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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets beat Sparta for second time in less than a week

Chester Lady Yellow Jackets improved to 3-3 on the season with a 68-34 road win at Sparta last night. It was the second time Chester defeated Sparta in a week, both times coming at Dwight Fulton Gym in Sparta.

The Lady Yellow Jackets will open BDC West Division play on the road next Monday at Vienna before hosting Waterloo (Gibault) in a non-conference matchup next Tuesday for the home opener.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Lady Jackets finish Sparta Tournament with 2-3 record

By Jim Beers

After starting the 2017 Sparta Girl’s Basketball Tournament with a nice win over the Trico Lady Pioneers, the Chester Lady Jackets finished with three losses and one more win for an overall tournament record of 2-3.

The Lady Jackets beat Trico, 51-48 Monday November 13. Destiny Williams led the jackets with 15 points, three rebounds, six assists, four turnovers, four steals, four deflections and one blocked shot.

As a team CHS made 18-of-49 shots for a shooting average of just 37 percent. CHS outrebounded Trico 27-19 and dished out 13 assists, grabbed 13 steals, had 21 deflections, took one charge and blocked two shots. From the free throw line the ladies made 12-of-31 for throw for a 39 percent average. With the win, Chester started the season with an overall record of 1-0.

Tuesday November 14 the Jackets fell to a very strong, quick and big Sesser-Valier team by a score of 81-27. Chester did not play especially poorly, but the Lady Red Devils were just that much better.

Sesser jumped out to a huge, 34-5 lead in the first quarter. In the second quarter the Red Devils outscored CHS, 14-8 for a 48-13 halftime advantage. After the break it didn’t get much better as Sesser-Valier outscored Chester, 21-7 for a 69-20 third period lead. Down the stretch the lady Red Devils scored 12 while the Jackets scored seven for a final score of 81-27.

Chester’s leading scorer was Destiny Williams with seven points followed by Tayler Dunning and Peyton Clendenin with four each, Reese Chandler and Josie Kattenbraker with three apiece, and Kendall Williams, Abby Myers, and Katie Shinabarger with two apiece.

Sesser had three players in double figures including Tucker (17), Page (19), and J. McCowen (17). The Red Devils outrebounded the Lady Jackets, 25-13. Chester had 27 turnovers in the loss. On the positive side, CHS recorded eight assists, seven steals, 15 deflections and two blocked shots. With the loss Chester recorded their first loss of the season and ended the night with an overall record of 1-1.

Wednesday November 15 Chester faced the Steeleville Lady Warriors. The game was competitive throughout, but according to Head Coach Pat Knowles, Steeleville’s height gave the Lady Jackets difficulty all night and Hood and Klothe were hard to stop.

Steeleville led 18-13 after the first quarter and 33-22 at the half. In the third period the lady warriors added another 20 points to lead, 53-30 heading into the final quarter. Chester came alive in the fourth and outscored Steeleville 28-14, but it was too little too late. The Warriors beat Chester 67-58 when time ran out.

Chester was led by the smallest, youngest girl on the team. Kendall Williams scored 22 points in the loss and added four steals, three deflections, and one loose ball recovery. She also led the team in turnovers, however, with nine.

Destiny Williams was the Jacket’s second-highest scorer with 16 points. She also recorded six rebounds, four steals, one deflection, and two blocked shots. She balanced those statistics with just two turnovers. Both Williams players were the only two to score in double figures.

Steeleville’s height helped them to win the rebounding race, 39-25, and the Lady Warriors had three players in double figures including Middendorf (20), Klothe (18) and Hood (20). With the loss, the Lady Jackets fell to 1-2 for the season.

Coach Knowles thought that the Jackets could play with Sparta and after taking Thursday=y off, Chester came back to Sparta to take on the Lady Bulldogs. CHS jumped out to a nice 11-8 lead after one quarter of play. In the second period, the Jackets continued their dominance outscoring Sparta, 15-8 for a nice, 26-16 halftime lead.

The third quarter was a lock as both teams scored 14 points. The score was, 40-30 after three periods. Down the stretch Chester sealed the game with a nice, 14-8 advantage and Chester won the game, 54-38.

Destiny Williams paced the Lady jackets with 20 points, five rebounds, one assist, one steal, and five deflections, to counter a pair of turnovers. Newcomer Josie Kattenbraker was Chester’s next highest scorer with 10 points. She added four rebounds, three assists, two steals, four deflections, and one loose ball recovery. The freshman had just two turnovers for the night.

As a team, Chester had 32 rebounds, 13 assists, nine steals, 21 deflections, nine loose ball recoveries and Kendall Williams took one charge. CHS, on the other hand recorded 27 turnovers. The rebounding battle was a draw with each team getting 32 rebounds. With the win, Chester evened their record at 2-2.

Red Bud was Chester’s final obstacle of the tournament. The Lady Musketeers were bigger, quicker and had a good handle in the scoring department. Coach Knowles said, "We knew that Red Bud was going to be good. They returned a lot of players from of last year’s team and still had a tough defense".

Chester was having a very "off" night in the offensive department and scored just 14 poi8nts for the entire night. The score was 9-2 after the first period. The Musketeers outscored Chester, 13-4 in the second quarter to lead 22-6 at halftime.

After the popcorn break, Red Bud exploded for a 16-6 rout of CHS to lead, 38-12 going into the fourth period. Things didn’t get any better in the final period as Red Bud pounded the Jackets, 11-3 for a final score of 49-15.

Freshman Josie Kattenbraker led the Lady jackets in scoring for the second night-in-a-row with five points, followed by another freshman, Reese Chandler who added four. After that, Taylor Dunning, Kendall Williams and Destiny Williams each added two points apiece.

The Lady Musketeers led the battle of the boards, outrebounding Chester, 31-18. For the night, Chester recorded just four assists, a pair of steals, three blocked shots, five loose ball recoveries, and 17 deflections. Another killer for Chester was the fact that they tied the team turnover record of 27 turnovers.

With the loss, Chester fell again to an overall record of 2-3 for the tournament and for the early season. Coach Knowles said, "We did some really good things this week and some really dumb things. We knew we would make a lot of freshmen mistakes, but some of the freshmen also stepped up and impressed me. I kind of thought that we might finish 2-3 for the week. We will get better with time. Now we will start the regular season with some experience under our belts."

On a good note, Chester’s Destiny Williams (right) earned "All-Tournament" honors for the second year-in-a-row. For the five-game tournament Williams scored 60 points, grabbed 15 rebounds, dished out 17 assists, recorded 11 steals, had 15 deflections, recovered two loose balls and blocked five shots. Those great stats were somewhat blemished by 15 turnovers, but not enough to keep her from being named to the 2017 Sparta Girl’s Basketball Tournament "All-Tournament Team.

CHS kicks off season with basketball extravaganza

By Jim Beers

The Chester High School YellowJacket Basketball Team kicked off the season with a night of exciting activities designed to create interest in the upcoming 2017-2018 basketball year.

The event was organized by CHS Head Basketball Coach, Brad Norman with help of Steve Colonel, Pep Band Director, Adrianne Kern, Dance Team Coach, Rachel Marshall, Cheer Coach, as well as Colbert Gymnasium announcer, Mike Lochhead and others.

Friday evening November 17 was the date and approximately 250 YellowJacket fans were in the stands to get a quick peek at the 2017-18 Basketball YellowJackets as well as the people who would be providing entertainment and spirit at CHS home games including the dance team and cheerleading squad.

Coach Norman said, "We want to get everyone excited about the upcoming season. I think we are going to be very quick, competitive and exciting. We have the players to take it inside for the layups, we can run the fast break and score coast-to-coast, and we have the skilled players who can drain the threes. I hope our fans saw each of these possibilities tonight and will be looking forward to coming back to see more of what we have to offer throughout the season."

Norman wasn’t disappointed either as all participants in the preview night activities had Jackets fans on the edge of their seats from start to finish in this three-ring circus of action at Colbert Gym on Rocky Bridges’ Court.

The Chester High School Pep Band kicked off the night with its usual brand of high-energy pep tunes. Stadium announcer Mike Lochhead then introduced the Junior varsity squad for 2017-18 prior to their scrimmage.

The JV squad included Matt Korando, Brandon Schwier, Berrimand Breeden III, Nate Heffernan, Jake Cushman, Drake Bollman, Ethan Bert, Jordan Hughes, Eli Hughes, Ian Reith, Colin Wingerter, Keith Kiner III, and Caleb Nolan.

The JV squad is coached by Chris Toledo, Ben Hunter, Riley Welborn and Jake Cowan. Team Managers are Jarred Meyer and Noah Colonel.

Just prior to the JV scrimmage the CHS Cheerleaders performed a pre-game routine that really knocked the socks off of those watching. 2017-18 Cheer squad members include Karson Colvis, Kaylah Hasemeyer, Emily Atchison, Ashley Hennrich, Allison Kennon, Faye Hathaway, Cara Childs, Kamryn Wingerter, Ashtyn Jany, Elyzabeth Mitchell, Addie Blechle, Parker Knippa, Amira Al-Jassim, Jessica Handel, Kennedy Herrell, Lauren Soellner, and Melody Colonel. Coaches are Rachel Marshal and Michelle Rust.

The JV squad was divided into an orange team and a black team for their scrimmage. The JV scrimmaged for two 10-minuere halves in a very spirited battle that was neck-and-neck for the most part. The JV promises to be quick and competitive and will definitely give opponents a run-for-their-money.

At halftime of the JV game there was a Fan Cupcake Shoot at which all fans had the opportunity to come down the court and shoot free throws to win delicious cup cakes. There was even a miniature hoop for toddlers. This event was a huge hit and lots of delicious cup cakes were eaten by those contestants who made their free throws.

During this same time period Coach Norman and stadium announcer Mike Lochhead gave a special "shout-out" to all of the Chester Grade School, St. Mary’s and St. John girls and boys basketball teams with best wishes for successful seasons.

Following the cupcake shoot the Chester High School dance Team performed a rousing hip-hop routine to the huge Bruno Mars hit, "Perm". The performance was flawless and the 19-person group had the entire audience on their feet as they perfected their hip-hop routine.

The squad will compete at the Illinois Dance Team Association Regional Competition at Benton January 6, 2018 for their first competitor of the season.

The dance team includes Bailey Misuraca, Captain, Alyse Vasquez, Captain, Hanna Bert, Co-Captain, Abbey Bauer, Co-Captain, Tayler Howie, Emma Naeger, Autumn Cushman, Stevie Gilbert, Sylena Martin, Avery Runge, Ryn Petrowske, Lauryn Vasquez, Mallary Vasquez, Kayla Bert, Maddie Hasemeyer, Jocelyn Landeros, Juliette Abernathy, Taylor Cartwright, and Alison Venus. The team is coached by Adrianne Kern. She is assisted by Barb Misuraca and Danielle Valleroy.

At the conclusion of the JV scrimmage the CHS Pep Band rocked the gym with more lively music. The band, dance team and cheerleaders then performed their entire pre-game routines prior to the introductions of the YellowJacket varsity.

The Chester High School YellowJacket Varsity Basketball Team poses for a picture following the varsity scrimmage Friday night November 17. The annual "Meet and Greet" gave Jacket fans the opportunity to see the YellowJackets in action prior to the home opener Friday December 8 when the Jackets host Sesser-Valier at 7:30 p.m. Pictured (left to right): Jarred Meyer, Head Manager, Colin Wingerter, Nick Heffernan, Jake Haberberger, Caleb Nolan, Clay Herrell, Ian Reith, Drake Bollman, Keith Kiner III, Josh Haberberger, David Ashby, Jake Cushman, Ethan Bert, and Noah Colonel, Manager. Jim Beers Photo

Following the pre-game routine, stadium announcer, Mike Lochhead introduced the 2017-18 YellowJacket Varsity Basketball Team. The roster includes Jake Haberberger, Clay Herrell, Josh Haberberger, David Ashby, Jake Cushman, Drake Bollman, Ethan Bert, Nick Heffernan, Ian Reith, Colin Wingerter, Keith Kiner III, and Caleb Nolen.

The Jackets are coached by Brad Norman, Head Coach, Chris Toledo, Assistant Coach, along with Ben Hunter, Riley Welborn and Jake Cowan. Managers are Jarred Meyer and Noah Colonel.

The varsity squad was divided into the orange squad and the black squad. The two units scrimmaged for two 10-minute halves. Coach Norman served as the referee and the other coaches guided the players.

The varsity proved to be very talented. They had good outside shooters, quick, versatile guards who could take-it-down the court and make the layup, inside players who could bang it down low and "dive-on-the-floor" defense that will be hard for opponents to ignore.

During halftime of the varsity scrimmage there was a three-point shooting contest among the player and a dunking contest with four varsity contests. The contests were exciting and fun to watch. With remaining time, Coach Norman brought audience members back to Rocky Bridges Court to once again compete for the last of the cupcakes in the free throw shooting contest.

During the last half of varsity scrimmage varsity players rotated in-and-out of the game and Jacket fans got a great show and preview of what promises to be a very competitive, exciting, athletic 2017-18 YellowJackets Basketball season.

Following the scrimmage parents, family, media, and Jacket fans came down to the court for a picture-taking session and a chance to meet-and-greet the players.

Coach Norman extended "thank you" to the band, dance team, cheerleaders, parents and YellowJacket fans that came out to show support for their YellowJackets. The event was deemed a huge success!

CHS Cheerleaders compete for first time this season

By Jim Beers

The Chester High School Cheerleading Team competed in their first competition of the 2017-2018 season Sunday November 19.

The event was the Illinois Cheer Coaches Association (ICCA) held at Waterloo High School.

The Lady Jackets placed 2nd in the competition and performed very well according to CHS Head Cheer Coach, Rachel Marshal. The group is in search of a bid to the 2018 ICCA Championships January 6th and 7th in Springfield, Illinois. They will try to qualify at the December 10th ICCA Competition hosted at Pinckneyville High School.

Coach Marshal and Assistant Coach, Michelle Rust will have the girls ready to battle for the championship bid in December and welcome and encourage all Jacket fans to make the trip to Pinckneyville to support the girls in their effort to advance to the State Competition in January.

