TriCounty Illinois Central softball coach Lorene Ramsey, who has molded dozens of outstanding players in her long Cougar career, may have never had a player like Kim Hartzler of Washington.
An outstanding pitcher who finished last season with a 17-2 record and an ERA of 0.85 Hartzler also was the team's leading hitter with .477 average, a flock of extra base hits and 62 RBls.
"I've had some very versatile pitchers in the past, but I've never had a pitcher that hit almost .500," praised Ramsey.
Hartzler always had her bat in the lineup, playing third when not pitching. And she was no slouch there, either. "She's played third base for us in All-American fashion defensively," points out Ramsey.
"In my years involved with ICC softball, I have never seen one person be such an impact player offensively, pitching and defensively," says batting coach Rudy Rudolph.
"She can hit for singles or for power," points out Ramsey. "She's a tremendous RBI player."
Hartzler, who is now attending Eastern Illinois University, was selected along with teammate Brigit Cornish for the United States Junior College All-Star team that played in the Canada Cup tournament last season. She played every inning of all nine games.
In 1995 she also was named to the First Team All Regional; first team all regional tournament; Most Valuable Player NCAA regional tournament; first team National Softball Coaches Association All-American; first team National Junior College Athletic Association All-American.
Her .478 batting average at ICC last season was the highest average of any regular player in the 27-year history of the ICC softball program.
Illinois Central softball coach Lorene Ramsey, who has molded dozens of outstanding players in her long Cougar career, may have never had a player like Kim Hartzler of Washington.
|1996-97 Manual Boy's Basketball Team|
Manual completed its amazing and unprecedented four-year run of IHSA Class AA Basketball Tournament Championships at Peoria’s Carver Arena. After defeating Thornton of Harvey in the two previous championship tilts, the Rams downed the previously undefeated Wildcats 65-62, in an epic semifinal matchup. Manual then defeated West Aurora, 47-43 for the title. They finished the season as the number one ranked team in the nation by the USA Today. The Rams posted a 31-1 record, losing only to Chicago Carver when All-State and McDonald’s All-America selection, Marcus Griffin was sidelined with an injury. The Rams completed the “Four-Peat” era with a combined record of 121-11 and a perfect 32-0 record in Class AA State Tournament competition. Sergio McClain, a starter for all four of the championship teams, was selected Mr. Basketball by coaches and media throughout the state.