The Commercial-News, Danville, IL


February 19, 2013

Devils advance to semis

HOOPESTON —  Last year’s 71-50, season-ending loss to St. Joseph-Ogden in the Westville Regional Championship marked the fifth time in seven seasons the Bismarck-Henning Blue Devils had been eliminated in the postseason by the Spartans. But last year was supposed to be their year. The Blue Devils were ranked No. 7 in Class 2A, and took a streak of 16 wins into the title game. It still didn’t happen.

The Spartans stunned the Blue Devils, and left them going back to Bismarck with a bad taste in their mouths. That taste still lingers, and there is nothing more Bismarck-Henning wants than to get back to this year’s regional championship game and get another shot at St. Joseph-Ogden.

Their journey toward what they hope results in their first regional title since the 2007-2008 season began on Monday with a 55-42 win over Hoopeston Area in a quarterfinal of the Class 2A Hoopeston Regional.

“I have a bad taste in my mouth from last year and getting blown out by St. Joe,” Bismarck-Henning senior guard Austin Toler said. “St. Joe’s a great team.

“I want to go out with a bang this year. It was tough losing to St. Joe last year with being ranked seventh. I just want another shot at St. Joe so bad.”

There is a possibility Toler and the Blue Devils will get another shot at the Spartans, who were ranked seventh in last week’s poll. That chance would come on Friday, once again in the regional championship. But first, they will have to contend with No. 10 Westville, which has already defeated Bismarck-Henning in this year’s Vermilion County Tournament. The Blue Devils (25-6) earned a season split with the Tigers eight days later.

As badly as Bismarck-Henning might be determined to get another shot at a regional championship, interim head coach Jon Clapp is confident his team will go into Wednesday’s contest against Westville focused only on its conference rival.

“I’ve stressed to them that we just can’t look past anybody right now,” Clapp said. “Even tonight, you can’t look past anyone. Strange things happen in a regional. I’ve seen it before.

“A few years ago, Paxton had a team that won very few games during the year and they beat us in the regional championship. You can’t take any game for granted. You’ve got to value every possession, and you’ve got to play until the buzzer sounds.”

Bismarck-Henning took no chances against Hoopeston Area (5-25) when it jumped out to an 11-2 lead four minutes, five seconds into the game. The Blue Devils held a 27-17 advantage at halftime after junior Chase Connelly strapped his team on his back scoring 15 of his 17 points in the first half.

“I don’t even know what they were doing,” Toler said. “They were just leaving him open. I think they were in a triangle-and-two, so I just threw to Chase and he killed them — the first nine points, I think.

“Chase is one of our best shooters, especially when he’s wide open. We thought they would go to man, or maybe a box-and-one against me, but they left him wide open, and he let them have it.”

Connelly made his first four attempts of the game and helped Toler record four of his game-high five assists in the first half. As a team, the Blue Devils shot 49 percent from the field, and made 12 of 19 free throw attempts. Defense created most of their opportunities, recording 10 steals with Toler (five) and Andy Bott (three) accounting for eight.

Toler scored a game-high 20 points with 12 coming in the fourth quarter, Bismarck-Henning forward Wilde Garowski finished with six points and eight rebounds.

Mason Layden led Hoopeston Area with 14 points and seven rebounds, while Brennan Crose scored 11. Daniel Lawson also had nine points, five rebounds, and three steals.

The Cornjerkers went on a 9-2 run late in the third quarter to pull to within 33-31 with the help of two threes by Crose, but the Blue Devils immediately responded with an 8-0 of their own to end the period. Bott and Dustyn Ingram each hit treys during the stretch.

Bismarck-Henning knows it will need another solid performance on Wednesday against the hungry Tigers who have not won a regional title since 1994. Westville’s last regional title game appearance was in 1999.

“Westville’s tough, and we’ve got to come out and play,” Toler said. “We’ve got to make sure our defense is on key, and our offense. We’ve just got to make sure we play hard.”

Wednesday’s game is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.

Text Only
  • SPT- Cn0418 - Covington softball photo 2 Trojans cruise to victory COVINGTON, Ind. - The Covington softball team had a big first inning as they scored five runs on their way to defeating Attica 11-1. Attica threatened to score in the first, getting Karrah Pattengale to second, but they were unable to drive her home.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Lunger steps up for Buffaloes GEORGETOWN -- In only the second start of his career, Georgetown-Ridge Farm/Chrisman pitcher Tyler Lunger pitched a five-hit complete game as the Buffaloes defeated Milford 8-2 on Thursday in Vermilion Valley Conference action. "I feel I threw well