Pictured are: (Front row, left to right) Kamryn Wingerter, Faye Hathaway, Ashley Hennrich, Kaylah Hasemeyer, Allison Kennon, Emily Atchison, and Cara Childs. (Row 2, left to right): Ashtyn Jany, Karson Colvis, and Addie Blechle. (Back row, left to right): Kennedy Herrell, Lauren Soellner, Jessica Handel, Elyzabeth Mitchell, and Melody Colonel. Not present: Amira Al-Jassim and Parker Knippa. Rachel Marshal Photo

CHS golfers are honored at 2017 banquet and awards night

By Jim Beers

Chester High School honored its 2017 YellowJackets and Lady Jackets Golf Teams Tuesday evening November 14 at a banquet and awards ceremony held at the Chester Eagles Club.

The event began at 6:00p.m. with a delicious meal prepared by the Eagles kitchen staff consisting of fried chicken, slaw, potato salad and French fries. Following the meal, Head Coach Chris Toledo and Assistant Coach, Paul Zemlyn spoke briefly about the season, and introduced those athletes in attendance.

Paul Zemlyn stated that the season went well and that the girls worked hard throughout the fall and improved at most matches. "We really had a good year. These girls were hard workers and came out every day ready to play. We had some young athletes that progressed throughout the year, and if they play throughout the summer, they will be even better next fall."

The 2017 Lady Jacket squad included seniors Hanna Bert and Alyse Vasquez. There were no juniors on this year’s team. Sophomores included Alyssa Place, Mallary Vasquez and Autumn Dunn. The rookie on the squad was freshman, Samantha Eggemeyer.

Alyse Vasquez led the Lady Jackets most of the season followed by either Alyssa Place or Hanna Bert who shared No.2 honors. Malary Vasquez and Samantha Eggemeyer alternated the No.4 spot most of the season while Autumn Dunn did her best as either the No. 4 or No.5 golfer.

Coach Zemlyn announced the Lady Jacket’s two awards for the 2017 season. The 2017 MVP or Lowest Average award was earned by senior, Alyse Vasquez. The Most Improved Award was earned by sophomore Alyssa Place.

Head Coach Chris Toledo spoke about the 2017 YellowJacket Boys Team. The YellowJackets were also very young for 2017. The roster included just two seniors and two juniors. Seniors were Clay Herrell and Lake Fogerson. Juniors were Jakob Cushman and Jacob Wingerter.

Five sophomores and four freshmen rounded out the roster. Sophomores included Ronin Doiron, Ian Reith, Chett Andrews, Wes Carpenter, and Michael Wingerter. Freshmen included Jarrett James, Jaden Mott, Jordan Hughes and Ryan Whitley.

Coach Toledo said, "We return our top-six golfers next year. I look forward to 2018. If these boys get out on the golf course next summer and work on their games, we could be really good. It takes practice and perfecting their games. If they work this summer, the Jackets will be very competitive."

Chester’s top-three golfers this season included No.1, Jarrett, a freshman James; No.2 Jacob Wingerter, a junior; and No.3 Jaden Mott, a freshman.

The YellowJacket’s MVP or Lowest Average player for 2017 was Jarrett James. James was medalist or the golfer with the lowest score eight times this season. He was also selected to the 2017 All-South Team.

Coach Toledo said, "Jarrett was an all-around great kid. At matches this year other coaches would frequently come up to me and say that this kid can really play. He wanted to make the 2017 State Tournament but just missed. His goal is to make it to State next fall. If he works hard on the off-season I have no doubt he will succeed." Jarrett’s average this year for a nine-hold match was 39.8 strokes.

Chester’s No. 2 player was Jacob Wingerter. Jacob’s average was 47.2 strokes per match for none-holes. Toledo said, "If Jacob will commit to working throughout the summer on his game, he will undoubtedly improve significantly and be a definite leader on next year’s squad.

The No. 3 player for CHS this year was Jaden Mott. Toledo said, "Jaden has a lot of potential. Like everyone else he needs to get on the course this summer and work on his game. He can really help us next year if he continues to improve. He is young and will develop throughout the summer.

The top-two awards for the boy’s team included Jarrett James who earned the MVP or Lowest Average Award and the Most Improved Award was earned by sophomore Chett Andrews.

Coach Zemlyn ended his comments by saying, "The girls were great to have this year. They listened, tried their best, worked hard, and improved throughout the season. They played and worked as a team. I look forward to seeing them all out again next fall."

CHS Golf Coaches Chris Toledo and Paul Zemlyn said farewell to four senior golfers at the 2017 CGS Golf Banquet and Awards Night 11-14-17. Pictured (left to right): Alyse Vasquez, Chris Toledo, Head Coach, Clay Herrell, Hanna Bert, and Paul Zemlyn, Assistant Coach. Not present was senior, Lake Fogerson. Jim Beers Photo

Coach Toledo and Coach Zemlyn said good-bye to four seniors who will graduate and move on to post high school endeavors. Senior Lady Jackets include Alyse Vasquez and Hanna Bert. Senior YellowJackets include Clay Herrell and Lake Fogerson. Both coaches wish to best of luck and much success for their futures.

Thursday, November 16, 2017
Lady Yellow Jackets fall to Steeleville at Sparta Tourny

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets fell to Steeleville 67-58 Wednesday night in the third night of action at the Sparta Girls Invitational Tournament.

Chester (1-2) will play the host Lady Bulldogs Friday night at 7pm and then wrap up the tournament on Saturday against Red Bud at 5:30pm. Both games at Dwight Fulton Gym at Sparta High School.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets fall to Sesser Valier Waltonville

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets fell to Sesser Valier Waltonville 81-27 Tuesday night in the second night of action at the Sparta Girls Invitational Tournament.

Chester (1-1) will play Steeleville tonight at 8:30pm at Dwight Fulton Gym at Sparta High School as the tournament continues.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Lady Jackets open season with win over Trico

By Jim Beers

Chester High School’s Lady Jacket Basketball Team opened the 2017-18 season Monday November 13 at the 20178 Sparta Girl’s Basketball Tournament. The opponent in Game 1 was the Trico Lady Pioneers. It was a very tough night for both teams in a very competitive game but the CHS Lady Jackets came away with a nice 51-50 victory.

A very young and inexperienced Chester team was rusty in the first quarter, trailing Trico, 21-11 after one period. Chester shook off the butterflies in the second period and outscored Trico, 17-10, to narrow the deficit to just three points, 31-28.

Chester came back after the halftime break with a vengeance and outscored the Lady Pioneers by three points, 13-7, to take a nice three-point lead, 41-38 after three quarters of play. Down the stretch, it was a tie with both teams scoring ten points. Chester won the contest, 51-50.

For the game, Pat Knowles, CHS Head Coach played nine-of-ten varsity players and all nine scored. The Jackets were led by sophomore Destiny Williams who scored 15 points. Williams did it the hard way making six-of-11 from the field along with three-of-eight from the free throw line.

Reese Chandler stepped it up in her high school debut and scored 12 points for CHS as a freshman. Chandler made 3-of-4 three pointers along with a free throw and a two-pointer. Chandler and Williams were the only two Lady Jackets in double figures.

Sophomore Audra Hopper scored seven points with a p[air of field goals and three free shots and senior Taylor Dunning added six points on three field goals. Freshman Kendall Williams scored in her first game as a Lady Jackets with three points on a field goal and a free throw. Senior Abby Myers and freshmen Katie Shinabarger, Peyton Clendenin and Josie Kattenbraker each scored two points apiece.

For the opener the Lady Jackets outrebounded Trico 27-19. Chester recorded 13 assists and 13 steals. They also added 21 deflections on defense and blocked two shots. Kendall Williams drew one charge for CHS.

Audrey Hopper led the team in rebounding with seven boards. Destiny Williams led the Jackets in assists with six. On defense, Kendall Williams led the Lady Jackets in deflections with five. The Jackets, however, committed 25 turnovers for the night. As a team, Chester shot just 18-of-49 (37 percent) from the field. From the free throw line CHS made just 12-of-31 (39 percent).

Trico fielded a roster of 11 varsity players. Eight of those 11 saw action while six scored. The Lady Pioneers were led by Prange who tore it up with 31 points, followed by Wetting (11), and Kelley, Bunselmeyer, Kunnert, and Couch with two apiece for a total of 50 points.

With the win the Lady Jackets start the season with a 1-0 record overall and 1-0 in the Sparta Tournament. For the remainder of the week in the Sparta Tournament the Jackets will play Sesser-Valier Tuesday November 14 at 8:30 p.m.; Steeleville Wednesday November 15 at 8:30 p.m.; Sparta Friday November 17 at 7:00 p.m.; and Red Bud Saturday November 18 at 5:30 p.m.

Coach Knowles said, "We made quite a few freshman mistakes tonight, but we are young and it was great to see the freshmen step up and play with the upper classmen. We were only 12-of-31 from the free throw line. That has to improve. I was proud of Reese Chandler who stepped up and sank three treys tonight. Very impressive. We will take the win! It was good for our young ladies to start their high school careers with a win!"

Friday, November 10, 2017

Mitchell signs with SEC's Missouri to play softball next year

A Chester High School Lady Yellow Jacket softball player signed a National Letter of Intent earlier this week on the college level.

Senior Miah Mitchell signed with the University of Missouri at a signing ceremony earlier this week.

Mitchell was a first team BDC all conference selection as a junior and was second team all-state in 2016.

With still her senior season to go, Mitchell has already belted 57 career home runs for the Lady Yellow Jackets.

Yellow Jackets to host meet and greet

The public is invited to the Chester High School boys basketball team's meet and greet gatorade night on Friday, November 17 at 6:30pm in Daniel Colbert Memorial Gym at CHS.

The cost is $1 per person or a bottle of sports drink.

The event will include a scrimmage of the JV and varsity boys teams, a 3-point contest, dunk contest, prize giveaways and performances by the CHS Cheerleaders and CHS Dance Team.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Lady Jacket Basketball will be young, athletic and quick for 2017-18

The Chester High School Lady Jackets opened the 2017 basketball season Monday October 30 with the first practice of the 2017-2018 season. The girls hit Colbert Gymnasium on Rocky Bridges’ Court at a sprint and began what is the beginning of a very competitive 13-week schedule.

This year’s schedule brings the Lady Jackets three tournaments, nine regular-season road trips, seven home games and the 2018 IHSA Regional Tournament.

The Lady Jackets will be a very young squad this season with just two seniors, one junior, five sophomores and five freshmen. The only returning starter is a sophomore and just one of the Lady Jacket seniors saw playing time last season. The rest of the 2017-18 edition of the Lady Jackets Basketball program is made up of sophomores, one inexperienced junior and five rookie freshmen.

The entire Lady Jacket program consists of 13 young ladies. Seniors include Abby Myers (14) and Taylor Dunning (2). Myers, 5’2", started on the JV squad last year and saw significant playing time on the varsity. Dunning, 5’6", took last year off as she was recovering from a nagging running injury she picked up during the summer of 2016 and the fall of 2016 in cross country.

Both Myers and Dunning will give Chester some much-needed leadership. Myers will pick up where she left off last year giving the Jackets feisty defense, great speed and a good knowledge of the Pat Knowles system. Dunning is a good defender, an experienced leader and will give CHS a lot of speed, fortitude and defensive prowess.

Chester’s only junior is 5’7" Alexis Alvarez who is recovering from a minor ankle injury she received at home playing pick-up basketball with family and friends. Her practice time has been very limited to date and she in somewhat of an unknown entity to Coach Pat Knowles and his staff since this is her first year going out for basketball.

Chester’s sophomore class offers the Lady Jackets some much-needed skill and experience. The Jacket’s only returning starter from last year is sophomore Destiny Williams (22). The 5’5" point guard and shooting guard offers CHS quickness, experience, confidence and a fantastic work ethic.

Ally Rowold (12), Audrey Hopper (35), and Bailey Wahl (54) return to the Jackets from last year’s JV squad. Rowold, 5’7", Hopper, 5’7" and Wahl, 5’5" are sophomores who saw playing time on Luke Lochhead’s JV squad, but were extremely limited at the varsity level. Ciontae Monroe, a 5’3" sophomore, is another new entity to the Jacket program. She brings limited experience and is another of the Lady Jacket’s unknown entities.

Rounding out the CHS basketball program will be five freshmen including 5’8" Katie Shinabarger (15), 5’3" Peyton Clendenin (21), 5’7" Josie Kattenbraker (32), 5’7" Reese Chandler (24), and 5’2" Kendall Williams (11).

All five of the freshmen are experienced basketball players who contributed significantly to their grade school programs last year. All three have been working very hard so far this season and are not afraid to "mix-it-up" with the upperclassmen. Coach Knowles expects that all five will see significant playing time this year at the JV level and possibly even the varsity level.

CHS Head Girl’s Coach is Pat Knowles. He is assisted this year by Assistant Coaches Jennifer Hittmeier-King, and a very familiar face to Lady Jacket Basketball, former Head Coach, Rick Powley.

Knowles said, "We are very young this season. Our youth is going to be both our strongest link and our weakest link too. These girls want to learn. They are very coachable. They are quick and they are fitting in well with the upper classmen. At the same time, they are rookies and they will take some time to learn our system and adjust to basketball at the high school level."

"Our team is very athletic, very young and very talented. Add to that, they will be quick and focused and they are eager to learn, work hard and work together as a team to accomplish our goals."

"Knowles also said, "Defense will be our key strong point this year. We don’t really have a "go-to", "hot-shot" shooter this year, so we will play hard defense, try to limit our competition to one shot, and hustle down the court and put in layups when possible."

With just 13 players for the entire program, the 2017-18 CHS Lady Jackets will keep very busy. Ten of those 13 girls will be eligible to dress for the JV squad. Three of those ten will only dress JV. Three upper classmen will dress for just the varsity. Seven will also likely dress both JV and varsity to start the season. There will probably "not" be a specific freshman schedule this year due to a lack of freshman competition in the area.

Chester opens the season at the 28th Annual Sparta Girl’s Tournament Monday through Saturday October 13-18. The Jackets open Monday November 13 against Trico at 7:00 p.m. Tuesday November 14 CHS will face Sesser-Valier at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday November 15 Chester plays Steeleville at 8:30 p.m.

There are NO games Thursday November 16. Chester will go up against Sparta Friday November 17 at 7:00 p.m. and they will close out the tournament Saturday November 18 against Red Bud at 5:30 p.m.

