Home, sweet home.
The McKendree University Bearcats and freshman Eric Hobbie, a Vandalia grad, fought all season to have home-court advantage throughout the American Midwest Conference Tournament.
They have it, and now they are hoping that their season does not end on the MPCC hardwood. In the last 15 games, McKendree has won 14 of them. The Bearcats have also won their last five games, which included a 116-57 win over Williams Baptist College in their first round game of the AMC Tournament.
In the win, Hobbie scored 12 points by hitting 5 of 11 field goals, which included 2 of 6 from beyond the arc. He also had eight rebounds.
The Bearcats had a much tougher battle in their final game of the regular season. In the 73-70, Hobbie scored 12 points, pulled down seven boards and blocked two shots. Once again, his points were free-throw line free, as he had five field goals (two treys). McKendree is 24-6. It won the AMC regular season title with a 13-1 mark. The Bearcats are set to face Harris-Stowe State University in the next round. They downed HSSU twice this season, beating them by at least 17 points each time.
Vanderbilt University placed fourth Sunday at the Holiday Classic, held in Bessemer, Ala. VCHS grad Josie Earnest, a Vanderbilt sophomore, finished third among the individual competitors. Her average was 223.3 through the tournament. In the five games held on Sunday, Vanderbilt downed Fontbonne University (814-666), Minnesota State University (1,004-895) and Arkansas State University (1,103-1,046). It was topped by University of Maryland-Eastern Shore (1,073-1,010) and Alabama A&M University (1,082-1,068).
Earnest bowled her best game against Arkansas State, rolling a 267. She helped Vanderbilt take fourth as a team. The Commodores finished with a pin count of 10,165. The champions of the tournament, University of Nebraska, rolled a 10,505.
Greenville College recently bowed out of the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Tournament with a 65-52 loss to Fontbonne University.
Former Vandalia player Meredith Banal, a Greenville junior, bucketed 18 points by hitting 6-of-14 from the field and 2-of-2 from the stripe. She struck four times from beyond the arc. Banal also had five boards and two steals.
Fellow Greenville player Susan Githinji, a South Central grad, finished with three points and five rebounds. Greenville finished the year with an 18-8 overall record. It was 12-4 in the SLIAC.
Blackburn College ended its basketball season on a winning note.
The Beavers downed MacMurray College, 82-63, in their final game of the season. Vandalia grads Blake Doehring and Ryan Smith scored nine and six points, respectively, for Blackburn. Doehring also had two rebounds, while Smith had eight boards and two assists. Blackburn finished the season with a 5-19 overall record. It was 3-13 in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
Brownstown grad Aaron Lovett has pitched 2 1/3 innings in the University of Kentucky Wildcats’ first nine baseball games. Lovett, who has made two appearances, has allowed only two hits and fanned three batters. Kentucky is 9-0.
Do you know of any spring athletes? We are trying to build our list for the spring months. If you know of an athlete that will be competing in a spring sport, please e-mail me ([email protected]). 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. Please put ‘The Leader-Union’ in the subject line.
There are only two requirements to be included in this column. First the athlete has to be a graduate of one of the area high schools or a resident of a town normally covered by the The Leader-Union. Secondly, they have to be involved in intercollegiate athletics.