A look back at Villa Grove High School hoops through the years

By Tony Hooker
In the absence of a high school basketball season in Illinois due to the Governor’s pandemic response, I will be writing a series of articles covering teams from the past four VGHS teams to win a regional tournament,  the teams from 1959, 1965, 1975 and 1984.  All info contained herein has been culled from editions of the Villa Grove News that are housed at the Camargo Township Library.

1959
Crush Ogden

Villa Grove put five players in double figures in a 110-49 win over Ogden. Dan Corbin led the way with 20 points, Bob Gaines netted 18, Jim Duncan added 17, and Joe Eversole and David Jackson netted 10 apiece.  Also getting in on the scoring action were Jim Smith and Larry Beccue, who each had 8 points, and Bill Gabbard, who splashed 7.   

Dethrone Rajahs

Jim Duncan had 15 points and Larry Beccue tallied 11 as the Blue Devils moved into first place in the Okaw Conference with a  55-35 win over Atwood.  The Blue Devils continued to get scoring from a wide variety of sources as Dan Corbin and Bob Gaines added 6 points, Jim Smith helped out with 5, and Bill Schackel, Larry Howard and Joe Eversole added 4 each.

1965
Glared by Rockets

The Blue Devils dropped a close one to Unity, falling 43-42 despite 12 points from Bob Ghere and 9 from Chuck Smith.  Big John McGrath pulled down 8 rebounds, and Smith and Don Burgett helped out by pulling down 7 caroms each. 

Bucked by Broncos

VGHS dropped another nail biter, this time in double overtime as they fell to Cerro Gordo 38-34.  Larry Sigler and Jerry Harvey each netted 8 points to lead the Devil scoring attack, which saw the team shoot a frigid .225 from the floor in suffering the loss.  

1975
Blast Rockets

VGHS got 20 points from Stan Prosser in a 66-44 win over Unity.  Tim Keith added 14 and Joe Waymire chipped in 10 for the Blue Devils.  Do everything guard Brian Carr ruled the glass, pulling down 18 rebounds and handing out 10 assists, and Duane Piercy dished out 8 dimes of his own in the win.  

Joust Knights

Stan Prosser netted 35 point and grabbed 16 rebounds to lead VG to a 92-62 pasting of Arthur.  Brian Carr had a double-double of his own, swishing 10 points and hauling down 15 rebounds.  Carr narrowly missed a triple double as he also handed out 9 assists.  Tim Keith added 18 points and Joe Waymire helped the cause with 12 points of his own as the Blue Devils opened up a 2-game conference lead.

1984
Cage Bulldogs

Kevin Moraski hit all nine of his free throw attempts on his way to a 19-point effort as the Blue Devils came from behind to defeat Bement 59-46.  Mark Waymire had 12 points and Andrew Turner hit for 11 for VGHS in the win. 

Unseat Riders

The Blue Devils forced 42 turnovers on their way to an 80-48 road win over Arcola.  Andrew Turner led the balanced VGHS scoring attack with 16 points.  Kevin Moraski added 15, and Doug Reed and Mark “Moose” Eckert chipped in with 13 each.  It was Eckerty’s defense and hard work that had Coach Marty Hinton raving, however.  “Wasn’t Eckerty something,” Hinton gushed. “He looked like a jet plane loosed among a bunch of hot air balloons.  You have to love his hustle.”

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