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Western Illinois will kick off the 2014 season against Valparaiso on Thursday night at Hanson Field. Western Illinois will kick off the 2014 season against Valparaiso on Thursday night at Hanson Field.

On the Sidelines: WIU begins fall crusade with Valpo in season opener Video included

Four weeks of preseason camp has come to an end. Come Thursday night the Western Illinois football team will get their first crack at showcasing a new and improved group against visiting Valparaiso.
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Illinois HS Football: Four area teams crack preseason poll

Illinois High School Football Top 10 Poll More>>

Soler shines in debut, but Cubs fall to Reds

Skip Schumaker drove in a pair of runs and the Cincinnati Reds withstood Jorge Soler's first-at-bat homer and an RBI single for a 7-5 victory over the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday night. More>>

Cards offense goes silent in sluggish loss to Pirates

Ike Davis hit a two-run homer off a speaker above the seats in right-center field, Jeff Locke outpitched Adam Wainwright and the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the St. Louis Cardinals 3-1 Wednesday to close in the NL wild-card race. More>>

Wednesday's Area Scores - August 27 Video included

Brittney McMahon (left) celebrates her game winning goal during Culver-Stockton's 2-1 victory against HLGU. Brittney McMahon (left) celebrates her game winning goal during Culver-Stockton's 2-1 victory against HLGU.

**College Soccer, Women's**Hannibal-La Grange: 1Culver-Stockton: 2 More>>

Tuesday's Area Scores - August 26 Video included

Aubrey Reis prepares to score the first of his two goals in QND's 4-0 season opening victory over Hannibal. Aubrey Reis prepares to score the first of his two goals in QND's 4-0 season opening victory over Hannibal.

QND shuts out Hannibal on the pitch, Knox County's Lauren Dale tosses a no-hitter and Highland rallies for a win at Bowling Green in softball, plus Hannibal hands its head coach her first victory in spikes, Payson boys golf earns a triangular win in Barry, and Palmyra girls tennis prevails at Moberly. More>>

Off and Running: Monroe City turns page after impressive debut Video included

The Monroe City Panthers hope to build off of Friday's impressive season opening win over Clark County, with the next challenge coming right away in a week two road trip to Macon. The Monroe City Panthers hope to build off of Friday's impressive season opening win over Clark County, with the next challenge coming right away in a week two road trip to Macon.

The Monroe City Panthers hope to build off of Friday's impressive season opening win over Clark County, with the next challenge coming right away in a week two road trip to Macon. More>>

Offensive Nucleus: Anders carries franchise role for Raiders attack Video included

Following a 1,500 yard junior campaign, Anders is once again the clear centerpiece of an offense that will rely on his big time production throughout the season. Following a 1,500 yard junior campaign, Anders is once again the clear centerpiece of an offense that will rely on his big time production throughout the season.

Quincy Notre Dame running back Daylin Anders burst onto the scene last year with a 1,500 yard season and returns to the Raider backfield prepared to shoulder the load as the centerpiece of a program in search of its 12th consecutive playoff appearance. More>>

Monday's Area Scores - August 25 Video included

Paige Couch had two hits and an RBI as Knox County won 4-0 at South Shelby on Monday night. Paige Couch had two hits and an RBI as Knox County won 4-0 at South Shelby on Monday night.

Knox County shuts out South Shelby, Palmyra wins at Mark Twain, and Hannibal rolls Mexico in softball, QND boys golf remains perfect, plus Unity and Illini West earn victories in volleyball. More>>

Friday Night Football - Week 1 Video included

Macon blanks Palmyra, Monroe City takes down Clark County, Brookfield handles South Shelby, Bowling Green beats rival Louisiana, Mark Twain pushes state ranked Westran to the limit, and Van-Far shuts out North Shelby. More>>

C-SC Football: Much needed stability to drive Wildcats this fall Video included

Culver-Stockton returns 18 starters, nine on offense and nine on defense, in hopes of its first winning season since 2001. Culver-Stockton returns 18 starters, nine on offense and nine on defense, in hopes of its first winning season since 2001.

