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PHS Boys Golf Team Gets Win On Senior Day


SENIOR BOY GOLFERS of the Pana High School golf team were honored prior to play on Senior Day at Oak Terrace on Thursday, Sept. 17.

From left are seniors Webber Jacobs, Blake Ade, Cody Bland, Jim LaMarche,  Michael Blackwell and Case Hudlin.

(Cathy Jones Photo)

Both boys and girls golf teams of Pana High School hosted a match at Oak Terrace on Thursday, Sept. 17. It was Senior Day for the boys golf team.

The boys were the winners in the triangular meet. They shot a 174 with Taylorville second with a 189. Effingham St. Anthony was third with a score of 193.

Medalists were Kody Bland and Jim LaMarche who both carded 42’s.

On Wednesday, Sept. 23, the boys went to Girard for a meet with North Mac, Lincolnwood and Staunton. No report was available.

Girls Golf–

The Panthers girls golf team hosted Lincolnwood, Effingham St. Anthony and Taylorville at the same time.

Pana was third with a team score of 222. Lincolnwood got the win, shooting a 204. St. Anthony was second with a 206.

Monday, Sept. 21, the girls will be hosting Teutopolis, Greenville and Williamsville at Oak Terrace.

The girls traveled to Effingham to play Effingham, Robinson, and Teutopolis on Tuesday, Sept. 22. The girls did a fine job on a tough course.

Pana was second with Effingham being the top winner. Those that played were Josie Pauley, Teagan Strom, Anna Osborn, Rebecca Miller and Olivia Kamer .

The Panthers hosted a match at Oak Terrace with Hillsboro and Litchfield on Wednesday, Sept. 23. This was Senior Night for the two seniors, Rebecca Miller and Anna Osborn.

There was no report from the match.

Pana Runners At Shelbyville Cross Country

The Pana High School cross country team went to Shelbyville Tuesday, Sept. 22, for a meet with Shelbyville, Sullivan, Central A&M and Cowden-Herrick. While Pana did not compete as a team, individually, they did well, according to Coach Mark Magnussen.

Junior Claudia Magnussen was first overall for the girls with a time of 18:42. Sixth was Pana’s Natalie Kirkbride, finishing in 21:36. Lauren Merrifield placed 11th as she covered the course in 24:05.

In the boys division, junior Jacob Latonis was second with a time of 17:46. J.T. Bland, Sullivan, was first with a time of 17:41.

Michael Hrabak had a time of 19:32 for 14th place and Pat Clark was 25th, 21:05 over the 3-mile course. Brian Housh, was 28th in a time of 28:45.

The team will be at Sullivan on Tuesday afternoon, Sept. 29, for their next meet.

Panthers Score 2 Late Goals To Beat Roxana Shells


MATT COPLEY OF the Pana Panthers (white jersey, center) heads the ball to a team mate during action on Wednesday, Sept. 23, at Tanner Field between Pana and the Roxana Shells.

A pair of late goals in the game gave Pana a 2-1 win and boosted their South Central Conference record to 5-1.

At left are Pana’s Jake Trexler, number 7 and Jacob Latonis. To the right is Logan Dameris, number 12.

(Tom Latonis Photo)

Goals by Jake McLeod late in the second half propelled the Pana Panthers to a 2-1 victory over visiting Roxana on Wednesday, Sept. 23, at Tanner Field. It was a South Central Conference game and Pana moves to 5-1 in the league and 9-2 overall.

The game was changed to Wednesday due to a conflict with the Roxana School District. It had been scheduled to be played today, Thursday, Sept. 24.

There was no scoring in the first half and the Shells drew first blood 10 minutes into the second half. Landon Godar launched a shot from about 25 yards out which sailed over the outstretched arms of Pana goalie Jack Epley as the ball floated just under the goal crossbar.

It almost looked like the goal would stand up, but with 8:11 left in the game, McLeod got the equalizer as a tipped ball came to him just outside the goal mouth and he punched it into the net.

With time running out, McLeod got the game-winner off a pass from Tristan Wooldridge. As he was falling to the ground, an out-stretched McLeod got his right foot on the ball and guided it past goalie Brenden Jones with 1:19 left in the game.

Pana did get 19 shots on goal and Jones had 7 saves. Meanwhile, Epley saved 6 shots, facing 13 Roxana shots on goal.