    April 18, 2014

  • SPT - CN0418 - Danville boys tennis photo Maroons blitz young Vikings DANVILLE -- In the process of gaining experience, the Danville boys tennis team has taken a few lumps in the first few weeks of season. On Thursday afternoon, the Champaign Central Maroons delivered a few lessons to the younger Vikings with a 9-0 vic

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Peelman pitches no-hitter as Vikings beat Maroons CHAMPAIGN -- Alissa Peelman pitched a no-hitter as the Danville High School softball team beat Champaign Central 11-0 in five innings on Thursday in Big 12 Conference action. Peelman was also 3-of-4 with three RBIs for the Vikings while Mackenzie Kin

    April 18, 2014

  • Thursday's Local Scores PREP BASEBALL At Georgetown Georgetown-Ridge Farm/Chrisman 8, Milford 2 Milford 101 000 0 -- 2 5 10 GRFC 200 141 x -- 8 8 3 WP -- Tyler Lunger. LP -- Clayton Rieches. Two or more hits -- GRFC: Dylan Bina, Ethan Silva. 2B

    April 18, 2014

  • SPT - CN0417 - Andy Bott photo Better late than never for Bott BISMARCK -- Marshall golf coach Matt Grobe completely surprised Bismarck-Henning standout Andy Bott with an e-mail earlier this year. Bott, who is a three-time all-stater for the Blue Devils, was preparing to attend Illinois Wesleyan in the fall. "Ou

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT- CN0417- Westville softball photo Nourie, Tigers beat Comets 20-4 in five inning game MUNCIE -- On a very windy day which made playing softball tough for both teams, Westville defeated Oakwood in five innings 20-4 with some good offensive production and a solid pitching performance from Stefanie Nourie. Nourie got her first win of the

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT- Cn0417 - Seeger baseball photo 2 Falcons make quick work of Pats WEST LEBANON, Ind. - North Vermillion sent 11 batters to the plate in the top of the first inning and scored seven runs en route to a 13-1 win over the homestanding Seeger Patriots. The visiting Falcons got five hits including doubles by Jordan West

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - CN0417 - Local Roundup photo Salt Fork's Learnard pitches perfect game JAMAICA -- Salt Fork's Ross Learnard finally got back on the mound on Wednesday for the first time in a week and he did not disappoint, pitching a perfect game as the Salt Fork baseball team beat Schlarman Academy in five innings. "He had his breakin

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT- CN0416 - NV softball photo 2 Patriots smash Falcons CAYUGA, Ind. - Seeger took an early lead, extended it and then kept North Vermillion at bay as the Patriots defeated the host Falcons 14-3 in five innings. The visitors scored one run in the top of the first inning and, after North Vermillion went do

    April 16, 2014 2 Photos

NCAA basketball
NJCAA Tourney Photos 2014

Check out the action at the NJCAA Division II National Men's Basketball Tournament March 18-22 at DACC. Buy photos from the Commercial-News here:

Must Read
AP Video
Obama Hopeful on Ukraine, Will Watch Russians Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction Crew Criticized Over Handling of Ferry Disaster Agreement Reached to Calm Ukraine Tensions Raw: Pope Francis Performs Pre-easter Ritual Raw: Bulgarian Monastery Dyes 5000 Easter Eggs Diplomats Reach Deal to Ease Tensions in Ukraine U.S. Sending Nonlethal Aid to Ukraine Military Holder: Americans Stand With KC Mourners Obama Greets Wounded Warriors Malaysia Plane: Ocean Floor Images 'Very Clear' Sparks Fly With Derulo and Jordin on New Album Franco Leads Star-studded Broadway Cast Raw: Two Lucky Kids Get Ride in Popemobile Boston Bombing Survivors One Year Later Sister of Slain MIT Officer Reflects on Bombing
NDN Video
Man Accuses 'X-Men' Director Bryan Singer of Sexually Abusing Him As a Teenager Lea Michele & Naya Rivera Feuding? Don't Be A Tattletale: Bad Bullying Tips For Students Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft Singing Nun Belts Out Cyndi Lauper Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday The trillest thoughts on marijuana "RHOA" Star Charged With Battery Grizzly Bears Get Snowy Birthday Party Weatherman draws forecast when another technical glitch strikes WGN Elizabeth Olsen's Sexy Shoot Bay Area Teen Gets Prom Date With Help From 'Breaking Bad' Star Boston Bomb Scare Defendant Appears in Court Behind The Tanlines Jersey Strong Part 1 WATCH: Women Fight To Marry Prince Harry! Jenny McCarthy Engaged to "New Kid" Kate and Will Land in Oz O’Reilly Launches Preemptive Strike Against CBS Pixar Unveils Easter Eggs From its Biggest Movies Baby Sloths Squeak for Their Cuddle Partners in Adorable Video