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Illinois Wins Sunday, Takes Two of Three in South Carolina

Illinois baseball (5-6) secured a winning weekend at the First Pitch Invitational with a 12-6 win over Michigan State (4-7) in a non-conference matchup at Fluor Field today.


Drake Westcott powered the offense today, going 1-for-4 with a run, home run, three RBI and a walk. Asher Bradd, Coltin Quagliano and Brody Harding all had two hits in the ballgame and all nine starters recorded at least one hit.


Cooper Omans earned his second win in as many appearances, working 2.2 innings of one-run ball, scattering four hits and striking out three. Jake Swartz took no decision in the start, allowing three runs, two earned, over 4.1 innings, punching out three. The Fighting Illini pitching staff issued just one free pass in the contest and totaled six strikeouts.


Swartz retired the first six batters he faced and retired nine of the first 10 batters overall, yielding just one hit. 


Quagliano finised 2-for-5 with a run and two RBI. He has recorded at least one hit in 10 of 11 games this season and has back-to-back multi-hit games.


Bradd went 2-for-5 with a run scored in his first multi-hit game of the season.


Westcott went 1-for-4 with a run, a home run, three RBI, and a walk.


Hejza scored four runs.


Every Illinois starter reached base safely in the win. 


Illinois fell to Florida State 13-7 and topped Western Michigan 8-6 in extra innings on Saturday.


Illinois baseball heads to Knoxville, Tenn., where they will face the No. 8 Tennessee Volunteers in a three-game set at Lindsey Nelson Stadium. 

Valpo Edges Illinois State

Cooper Schwieger had 28 points in Valparaiso's 75-72 win against Illinois State on Sunday.


Schwieger had five rebounds and his two free throws with 12 seconds left sealed the win for the Beacons (7-24, 3-17 Missouri Valley Conference). Isaiah Stafford scored 20 points and added eight rebounds. The win snapped an 11-game losing streak for the Beacons.


Kendall Lewis finished with 17 points and nine rebounds for the Redbirds (15-16, 9-11). Malachi Poindexter added 17 points, five assists and two steals. In addition, Myles Foster finished with 15 points.


Schwieger put up 13 points in the first half for Valparaiso, who led 44-31 at the break. Schwieger scored 15 points down the stretch in the second half to help lead Valparaiso to a three-point victory.


It's off to the Missouri Valley Conference tournament this weekend. The Redbirds take on Evansville on Thursday at 6 pm. 

Illinois State Sweeps Arkansas-Pine Bluff Over Weekend

Illinois State baseball posted their first sweep since 2022 as the Redbirds defeated Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 13-3, at the Torii Hunter Baseball Complex on Sunday.


Six players had hits for Illinois State (5-5), led by junior Noah Rabin, who smacked a home run for the second straight game, tallying four RBIs, and a run scored. Sophomore Luke Lawrence went 3-for-5 with a triple, three RBIs and three runs scored.


Sophomore Thomas Harper got the Sunday start, going 3.0 innings against the Golden Lions (6-5) with eight strikeouts. Junior Joe Husak impressed out of the Redbird pen once again, firing four scoreless innings as he picked up the win.


Rabin's grand slam to gave ISU a 4-3 lead and Daniel Pacella added an RBI double down the right field line, pushing the margin to 5-3 in the fifth. 


Lawrence made it 13-3 in the 9th with an RBI triple as scoring Luke Stulga and Daniel Contreras.


Illinois State is scheduled to travel to nationally-ranked Vanderbilt from March 8-10 for a three-game series.

Drake Tops Bradley

Tucker DeVries scored 29 points and Drake beat Bradley 74-66 on Sunday night.


DeVries added six rebounds and four steals for the Bulldogs (25-6, 16-4 Missouri Valley Conference). Kevin Overton made two 3-pointers and scored 13. Colby Garland had 10 points.


Malevy Leons led the Braves (21-10, 13-7) with 18 points, six rebounds and four blocks. Duke Deen added 13 points and Darius Hannah scored 10.


The Braves will take on the winner of Thursday's Illinois-Chicago/Southern Illinois first-round Missouri Valley Conference tournament game Friday night at 8:30 pm.

Kyle Larson Wins at Las Vegas

Kyle Larson won for the third time in his career at Las Vegas, where in 2021 he got his first win driving for Rick Hendrick following a nearly yearlong suspension in 2020. Larson also won in the No. 5 Chevy at Las Vegas last October in the playoffs.


Larson held off Tyler Reddick for his 24th career Cup victory. In a Toyota for 23XI Racing, Reddick chased Larson for the final several laps but could never find enough room to make a move for the pass. Larson’s margin of victory was 0.441 seconds over Reddick.


Hendrick Motorsports is celebrating its 40th anniversary this season and opened the year with William Byron winning the Daytona 500.


Chevrolet also has wins this year by Byron in the Daytona 500 and Daniel Suarez last week at Atlanta for Trackhouse Racing. Chevrolet has won eight of nine national series races to open the year.


Ford and Toyota are both using new cars this year.


Reigning NASCAR champion Ryan Blaney was third for Team Penske in a Ford, followed by Trackhouse driver Ross Chastain, Ty Gibbs in a Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing and Las Vegas native Noah Gragson was sixth in his best finish since joining Stewart-Haas Racing.


Martin Truex Jr. for JGR was seventh, followed by teammate Denny Hamlin, Penske driver and pole-sitter Joey Logano and Byron. Suarez, last week’s winner, was 11th


Larson swept all three stages and led 181 of the 267 laps. The win made Larson the Cup Series points leader with an eight-point cushion over Blaney.


NASCAR goes next week to Phoenix Raceway, where Byron is the defending race winner. Chastain won in November on the day Blaney won his first Cup title.

Blue Ridge Senior Signs NLI To Water Ski at Florida Southern

A Blue Ridge student is heading to college in Flordia to water ski.


Blue Ridge senior Ty Meeker loves the beach and the water and says Flordia Southern was the perfect fit for the next step for his water skiing career and his professional ambitions.



Meeker explains his dad's love of the sport and growing up around water skiing started his love for the sport 



Since Meeker has taken up water skiing his talents have led him to many distinguished events and accomplishments 



Meeker is a part of the soccer and basketball teams at Blue Ridge. He is also a member of the CEO program and is the student council president. He explains how he can do all that and pursue water skiing.


Meeker indicates nationals this year will be held in Lakeland, Flordia and you can watch through the  YouTube channel,  Water Broadcasting Company. 

HS BBall Postseason Action Today

Class 1A Sectional championship action tonight


At Salt Fork


Heyworth 7:00pm



At Effingham St. Anthony


Arcola 6:00pm

Centralia Christ Our Rock Lutheran


Class 2A Sectional championship action tonight


At Shelbyville


St. Joseph-Ogden 7:00pm



Class 3A Sectional championship action tonight


At Lincoln


Decatur MacArthur 7:00pm

Mt. Zion


At Pontiac


Metamora 7:00pm

Peoria Richwoods


Class 4A Sectional championship action tonight


At Pekin


Quincy 7:00pm

Normal Community


High school girls Class 3A State semifinal action today


At Normal CEFCU Arena


Chatham-Glenwood 9:30am

Hinsdale South


Lombard-Montini 11:15am


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