The Lady Jackets will return to Sparta Monday November 20 for their first regular-season game of the year against the Sparta Lady Bulldogs. The Jackets will host their 2017-18 home-opener Tuesday November 28 when Gibault comes to YellowJacket Country.

CHS will close out the 2017 portion of the season over Christmas break December 26-29 at the Wesclin Girls Christmas Tournament. The use of a tournament over Christmas break last year proved to be very beneficial as the girls kept busy and stayed in the loop over the two-week vacation.

Immediately after Christmas break the Lady Jackets will open the New Year with their own Lady Jackets Mid-Winter Classic Girls Basketball Tournament. That event runs January 2-6 and is a great way to start 2018.

Chester will close their 2018 season with four home games January 22, 24, 25 and February 3 to close out the regular season. CHS will be on the road for five-of-the-last nine games on January 8, 11, 15, 16, and February 1.

Most Lady Jacket home games start with the JV game at 6:15 p.m., followed immediately at 8:00 p.m. with the varsity contest. Coaches Knowles, Hittmeier-King, and Powley strongly encourage everyone to come to all Lady Jacket games at Colbert Gym to support the Lady Jackets!

Friday, November 3, 2017

Hoffman, Welge and Weir earn BDC All-Conference honors

By Jim Beers

Three Chester High School Lady Yellow Jacket Volleyball players have been selected to the 2017 Black Diamond Conference Volleyball All-Conference Team. It was announced Wednesday November 1 that senior Katie Hoffman and juniors Carlee Weir and Lauren Welge have earned All-Conference honors and that Weir was further named as the 2017 BDC All-Conference Team Captain.

CHS Head Coach, Adam Gibbs said, "I am very proud of all three of these girls. They earned their designation as All-Conference team members and it was also very special that Carlee Weir, a setter, was named as the All-Conference Team Captain."

The 2017 Lady Jackets exceeded pre-season expectations according to Coach Gibbs. "At the beginning of the season we had a goal of at least achieving a .500 season with an equal number of wins and losses. Who would have guessed we would win 24 games. I would have been thrilled with a 20-win season, but the girls exceeded expectations and accomplished many great things."

The 2017 Lady Jackets ended the season with an overall record of 24 wins and just 8 losses. Their home record was 8-1 and their record on the road was 7-2. On a neutral court CHS had a record of 9-5. Chester’s winning percentage was .750.

The Jackets tied for the 2017 Black Diamond Conference Championship with the Trico Lady Pioneers. Both teams had BDC records of 10-2 for the year.

For 2017 the Chester girls were placed in the IHSA Class 2A Regional hosted by Anna-Jonesboro. The five teams in that regional included one of the best teams in the area, Pinckneyville, along with Chester, Anna-Jonesboro, Vienna and Johnston City.

Chester No. 4 beat No. 5 seed, Anna-Jonesboro in three exciting sets to advance to the regional championship match against the No. 1 seed Pinckneyville Lady Panthers.

The Panthers proved to be too much for the Lady Jackets, however, who were experiencing an off night in the title match, and CHS fell in two sets. Chester assumed the role of 2017 IHSA Class 2A Regional runner-up and Pinckneyville advanced to the Sectional Tournament.

In the 2017 Freeburg Invitational Tournament the Lady Jackets won the Silver Division bracket by defeating Marquette, Gibault and Waterloo. CHS only fell on to a very talented Greenville squad in that very competitive tournament, but did earn the Silver Division award.

The 2017 Chester varsity featured a rather young team which included just three seniors, Katie Hoffman, Maddie Hoffman and Tayler Howie. The Jackets then had just two juniors including Carlee Weir and Lauren Welge.

The remainder of the varsity squad consisted of three sophomores and four freshmen. Sophomores included Lauren Vasquez, Ashtyn Jany and Grace Stec. Freshmen included Reese Chandler, Josie Kattenbraker, Lauren Soellner and Kendall Williams.

For the year, the Lady Jackets recorded 185 aces, 695 kills, 178 solo blocks, 643 assists and 729 digs. Katie Hoffman and Carlee Weir led the team in two of those five statistical categories while Tayler Howie led in the other.

Katie Hoffman led the team in kills with 173 and solo blocks with 74. Carlee Weir led the team in aces with 41 and assists with 582 and Tayler Howie led the team in digs with 223.

Other kill leaders included Lauren Welge (162), Maddie Hoffman (155), Grace Stec (88) and Lauren Vasquez (53). Other Lady Jackets with a significant number of aces include Reese Chandler (39), Tayler Howie (30), Lauren Welge (28) and Katie Hoffman (25).

Maddie Hoffman had 47 solo blocks and Lauren Welge added 22. Carlee Weir contributed 16 solo blocks and Lauren Vasquez added 11.

After Carlee Weir’s 582-of-643 assists, Maddie Hoffman had 23 and Katie Hoffman contributed 21. Other contributors to the total of 729 digs, besides Tayler Howie with 223, included Maddie Hoffman (140), Carlee Weir (137), Katie Hoffman (106) and Ashtyn Jany (64).

The Lady Jackets' end-of-the-year awards banquet will take place at a later date at which time individual team awards will be presented. A very stellar season has just come to an end and each and every member of the Lady YellowJacket program deserve to be recognized and honored for performance above-and-beyond pre-season expectations!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Yellow Jacket football season ends in Central Illinois

The Chester Yellow Jackets football season ended Saturday in the first round of the Class 1A playoffs with a 56-0 rout at the hands of the Tuscola Warriors. Chester finishes their season under first year head coach Billy Belton 5-5.

Red Bud's season also ended Saturday in the opening round of the Class 2A playoffs. The Musketeers lost at Eldorado 38-13. Red Bud finishes with a record of 6-4.

Other scores from Saturday...

Class 2A

Carmi White County 34
Bismarck-Henning 37

Class 3A

Du Quoin 26
Pana 39

Greenville 39
Sesser Valier 20

Hillsboro 8
Anna Jonesboro 22

Vandalia 41
Fairfield 14

Class 4A

Paris 28
Herrin 63

Carterville 0
Belleville (Althoff) 42

Class 5A

Marion 12
Rich Central 54

Lady Yellow Jacket cross country season ends at Benton Sectional

The Chester Lady Yellow Jacket cross country season came to an end Saturday at the sectional meet in Benton.

Chester finished in 12th place overall with 321 points. Nashville won the sectional with 95 points.

In her final race, senior Jessica Kattenbraker finished 12th overall with a time of 19:11.1. Fellow senior Taylor Dunning finished 34th overall with a time of 20:08.4.

Also on the course for Chester was Avery Runge (73rd, 21:32.8), Adeline Blechle (96th, 22:46.5), Shea Petrowske (106th, 23:54.5), Breanna Brigham (115th, 24:33.3) and Elizabeth Soellner (117th, 24:38.2).

Friday, October 27, 2017

Lady Yellow Jacket volleyball season ends at regional championship

Chester's volleyball season came to an end Thursday night in Anna Jonesboro.

The Lady Yellow Jackets lost the Class 2A regional championship to Pinckneyville 21-25, 10-25 to finish the season with a record of 24-8.

Red Bud is off to the sectional round after beating Trico last night in the regional championship at Sparta.

Red Bud defeated the Lady Pioneers 25-21, 25-16. The Lady Musketeers will play Trenton (Wesclin) Monday in a sectional semifinal round match at Nashville. Game time is 6:30pm.

Meanwhile, Steeleville advanced to the sectional round after upsetting host New Athens last night.

The Lady Warriors beat New Athens 25-17, 19-25, 25-27

Steeleville will play Brussels in a sectional semifinal round match Monday at Christ Our Rock Lutheran high school in Centralia Monday at 6:30pm.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets to play for regional volleyball championship Thursday

Chester advanced to the Class 2A volleyball regional championship last night at Anna Jonesboro after beating the host Lady Wildcats 25-12, 8-25, 25-13. Now 24-7, Chester will play top seed Pinckneyville tomorrow night at 6:30pm in the regional final. Last night, in the other semifinal round match, the Lady Panthers beat Vienna 25-10, 25-22. First serve Thursday is set for 6pm.

Meanwhile at Sparta, it will be Red Bud and Trico in the regional championship of the Sparta Class 2A volleyball regional tournament. Last night, in the semifinals, Red Bud beat Du Quoin 25-18, 25-14. Trico defeated Marissa-Coulterville 25-22, 23-25, 25-15.

In Class 1A last night at the New Athens regional, New Athens defated First Baptist Academy of O'Fallon 25-7, 25-8 to advance to the regional championship where they'll play Steeleville. The Lady Warriors advanced with a 25-17, 25-16 win over Waterloo (Gibault).

Monday, October 23, 2017

Chester heading back to post-season, beat Edwards County 47-35

For the first time in two years, the Chester Yellow Jacket football team is heading back to the post-season.

Chester jumped out to a 28-6 halftime lead Friday and then held off a late rally to beat Edwards County 47-35 on Senior Night at W.O. Smith Field.

Nick Meyer continued his chase of history Friday. The junior quarterback was 14-for-22 passing for 342 yards and three touchdowns leading the Yellow Jackets to the win.

Calvin Clendenin was his favorite target. Clendenin caught nine passes for 245 yards. Nick Heffernan caught two passes for 62 yards. Clayton Richelman had 24 yards on two catches while Curt Meyer had one catch for six yards.

On the ground, Richelman had one carry for 65 yards. Mason Westerman had four carries for 35 yards while Heffernan had five carries for 34 yards.

Defensively, Heffernan led the Yellow Jackets with 13 tackles. Keith Kiner had 13 while Eathan Thompson had nine.

Chester received one of the final at-large invitations and will be the largest school in Class 1A when the playoffs begin this weekend.

The Yellow Jackets are the 16th seed in the south bracket of Class 1A and will travel to top seed Tuscola. Game time and date will be announced later today.

It's Chester 15th trip to the post-season. The Yellow Jackets are 5-14.

The Warriors and Yellow Jackets will meet for the third time in the post-season with Tuscola winning the previous two. In 2014, the Warriors escaped W.O. Smith Field with a 17-14 win in the quarterfinal round of the Class 2A playoffs. The first meeting came in 1996 when Chester was making their first ever appearance in the post-season. The host Warriors beat Chester 49-8.

Lady Yellow Jacket XC advances to sectional round

The Chester Lady Yellow Jacket cross country team is moving on to the sectional round after a fourth place finish Saturday at the Class 1A regional meet hosted by Carterville at John A. Logan College.

Nashville won the regional meet with 51 points followed by Pinckneyville (62), Du Quoin (85), Chester (127), Carterville (131), Massac County (154), Marissa-Coulterville (186), Red Bud (210), Goreville (214) and Murphysboro (218).

Jessica Kattenbraker finished fifth overall with a time of 20:56. Taylor Dunning finished in the top-20 with her time of 21:53, good enough for 15th place overall.

Also on the course for the Lady Yellow Jackets were Avery Runge (31st, 23:32), Shea Petrowske (37th, 24:26), Adeline Blechle (39th, 24:48), Breanna Brigham (50th, 26:12) and Elizabeth Soellner (52nd, 26:26).

The season for the Chester Yellow Jacket boys cross country team came to an end Saturday.

Chester finished 11th with 299 points. Steeleville won the regional with 66 points, one point ahead of second place finisher Nashville.

Jordan Hughes turned in Chester's best time of 19:16, good enough for 46th overall.

Ronin Doiron finished in 102nd place with a time of 19:40.

The Lady Yellow Jackets will run in the sectional meet this Saturday morning in Benton.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Chester wraps up regular season with senior night win over Christopher

Chester finished the regular season last night with a 25-14, 19-25, 25-23 home win on senior night.

The Lady Yellow Jackets finish the regular season with a record of 23-7 overall and 10-2 in the BDC West. Both conference loses were to Trico.

Chester is the #4 subsectional "A" seed of the Nashville Sectional. The Lady Yellow Jackets will play as the #2 seed of the Anna Jonesboro regional next week. Chester will play in the semifinal round on Tuesday against the host Lady Wildcats. Game time is 6:30pm at Anna Jonesboro High School.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Chester holds off Sparta to earn 22nd win of season

Chester improved to 22-7 last night with a 25-16, 22-25, 25-17 home win over Sparta.

The Lady Yellow Jackets will wrap up the regular season at home tonight at Christopher on Senior Night.

Carlee Weir led Chester in assists last night with 28.

Maddie Hoffman led in kills with eight while Katie Hoffman and Grace Stec each had seven. Lauren Welge finished with six.

Maddie Hoffman also led Chester in blocks with three while Katie Hoffman had two.

Tayler Howie led in digs with 12 while Maddie Hoffman finished with 11.

Freshman Reese Chandler recorded three ace serves while Carlee Weir and Katie Hoffman each had two.

Monday, October 16, 2017

CHS Quarterback sets new TD passing record; Chester routs CZR 60-0

A 32 year old passing record was broken Friday night in Chester's 60-0 rout of Christopher Zeigler Royalton.

Nick Meyer was 8-for-12 passing for 256 yards and four touchdowns to lead Chester. His four touchdown passes last night now gives him 17 on the season which breaks the single season record of 16 set in 1985 by CHS Hall of Fame quarterback Curt Clendenin.

The record breaking touchdown pass came in the second quarter when Meyer connected with his older brother Curt on a 14 yard pass.

Chester jumped out to a 13-0 lead after the first quarter on two touchdown passes by Meyer. One to Curt for 57 yards while the other was to Calvin Clendenin for 68 yards.

The Meyer brothers hooked up on a 63-yard touchdown pass early in the second quarter to make it 20-0.

A 62 yard punt return by Clendenin gave Chester a 27-0 lead before the record breaking touchdown pass.

Nick Heffernan rounded out the first half scoring on a 44 yard run to give Chester a 41-0 lead at the intermission.

In the third, Curt Meyer scored on an 11-yard run to give the Yellow Jackets a 47-0 lead heading to the fourth.

In the final 12 minutes, Heffernan intercepted a pass and returned it 37 yards for the touchdown. Later, Mason Westerman scored on a 12-yard run to put the finishing touches on the scoring.

Final score - Chester 60, CZR 0.

Chester racked up 361 yards total offense while holding CZR to just 59 yards.