Vs. North Mac–

The goals came rather infrequently, but Pana managed to shut-out the North Mac Panthers at Tanner Park on Monday, Sept. 21, 3-0.

Actually, the first goal of the game came rather early, just a minute-and-a-half into it. Jake McLeod, unassisted, scored with 38:26, left in the first half, almost before spectators got their popcorn and drink and settled into their seats.

The half would end with that score, and it wouldn’t be until the 33:11 mark of the second half before McLeod made it 2-0. He scored off an indirect free kick by junior Jacob Latonis with 33:11 left in the game.

Senior Rhett Zahradka got an insurance goal at the 2:49 mark as he hit the back of the net from about 22 yards out to make the final, 3-0.

The Panthers had 35 shots on goal and their keeper made 14 saves. Jack Epley of the Panthers faced 10 shots with 4 saves to his credit. This is his fourth shut-out of the season.

It’s a rough stretch of the schedule for Pana as they have 3 games in 4 days, but the good news is 2 of them are at home. Saturday, Sept. 26, Pana will play host to non-conference opponent Effingham St. Anthony. Kick-off is at 11:00 a.m. On Monday, Sept. 28, the Panthers will be at Taylorville for the “Battle of Route 29.” The game will start at 4:30 p.m. Then on Tuesday, Sept. 29, Pana will entertain conference foe Hillsboro in a contest set for 4:30 p.m.

Panthers Blank Carlinville, 35-0


PANA’S DEFENSE NEVER allowed the Carlinville Cavaliers into the “Red Zone” once and not into the end zone ever as the Panthers posted a 35-0 win Friday, Sept. 18, at Brummett Field in South Central Conference action.

Defenders Gabe Henschen, number 61, left, and Austin Gruber, right, number 78, both seniors, and an unidentified Pana player, behind the Carlinville player, make a stop during the game.

While lightning danced to the north of Pana on Friday night, Sept. 18, the Pana Panthers were striking on the football field. They held the Carlinville Cavaliers to 130 yards of offense and bolted to the top of the South Central Conference with a 35-0 win at Brummett Field.

The Panthers scored 28 first half points in the rout. Senior quarterback Rhett Zahradka ran for 2 scores and threw for another and fellow senior Wade McMillen picked up right where he left off last week, scoring 2 rushing touchdowns in the blowout win.

Pana is undefeated at 4-0 and picked up win number 499 in the history of the program which dates back to 1909.

In the SCC race, Pana is 4-0 with Hillsboro second, 3-1. There is a log jam for third with Carlinville, Gillespie, Litchfield, Piasa Southwestern (Pana’s next opponent), Roxana and Vandalia all at 2-2. Then comes Greenville, 1-3 and Staunton, 0-4. On Friday, Piasa beat Gillespie, 40-13 and Hillsboro humbled Greenville, 48-28. Litchfield blanked Staunton, 40-0 and Roxana was a 36-14 winner over Vandalia.

Zahradka threw for 257 yards, completing 10-of-15 and a touchdown. He rushed for 73 yards and scored twice. His favorite target was Adam Miller who grabbed 4 passes for 98 yards and Blake Stauder caught 3 passes for 86 yards. Jake McLeod made a spectacular over the shoulder catch good for 35 yards. Zahradka’s touchdown pass was caught by Nick McMillen for 24 yards. All of those receivers are juniors. Daniel Duduit, a sophomore, made the other catch good for 14 yards.

Senior Wade McMillen rushed 10 times with 45 yards and 2 scores. Jack Epley ran 4 times, picking up 23 yards. Senior Tucker Moeller rushed for 17 yards and Ian Harbert ran for 16 yards.

Pana’s defense held Carlinville to just 130 total yards. They had 112 on the ground, led by junior Dylan Chism with 35 yards. Junior Brady Egelhoff rushed for 28. The Cavs got 18 yards through the air. Starting quarterback, senior Chandler Seago, was 2-of-5 with an interception for 13 yards. Freshman Jarret Easterday was 3-of-4 for 5 yards.

The Panthers will travel to Piasa Southwestern on Friday, Sept. 25, for a contest with the Southwestern Birds. Pana will be looking to stay undefeated and a win would give the Pana program a milestone 500th win in its history. Kick-off is at 7:00 p.m.

