Today's News

  • Sex offender agrees to 10 years

    A Brownstown man accepted a prison sentence for a felony sex offense right before his case was to be presented to a jury.
    Lloyd W. Merkley accepted a plea bargain on Tuesday that includes a 10-year prison term.
    Merkley, 61, pleaded guilty to predatory criminal sexual assault of a child.

  • Senior Spotlight: Austyn Krueger

    Even when she is in a bad mood, it doesn’t take much to make Austyn Krueger smile.

    The easy-going senior who transferred to Vandalia as a sophomore not only keeps the team in positive spirits, she also has used an all-around game to help lead the Lady Vandals to one of the best seasons in school history.

    “I feel like if I am in a good mood, then everyone around me will be in a good mood, too,” Krueger said. “You have to look at the positives in everything to make more out of it.”

  • Lady Vandals defeated by Pana at sectional

    TOLEDO – The season may have ended on Tuesday, but it is one that will be remembered for a long time.

    Playing in a sectional tournament for the first time in 27 years, the Lady Vandals found themselves locked in a tight battle with Pana at the Class 2A sectional at Cumberland High School, but despite 11 kills from senior

    Austyn Krueger and 10 more from senior RaeChelle Leiken, it was Pana which came away the 25-16, 23-25, 25-19 winner.

  • Lady Vandals win school's first volleyball regional since 1985

    The Vandalia volleyball team took to the streets following the regional championship game last Thursday.

    “I believe that we just won,” the team chanted as they rode through Vandalia’s Halloween parade after winning the school’s first regional volleyball championship since 1985 with a 25-18, 25-18 win against Flora.

  • St. Elmo to face Lebanon in finals of Class 1A sectional

    It's been a goal all season for the St. Elmo volleyball team to advance as far as possible through the state postseason, and on Tuesday, the Lady Eagles notched another victory.

    Behind 14 kills from senior Savannah Feezel, St. Elmo had little trouble defeating Woodlawn in the first round of the Class 1A sectional in Lebanon, winning the match, 25-14, 25-13.

    With the victory, the Lady Eagles (28-9) advance to Thursday's sectional final against Lebanon. The game will be played at 7 p.m. at Lebanon High School.

  • Ambuehl has career day, but Vandals lose in OT

    It was a slow walk off of the field for the Vandals on Saturday after losing to Carterville in the first round of the Class 3A state playoffs, as players held on to the last shred of what they had hoped would be a dream season.

    A two-point conversion pass in overtime was batted down to gave the Lions the 35-34 victory, ending the season of Vandalia’s large senior class that had aspirations to go deep in the playoffs before injuries knocked out two starters in week nine.

  • Sophomore Strobel personally trains his way to state

    Despite having no formal practices or coach, Vandalia sophomore Ben Strobel said it has not been difficult to train for cross county every day.

    His dedication paid off on Saturday when he qualified for state after placing sixth at the Metro-East Lutheran Sectional meet at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville.

    “I’ve been really determined after not making state in track last year,” Strobel said. “Coach (Jane) Bell was hoping I would make sectionals, but I wanted to get to state.”

  • Senior class accomplishes final goal

    Prior to the season, the Vandalia volleyball team set four major goals for the season, and with last Thursday’s win in the regional championship game, all four have been accomplished.

    The Lady Vandals (25-5) set goals of winning championships in the Altamont Tournament, Vandalia Tournament, South Central Conference and Regional Tournament.

    “This group is so focused and determined,” said coach Allison Smith said. “They are so eager to get everything they want, and they aren’t ready to quit yet.”

  • Team wins first title since 1985

    Prior to last Thursday’s victory, it had been 27 years since Vandalia had won a regional championship in volleyball.

    It was the second try for the core of this season’s volleyball team to win a regional, after the Lady Vandals ran into eventual state placer Breese Central in the title game of last season's Flora Regional.

    But now that the title is theirs after a 25-18, 25-18 win against Flora, players feel accomplished that they were able to close that lengthy gap.

  • St. Elmo seniors are a special group

    ST. ELMO – It’s not easy for a group of six teenage girls to never have a fight from sixth-grade through senior year, but that’s what has happened in St. Elmo.

    This season’s seniors are one of the most unselfish classes the school has ever seen, and their friendship on and off the court has the potential to lead them very far through the postseason.