Heffernan led the ground attack with 44 yards on one attempt. Clayton Richelman had one carry for 40 yards. Westerman finished with 22 yards on four carries while Curt Meyer had one carry for 11 yards.

C. Meyer had 134 yards on four receptions while Clendenin finished with two receptions for 102 yards.

Heffernan and Tristian Hobeck each had five tackles to lead the Chester defense while Chase Colvis and Ethan Bert each had four.

Chester (4-4) will need to win the regular season finale this Friday night at home against Edwards County to become playoff eligible. Kickoff at W.O. Smith Field is at 7pm.

Lady Yellow Jackets finish fifth at Freeburg Volleyball Tournament

By Dr. Jim Beers

Saturday October 14 the Lady Jackets spent the day in Freeburg where they competed in the 2017 Freeburg Invitational Volleyball Tournament. At Freeburg the Jackets won four matches and just lost one. In the process Chester won the Silver Division Championship and ended the week with an overall record of 21-7.

The Freeburg Invite consisted of 12 teams. There were four pools each containing three teams each. Every team in the event played two pool matches and two bracket matches for a total of four matches.

The top four undefeated teams in each pool were placed in a Gold Division bracket and competed for the Gold Championship. The four second place teams in each pool were sent to the Silver Division bracket to compete for the Silver Championship. Finally, the four third place teams in each pool competed in the Bronze Division for the Bronze Championship.

Chester won the first pool match against Alton-Marquette in two sets, 25-9 and 25-16 to improve to 19-6 overall. In their second pool match the Yellow Jackets fell to Greenville in two sets, 12-25 and 14-25. With that loss the Jackets fell to an overall record of 19-7 for the season. With the one loss in pool play, the Lady jackets were placed in the Silver Division Bracket for the four teams that had one loss in pool play.

In Bracket play the Jackets cleaned house. In the first match against Gibault, Chester battled for three sets, but won the match, 25-14, 18-25 and 15-12. With this win Chester improved to an overall 2017 record of 20-7 and a tournament record of 2-1. With a 2-1 record, the Lady Jackets moved into the Championship game against Waterloo.

Against Waterloo, CHS lost the first set, 17-25. In the second set the Lady Jackets battled back and win, 25-17 forcing a third, tie-breaking set to determine the winner of the Silver Division. The third set was very competitive, but the Jackets won, 15-8 to improve to 21-7 overall and win the Championship of the Silver Division.

In the win over Alton Marquette Chester had four aces, 22 assists, 12 blocks and 17 digs. Carlee Weir, Reese Chandler, Tayler Howie and Katie Hoffman each had aces. Weir led with 19 of the 22 assists. Weir had three blocks and Weir led in digs with five. Chester made 55 attacks with 22 resulting kills. Katie and Maddie Hoffman each led in kills with six apiece.

In the loss to Greenville, the Jackets recorded 40 attacks with 16 resulting kills led by Lauren Welge, Katie Hoffman and Maddie Hoffman with four each. Weir had all 15 assists and nine-of-Chester’s 18 digs. Chester had eight blocks led by Katie Hoffman with eight.

In the first win of bracket play over Gibault, Chester had 53 attacks resulting in 19 kills. Lauren Welge led the team in kills with six. Weir recorded 14-of-Chester’s 18 assists. Maddie Hoffman had six-of-Chester’s eight blocks and Tayler Howie had seven-of-the Lady Jacket’s 26 digs. Weir added five digs and Katie Hoffman contributed five.

In the final match of the Silver Championship Division when Chester defeated Waterloo, the Lady Jackets attacked the net 71 times. Of those 71 attacks, CHS achieved 19 aces lead by the Hoffman cousins with seven apiece. Weir had 14-of-the-15 Chester assists. The rowdy Jackets blocked 19 balls led by Maddie Hoffman with seven. Tayler Howie recorded eight-of-Chester’s 20 digs.

For the week the Lady jackets won five matches and lost just one. Regarding the Freeburg Tournament Head Coach Adam Gibbs said, "We had a great tournament today. We went 1-1 in pool play beating Alton Marquette and losing to Greenville. In the Silver Division Playoffs we beat Gibault Catholic and Waterloo to win the Silver Championship. That put us in fifth place overall."

" I am very proud of how these girls played today! We are now 21-7 on the season. Reaching 20 wins was a goal of mine this year. I’m so proud and thankful we accomplished it. Just two more regular season games, then it’s regional time."

Now 21-7 overall, the Lady Yellow Jackets will host Sparta tonight and wrap up the regular season at home Tuesday on Senior Night. Game time for both is approximately 7:30pm.

Lady Jackets win Black Diamond Cross Country Championship; Boys run well finishing 4th

By Dr. Jim Beers

The Chester High School Girls and Boys Cross Country Teams competed in the 2017 Black Diamond Conference Cross Country Meet Thursday October 12. The event was held at Fairfield.

Both Chester teams performed very well according to Curt Gilpin, CHS Head Cross Country Coach. The Lady Jackets won the Girl’s Division and earned the title of 2017 Black Diamond Conference Champions, while the YellowJackets ran well and had very good times heading into the final weeks of the season.

The Lady Jackets have won the Black Diamond Conference seven-of-the-last eight years with wins in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2017. Hamilton County is the other cross country nemesis with wins in 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2009, and 2015. Carmi-White County won in 2007 and 2008.

Chester led the pack in 2017 with 56 points followed closely by Hamilton County with just a six-point deficit of 61 points. Carmi-White County finished third with 64 points and Fairfield had 81 points for fourth place. Goreville brought up fifth place with 89 points. AS can be seen, the entire field of five teams was fairly competitive.

The top five finishers at the BDC Conference Meet earned All-Conference honors. Chester brought two of those Top-5 finishes. The Black Diamond Conference Champion this year was Payton Dixon from Carmi-White County. Dixon finished first with a time of 21:05.

Chester’s Taylor Dunning was BDC Runner-Up with a time just ten seconds behind Dixon of 21:15. Fairfield’s Kelsey Rice finished third with a time of 21:20 and Chester’s Jessica Kattenbraker was the fourth place finisher with her 21:26 performance. The final All-Conference honoree was Kiara Miller from Goreville at 21:56.

Chester’s other finishers included Avery Runge (12th, 23:45); Addie Blechle (18th, 25:17); Breanna Brigham (23rd, 26:56); and Elizabeth Soellner (29th, 28:37).

Coach Gilpin said, "The girls performed great as usual. What made the real difference today was not only out top runners, but the lower runners. Only the top five finishers are counted in the final score, but all seven runners helped out by finishing well and above other runners from the other teams. That kept us in the hunt for the championship. I am very proud of Brenna Brigham and Elizabeth Soellner for doing their best and helping us win."

Ronin Doiron, who recently returned to action after playing golf and recovering from a nasty running injury, led the YellowJackets in the Boy’s Division race. Doiron finished 17th overall with a time of 19:12.

Jordan Hughes was Chester’s second finisher with a 19th place finish and a time of 19:40. Zach Zappa was the third Chester finisher with an overall finish of 23rd and his 20:31 performance. Lance Bohnert finished fourth for CHS with a time of 20:36 and an overall finish of 25th. Mitchell Colonel rounded out the YellowJacket scoring with a time of 20:57 and an overall finish of 26th. Jakob Cushman finished 31st with his time of 22:22.

There were 37 boys in the Boy’s Division race led by Jazale O’Neal of Fairfield who finished first with his winning time of 17:31. He was the 2017 Black Diamond Conference Boy’s Champion.

Travis Woodworth of Vienna was runner-up with his time of 17:34. The other Top-5 finishers included Loren Webb of Vienna (3rd, 17:35); Cody Todd of Fairfield (4th, 17:42); and Hunter Braden of Hamilton County (5th, 17:44). The Top-5 finishers earned 2017 All-Conference honors.

Hamilton County was the team champion this year with 35 points. Fairfield was runner-up with 48 points. Just four points behind Fairfield was Vienna in third place with 52 points. Chester finished 4th with 110 points. Rounding out the team competition was Goreville with 137 points.

Coach Gilpin said, "All of our boys ran well and had good times compared to their former times. In cross country the place a team or individual does not necessarily represent how well a team or individual finishes. You must look at improvements in overall times and individual times. Our boys ran well and I am proud of their efforts today!"

The YellowJacket boys and Lady Jackets will travel to Benton for the 2017 Benton Invitational Monday October 16; then Saturday October 21 they will both compete in the 2017 IHSA Regional Meet at John A. Logan College. This event is being hosted by Carterville.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Chester improves to 18-6 with road win at Gibault

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets picked up their 18th win of the season Thursday night in Waterloo.

Chester defeated the host Gibault Lady Hawks 25-27, 26-24, 25-14 to improve to 18-6 on the season. Next up is Saturday's Freeburg Monster Mash Volleyball Tournament.

Katie Hoffman led Chester in kills with seven. Grace Stec finished with four while Maddie Hoffman and Lauren Welge each had three.

Carlee Weir dished out 17 assists.

Weir also led Chester in digs with eight while Tayler Howie had seven. Ashtyn Jany and Katie Hoffman each had six.

Katie Hoffman led in blocks with seven while Lauren Welge had three.

Reese Chandler led in ace serves with two while Tayler Howie had one.

Chester is among the 12-teams entered in Saturday's volleyball tournament hosted by Freeburg.

The tournament will use four venues in the Freeburg area.

Chester has been assigned to Pool C along with Greenville and Alton Marquette. Pool C will be played at Smithton Grade School.

Chester will play at 11am against Alton Marquette and then turn around and play Greenville at 12pm.

Depending on how the Lady Jackets finish in pool play will dictate where they will play in the final round.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets slow Lady Tornadoes

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets picked up their ninth conference win of the season Tuesday night with a road win at Zeigler Royalton.

Chester swept the host Lady Tornadoes 25-22, 25-15 to improve to 9-2 in the BDC West Division and 17-6 overall.

Chester will head to Waterloo Thursday night for a non-conference match against the Gibault Lady Hawks.

Lauren Welge led Chester in kills Tuesday night with 11 while Grace Stec finished with six.

Carlee Weir dished out 18 assists.

Weir and Tayler Howie led Chester in digs with six.

Katie Hoffman had four ace serves while Tayler Howie and Lauren Welge each had two.

Katie Hoffman and Lauren Welge each had one block in the win.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Yellow Jackets drop homecoming game to Carmi-White County 34-7

Chester's hopes of qualifying for the post-season took a big hit Friday night as the Yellow Jackets lost on homecoming night to the Carmi-White County Bulldogs 34-7.

Now 3-4, the Yellow Jackets must win their final two games. This week at CZR and then on senior night Oct 20 against Edwards County to become playoff eligible.

The visiting Bulldogs jumped out to a 20-0 lead at halftime en route to the win.

Chester's lone touchdown came in the third quarter when quarterback Nick Meyer connected with Calvin Clendenin on an 11-yard pass.

N. Meyer was 10-for-24 passing for 133 yards and that lone touchdown pass.

N. Meyer also led the ground attack with 69 yards on 15 carries. Keith Kiner had 61 yards on three carries. Curt Meyer had 27 yards on two carries while Mason Westerman had three carries for 19 yards.

Defensively, Nick Heffernan led in tackles with 13. Kiner had 12 while C. Meyer finished with 11. Ethan Bert had 10.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Lady Yellow Jacket volleyball handles Goreville's Blackcats

Chester improved to 8-2 in the BDC West Division last night with a 25-12, 25-15 home win over Goreville.

Now 16-6 overall, Chester will visit Zeigler Royalton on Tuesday.

Carlee Weir dished out 29 assists in the win.

Maddie Hoffman led Chester in kills with nine. Grace Stec finished with six while Lauren Welge had five.

Lauren Welge and Maddie Hoffman each had six digs while Tayler Howie finished with five.

Carlee Weir had two ace serves.

Katie Hoffman recorded Chester's lone block.

Chester Cross Country teams run in Pinckneyville Invite

Chester Lady Yellow Jackets finished sixth while the Yellow Jackets finished 13th in their respective races as part of the Pinckneyville Cross-Country Invitational Thursday.

Nashville won the girls race with 66 points. Chester finished with 199 points. Red Bud finished ninth with 290 points.

In the boys race, Pinckneyville finished first with 62 points. Chester finished with 334 points. Steeleville finished second with 66 points while Red Bud finished fifth with 147 points.

None of the local runners finished in the top 5 of either race.

Next up for Chester is the Black Diamond Conference meet at Fairfield Thursday at 4:30pm.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Lady Yellow Jacket golf season ends at regional

Chester Lady Yellow Jacket golf team saw their season come to an end Wednesday in the regional tournament at the Union County Country Club.

The Lady Yellow Jackets finished 11th with a team score of 507.

Senior Hanna Bert turned in Chester's best performance with a score of 113.

Also on the links for the Lady Yellow Jackets were Alyse Vasquez (127), Mallary Vasquez (127), Alyssa Place (133) and Samantha Eggemeyer (134).

It was the final golf match for seniors Hanna Bert and Alyse Vasquez for Chester.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Two members of Yellow Jacket golf team advance to sectionals

Two members of the Chester Yellow Jacket boys golf team has advanced to the sectional round after Tuesday's regional at the Franklin County Country Club in West Frankfort.

Freshman Jarrett James and junior Jacob Wingerter both advanced. James fired off a round of 87 while Wingerter was a stroke back with an 88.

As a team, Chester finished fifth with a team score of 365.

Also on the links for the Yellow Jackets Monday were Jakob Cushman (93), Chett Andrews (97), Jaden Mott (98) and Clay Herrell (142).

The sectional will be held Monday at the Governors Run Golf Course in Carlyle.

Lady Yellow Jackets pick up conference road volleyball win at Vienna

Chester improved to 7-2 in the Black Diamond Conference's West Division last night with a 27-25, 25-14 road win at Vienna.

Now 15-6 overall, the Lady Yellow Jackets will host Goreville Thursday night at 7:15pm.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Lady Yellow Jacket golf team in action Monday before regionals

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets hit the golf links one final time Monday before regionals later this week.

Chester finished second in a triangular match hosted by Anna Jonesboro at the Union County Country Club. The host Lady Wildcats finished first with a team score of 180 while Chester turned in a 252. Murphysboro didn't have enough golfers for an official team score.

