Athlete Spotlight – Ellis Leads the Way

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

Although the O’Fallon Township High School Boys Soccer team has struggled to find a consistent rhythm in the early season, at least one thing can be counted on every time the Panthers hit the pitch.

Senior star Jordan Ellis has been an absolute sensation early in 2017, grabbing the team lead in points with ten while also holding a tie for the team lead in goals with four, production that the Panthers have relied on through the first two weeks of play.

His sharp play to open the 2017 season has earned Jordan the honor of First National Bank Athlete of the Week.

 

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Panthers can’t escape Wildcats in Normal

BY COLTEN STEELE
WEEKLY REPORTER

Running Back Jacob Flores heads into a pack of Wildcats
(O’Fallon Weekly Photo by Nick Miller)

NORMAL – It was the same story all over again for O’Fallon, as they dropped their second game of the season, losing to Normal West 41-7.

Head Coach Brandon Joggerst said, “Normal West is an extremely talented team that has a lot of offensive weapons. Their offense stresses your defense by multiple formations and playing at a frenetic pace.”

The Blue and Gold were down early as the Wildcats got out to a quick 14-0 lead over the Panthers in the first quarter. It seemed that this game was going to be a lot closer than watch the scoreboard showed, but the Wildcats weren’t going to stop what they had been doing all game.

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Girls golf continues to win, now breaking records

BY COLTEN STEELE
WEEKLY REPORTER

The O’Fallon Township Lady Panthers Golf team defeated Belleville East last Tuesday afternoon, and broke a school record while they were at it.

O’Fallon has had a very hot start to the season, and Head Coach Chris Eddy says, “The girls have started off the season very well, but we still have several things to improve to reach our goals. The girls all know their potential and our goal is to be clicking on all cylinders come the end of the season. We already have three tournament victories and a couple other great finishes, but our main focus is still for continual improvement from everyone at every level in our program throughout the season.”

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O’Fallon Cross Country finds top five finishes

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

GRANITE CITY – The season is still young, but the O’Fallon Township High School cross country team is starting to round into form.

This past Saturday, the Panthers took to the course at the Granite City Invitational at Wilson Park in one of the toughest fields of competition in the early season slate.

The Boys team put up one of the Southwestern Conference’s top performances on the day, placing fourth overall with 146 points, behind Edwardsville, Chatham Glenwood, and Saint Louis University High.

To read the full article, pick up a copy of this week’s paper on newsstands now. Or, click here for the digital edition.

Lady Panther Tennis wraps up busy week

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

Junior Lindsay Miles prepares to serve during play on Saturday as part of the Edwardsville tournament in matches held at OTHS. Also pictured is freshman Ali Mueller.
(O’Fallon Weekly Photo by Angela Simmons)

The O’Fallon Township High School Lady Panthers tennis team continued its strong run to open the season this past week, riding dominant all around performances to a pair of head to head wins before splitting four tough tournament matchups.

Wednesday afternoon on the road in Granite City, the Lady Panthers flexed their collective muscles against the Warriors, dominating on all fronts to race out to a 9-0 win.

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Volleyball Panthers win tough match against Villa Duchesne

Lady Panthers take seventh in Edwardsville Tiger Classic

BY COLTEN STEELE
WEEKLY REPORTER

The O’Fallon Girls Volleyball team started off what would be a very busy week for them, on a very high note.

The Blue and Gold won a very tough, non-conference match against Villa Duchesne on Thursday.

The Villa Duchesne Saints are one of Missouri’s top teams in the area year in and year out. The Saints won a state title a couple years ago in 2015 to add to their resume. But it was O’Fallon who scored points when they needed to at the end of matches to sweep Villa Duchesne.

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A Note from the Superintendent’s Desk – School funding reform and OTHS

Last Thursday, Governor Bruce Rauner signed into law SB1947.  The bill includes a new formula that will change the manner in which funding is distributed to school districts.  Many people have expressed their relief that school districts are “out of the woods”.  People may have the impression that because the State of Illinois recently passed a budget and enacted a new evidence-based funding formula, the financial challenges facing school districts are over.  This is not the case.  The Illinois Association of School Administrators anticipates that it will take several years of state budget allocations before schools reach adequacy in funding to support education for their students.

So, how does the new evidence-based funding formula work?  Based on the individual demographics and characteristics of a school district, an “adequacy target” of funding for the district is calculated.  In simple terms, the “adequacy target” is the calculated amount of money the school district requires to educate its student population based on factors supported by evidentiary research.  Each school district will have a unique adequacy target as each school district serves a unique student population.

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Hawks rout Panthers in season opener

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

Anneus Riggs and Deven Monahan wrap up Hawks wide receiver Reggie Certain.
(O’Fallon Weekly Photo by Nick Miller)

Picturing a dream start to a season usually includes a couple of big plays, a breakout performance from an under-the-radar player, and, most of all, a Week 1 win.

That’s not what happened to the O’Fallon Panthers at home on Friday night against Hazelwood Central.

The Panthers struggled to find anything on the offensive side of the ball while the defense held off a high-powered Hawk offense for as long as they could until the floodgates opened in the second half, and O’Fallon fell 34-3 in one of the worst home losses of Head Coach Brandon Joggerst’s tenure at OTHS.