Pana Third; St. Anthony Tournament, Saturday


COLLEEN WEDDLE, LEFT and Lexi Siegert, right of the Pana Panthers volleyball team were selected to the all-tournament team of the Effingham St. Anthony Volleyball Tournament on Saturday, Sept. 19.

(Mary Cothern Photos)

On Saturday, Sept. 19, the Pana Panthers took part in the Effingham St. Anthony Volleyball Tournament. They took third place in the 8-team round-robin tournament.

Two Pana players made the all-tournament team. Colleen Weddle and Lexi Siegert received the honor. This was the third tournament this season Siegert has been named to an all-tournament team.

Siegert and Weddle teamed up for 40 kills between them and 24 blocks. Weddle got 28 service points and served 7 aces during the tournament.

The Panthers went 2-1 in pool play Saturday. They knocked off Tri-County, 25-13, 25-16 in the first match. It was a 25-18, 25-19 win over Teutopolis before losing to Newton, 15-25, 25-11, 15-17.

In the cross pool play, Shelbyville got the best of the Panthers, 25-15, 15-18. In the third place match, Pana beat the host Bulldogs, 25-21, 25-18.

Vs. Greenville–

In a South Central Conference match, the Panthers improved to 4-0 with a 25-21, 25-17 win in the Pana High School gym on Thursday, Sept. 17.

It took 3 games for the junior varsity Panthers to prevail, 24-26, 25-19, 25-11. They are also 4-0 and 6-1 overall.

The freshman team improved to 9-1 and 3-0 in the SCC with a 25-11, 25-20 win.

Vs. Gillespie–

The team hosted another SCC foe on Monday, Sept. 15, when Gillespie came to town. The sent them home with a 25-7, 25-13 loss.

The JV Panthers also were 2-game winners, 25-11, 25-10. The JV are 5-1 overall and 3-0.

It was also a 2-game win for the freshman with a 25-6, 25-20 win over the Miners.

Pana, 13-9 overall and 4-0 in the South Central Conference, will have one match this week when they travel to Vandalia on Thursday, Sept. 24. There is a 5:00 o’clock freshman match with the junior varsity starting at 6:00 p.m. The varsity match should begin at about 7:00.

Panthers Give Game Away To T-Town; Rebound At Gillespie


ON DEFENSE FOR the Pana Panthers is sophomore Christian Taylor, number 18 in dark jersey, during the soccer game at Gillespie, Saturday, Sept. 19.

The Panthers came away with a 7-0 South Central Conference win to go 4-1 in league play.

(Tom Latonis Photo)

It was a “Tale of Two Halves,” Thursday, Sept. 17, for the Pana Panthers soccer team as they hosted the Wooden Shoes of Teutopolis at Tanner Field. Pana jumped out to a 2-0 first half lead against the Shoes, but disappeared in the second half as T-Town scored 3 unanswered goals to steal the win, 3-2.

Pana was able to rebound on Saturday, Sept. 19, traveling to Gillespie in a South Central Conference game with the Miners and post a 7-0 shutout. They are 7-2 overall and have a 4-1 SCC record entering today’s, Monday, Sept. 21, game with North Mac at 4:30 p.m. at Tanner Field.

Today, Monday, Pana is home to face North Mac in non-conference action. The game with Roxana has been moved to Wednesday, Sept. 23, at Tanner Field, starting at 4:30 p.m. It was originally set for Thursday, Sept. 24.

Soccer Panthers Get 1-0 Win Over St. Teresa Tuesday


GOAL – Reide Beyers of the Pana Panthers, center, white jersey, watches as his shot sails into the goal during the Pana-Decatur St. Teresa game at Tanner Field on Tuesday, Sept. 15. It was the only goal of the game as Pana avenged their loss to the Bulldogs last season, 1-0.

At left is goal keeper Christian Archer and at right, an unidentified St. Teresa defender.

Pana is back in action today, Thursday, Sept. 17, at 5:00 p.m., going up against Teutopolis.

(Tom Latonis Photo)

In a nail-biter of a soccer game, the Pana Panthers nursed a 1-0 lead through two-thirds of the second half and defeated the St. Teresa Bulldogs at Tanner Field on Tuesday, Sept. 15. It was the second shut-out of the year for the Panthers and goalkeeper Jack Epley as Pana improved to 6-1 overall this season.

The first half was scoreless as neither team was able to generate much offense.

