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Hobbie has fast start for McKendree

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By Dan Chamness

One heartbreaking loss, one victory and two great Eric Hobbie performances.

McKendree University coach Harry Statham would have liked to have beaten Lindenwood University in its first game of the season, but Hobbie, a Vandalia grad, did everything he could do to power the Bearcats to victory. In the 81-79 loss to the St. Louis-based school, Hobbie poured in 24 points, grabbed five rebounds and doled out three assists. He hit 8-of-21 field goals and 4-of-4 free throws. He made 4-of-9 trey opportunities.

In the first win of the year, a 95-79 thumping of Lindenwood University-Belleville, Hobbie bettered his individual performance. The former Vandal star drained 7-of-11 field goals and 8-of-9 free throws to score 25 points. He also grabbed five boards.

With his 49 points in the first two games, Hobbie is now 17th on the all-time scoring list at McKendree. He is only six points from becoming the 16th leading scorer of all time at the school. He should enter the top 10 in short order, as well. He will need more than 1,750 points to enter the top 10. Only seven McKendree players have scored 2,000 points or more, and Hobbie is on pace to become the eighth.

At the time of its first contest, McKendree was ranked eighth in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics poll. Lindenwood, which is transitioning to NCAA Division II after this year, was ranked 14th in the same poll. McKendree is 1-1.

Vanderbilt University finished fourth in the Fairleigh Dickinson University Tournament. Former Vandalia bowler Jessica Earnest finished 21st by averaging 186.4 pins per game during the tournament. The winning average was posted by University of Maryland-Eastern Shore's Kristina Frahm, who shot a 235.

Illinois College lost its final two football games of the year. While Vandalia grad Brock Doehring played in both contests, he only had stats in the 42-29 loss to Grinnell College, after finishing with one catch for 10 yards in the game. IC won four of its last six contests and finished the year with a 5-5 mark. IC was 5-4 in the Midwest Conference.

The Rockford College Regents got 13 digs from St. Elmo grad Maribel Guerrero, but that did not power them past Dominican University in the Northern Athletics Conference Tournament. With the 3-0 loss, Rockford ended the year with a 7-17 overall record. The Regents were 6-6 in the Northern Athletics Conference.

Illinois College golfer Meagan Wright finished the fall portion of her golf season, recently. Wright, who prepped at Vandalia, shot 11 rounds and finished with a stroke count of 1,384, which is an average of 125.8 strokes per round. Her low round was a 110. Wright helped IC finish in the top 10 in two tournaments, which included a second-place finish in the Midwest Conference.

We are looking for names. The winter sports are upon us. If anyone wants to make sure their son/daughter is on my list, please e-mail me (Dan62801@aol.com). Please put "Vandalia Leader-Union" in the subject line of the e-mail. I will need the name of the athlete, the former high school, the college/university they are attending and of course, the sport they are playing.

There are only two rules to be included in this column. The athlete must be involved in intercollegiate athletics, meaning their chosen school plays other schools. In addition, the athlete must have been a resident of or a graduate of one of the high schools in Fayette County during their prep days.