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SCC likely to re-align

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By Jonathan Stark

Rumors were flying at theVandalia Sports Booster Club meeting on Saturday that the South Central Conference will re-align again.

Speculation is that Gillespie High School and Staunton will once again join the ranks, along with Nokomis. Roxana, East Alton-Wood River and Alton Marquette would depart the SCC.

An official announcement is expected next Wednesday, but things could change.

Vandalia's athletic director-in-waiting, Kevin Jackson, did not want to speak before anything was finalized, as "there are still some things that could go haywire."

Current Athletic Director Mike Butler said the realignment will "probably happen," but the decision is up to the superintendents of the school districts.

Vandalia Superintendent Rich Well could not be reached at presstime.

The three schools supposedly planning to leave are in close proximity to each other farther west, in Madison County. EAWR and Roxana are also the two largest schools in the SCC, with enrollments over 620.

The three schools that might come in are all northwest of Vandalia and are currently in the Prairie State Conference.

Nokomis is about 35 miles northwest of Vandalia, with an enrollment of about 250.

Gillespie is no stranger to the SCC, having been a member several years ago. The Miners have an enrollment of 380. Gillespie is located just west of Litchfield.

Staunton is largest of the three additions, with 415 students. Staunton is located along I-55, south of Mt. Olive.

The realigment brings the conference closer together geographically, with Piasa, Pana, and Vandalia still being the outer coners. Hillsboro would be the largest school, with 605 enrolled, Vandalia would be the third-largest, with 535. The three new schools would be the smallest.

The change would likely not take effect until the 2011-2012 school year.

In other VSBC news, new officers for the 2010-11 term were announced. Renee Whightsil will be president; Joe Shields, vice president; Ginger Edwards, secretary; and Billy Joe Ritchey, treasurer.