The People's Choice: QND's Eric Orne - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

The People's Choice: QND's Eric Orne

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QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -- For the first time in four years Quincy Notre Dame did not win a state championship in girls basketball.

For that reason alone, the timing may seem odd that for the first time Eric Orne was voted The People's Choice for WGEM Girls Basketball Coach of the Year.

However when you take a closer look, this may have been his most impressive season on the Lady Raider bench to date, following a third place finish and another season ending win at Redbird Arena.

"It was a lot of fun this year," Orne expressed.

"This team went to Springfield High and won a regional, went to U-High, played U-High, and won a sectional there."

"This team that I'm thankful for is a blessing to me, and how hard of an effort they put forth to prove to themselves what they could do."

After graduating arguably more talent than any team in Illinois, this season displayed that the Notre Dame program is about more than having the right players at the right time.

It is nothing less than a well oiled machine, ran by chemistry from the top down.

"It shows a lot about his character, losing Jordan Frericks and Kassidy Gengenbacher, two all-staters, and nobody really expected us to do something like this, or even to get back to state," senior guard Cassidy Foley told WGEM Sports.

"Coming into practices in the first week we had that mindset that we wanted to get back to state, and I think it just showed that coach Orne and our whole coaching staff believed in us and really supported us throughout the season."
 
"That starts with the hard work and sacrifices you have to go through every day," Orne added.

"I think that once you commit to that the success just follows."

On the surface, Orne should have nothing more to prove to anyone, but that's not why he's still in the game.

Several talented players have come and gone, but the man patrolling the sidelines at 10th & Jackson has been a constant figure throughout years of nearly unparalleled success, even though that is something the humble head coach would be hard pressed to admit. 

"It really revolves around the girls," Orne said.

"I am blessed that this team and these young ladies over the last 14 years have believed in the system that we do, and how we approach things."

"Really the credit goes to the girls and everything that they do."
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