TriCounty During her senior year at Dunlap High School, Shawna proved not only her athletic ability, but her athletic versatility by excelling on the soccer field as well as the basketball and volleyball courts.
In a rare "double," Shawna was named Journal Star Soccer Player of the Year, and also Journal Star basketball Class A Player of the Year.
Neff became Dunlap's first all-state soccer player, in part by leading area players with 19 assists while scoring 22 goals. Shawna is currently a starter for the Air Force Academy Falcons basketball team. [written 2001]
During her senior year at Dunlap High School, Shawna proved not only her athletic ability, but her athletic versatility by excelling on the soccer field as well as the basketball and volleyball courts.
Hockey was a sport local fans could watch only if they went to Chicago or St. Louis until BardezBanian founded the Peoria Stars in 1959.
The two were with the Pekin Stars until 1970, when they formed the Peoria Blades, on the outdoor rink at Logan, in 1971. The Logan "bubble" went up the next year and the Blades, through membership in the Continental League, gave Peoria a solid taste of hockey.
BardezBanian played with the Blades for a few years, then became president while Olson always served as the team's general manager.
And the two gave hockey a boost whenever they could. BardezBanian coached the Bradley University club team for many years and both were instrumental in starting and maintaining youth hockey in Pekin and Peoria.
Both are now retired, Olson from Caterpillar's Mossville plant and BardezBanian from a management position with the City of Peoria.