Chester was paced by senior Alyse Vasquez who turned in a score of 55. Hanna Bert carded a round of 59. Samantha Eggemeyer finished with a 68 while Mallary Vasquez shot a round of 70.

Autumn Dunn was also on the links for Chester and finished with a round of 79.

The Lady Yellow Jackets will return to the Union County Country Club for the Class 1A regional on Wednesday. In total, 12 teams and four individuals have been assigned to the Anna Jonesboro Regional.

Tee time is 9am.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Chester’s winning streak ends at three, lose at SVWW 20-6

Chester’s winning streak ended at three Friday night after the Yellow Jackets fell on the road 20-6 to Sesser Valier Waltonville Woodlawn.

Now 3-3, Chester will return home to W.O. Smith Field this Friday to host Carmi-White County for homecoming. Kickoff is set for 7pm.

SVWW’s Eli Gunter gave the Red Devils the lead with 3:52 left in the first quarter when he scored on a 21-yard run. The Yellow Jackets tied the game on the first play of the second quarter when Ethan Bert scored on a four-yard run.

But just under a minute later, the Red Devils took the lead for good when Gunter scored on a 62-yard run.

Peyton Rock rounded out the scoring for SVWW on a 28 yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.

Bert led the ground attack for Chester with 65 yards on eight carries. Mason Westerman had 18 yards on four carries while Nick Heffernan had 17 yards on nine carries.

Nick Meyer was 5-for-16 passing for 76 yards. Four passes were caught by Keith Kinner for 60 yards while the other was caught by Calvin Clendenin.

UNI tops SIU in MVFC opener, 24-17

The Southern Illinois football program fought back from a 17-3 halftime deficit, but Northern Iowa hung on for a 24-17 win at Saluki Stadium on Saturday night. The Salukis twice had the ball with a chance to tie in the game's final minutes, but interceptions ended both drives.

"That's a tough one to lose at home," SIU head coach Nick Hill said. "I felt like we had the opportunities to win that football game. We were battling uphill the entire night and didn't execute a high enough level to win the football game. You have to execute consistently on a high basis, and we didn't do that in the areas that we needed to."

The Salukis (2-2, 0-1 MVFC) flew into UNI territory on the opening drive, but a penalty pushed SIU to the brink of field goal range. Matt Sotiropoulos's 45-yard attempt hit the crossbar and bounced back onto the field. UNI (2-2, 1-0 MVFC) took the momentum and ran off 10 points before the Salukis gained another yard.

SIU kicked a field goal to get within a touchdown, but the Panthers immediately responded with a touchdown to take a 17-3 lead into halftime. Southern's defense opened the third quarter strong, and the Salukis got within a touchdown after a 29-yard touchdown from Sam Straub to Darrell James on fourth-and-10. But UNI again answered with an immediate touchdown to push its lead out to two scores. That touchdown was the only second-half score Southern's defense allowed.

"We're four games in, so we have to take a honest evaluation and get better collectively," Hill said. "I do think we have a good football team, and we showed that our defense is a lot better. That's the first time we've held UNI under 40 points in four seasons. Our defense battled."

Kyron Watson forced and recovered a fumble early in the fourth quarter, and the Salukis marked 54 yards in four plays to get back within seven, 24-17. After that, the defense forced three-straight punts, but the offense committed three-straight turnovers with a chance to tie the game--twice deep in Panther territory.

Jacob Varble fumbled after landing awkwardly inside the UNI 15-yard line. The Salukis got the ball back with 3:43 to play at its own 18, and SIU drove inside the UNI 10 with less than two minutes to go. Straub's pass to Daquan Isom hit off his chest, and UNI's Jake Hartford caught the deflection to end the threat. The Salukis got the ball back with 38 seconds and no timeouts, but Malcolm Washington ended the game with an interception on the second play of the drive.

"I was proud that we were able to make it close and have the opportunities to win the game; but to take that next step, you have to be able to go win that game," Hill said. "That's what the Missouri Valley is going to be like. We have to figure out how to get better from this game because it doesn't get any easier."

SIU fell to UNI for the fourth-straight year, the longest losing streak for either team in the series since the mid-1990s. The Salukis travel to South Dakota State for a matchup against the nationally ranked Jackrabbits next Saturday.

CHS Cross Country competes at Chester Invitational and Carterville Invite

It was a busy week for the Chester High School Cross Country Teams. The Jackets hosted their own 27th Annual Cross Country Invitational Meet Thursday September 28 and traveled to the Carterville High School Cross Country Invitational Saturday September 30.

According to CHS Head Cross Country Coach, Curt Gilpin, both CHS teams, the Boy’s and the Girl’s, competed well and did a great job of representing Chester at the invitational meets. "I was very proud of both of our teams. The Carterville meet is where Regionals will be held this year, so it was fantastic for us to be able to run that course to get an idea what to expect at Regionals".

The Chester meet was the 27th Annual Chester Invite and it was a beautiful day to run. The event was held at the Randolph County Lake and the course was dry, clear and well-north wind kept the runners cool and comfortable.

The Girl’s race was run first starting at 4:30 p.m. There were a total of 86 girls competing in the 3-mile race. Results were divided into Overall results, Varsity results and Freshman/Sophomore results. Team scores were also calculated as well as combined Girl’s and Boy’s Team Results.

The overall Girl’s race winner was Gabby Alongi from DuQuoin. Her time was 19:27 with a pace of 6:29 per mile. Overall Chester Girl’s results were as follow: Jessica Kattenbraker (5th, 21:11); Taylor Dunning (16th, 22:15); Avery Runge (35th, 24:23); Shea Petrowske (36th, 24:39); Addie Blechle (45th, 25:33); Breanna Brigham (46th, 25:36); and Melody Colonel (65th, 35:41).

In the Girl’s Varsity Division there were 46 girls competing. Brooke Biffar of Gibault was the Varsity Division winner. She turned in a time of 19:50 with an overall pace of 6:37 per mile.

Chester Varsity runners included: Jessica Kattenbraker (5th, 21:11, pace 7:04); Taylor Dunning (14th, 22:12, pace 7:25); Avery Runge (24th, 24:23, pace 8:08); Shea Petrowske (25th, 24:39, pace 8:13); and Addie Blechle (33rd, 25:33, pace 8:31). Kattenbraker, Dunning and Runge earned medals for their efforts.

In the Girl’s Freshman/Sophomore Division there were 40 runners. The winner of this event was Gabby Alongi from DuQuoin with her time of 19:27 and pace of 6:29 per mile.

Chester Freshman/Sophomore Results are as follow: Breanna Brigham (22nd, 25:36, pace 8:32); and Melody Colonel (39th, 35:41, 11:54).

Nashville won the team score top prize with 47 points, followed by Pinckneyville (2nd, 73); New Athens (3rd, 78); DuQuoin (4th, 100); Okawville (5th, 106); Chester (6th, 137); Steeleville (7th, 187); Columbia (8th, 203); Murphysboro (9th, 255); and Metro-East Lutheran High School (10th, 277).

There were 116 boys that ran in the Boy’s Division. Results were divided into the Overall, Varsity, and Freshman/Sophomore Divisions. There were also Team Scores and Combined Girl’s and Boy’s Scores.

The overall winner of the Boy’s Division was Brandon Schnitker of Nashville. He had a time of 16:28 and a pace of 5:30 per mile. Overall Chester Boy’s results were as follow: Jordan Hughes (55th, 19:53, pace 6:38); Lance Bohnert (60th, 20:12, pace 6:44); Zach Zappa (66th, 20:35, pace 6:52); Jakob Cushman (90th, 22:26, pace 7:29); and Mitchell Colonel (92nd, 22:32, pace 7:31).

In the Boy’s Varsity Division there were 764 boys competing. Brandon Schnitker of Nashville was the winner of this race with his time of 16:28 and pace of 5:30 per mile. Chester Varsity competitors included: Lance Bohnert (39th, 20:21, pace 6:44); Zach Zappa (41st, 20:35, pace 6:52); Jakob Cushman (55th, 22:26, pace 7:29); and Mitchell Colonel (57th, 22:32, pace 7:31).

There were 52 runners in the Boy’s Freshman/Sophomore Division. Logan Fulkerson of Steeleville won that race with his time of 17:39 and a pace of 5:53 per mile. Chester freshman, Jordan Hughes was the only Chester runner in this race. Hughes finished 19th with a time of 19:53 and a pace of 6:38 per mile.

Twelve schools qualified for Boy’s team scores. The winner of the 2017 Chester Invite was Pinckneyville with 55 points followed by Nashville (2nd, 75); Steeleville (3rd, 79); Columbia (4th, 80); DuQuoin (5th, 143); Marissa (6th, 157); Okawville (7th, 171); New Athens (8th, 200); Gibault (9th, 225); Murphysboro (10th, 281); Metro-East Lutheran High School (11th, 295); and Chester (12th, 324).

Combined scores were calculated by adding both the Girl’s and Boy’s Team Scores together. The winner of the 2017 Combined Team Score Division was Nashville with 122 points followed by Pinckneyville (2nd, 128); DuQuoin (3rd, 243); Steeleville (4th, 266); Okawville (277); New Athens (278); Columbia (283); Chester (8th, 461), Murphysboro (9th, 536); and Metro-East Lutheran High School (10th, 572). Gibault, Marissa and Sparta did not qualify for a combined team score.

The Carterville Invitational was Saturday September 30 on a clear, dry, somewhat breezy day. Temperatures were in the mid 70’s with mostly sunny skies. There were 97 boys competing in the Division 1A race. Austin Knight of Carterville was the winner with a time of 16:23 and a pace of 5:28 per mile.

Chester entered six boys led by Jordan Hughes who finished 42nd with a time of 19:25 and a pace of 6:28 per mile. Other Chester runners included Zach Zappa (62nd, 20:26, pace 6:49); Lance Bohnert (65th, 20:35, 6:52); Mitchell Colonel (68th, 21:05, 7:02); Jakob Cushman (79th, 21:50.5, 7:17); and Joe Soellner (81st, 21:59.8, 7:20).

There were 14 schools that qualified for a team score. Nashville was the winner with 69 points followed by Hamilton County (2nd, 82); Steeleville (3rd, 87); Herrin (4th, 132); Carterville (5th, 146); DuQuoin (6th, 155); Okawville (7th, 164); Fairfield (8th, 184); Red Bud (9th, 193); Sparta (10th, 250); Chester (11th, 311); Goreville (12th, 328); Murphysboro (13th, 348); and Cobden (14th, 406). Anna-Jonesboro and Harrisburg had no team score.

In the Girl’s Division there were 90 runners. Gabby Alongi from DuQuoin was the winner with a time of 19:47 and a pace of 6:36 per mile.

Chester entered six girls Jessica finished 4th overall. Other Lady Jacket runners included Taylor Dunning (6th, 21:06, pace 7:02); Avery Runge (27th, 23:27, pace 7:49); Addie Blechle (49th, 25:23, pace 8:28); Breanna Brigham (56th, 26:07, pace 8:42); and Melody Colonel (89th, 35:37, pace 11:52).

There were 14 out of 17 schools that qualified for a team score. Nashville was the winner with 45 points followed by DuQuoin (2nd, 108); Carterville (3rd, 130); Chester (4th, 137); Herrin (5th, 150); Okawville (6th, 157); Hamilton County (7th, 197); Marion (8th, 223); Steeleville (9th, 232); Goreville (10th, 234); Fairfield (11th, 239); Red Bud (12th, 244); Murphysboro (13th, 266); and Anna-Jonesboro (14th, 307). Cobden, Harrisburg and Sparta did not have team scores.

With just five weeks remaining in the 2017 regular season the Jackets and Lady Jackets will compete in only one meet each week leading up to the IHSA Regional Meet and the 2017 IHSA Sectional Meet, Chester will travel to Pinckneyville Thursday October 5 for the Pinckneyville Invitational. The gun goes off at 4:00 p.m.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets win hard, fought match over Steeleville

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets improved to 14-5 overall Wednesday night with a home win over Steeleville.

Chester won a hard fought match over the Lady Warriors 25-22, 20-25, 25-23.

The Lady Yellow Jackets will wrap up a busy week with a conference road match tonight at Trico. The Lady Pioneers handed Chester their only loss in conference play earlier this month.

Katie Hoffman led Chester in kills with 11.

Carlee Weir dished out 25 assists in the win.

Weir also led in digs with 12.

Katie Hoffman led Chester in blocks with four while her cousin Maddie finished with three.

Maddie Hoffman led in ace serves with five.

Chester competes in the Black Diamond Conference golf tournaments

The Chester Yellow Jackets and Lady Yellow Jackets each finished seventh in their respective tournament as part of the Black Diamond Conference tournaments held Wednesday at the Franklin County Country Club.

In the boys’ tournament, Hamilton Country won the championship with a team score of 329 followed by Fairfield (334), Trico (339), Eldorado (341), Goreville (345), Carmi-White County (347), Chester (371), Vienna (389) and ZRC (399).

Chester freshman Jarrett James earned all-conference honors as he tied for eighth place overall with a round of 84.

Also on the links for Chester were Jaden Mott (93), Chett Andrews (96) and Jacob Wingerter (98).

Meanwhile, Trico won the girls championship with a team score of 368 followed by Eldorado (387), Hamilton County (396), ZRC (419), Goreville (419), Carmi-White County (421) and Chester (458).

Lady Yellow Jacket senior Alyse Vasquez led Chester with a round of 105. Alyssa Pace turned in a 110. Hanna Bert carded a round of 113 while Mallary Vasquez finished with a 130.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets improve to 6-1 in conference with home win over Sesser

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets bounced back into the win column Tuesday night with a conference home win over Sesser Valier.

Chester beat Sesser Valier 27-25, 25-22 to improve to 13-5 overall and 6-1 in the West Division of the Black Diamond Conference. The Lady Yellow Jackets will host Steeleville tonight for a non-conference matchup in Daniel Colbert Gym.

Katie Hoffman led Chester in kills with nine while Lauren Welge recorded four.

Carlee Weir led in ace serves with five while Grace Stec recorded three.

Weir dished out 17 assists in the win.

Maddie Hoffman, Ashtyn Jany and Carlee Weir each recorded seven digs while Tayler Howie had five. Lauren Welge finished with four.

