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Iroquois West girls earn fourth place at state; McNamara girls are 2A state champs

Iroquois West's girls' basketball coach Kristy Arie brought home a proud bunch of girls Saturday after her team earned a 4th place trophy at the 1A state finals at ISU's Redbird Arena.

Arie notes the state appearance will bring more interest in the high school basketball program in Iroquois County.
"This group set our expectations high since they were freshmen," IW coach Kristy Arie said. "They've been a coachable group and a hungry group. They always exceeded my expectations.

"The big thing this (trophy) does is get everyone excited, all the way down to the little kids in kindergarten. There's tons of interest in the program."

Seniors Taylor Cultra and Elena Sanchez left their mark at a school that won 89 games after they entered the building, helping Iroquois West secure its first team trophy in any girls' sport.

The Raiders lost 45-28 to top-rated Prophetstown in Saturday's Class 1A third-place game in the 39th annual IHSA state tournament at Illinois State University's Redbird Arena.

"We will be one of the teams everybody looks back at," said Cultra, who grabbed a team-high eight rebounds in the trophy game. "It was a dream. We knew we were capable of it, and it happened.

"Fourth in the state is not something to be disappointed in. My senior year is everything I wanted. Experiencing state is a great thing."

Sanchez, who led the team in scoring in both state games, had nine points.

Mac Girls win it all >

Bishop McNamara (Kankakee) defeated Breese Central, 55-51, Saturday for the Class 2A Girls championship.

All-Stater Khadaiza Sanders scored 19 points and Hanna Mitchell added 12 to lead the Irish. Both Sanders and Mitchell were unstoppable in the 4th quarter. McNamara finished at 29-4.

Sanders had a record 38 points in Friday's semi-fianls.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Snowfall blankets Illiana, 5-9 inches reported

Snowfall updates throughout the day Sunday resulted in amounts ranging from five to nine-plus inches in the immediate 94.1 WGFA-listening area.

At WGFA north of Watseka, 5.6 was measured. Areas south of Watseka checked in with 6 and 6.2 inches.

The Champaign, Danville and northwest Indiana area reported 8 – 9.7 inches.

Snowplows were busy most of Sunday clearing routes after many churches cancelled services. Other events were also postponed.

Municipal Public Works Departments, County highway crews and I-DOT plows worked around the clock from about 4:30 Saturday afternoon thru Sunday.

Citizens were asked to keep from parking on city streets so plows could do their jobs. And motorists were advised to leave early for destinations and allow extra time.

Sidewalk Snow Removal ordinances will be in effect today (Monday).

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Search continues for Kankakee woman, safety stressed

Search & Rescue teams are still searching the Kankakee River for Jessica Hinojosa. The 26-year-old woman is presumed drowned since her call was pulled from the river two weeks ago.

Family and friends are gathering for a fundraiser in Bradley this (Fri) evening.

While friends want to help, Kankakee Fire officials understand that, but untrained volunteers can also hamper efforts. Assistant Fire Chief Phil Perkins says safety has to be the priority.

"We encourage volunteers to help but this water is cold and fast-flowing. This has to be done in a safe manner," Perkins told 94.1 WGFA News. "This river dam is about the most-dangerous thing we have to deal with in this city."

Miss Hinojosa was last seen on a Saturday night. Her family and friends reported her missing the following day.

The search has focused between the river dam and Bird Park to the west.

Perkins said search efforts will continue. "Anytime someone reports a spotting, we check it out as quickly as we can. Boat patrols continue. The biggest problem is the extreme cold temperature," Perkins said.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Child porn case leads to arrest of Bourbonnais man

A Bourbonnais man had bond set at $100,000 (Thursday). 35-year-old Mark McKune was arrested in a child porn sting.

A search of his home computer revealed child porn files. McKune's 12-year-old daughter is now in the custody of the DCFS (Dept of Children & Family Services).

Bourbonnais Police, Will County State's Attorney's Office, and the Will County Computer Task Force were involved in the investigation. The case heads to the grand jury next month.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Rauner budget proposal threatens ag education

As FFA Week is recognized and Illinois schools promote their programs, many chapters might be wishing Governor Bruce Rauner had paid more attention to National FFA Week activities.

As area chapters are celebrating career opportunities and leadership training in agriculture, the governor's budget proposal would zero out the agricultural education line item, which provides $1.8 million annually to support these kinds of programs.

The FFA programs are designed to invest in the youth and offer challenges for them to succeed.

A former Illinois FFA State President who credits the organization with many of the leadership skills he uses in making decisions today said the return on investment when it comes to this funding is significant.

FFA leaders are encouraged by proposed general state aid increases and efforts like Vision 2020, but there's hope agriculture education funding can also be maintained.

94.1 WGFA