For the first time in now his fourth season as the leader of the Culver-Stockton football program Jeff Duvendeck has stability. He's no longer relying heavily on young players, and more importantly, players without experience. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: High octane offense prepares for lift-off at Louisiana Video included

Louisiana opens the season by hosting non-conference rival Bowling Green on Friday night. Louisiana opens the season by hosting non-conference rival Bowling Green on Friday night.

By all accounts this isn't the same Louisiana football program that won just two games and gave up 40 or more points in six of its eight losses last season. The page in the first chapter of the Greg Purdum era as head coach has been turned. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Simonson returns to coach Sangamo bound Pittsfield Video included

Former Saukee head coach Curt Simonson has returned to the sidelines to start the program's first season in the Sangamo Conference. Former Saukee head coach Curt Simonson has returned to the sidelines to start the program's first season in the Sangamo Conference.

The landscape of Pittsfield football has changed dramatically, where former Saukee head coach Curt Simonson returns to the sidelines to start the program's first season in the Sangamo Conference. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Battled tested West Hancock determined to bounce back Video included

The Titans had seven underclassmen start on both side of the ball in 2013. The Titans had seven underclassmen start on both side of the ball in 2013.

It's no longer a time for transition at West Hancock where Travis Cook takes the sidelines for his second season as head coach with a team that brings back a majority of its starting line-up and an imposing physical presence. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Bushnell and West Prairie join forces as the Sparclones Video included

Bushnell-West Prairie head coach Roy Gully III looks on at practice in Sciota as his team gears up for the first season under a new co-op. Bushnell-West Prairie head coach Roy Gully III looks on at practice in Sciota as his team gears up for the first season under a new co-op.

The Bushnell and West Prairie programs inked a co-op deal this off-season, along with a unique mascot combining the Spartans and Cyclones into the Sparclones, beginning a new chapter of football between two schools in search of success. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Commitment proves Macomb is ready to bounce back Video included

Macomb's schedule is one of the more difficult small school slates in Illinois with a trip to Limestone on tap to kick off the season. Macomb's schedule is one of the more difficult small school slates in Illinois with a trip to Limestone on tap to kick off the season.

As the rain fell and the lightning struck in Macomb on Saturday morning Bomber football coach Kelly Sears spent more than an hour in film session showing various areas in which his team can get better, and the receptive players are ready to prove that last season won't repeat itself. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Rushville/Industry turns to new guidance to ignite program Video included

Rushville/Industry opens the season in two weeks when Havana comes to town. Rushville/Industry opens the season in two weeks when Havana comes to town.

There's a sense surrounding the Rushville/Industry football that a new beginning could be the remedy for a revival. The keys to the Rocket ignition have been handed over to first-time head coach Jon Hebb as the program tries to regain a positive direction.


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GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Keokuk turns the page to begin playoff search Video included

Keokuk will kick off the season on August 29 when Central Lee invades Calvert Stadium. Keokuk will kick off the season on August 29 when Central Lee invades Calvert Stadium.

Keokuk's 2013 season may have ended with a win but the excitement of beating its biggest rival was tempered a bit with the reality of a finish without a spot in the postseason. It's very apparent the Chiefs plan for an opposite conclusion this year.


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GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Sizable advantage to lift Fort Madison Video included

Fort Madison opens with a visit from West Burlington/BND on August 29. Fort Madison opens with a visit from West Burlington/BND on August 29.

Football can sometimes be a game of inches, or a case of missed opportunities. For the Fort Madison football program it's been the latter, especially the last few seasons as in-game mistakes have troubled the Hounds. This fall they hope to take better advantage of those chances. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: QND turns to 'old fashion' style to try and extend playoff streak Video included

QND opens the 2014 campaign with a trip to reigning Class 4A semifinalist Rockford Lutheran. QND opens the 2014 campaign with a trip to reigning Class 4A semifinalist Rockford Lutheran.

Fresh off advancing to the Class 4A quarterfinals last fall the Quincy Notre Dame football team got another taste of an extended postseason. But that also motivated this year's squad to not take for granted their string of success - in hopes of an even deeper run this fall. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Camp Point Central driven by unfinished business Video included

Brad Dixon works with the Panther defensive line during drills at practice in Camp Point. Brad Dixon works with the Panther defensive line during drills at practice in Camp Point.