Lauren Welge led in blocks with two.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Yellow Jackets win third in a row with 47-29 win over Johnston City

Nick Meyer and Nick Heffernan combined for 145 yards rushing Friday night as the Chester Yellow Jackets won their third in a row with a 47-29 win over Johnston City at W.O. Smith Field.

After starting 0-2 on the season, the Yellow Jackets have won three in a row and will head to Sesser Valier this Friday night for a showdown with the Red Devils. Kickoff is at 7pm.

Quarterback Nick Meyer was 9-for-15 passing for 192 yards and five touchdowns to lead Chester to the win. N. Meyer also led the ground attack with 75 yards on 15 carries and one touchdown.

Heffernan rushed 12 times for 70 yards and one touchdown.

Calvin Clendenin caught four passes off the arm of N. Meyer for 84 yards and two touchdowns. Clayton Richelman had two receptions for 78 yards and a touchdown.

Ethan Bert caught a touchdown pass for 14 yards while Curt Meyer caught a touchdown pass for 13 yards.

Heffernan led Chester defensively with 10 tackles. Keith Kiner had eight while Eathan Thompson finished with seven. Wyatt Roth had six tackles in the win.

Salukis test Memphis but fall, 44-31

The Southern Illinois football team gave a highly touted Memphis team a fight, but the Salukis ultimately fell short, 44-31. SIU had a 21-17 lead at halftime, but Memphis outscored SIU 17-3 in the third quarter and held on for the win.

"I was proud of our guys," SIU head coach Nick Hill said. "We didn't come down here just to be proud of our effort and play it close and feel good. Really, we've never questioned this team's effort. We knew they were going to come out here and play hard. They wouldn't be travelling if they weren't a guy that commits and plays hard and battles."

Memphis was a 30-point favorite after beating nationally-ranked UCLA last weekend, and the Tigers came into the game ranked No. 31 in the FBS in both major polls. But Southern Illinois (2-1) dominated the Tigers in the first half. SIU rolled 78 yards on the opening drive of the game to set the tone. At the end of the first quarter, SIU had outgained Memphis 167-27.

"We started out hot. We just have to finish," SIU safety Ryan Neal said. "That's the thing about it. We've got to come out the canon and keep it on them. That's the way you play the game."

Memphis (3-0) controlled the second quarter and took a 17-14 lead; but with less than two minutes remaining before halftime, Sam Straub guided a five-play, 65-yard touchdown drive in less than a minute. Darrell James broke a tackle on the 33-yard touchdown reception, his second of the half. SIU led at the break, 21-17.

The Tigers won the game in the third quarter. They got the ball first and scored within 90 seconds. After an SIU 3-and-out, they scored again, this time a field goal to take a 27-21 lead.

Then, Southern controlled the ball for nearly nine minutes on its next possession, converting two fourth downs on a 16-play drive. But Memphis held Southern to a field goal, then immediately returned the ensuing kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown to take a 34-24 lead, its biggest of the game, with five second left in the quarter.

"On that drive, we only got three. Then they housed the kickoff. That's tough to respond from, but I was happy with the way that we continued to come back and finish for four quarters," Hill said

Memphis added a field goal to take a 37-24 lead, but the Salukis nearly came back to win anyway. Straub finished a 13-play drive with a touchdown pass to Jaylon Graham with five minutes to go. Southern's defense appeared to get a defensive stop--which would have given SIU the ball back with a chance to win--but a facemask penalty was called on the play. Memphis took advantage of the break and punched in the touchdown to set the final score at 44-31.

The script felt familiar for SIU. Southern hasn't been blown out of a game against an FBS opponent since a 35-3 loss at Illinois in 2010. But despite being close in every game since (SIU has outgaining its FBS foes cumulatively over those seven games), SIU fell to 0-7 in the so-called "guarantee games." What this game in particular showed was that the Salukis can compete with a top-30 team in all of college football.

"We both put on our pads the same way. We both put on our helmets the same way. We both play football the same way. It really doesn't matter," Straub said of the FCS vs. FBS matchups. "We just try to come out here and compete and give it our all."

Straub threw four touchdowns in the loss. Connor Iwema caught nine passes for 118 yards and a touchdown, and Raphael Leonard caught six passes for 70 yards. Defensively, Ryan Neal led the team with 10 tackles. Cody Crider(9), Kyron Watson (8 and a TFL) and Jeremy Chinn (7) also had big days on defense.

Southern Illinois opens conference play next weekend at home against Northern Iowa on Family Weekend. The Salukis are trying to snap a three-game losing streak against the Panthers. Kickoff is set for 6 p.m.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Lady Yellow Jacket repeat as Trico Round Robin Volleyball Tournament Champions

For the second straight year, the Chester Lady Yellow Jackets are the champions of the Trico Round Robin Volleyball Tournament.

Chester defeated Marissa-Coulterville 21-12, 21-13 and then beat Steeleville 21-9, 21-18 to finish the tournament with a perfect 5-0 record.

Chester, winners of their last eight in a row, is now 12-4 overall. They're back in action for a non-conference match Monday night at Valmeyer.

In their win over Marissa-Coulterville, Lauren Welge led Chester in blcoks with six while Reese Chandler, Lauryn Vasquez and Maddie Hoffman each had two.

Maddie Hoffman, Lauryn Vasquez and Katie Hoffman each recorded to blocks.

Carlee Weir led in assists with 14.

Maddie Hoffman and Carlee Weir each had five digs while Katie Hoffman and Tayler Howie each had three.

In their win over Steeleville, Katie Hoffman and Lauren Welge each recorded seven kills.

Tayler Howie led in digs in seven while Ashtyn Jany and Katie Hoffman each had four.

Carlee Weir dished out 20 assists.

Katie Hoffman and Reese Chandler each had two blocks.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets improve to 3-0 in Trico Volleyball Tournament

Chester improved to 3-0 in the Trico Round Robin Tournament last night with a 21-13, 19-21, 15-13 win over Sparta.

Tonight, Chester will wrap up tournament play with matches against Marissa-Coulterville at 6pm and versus Steeleville at 7pm.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets open play in annual Trico Round Robin Tournament

Chester opened up play in the annual Trico Round Robin Volleyball Tournament with a pair of wins last night.

The Lady Yellow Jackets beat Okawville 21-16, 19-21, 15-13 and then turned around and defeated the host Lady Pioneers 21-11, 21-11.

Chester will play Sparta tonight at 5pm as the tournament continues.

In their win over Okawville, Katie Hoffman recorded four kills to lead Chester. Carlee Weir had three while Lauren Welge, Maddie Hoffman and Lauryn Vasquez each had two.

Carlee Weir led in assists with 14.

Katie Hoffman led in blocks with three.

Carlee Weir had five digs while Tayler Howie recorded four.

In their win over Trico, Katie Hoffman and Maddie Hoffman each recorded five kills while Lauryn Vasque had four. Lauren Welge and Reese Chandler each had three.

Carlee Weir led in assists with 14.

Reese Chandler recorded five ace serves.

Tayler Howie had four digs.

Katie Hoffman led in blocks with two.

Lady Yellow Jacket golf hosts Steeleville

Chester Lady Yellow Jacket golf team hosted Steeleville Tuesday at the Chester Country Club.

Chester finished with a team score of 238 while Steeleville didn't have enough for an official score.

Alyse Vasquez carded a round of 54 to lead Chester. Alyssa Pace turned in a 55. Hanna Bert finished with a 63 while Samantha Eggemeyer and Autumn Dunn each fired off rounds of 66. Mallary Vasquez finisehd with a 68.

The Lady Yellow Jackets are off until the Chester Girls Invitational next Tuesday, September 26 at the Chester Country Club. Tee time is 4pm.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Chester takes care of volleyball business against Zeigler Royalton

The Chester Lady Yellow Jacket volleyball team improved to 5-1 in the West Division of the Black Diamond Conference with a 25-16, 25-13 home win over Zeigler Royalton Monday night in Daniel Colbert Gym.

Katie Hoffman led Chester in kills with seven. Lauren Welge had four while Maddie Hoffman had three.

Carlee Weir dished out 16 assists.

Maddie Hoffman led in digs with seven while Tayler Howie had five.

Lauren Welge led in ace serves with three while Tayler Howie and Reese Chandler each had two.

Katie Hoffman led in blocks with four.

Chester will begin play in the annual Trico Round Robin Tournament this evening. The Lady Yellow Jackets will play Okawville at 6pm followed by a rematch with the host Lady Pioneers at 7pm.

Lady Yellow Jacket golf team falls to Waterloo (Gibualt)

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets' golf match with Waterloo (Gibault) was moved up to Monday and Chester fell to the host Lady Hawks 231-238 at the Acorn Golf Links in Waterloo.

Alyse Vasquez led Chester with a round of 54. Mallery Vasquez turned in a 58. Hanna Bert carded a 62, Samantha Eggemeyer finished with a score of 64 while Autumn Dunn carded a 68.

The Lady Yellow Jackets are back on the home links today with the Yellow Jackets for matches against Steeleville. Tee time at the Chester Country Club is 4pm.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Nick Meyer’s big night helps Yellow Jackets to 43-13 win over Vienna-Goreville

Yellow Jacket quarterback Nick Meyer rushed for 162 yards and three touchdowns Friday night to help the Chester Yellow Jackets beat the Vienna-Goreville Eagles 43-13.

Chester (2-2, 2-2) will host Johnston City this week for Rivalry Week in the Black Diamond Conference at W.O. Smith Field. Kickoff is set for 7pm.

Chester led 22-13 at intermission and then held Vienna-Goreville scoreless in the second half.

In addition to his rushing performance, Nick Meyer was 2-for-7 passing for 54 yards. Both passes were caught by Calvin Clendenin.

Nick Heffernan rushed for 86 yards on 11 carries. Curt Meyer had 49 yards on five attempts while Tristin Hobeck had 27 yards on eight carries.

Defensively, Heffernan led in tackles with 11 while Ethan Thompson finished with 10.

Chester among six teams in annual Trico Round Robin Volleyball Tournament

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets are among six teams entered in this year's annual Trico Round Robin Volleyball tournament which begins Tuesday night in Campbell Hill.

Along with Chester and the host Lady Pioneers, the other four schools entered at Sparta, Okawville, Steeleville and Marissa-Coulterville.

Chester's first match will be Tuesday night against Okawville around 6pm followed by a match with the host Lady Pioneers around 7pm.

Chester's lone match on Wednesday will be against Sparta at 5pm.

The Lady Yellow Jackets will wrap up tournament play against Marissa-Coulterville around 6pm and then Steeleville at 7pm.

Game times are approximate and matches could start sooner except on Wednesday night when Chester and Sparta play in the first match of the night.

Salukis surge past SEMO, 35-17

The Southern Illinois football team earned a hard-fought, 35-17 win over Southeast Missouri on Saturday night.

"I think our upperclassmen showed the way here--Ryan Neal and Jeremy Chinn and guys who have played," SIU head coach Nick Hill said. "I thought overall it was a great week of practice and preparation. The coaching staff did a great job of staying together on the sideline and figuring out a way to come out with a win."

The win snapped a 12-game road losing streak that went all the way back into the 2014 season, including a loss to SEMO at Houck Field in 2015. In that 2015 game, Southern turned it over on the first play of the game and never recovered en route to seven turnovers and a 27-24 loss. In this game, Southern (2-0) turned it over on the first play of the game but immediately recovered.

The defense held SEMO to a field goal, then the offense rattled off 21-straight points to take a 21-3 lead. Southeast Missouri (0-3) got within 21-10, but the Saluki offense immediately answered with a five-play, 58-yard scoring drive that took just 43 seconds. SIU took a 28-10 lead into halftime.

"Forcing that field goal on the first drive was really big," Hill said. "I told our guys that there would be some kind of adversity for us to overcome in order to get this 12-game road losing streak over."

Sam Straub threw for 126 of his 206 yards in that second quarter spurt. Darrell James had 112 yards in the first-half alone, thanks to 37- and 38-yard touchdown catches. Straub also hit Connor Iwema and Raphael Leonard for big plays.

Nearly every SIU score was set up a big play on special teams. After SEMO took the 3-0 lead, D.J. Davis returned the ensuing kickoff 42 yards; the Salukis scored nine plays later. Craig James returne a punt 14 yards; the Salukis scored six plays later. After SEMO got within 21-10, Davis again had a big kick return--this time 38 yards; the Salukis scored five plays later.

And the lone SIU score of the second half was set up by a punt. Lane Reazin boomed one 60 yards, and SEMO's returner dropped it heading backwards; the Salukis scored four plays later to make the lead 35-10.

While the big plays came in the passing game, SIU still maintained nearly a 50-50 split between runs and passes at halftime, which paid off in the second half. With a big lead, SIU turned to power back Jonathan Mixon. Thirteen of Mixon's 17 rush attempts came in the final 19 minutes. The Salukis controlled the ball for 13 of those final 19 minutes, icing the victory.

"I think it says a lot about our team that we were able to just keep grinding and take the air out of the football to do what we had to do to win," Hill said. "We could have opened it up and spread it out, but if we're going to win championships we have to be able to run the ball, play good defense and play great special teams."

Southern Illinois travels to FBS opponent Memphis next Saturday, Sept. 23. The Tigers are 2-0 and beat nationally-ranked UCLA earlier on Saturday.

Yellow Jacket golf finishes second at Pinckneyville Friday

The Chester Yellow Jackets finished second in a quadrangular golf match host by Pinckneyville at the Red Hawk Golf Course.

The host Panthers finished first with a team score of 178 followed by Chester (179) and Trico (185). Du Quoin didn't have enough golfers for an official team score.

Yellow Jacket freshman Jarrett James fired a three-over-par 38 to take medalist honors.

Also on the links for the Yellow Jackets were Jacob Wingerter (41), Jaden Mott (50), Jakob Cushman (50), Chett Andrews (51) and Ian Reith (56).

Chester is off until Thursday when they will return to the Acorns Golf Links in Waterloo. This time Waterloo (Gibault) will be the host school. Tee time is 4pm.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets now 4-1 in BDC West after beating Goreville

Chester finished their week with a 2-1 record after winning a BDC West Division conference match on the road at Goreville last night.

Chester beat the host Lady Blackcats 25-21, 25-15 to improve to 6-4 overall and 4-1 in the BDC West. Next up is a home match Monday against Zeigler Royalton.

