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2012 Eighth Grade Boys Basketball State Finals Begin Saturday

Four champions in Illinois Elementary School Association (IESA) eighth grade boys basketball will be crowned for the sixth time in history, beginning Saturday (Feb. 11) at four sites. Competition in the Class 1A, 2A, 3A and 4A State Final Tournaments begins Saturday and concludes Thursday (Feb. 16).

Class 1A will be played at Auburn Junior High in Divernon. Class 2A will be at Downs Tri-Valley High School. Class 3A will be at Monticello Middle School. Class 4A will be at Stanford Olympia High School.

The time schedule for all four tournaments will be the same. Quarterfinals will be played Saturday with the first of four games beginning at 10:00 a.m. at each site. The four quarterfinal winners will meet in semifinal games Saturday afternoon with the first of two games set to begin at 5:00 p.m. Third place and championship games will be played Thursday (Feb. 16) with the third place game set for 6:00 p.m. and the championship game scheduled for 7:30.

Any changes in the playing status of each of the four tournaments will be posted on the IESA Web Site at www.iesa.org as each tournament progresses.

The price of admission Saturday is $7.00 for adults and $3.00 for seniors (62 and over) and students (K-8) and is good for all games Saturday. Children younger than kindergarten are admitted free. Fans attending the games Saturday will receive a wristband that is to be worn all day and will be used for entry into that respective state final site only throughout the day. It will not be honored at any other 8th grade state final site. The price of admission for the third place and championship game session Thursday will be $5.00 for adults and $2.00 for seniors and students (K-8). Children younger than kindergarten again are admitted free.

IESA boys basketball began in 1930. From 1930 to 1972 there were two classes: Class A (heavyweight) and Class B (lightweight). Class C (7th grade) was added in 1973. From 1977-1984, the heavyweight class was divided into two classes based on enrollment. From 1985-2006, there were Class A and Class AA state series for both seventh grade and eighth grade. Beginning in 2007, the seventh grade and eighth grade series have four classes each.

Complete pairings for each state final, plus the FanZone, can be found at www.iesa.org. Click on the Boys Basketball link at the top of the IESA Web Site Home Page.

Here is a look at each of the four 2012 Eighth Grade State Final Tournaments:

Class 1A

Class 1A this year has four schools who participated in the seventh grade state tournament just a year ago. In the first quarterfinal matchup of the day, Flanagan will take on Springfield Calvary. Even though this is Flanagans first appearance in the 8th grade tournament, they took home the seventh grade Class 1A state runner-up trophy last year. Calvary had an impressive victory over Edingburg to win the sectional and secure their spot in the state tournament this year. The 11:30 a.m. game will feature Palestine and Joliet Laraway. Palestine will be making their very first appearance in the Class 1A tournament. Laraway on the other hand is making their fourth appearance in the last five years. They took home the state championship for this class in 2010. Both Bourbonnais Maternity BVM and Monmouth lost in the first round of the seventh grade tournament last year in the quarterfinals. This year they will meet in the quarterfinals at 1:00 p.m. to decide who will get to move on to the semifinals. The last quarterfinal game of the day will feature Carrollton St. John taking on Beecher City. It has been awhile since St. John has been in this tournament (2007). But they are back and will have to go through a tough Beecher City squad who is making their first appearance this year in Class 1A.

Class 2A

A great matchup will kick things off for the Class 2A tournament when undefeated Winchester and Elmwood take to the hardwood. Both of these teams competed in the seventh grade tournament last year. Elmwood captured the runner-up trophy and Winchester took home third place. The second quarterfinal game of the day will showcase Peoria St. Vincent de Paul and Dieterich. St. Vincent de Paul is making their second straight appearance in Class 2A and they are looking to bring home a state championship this time around. Dieterich needed to hold off a feisty Nokomis team to capture their sectional championship and a berth in the state tournament. Champaign St. Matthew and Madison will meet in the 1:00 p.m. quarterfinal game. St. Matthew returns a squad who made an appearance in the 2011 seventh grade tournament just a year ago. Madison will be making their very first appearance in the Class 2A state tournament. Ford Heights Cottage Grove UGC and Decatur Robertson will take to the spotlight in the last quarterfinal game of the day. Cottage Grove participated in the seventh grade Class 2A tournament last year. Roberston will be making their first appearance in this tournament.

Class 3A

The Class 3A tournament will get started off with a bang when Peoria Christian takes on undefeated Burr Ridge MS. Burr Ridge is making their first trip to the Class 3A tournament. Peoria Christian brings experience this year. The eighth graders participated in the seventh grade Class 3A tournament last year. Christian also took home fourth place honors in the eighth grade tournament just a year ago. Pleasant Plains and Blue Mound Meridian will meet in the second quarterfinal game of the day at 11:30 a.m. Meridian barely defeated Gillespie to take home the sectional championship. Pleasant Plains will make their third straight appearance and are looking for their first win in the Class 3A state tournament. Both of the teams in the third quarterfinal game are making their first appearances at this tournament. Wenona Fieldcrest will meet Lawrenceville Parkview to decide who will go to the final four. Fans should not leave their seats before Bloomington Holy Trinity and St. Joseph square off in the last quarterfinal game. Holy Trinity was able to take care of business in the sectional championship and they are looking to make some noise at state. St. Joseph finished second in the Class 3A tournament just two years ago and they have their eye on first place this year.

Class 4A

Normal Kingsley will come into the Class 4A tournament with their undefeated record on the line in the first game of the day. They will meet Channahon to decide who gets to move into the semifinals. These two teams are very familiar with each other as they met just a year ago in the seventh grade Class 4A tournament semifinals. Kingsley went on to win that game and took home the 2011 seventh grade title against Bolingbrook Jane Addams. Channahon will be looking to turn the tables this year and take down last years seventh grade Class 4A state champion. East St. Louis Clark will face Champaign Edison in the second quarterfinal game. Both of these teams participated in this tournament last year and Clark was able to bring home the third place trophy. A couple of newcomers will hit the floor in the 1:00 p.m. quarterfinal game, Taylorville JHS and New Lenox Liberty. Between both of the teams they only combined for four losses on the year. In the last quarterfinal game of the day, Bolingbrook Jane Addams will square off against Park Forest Forest Trail. The eighth graders of Jane Addams played in the seventh grade Class 4A state championship game against Normal Kingsley just a year ago. Forest Trail is making their first appearance this year in Class 4A and will be looking to take home the 1st place trophy.



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