Tri-County Youth Sports Grant
Tri-County Youth Sports Grant Winners
1953 Peoria Central Basketball Team

First Row (left to right): Jerry Lewis, Jim Shively, Chet Ziegler

Middle Row: Nick Panos, Gary Trotter, Leon Hurst, Dave Lancaster, Jerry Green

Back Row: Allan Anderson, Jim Ashby, Alan Swanson, Hiles Stout, Hal Douglas, Dawdy Hawkins

The Lions ended a 29-4 season with a 72-60 state title loss to undefeated LaGrange. Still, a 2nd place state finish, along with city, Greater Peoria conference, and Big 12 titles, made this one of the area's best-ever high school teams. Coached by Dawdy Hawkins and assisted by Bruce Saurs, the team featured Hiles Stout, Alan Swanson, Jim Ashby and Hal Douglas with a supporting cast of Nick Panos, Jerry Green and Gary Trotter. It was the highest state finish for Central since 1908.