Maddie Hoffman led Chester in kills with nine. Kattie Hoffman added four while Lauren Welge finished with three.

Carlee Weir dished out 18 assists in the conference win.

Reese Chandler and Carlee Weir each had two ace serves.

Tayler Howie led in digs with 11 while Carlee Weir had six. Lauren Welge finished with five.

Katie Hoffman recorded a team high four blocks.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets pick-up straight sets win over Vienna

After seeing their 15-game conference winning streak end Tuesday, the Chester Lady Yellow Jacket volleyball team bounced back into the win column Wednesday night with a straight set win over conference foe Vienna.

The Lady Yellow Jackets took care of business inside Daniel Colbert Gym Wednesday night and beat the visiting Lady Eagles 25-18, 25-11 to improve to 5-4 overall and 3-1 in the Black Diamond Conference's West Division.

Chester will make the long trip to Goreville tonight for a conference match against the Lady Blackcats.

Grace Stec led Chester in kills last night with four, Lauren Welge finished with three while Lauryn Vasquez and Katie Hoffman each had two.

Carlee Weir dished out 12 assists.

Lauryn Vasquez recorded Chester's only block in the match.

Katie Hoffman led in digs with six while Maddie Hoffman finished with five.

Freshman Reese Chandler had five of Chester's 12 aces serves.

Lady Yellow Jacket golf team falls to Red Bud 198-240

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets fell to the Red Bud Lady Musketeers 198-240 in girls golf action Wednesday at the North County Country Club in Red Bud.

Alyssa Place led Chester with a round of 54. Alyse Vasquez turned in a round of 56. Hanna Bert ended her round with a 64. Mallary Vasquez turned in a 66.

Also on the links for Chester were Autumn Dunn (69) and Samantha Eggemeyer (77).

The Lady Yellow Jackets will head to the Acorn Golf Links in Waterloo Monday for a match against the Waterloo (Gibault) Lady Hawks. Tee time is 4pm.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Chester drops home volleyball opener to rival Trico

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets dropped their home opener Tuesday night, losing to rival Trico inside Daniel Colbert Memorial Gym.

Chester fell to the visiting Lady Pioneers 16-25, 25-21, 23-25 to fall to 4-4 overall and 2-1 in the Black Diamond Conference's West Division.

The loss snapped Chester's 15 match winning streak in conference play.

Katie Hoffman led Chester in kills with nine while Lauren Welge finished with eight.

Carlee Weir dished out 15 assists in the match and led the team in digs with 19. Taylor Howie finished with 13 digs while Maddie Hoffman had 12.

Katie Hoffman had five blocks.

Freshman Reese Chandler finished with four ace serves.

Chester also lost the JV match.

The Lady Yellow Jackets will host Vienna tonight in another BDC West Division matchup. Varsity game time is around 7:30pm.

Yellow Jacket boys golf team falls to Valmeyer

The Chester Yellow Jacket boys golf team fell on the road to Valmeyer Tuesday at the Acorn Golf Links in Waterloo.

Chester lost to the host Pirates 189-195.

Freshman Jarrett James led Chester with a round of 36. Jaden Mott turned in a round of 50 while Chett Andrews carded a round of 53.

Jacob Wingerter and Clay Herrell each turned in a 56 while Ian Reith finished his afternoon with a round of 57.

Chester boys will return to the links Friday at the Red Hawk Golf Course near Pinckneyville as the Panthers will be the host team. Tee time is 4pm.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Red Bud defeats Chester in boys golf on first tie-breaker

The Chester Yellow Jackets and Red Bud Musketeers tied in boys golf action at the Chester Country Club Monday afternoon. However, Red Bud left Chester with the win after the Musketeers won on a tie-breaker.

Each team finished with a team score of 170.

Chester freshman Jarrett James and Red Bud's C.J. Doiron tied for medalist honors, each shooting a two-over-par 38.

Also on the links for Chester were Jacob Wingerter (41), Ian Reith (45), Chett Andrews (46), Jaden Mott (53) and Ronin Doiron (65).

Chester is back on the links today for a match at the Acorn Golf Links in Waterloo. Valmeyer High School is the host team today. Tee time is 4pm.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Chester picks up first win of season with 41-22 win over HamCo

First year head football coach Bill Belton picked up his first win at the helm of the Yellow Jacket program as Chester beat Hamilton County 41-22 Friday night in McLeansboro.

Now 1-2 on the season, Chester will host Vienna-Goreville Friday night at W.O. Smith Field. Kickoff is set for 7pm.

Chester led 41-0 at the intermission en route to the win.

Curt Meyer led the ground attack nine carries for 97 yards and two touchdowns. Mason Westerman had 62 yards on nine carries while Eathan Thompson had 50 yards on nine carries.

Nick Meyer was 6-for-9 passing for 133 yards and three touchdowns. Three passes were caught by Calvin Clendenin for 99 yards and two touchdowns. Nick Heffernan caught one pass for 19 yards which was also a touchdown.

Salukis dominate season opener, 55-3

The Southern Illinois football program rolled to a 55-3 season-opening win over Mississippi Valley State on Saturday night in Saluki Stadium.

"You never take winning for granted," SIU football head coach Nick Hill said. "This is why we do it. It doesn't matter what the score is. You're only guaranteed 11 games in college football. Anytime you can get a win, it feels great."

After waiting an extra week to play--Southern's bye week was Week 1 of the season--the Salukis dominated from the start. SIU won the toss and took the opening drive of the season 75 yards in six plays. Hans Carmien scored the first touchdown, barreling over a Delta Devil defender to get to the goal line. Southern Illinois kept rolling from there. At halftime, SIU held a 41-3 lead, and most starters did not play in the second half.

"We were able to establish the football game in the first half. We ran the football," Hill said. "Then, we were able to play a ton of players. I think (Hall-of-Fame broadcaster Mike Reis) said 25 players had a tackle. We were able to play everybody who dressed, and that was big. We built some depth."

Strikingly, the Southern Illinois defense held MVSU (0-2) to negative-eight rushing yards on the game, while Southern's offense piled up 285 yards on the ground. Southern's defense held a Division I opponent to negative-eight or fewer rushing yards for the first time since 2000.

Everyone got in on the fun. Nearly 70 players saw action in the game for SIU. Southern's eight touchdowns were scored by seven different players. Southern had an astounding 16 tackles for loss--and 16 different players contributed to at least one.

"We'll look back, and some of those players that were in during the second half will hopefully help us win football games late in the season," Hill said. "We play in the Missouri Valley, and it's a tough league. It's a physical league. Anytime you play college football, there will be injuries. I tell the team all the time, 'The team that's coming in doesn't care about that.' It's next man up, or we won't be that good."

Southern's road gets tough quickly. The Salukis head to Southeast Missouri for a regional rivalry next Saturday. Kickoff against the Redhawks is set for 6 p.m. SIU hasn't won a road game since 2014 and is looking to snap a 12-game road losing streak.

"How are we going to turn around and get better from this?" Hill said. "Our schedule is set up so if we don't do that, the team we're playing will beat us. Even though we're young, the guys understand it takes a great week of preparation and then 60 great minutes, sometimes more, of full concentration on every single rep."

Matt Seymour of Chester wins Popeye 5K Run

By Dr. Jim Beers

Over the years, the weather has always helped to determine the fate of many local road races. Extremely hot and humid weather often deters runners and walkers from attending while cooler less humid conditions increases the likelihood that runners and walkers will join the fun and fitness of a road race.

The annual Popeye 5K Races are no exception to the rule. This year early indications were not very promising as temperatures were in the high 90’s with very high and dangerous high humidity. Early registrations were slim throughout July and early August.

The three weeks prior to the 2017 Popeye 5K Races were sharply different with uncommonly low humidity and temperatures in the 70’s and low 80’s. Race applications started coming in at a higher rate with a great outlook weather-wise and continued low humidity.

On race morning, Saturday September 9, it was a sunny day with temperatures in the 60’s to start the day and low humidity. Conditions were great for running and walking and local participants showed up to participate in the 2017 Popeye 5K Race, 5K Competitive Walk and 1.5-Mile Fun Run/Walk. A total of 78 additional participants signed up on race day adding to the 152 that had pre-registered.

230 participants showed up on race morning with 115 competitors in the 5K race and 38 competitors in the 5K Competitive Walk for a total of 153 competitors. Another 115 runners and walkers in the 1.5-mile Fun Run/Walk made it a grand total of 230 participants overall. In the 5K Run there were 62 male competitors and 53 female competitive runners.

Matt Seymour of Chester (35 years old) was the winner of the 5K Race. His winning time was 20:33.8. This is the first time that a Chester runner has won the race. Seymour made history as he crossed the finish line in the 2017 Popeye 5K race!

Other Top-5 Male winners included Hunter Fedderke, 18, of Chester (2nd, 21:13.6); Brandon Middendorf, 17, of Steeleville (3rd, 21:50); Troy Birch, 42, of Baldwin (4th, 21:27); and Shawn Bert, 37, Ellis grove (5th, 21:37). All Top-5 winners were local, area runners.

The overall female winner was Marci Furuholemen, 25, of Sparta. She had a time of 21:33.8. Other Top-5 female winners included Marla Rathjen, 56, of Jacob, (2nd, 22:49); Michelle Schmidt, 33, of Murphysboro (3rd, 22:49.1); Jennifer McDonnell, 47, of Richmond Heights, Missouri (4th, 24:03.9); and Tara Ticer, 28, of Chester (5th, 24:57.6).

There were 13 age group categories for both the male and female races including 14 years and younger, 15-19, 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, and 70 and older. Very nice, high-quality medals were presented to the top-3 finishers in each age group.

There were 29 female competitors and nine male competitors in the 5K Competitive Walk for a total of 38 competitors. Age groups for the Competitive Walk included the following six age groups for both male and female walkers: 24 years and younger, 25-25, 36-45, 46-55, 56-69, and 70 years and older.

Special awards were presented to the Overall Winner in both the male and female age categories. Top-3 finishers in each respective age group also received medals.

The overall winner of the 2017 5K Competitive Walk was Candy Cicardi, 56, of Pinckneyville. Her winning time was 38:15.8. The overall male winner was Tony Miksanek, 61, of Benton. His winning time was 33:08.5.

Several local runners won age group awards in both the male and female 5K Race. Male age group "winners" included: Gabriel Coffman, nine, of Chester (14 and Younger, 24:30); Diego Gomez, 23, of Chester (20-24, 23:37); Justin Massey, 37, of Chester (35-39, 21:41); Ron Hillerman, 51 of Chester (50-54, 24:42); and Keith Kittell, 62, of Chester (60-64, 24:17).

Female age group winners included: Abigail Zweigart, 11, of Evansville (14 and Younger, 42:40); Katie Kerkhover, 20, of Chester (20-24, 27:53); Sarah Brennfleck, 42, of Steeleville (40-44, 25:16); Andrea Decker of Chester, 47, (45-49, 25:28); and Betty Bohnert, 53, of Chester, (50-54, 26:21).

Emma Nazar, 16, of Chicago, was the winner of the 15-19 age group with her time of 25:59. She is the niece of Steve and Sue Colonel of Chester.

In the 5K Competitive Walk there were four female local "winners" of age group awards: Macey Ludwig, 14, of Chester (24 and Younger, 49:14); Lacey Hartman, 26, of Chester (25-35, 42:07); Becky Dudenbostel, 47, of Ellis Grove (46-55, 40:38); and Linda Stern, 64, of Chester (56-69, 40:05); and Joyce Melchers, 76, of Red Bud (70 and Older, 59.02). Bruce Williamson, 64, of Chester won the male 56-69 age group with his time of 37:16.

Prior to the start of the 2017 Popeye Races and Fun Run/Walk Dr. Bob Platt, Race Director, made two special presentations of plaques to long-time friends of the Popeye events.

Thomas Feeley of Bellevile, age 68, is the only remaining participant who has competed in all 38 of the Popeye races over the course of the event. Platt presented Feeley with a plaque for his continued allegiance to the Popeye Race events for the entire 38 years. Feeley finished 3rd in his 65-69 age category this year and also earned a medal for his 46:28 effort.

Dick Keegan, 80, of Mt. Vernon was presented a plaque for his participation for 27-of-the-28 years of the Popeye Competitive walk. The only year he missed was due to open heart surgery. In this year’s 5K Competitive Walk Keegan finished 2nd in his 70 and older age category with his time of 47:13. He received a medal for his effort.

Immediately following the race, numerous attendance prizes were given away for race or walk participation and medals were presented to award winners. Refreshments were also available to all participants as well as time to meet and greet fellow participants.

The Popeye Race Committee extends many thanks to this year’s Race Sponsors and Contributors. Sponsors contribute a minimum of $250.00 to the race.

For 2017 there were seven sponsors. Long-time Sponsors include Silkworm, Inc.; First Bank; Gilster Mary-Lee Corporation; and Chester National Bank. New sponsors this year include Rozier’s Country Mart; Memorial Hospital; and Fisher-Kerkhover-Coffey-and Gremmels Law Office.

Contributors donate at least $50.00 to the race. This year’s contributors include Aaron Tretter Financial Advisor; Paul Gentry State farm Insurance; Larry Soellner & Southern Illinois Eyecare; Apexnetwork Physical Therapy; Victor’s Medicenter Pharmacy; Chester Clinic & Steeleville Family Practice; Drew McClerren, Financial Advisor; Colvis Investment Services; Betty McCoy, Country Financial; Uptown Barbers; Patrick Miller, DMD & Philip Miller, DMD; Little Rascals Diner; and Robert Platt, DDS.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets improve to 2-0 in BDC West play with road win at Christopher

Chester ended a three-game losing skid last night but remained perfect in conference play with a 22-25, 27-25, 25-14 win at Christopher.

Now 4-3 overall and 2-0 in the BDC West, the Lady Yellow Jackets will host Trico for the home opener Tuesday in Daniel Colbert Gym at 7:30pm.

The JV also won last night 25-12, 25-21 to improve to 2-0 overall and 2-0 in the BDC West. The JV will host Trico Tuesday night for the home opener at 6:30pm in Colbert Gym.

Freshman James finishes fourth at Nashville Invitational

Yellow Jacket freshman Jarrett James finished fourth Thursday at the Nashville Invitational Tournament. The freshman James fired a four-over-par 40.

