joseph.
The victory clinched a second-place finish in the SVC for the Spartans, who ended conference play with a 5-2 record, two games behind conference champion St. Thomas More.
The entire St. Joseph-Ogden wrestling team won't get a chance to wrestle again this season.
But the Spartans will send a hearty contingent to the Class 1A Stanford Olympia Sectional meet this weekend.
St. Joseph-Ogden seniors Brock Immke and Tyler McCormick are used to playing baseball together.
They played together for the SJO Spartans, the St. Joseph Bandits and years before when they played T-ball.
Now they will play baseball together at Kankakee Community College.
The pitchers signed their letter of intents on Jan. 29.