To read the full article, pick up a copy of this week’s paper on newsstands now. Or, click here for the digital edition.

Athlete Spotlight – Brunner and Macaluso Impress as a Duo

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

For the O’Fallon Lady Panthers Tennis team, any chance to showcase their wares against programs from all reaches of the state is an exciting opportunity.

For the doubles pairing of Miley Brunner and Kate Macaluso, the Champaign Centennial Invitational at the Atkins Tennis Center was an opportunity to show the rest of Illinois that they are a force to be reckoned with on the courts.

On August 19th, the Lady Panthers made the trip north to Champaign where they would compete against some of the best tennis talent the state of Illinois has to offer, and the sophomore duo proved they belong in that conversation.

The pair defeated the Warren Township pair of Ayalur and Janti in straight sets, 6-0, 6-2 before a matchup against the duo from 2nd place Wheaton Warrenville South, Liza Dryer and Sophia Stamatopoulos.

To read the full article, pick up a copy of this week’s paper on newsstands now. Or, click here for the digital edition.

OTHS Soccer gets mixed results

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

While football opened its season on Friday evening in O’Fallon, another type of football was also gearing to go in the Metro East.

The O’Fallon Township High School Boys Soccer team started its season on a roll this past week before a pair of close contests brought the club back down to earth.

OTHS started play in the Metro East Cup against the Marion Wildcats last Tuesday, using some second half clutch to secure the club’s first win of the season.

Brothers Ben and Jake Koenig each scored for the Panthers, and the O’Fallon defense was just good enough in the second half to secure a 2-1 opening win, holding off a strong Wildcat surge.

To read the full article, pick up a copy of this week’s paper on newsstands now. Or, click here for the digital edition.

Cross Country teams ready for 2017 season

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

Finishing a season within the state’s top 25 is a great accomplishment for most programs in Illinois.

At O’Fallon, it’s expected.

A year after finishing 21st at the Illinois High School Association State Finals, the O’Fallon Boys Cross Country team is looking to build with a strong group of senior runners expected to lead the way.

Despite losing star harrier Chris Conrad to graduation and the University of Missouri, the Panthers boast four key seniors and a star junior, enough to be ranked #21 in the state according to MileSplit.com’s preseason rankings.

To read the full article, pick up a copy of this week’s paper on newsstands now. Or, click here for the digital edition.

Lady Panthers take third in Centennial Invite

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

The O’Fallon Township High School Girls Tennis team travelled north to Champaign on August 19 to compete in the 2017 Champaign Centennial Invite against some of the top teams in the state of Illinois.

Eager to start the new season on the right foot, the Lady Panthers wasted no time making a strong impression against some stout competition.

O’Fallon placed third overall out of 16 schools at the invitational and second overall out of Southwestern Conference competition.

To read the full article, pick up a copy of this week’s paper on newsstands now. Or, click here for the digital edition.

Lady Panthers sweep Waterloo to kick off season

BY COLTEN STEELE
WEEKLY REPORTER

The O’Fallon Panthers rallied past Waterloo last Thursday sweeping them two games to none.

In the first contest, it was the Panthers who started off slow, but quickly turned things around. In game one, the ladies were down 8-19 but clawed their way back to defeat Waterloo, 27-25.

Head Coach Melissa Massey commented on the first game saying, “We got off to a bit of a rough start, but pushed through to get those first game jitters out.”

 

To read the full article, pick up a copy of this week’s paper on newsstands now. Or, click here for the digital edition.

Football kicks off their season with annual Blue and Gold game

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

O’FALLON – The students are back on campus, and, after Friday night, so is football at O’Fallon Township High School.

Fans packed the stands for scrimmage play between offense and defense, giving a first look at the 2017 Panthers ahead of their regular season opener against Hazelwood Central this Friday night.

Play consisted of offense against defense for each level of Panther Football, starting with Little Panthers when the evening first started and ending with varsity at the conclusion of the event.

The evening also featured dance performances by campers from the OTHS Dance Camp from earlier in the summer, which featured dancers as young as four years old in choreographed routines in between the JV and Varsity scrimmages.

To read the full article, pick up a copy of this week’s paper on newsstands now. Or, click here for the digital edition.

Athlete Spotlight – Kentrail Moran ready to run

BY SAM SCINTA
WEEKLY REPORTER

Kentrail Moran spent his four years at O’Fallon Township High School as one of the area’s premiere running backs, and now he is ready to make his mark as one of the best underclassmen backs in the Mountain West Conference.

He joined elite company after his freshman season when he earned a scholarship offer from Northern Illinois University, becoming one of the rare underclassmen to earn an NCAA Division 1 scholarship. Rather than sitting back on his laurels, Moran continued to improve and get stronger, eventually earning himself a slew of Division 1 offers from programs like Michigan, Kansas, and Louisville.

After what proved to be a four-year recruiting process, Moran announced his decision to sign with the University of New Mexico in May of 2016.

To read the full article, pick up a copy of this week’s paper on newsstands now. Or, click here for the digital edition.