With game breakers and work horses returning under the command of head coach Brad Dixon, expectations remain high at Central where the Panthers most potent weapon is a collective mindset to never be satisfied. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Quincy High out to prove last fall was no fluke Video included

Quincy High begins its pursuit of another playoff run when United Township visits Flinn Stadium on August 29. Quincy High begins its pursuit of another playoff run when United Township visits Flinn Stadium on August 29.

Quincy High may have lost the program's all-time leading rusher and a linebacker who's now playing NCAA Division I football, but as head coach Rick Little points out, the cupboard is far from bare. And this year's squad has a goal of exceeding last year's historic run. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Brown County anchored by strength in trenches Video included

The Brown County Hornets are on a run of ten consecutive trips to the postseason. The Brown County Hornets are on a run of ten consecutive trips to the postseason.

Despite graduation losses to several key position players, Brown County will reset behind a strong, veteran front line and the consistency of an established program that hasn't missed the playoffs in a decade. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Budding talent has Unity-Payson in playoff pursuit Video included

Unity-Payson is banking on a veteran-led offensive and defensive line to push the Mustangs to their first playoff appearance since 2010. Unity-Payson is banking on a veteran-led offensive and defensive line to push the Mustangs to their first playoff appearance since 2010.

As short handed as the Unity-Payson football program is when it comes to a wealth of experience they have budding talent looking to make their mark following a 2013 campaign which nearly ended with a spot in the postseason.


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GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Elite speed, dynamic roles key to Illini West potential Video included

With just one playoff win in the last three seasons Illini West is determined to return to its elite tradition, and the weapons making a return to the Chargers lineup have the potential to make it happen. With just one playoff win in the last three seasons Illini West is determined to return to its elite tradition, and the weapons making a return to the Chargers lineup have the potential to make it happen.

With just one playoff win in the last three seasons Illini West is determined to return to its elite tradition, and the weapons making a return to the Chargers lineup have the potential to make it happen. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Confidence on the rise for reloaded Leathernecks Video included

An off-season of growth will be on display for the Leathernecks who return a total of 16 starters this fall. An off-season of growth will be on display for the Leathernecks who return a total of 16 starters this fall.

The Western Illinois Leathernecks enter their second season under head coach Bob Nielson constructing the framework of a program that could make its presence felt in the Missouri Valley Conference very soon. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Monroe City crashes Class 1 with wave of returning starters Video included

Excitement is riding high around the Monroe City football team heading into the fall, where the Panthers will break into Class 1 with nearly every starter back in the line-up under second year head coach David Kirby. Excitement is riding high around the Monroe City football team heading into the fall, where the Panthers will break into Class 1 with nearly every starter back in the line-up under second year head coach David Kirby.

Excitement is riding high around the Monroe City football team heading into the fall, where the Panthers will break into Class 1 with nearly every starter back in the line-up under second year head coach David Kirby. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Knox County aims to push forward with talented seniors Video included

Knox County was on the cusp of a break through season in 2013, and with a talented senior class returning to the field, the Eagles are planning on taking bigger strides this fall. Knox County was on the cusp of a break through season in 2013, and with a talented senior class returning to the field, the Eagles are planning on taking bigger strides this fall.

Knox County was on the cusp of a break through season in 2013, and with a talented senior class returning to the field, the Eagles are planning on taking bigger strides this fall. More>>

GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Hannibal's motivation extends beyond the football field Video included

Hannibal head coach Mark St. Clair is in a fight off the field after his wife Mary Ann was diagnosed with cancer earlier this summer. Hannibal head coach Mark St. Clair is in a fight off the field after his wife Mary Ann was diagnosed with cancer earlier this summer.

The Hannibal football team is sure to end up on the winning side of the scoreboard more times than not this season. However, they're already winners off the field. The Pirate seniors are sporting mohawk's to support head coach Mark St. Clair and his family.


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GRIDIRON PREVIEW: Clark County looks to 'Trump' the competition Video included

Clark County is banking on experience to try and rebound from a 5-6 season a year ago. Clark County is banking on experience to try and rebound from a 5-6 season a year ago.

With plenty of graduation in the Clarence Cannon Conference there's only a few teams that have experience on this year's roster. One of those is Clark County who's mission is to climb to the top with more than a dozen players who are game ready.

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