As a team, Chester finished with a team score of 201. Waterloo (Gibault) won the tournament with a team score of 164.

Also on the links Thursday for Chester were Jaden Mott (52), Jakob Cushman (52), Ian Reith (57), Jacob Wingerter (59) and Chett Andrews (64).

The Yellow Jackets return home to the Chester Country Club Monday for a home match against Red Bud. Tee time is 4pm.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Three Lady Yellow Jacket cross country runners finish in Top 10 at Benton

Chester Lady Yellow Jacket cross country team finished second Wednesday at Benton.

The Lady Yellow Jackets finished with 63 points, six points behind first place Belleville (Althoff).

Taylor Dunning finished second overall with a time of 20:14 while fellow senior Jessica Kattenbraker finished third with a time of 20:24.

Avery Runge cracked the top 10 with her tenth place finish with a time of 22:03.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Strong second half pushes Mules to 56-22 win over Chester

The Chester Yellow Jackets fell to 0-2 on the season after dropping their home opener Friday to Fairfield 56-22.

The Mules led 34-22 at the intermission before holding Chester scoreless in the second half.

No other information about the game was available.

Chester (0-2) will head to McLeansboro this Friday night for a 7pm showdown with former Yellow Jacket assistant football coach Jeff Rush and his winless Foxes.

Kickoff is set for 7pm.

CHS Cross Country runs well at Columbia Relays

By Jim Beers

The Chester High School Girl’s and Boy’s Cross Country Teams traveled to Columbia, Illinois Wednesday afternoon to compete in the 2017 Columbia Relays Meet. The meet is always a fun and interesting event due to the nature of the way it is organized.

At the relays, teams of three runners compete together to complete a 4.5-mile race in relay fashion. Each runner has to run 1.5-miles after which the next runner completes his or her 1.5-mile leg. The last runner then finishes the race by completing his or her 1.5-mile leg for a total of 4.5 miles.

Schools are allowed to enter as many three, three-person teams. For example, in the Girl’s Division, there were 10 schools represented and there were a total of 21 teams in the following combinations: Waterloo (3), Belleville East (2), Chester (2), Breese Central (3), Columbia (2), Marissa-Coulterville (1), Valmeyer (2), Gibault (2), Metro-East Lutheran (3), and Granite Coty (1).

Jessica Kattenbraker, Taylor Dunning, and Avery Runge ran as the Chester A Team. This group finished 5th overall out of 21 teams with a combined time of 32:55 for the 4.5 miles. For their efforts Chester Team A earned medals.

The Chester B Team included Addie Blechle, Shea Petrowske, and Elizabeth Soellner. Team B finished in 12th Place out of the field of 21 teams and turned in a time of 38:54. Breanna Brigham and Melody Colonel ran in the Open Division.

The Top-10 finishers in the Team competition included Waterloo A (1st, 28:19); Belleville East A (2nd, 30:44); Waterloo B (3rd, 30:50); Waterloo C (4th, 32:24); Chester A (5th, 32:55); Breese Central A (6th, 34:01); Columbia A (7th, 34:55); Marissa-Coulterville (8th, 36:02); Valmeyer A (9th, 36:28); and Gibault A (10th, 37:11).

The next 21 finishers included Columbia B (11th, 38:39); Chester B (12th, 38:54); Breese Central B (13th, 39:11); Belleville East B (14th, 40:45); Metro-East Lutheran A (15th, 40:46); Valmeyer B (16th, 41:26); Breese Central C (17th, 41:37); Granite City A (18th, 41:56); Metro-East Lutheran B (19th, 43:33); Metro-East Lutheran C (20th, 46:17); and Gibault B (21st, 47:15).

In the Boy’s Division there were 11 schools represented and 30 three-person teams in the following combinations: Waterloo (3), Granite City (2), Columbia (3), Belleville East (2), Marissa-Coulterville (3), Breese Central (3), Chester (3), East Alton Wood River (3), Gibault (3), Valmeyer (2), and Metro-East Lutheran (3) for a total of 30 teams.

Chester’s Team A included Trent Bierman, Ronin Doiron, and Jordan Hughes. Team A finished 12th overall out of 30 teams with a time of 29:00. Team B included Jakob Cushman, Josh Haberberger, and Lance Bohnert. Team B finished 19th out of 30 teams with a time of 30:27. Team C included Mitchell Colonel, Zach Zappa and Joe Soellner. Team C finished 26th out of 30 teams with a time of 32:30. Ian Reith ran in the Open Division.

The Top-10 finishers in the Boy’s Division included Waterloo A (1st, 24:00); Granite City A (2nd, 24:43); Waterloo B (3rd, 25:37); Columbia A (4th, 25:50); Belleville East A (5th, 26:11); Marissa-Coulterville A (6th, 26:51); Columbia B (7th, 27:47); Columbia C (8th, 28:03); Breese Central A (9th, 28:15); and Waterloo C (10th, 28:32).

The next 20 finishers included Belleville East B (11th, 28:47); Chester A (12th, 29:00); East Alton Wood River A (13th, 29:01); Gibault A (14th, 29:13); Valmeyer A (15th, 29:23); Metro-East Lutheran A (16th, 29:29); Breese Central C (17th, 29:30); Breese Central B (18th, 30:19); Chester B (19th, 30:27); and Marissa-Coulterville B (20th, 30:28).

The final 10 teams included Gibault B (21st, 30:39); East Alton Wood River B (22nd, 30:46); Gibault C (23rd, 31:58); Granite City B (24th, 31:59); Marissa-Coulterville C (25th, 32:02); Chester C (26th, 32:30); East Alton Wood River C (27th, 33:43); Valmeyer B (28th, 36:02); Metro-East Lutheran B (29th, 37:06); and Metro-East Lutheran C (30th, 42:43).

Following the meet, Curt Gilpin, CHS Head Coach said, "The meet went great! The girls and boys both performed well. We use this meet to look at split times and also it’s a different type of meet for the kids. I was really happy with all of our times coming out of this meet and am excited for the meets coming up next week."

The Jackets and Lady Jackets will compete on the road in back-to-back competitions next week. Tuesday September 5 they will travel to the Benton 6 plus Meet and Wednesday September 6 they will run at the Annual Marissa Invitational.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Lady Yellow Jacket volleyball team finishes fourth in Labor Day Tournament

The Chester Lady Yellow Jackets finished in fourth place at the 2017 Labor Day Volleyball Tournament last night at Marissa.

Chester (3-3) lost their championship semifinal match against Columbia 19-21, 6-21 and then lost the third place match to Wesclin 10-21, 21-18, 20-22.

Carlee Weir was voted to the All Tournament Team.

In their loss to Columbia, Reese Chandler and Grace Stec each had two kills.

Carlee Weir dished out five assists.

Maddie Hoffman had five digs while Carlee Weir finished with four.

Katie Hoffman led in blocks with four.

In their loss to Wesclin, Katie Hoffman led in kills with six while Maddie Hoffman had five.

Carlee Weir led in assists with 18 and digs with 12. Tayler Howie added 11 digs.

Maddie Hoffman had two blocks.

Tayler Howie, Carlee Weir, Lauren Welge and Kendall Williams each recorded an ace serve.

Chester is off until a conference road match against Christopher on Thursday.

Chester finishes fifth in Chester Boys Golf Invitational Tournament

The Chester Yellow Jacket boys golf team finished fifth Thursday in their own Chester Invitational Tournament held at the Chester Country Club.

Trico won the tournament with a team score of 323 followed by Red Bud (340), Steeleville (363), Sparta (367), Chester (374) and New Athens (396). Murphysboro didn't have enough golfers for an official team score.

Freshman Jarrett James finished fourth overall with an eight-over-par 80 for the Yellow Jackets. Jacob Wingerter turned in a round of 93, Jaden Mott finished with a 98 while Jakob Cushman and Chett Andrews each fired off rounds of 103. Clay Herrell finished with a 128.

The boys golf team will return to the home links Tuesday at 4pm.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets advance to championship final four despite losing to Steeleville

Despite losing to Steeleville last night, the Chester Lady Yellow Jackets will play in the championship final four of the 2017 Labor Day Volleyball Tournament tonight at Marissa.

Chester lost to Steeleville 21-23, 21-16, 12-15 to finish pool play with a 2-1 record along with Steeleville and Okawville.

The two tiebreakers favored Chester so the Lady Yellow Jackets will head back to the final four and will square off again with Columbia in a championship semifinal tonight at 5:30pm. Chester lost to Columbia in the championship last year in the tournament.

Last night, Katie Hoffman and Grace Stec each had five kills while Maddie Hoffman finished with three.

Carlee Weir dished out 15 assists.

Tayler Howie recorded 15 digs while Maddie Hoffman had 10.

Katie Hoffman led Chester in blocks with four while Tayler Howie recorded three ace serves.

With a win over Columbia, Chester (3-1) would play in the championship tonight at 7:30pm. A loss and Chester will play for third place at 6:30pm.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Lady Yellow Jackets open Labor Day Tournament with pair of wins

The Chester Lady Yellow Jacket volleyball team began play in the 2017 Labor Day Volleyball Tournament Monday with a pair of wins in pool play.

Chester (3-0) defeated Lebanon 21-23, 21-12, 15-7 in their first match and then turned around and beat Okawville 21-14, 21-6. The Lady Yellow Jackets need a win tonight against Steeleville at 6:30pm to advance to the finals for a second straight year.

In their match against Lebanon, Maddie Hoffman led Chester in kills with six while Lauren Welge recorded four.

Carlee Weir dished out 14 assists.

Ashtyn Jany finished with six digs while Carlee Weir had four. Katie Hoffman, Tayler Howie and Maddie Hoffman each had three.

Maddie Hoffman led in blocks with four while Carlee Weir led in ace serves with four. Tayler Howie recored three.

In their win over Okawville, Maddie Hoffman and Grace Stec each had four kills while Katie Hoffman had two.

Carlee Weir dished out 13 assists.

Tayler Howie recorded seven digs while Maddie Hoffman had six.

Lauren Welge finished with three blocks while Maddie Hoffman had two.

Lauren Welge also led Chester in ace serves with four.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Lady Yellow Jacket volleyball team rallies for season opening win over SVW

It didn't take long for first year Chester head volleyball coach Adam Gibbs to pick up his first win of his career.

Saturday, the Lady Yellow Jackets of Chester beat Sesser Valier 24-26, 25-13, 25-11 in their season and conference opening match.

Maddie Hoffman led Chester in kills with nine while Katie Hoffman had seven.

Carlee Weir dished out 26 assists in the win.

Maddie Hoffman also recorded three ace serves while Katie Hoffman added two blocks.

Chester (1-0) will open play in the 2017 Labor Day Volleyball Tournament this afternoon with two matches in pool play. Chester will play Lebanon at 4:30pm and turn around and play Okawville at 5:30pm. Chester will wrap up pool play on Wednesday against Steeleville at 6:30pm. All three pool matches will be played at Marissa High School.

The finals are set for Thursday.

Cross Country teams open season Saturday at Edwardsville

The Chester High School cross country teams opened their season Saturday at the big First to the Finish Kickoff meet held at Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville.

The Lady Yellow Jackets finished 14th overall out of the 33 schools entered. Meanwhile, the Yellow Jackets finished in 29th place. There were 37 schools entered in the boys race.

Senior Jessica Kattenbraker finished 53rd overall with a time of 23:25.3. Fellow senior Taylor Dunning finished with a time of 23:48.8 which was good enough for 62nd place overall.

Sophomore Ronin Doiron turned in Chester's best time in the boys race with 20:43.9, good enough for 151st place overall.

The cross country teams are scheduled to return to action Wednesday at the Columbia Relays at 4pm.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Yellow Jacket golf teams open seasons at home Tuesday

The Chester Yellow Jacket golf teams both opened their seasons Tuesday afternoon at the Chester Country Club.

Playing in his first varsity match, Yellow Jacket freshman Jarrett James fired a three-over-par 39 to earn medalist honors while leading Chester to a second place finish in the season opening triangular.

Waterloo (Gibault) finished first with a team score of 168 followed by the host Yellow Jackets with 184. Steeleville finished third with a team score of 184.

Jacob Wingerter turned in a round of 45 while Jakob Cushman finished with a 46. Jaden Mott carded a round of 54. Also on the links for Chester were Chett Andrews (60) and Ian Reith (65).

Meanwhile, the Lady Yellow Jackets defeated Waterloo (Gibault) 238-244.

Senior Alyse Vasquez carded a round of 52 to lead Chester. Hanna Bert turned in a 57 while Sam Eggemeyer finished with a 64. Mallory Vasquez and Alyssa Place each carded a round of 65.

The Yellow Jackets are scheduled to return to the links today at the North County Country Club in Red Bud at 4pm. The Lady Yellow Jackets are off until Monday when they visit Trico at 4pm.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Annual Soup Scrimmage this Friday night at CHS

The annual Chester Yellow Jacket football team’s soup scrimmage will be this Friday night at W.O. Smith Field beginning at 6pm.

Admission to this year's scrimmage will be two canned food items.

Parents, fans and members of the local media will be allowed onto Smith Field to take photos of the teams and individuals beginning at 6pm.

At 6:45pm, the team will stretch and begin their pre-game warm-ups and the scrimmage is set to begin at 7pm.

The freshmen defense will be featured first followed by the junior varsity and then varsity. Then, the freshmen offense will take the field followed by the JV and varsity.

The varsity will open on the road Friday, August 26 at Eldorado. Kickoff is set for 7pm.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

SIU Salukis picked eighth in preseason football poll

The Southern Illinois football team was picked eighth in the preseason Missouri Valley Football Conference poll, the league announced Tuesday morning. SIU was picked eighth for the second-straight year.

The poll consists of votes from the coaches, local media and sports information directors in the 10-team conference. In the closest vote in the history of the league, North Dakota State was picked as the preseason favorite by one point over South Dakota State. The Bison received 21 first place votes, and the Jackrabbits received the other 19.

Southern Illinois is coming off a 4-7 season. Southern finished 2-6 in the MVFC after winning two of its final three games, including a 17-point comeback win in the season finale over No. 23 Western Illinois. The Salukis return 15 starters from 2016 (seven on offense, six on defense, and two on special teams).

Southern Illinois opens the season at Saluki Stadium on September 9 vs. Mississippi Valley State.