With 27:55 left in the contest, Jake McLeod controled the ball for the Panthers, coming down the field to the right of St. T’s goaltender Christian Archer. He deftly crossed the ball off to his right where senior Reide Beyers was left alone and drilled a low shot into the right corner of the net.

The Pana defense held the rest of the way and the Panthers got the win. Pana was out-shot 2-1 as St. Teresa had 29 and Pana, 13 shots. Jake Epley turned away 16 of those shots while Archer made 7. The Bulldogs had 6 corner kicks with Pana getting half that many, 3.

Pana stays outside the South Central Conference this afternoon, Thursday, Sept. 17, when they host Teutopolis at 5:00. They return to conference play on Saturday, Sept. 19, traveling to Gillespie to face the Miners at 10:00 a.m. Pana is 3-1 in SCC play this season.

Monday, Sept. 21, the Panthers return to Tanner Field to take on North Mac in non-conference play at 4:30 p.m.

PHS Golf Round-Up


TEAGAN STROM OF the Pana Panthers girls golf team makes a chip shot during action at Oak Terrace.

(Cathy Jones Photo)

The Pana Panthers girls golf team traveled to Litchfield for a match with Hillsboro, Litchfield and Bethalto on Tuesday, Sept. 15. The Panthers beat Litchfield, but not Bethalto or Hillsboro.

On Monday, Sept. 15, the girls hosted a match at Oak Terrace with Charleston. Charleston came out with the win.

Pana players Monday were Rebecca Miller, Anna Osborn, Olivia Kamer, Teagan Strom, Josie Pauley, Elizabeth Epley and Hannah Leduc.

The girls are 3-13 on the season.


Pana’s boys golf team hosted a match at Oak Terrace with Teutopolis and lost with a team score of 176, on Tuesday, Sept. 15.

On Monday, Sept. 14, the boys went to Hillsboro for a match with the Hiltoppers and Roxana. Pana posted a team score of 178 and took the win.

Pana players were Kody Bland, Michael Blackwell, Jim LaMarche, Blake Ade, Dylan Moon and Michael Hrabak. The boys record is 14-3.

No individual scores were available in any of the matches.

The boys will host their next match today, Thursday, Sept. 17, with Lincolnwood, Taylorville and Effingham St. Anthony at Oak Terrace.

McMillen Rushes for 3 Scores, Panthers Throttle Miners, 35-12


WADE McMILLEN, NUMBER 6 of the Pana Panthers, heads for the end zone to score 1 of his 3 touchdowns on the night as the Panthers ran by Gillespie, 35-12, at Brummett Field on Friday, Sept. 11.

McMillen ended up with 66 yards on 11 carries for a 6-yard per carry average.

(Mary Cothern Photo)

Two of three teams tied for the South Central Conference lead this season met up in Pana on Friday, Sept. 11,  as the Panthers (2-0) hosted the Gillespie Miners (2-0) at Brummett Field. On a sloppy field, running back Wade McMillen rushed for 3 touchdowns in Pana’s 35-12 spanking of the Miners.

With the win, Pana – coupled with the Miners loss and the other 2-0 team, Hillsboro’s loss – the Panthers take sole possession of first place in the league with a 3-0 record. Hillsboro fell to 2-1 with a 34-7 loss to Roxana (1-2) at Hillsboro Friday night.

Also, the win was the 498th in the 100-plus year history of the Pana football program.

“Our kids showed great desire this past Friday against a very good Gillespie team,” Pana Head Coach Al Stupek said. “We kind of shot ourselves in the foot with some bad snaps in the first half, but we were able to correct that in the second half and our ground game took over from there. Couple that with our defense that continues to swarm opposing offenses and the night turned out fine for the Pana faithful.”

McMillen, a 6-1, 208-pound senior, found pay dirt with 1:46 to go in the first quarter. It was a 2-yard run and Jake McLeod booted the extra point try to make it 7-0. That would be all the scoring of the first half and Pana had a 7-0 lead going into the locker room.

McMillen led Pana’s ground attack with 66 yards on 11 carries. Both Zahradka and Moeller finished with 33 yards apiece on the ground. Jack Epley carried once for 13 yards and Ian Harbert picked up 7 yards rushing. The team totaled 151 yards rushing.

Zahradka completed 6-of-14 passes for 125 yards and a touchdown. Both Adam Miller and McMillen each caught 2 passes, Miller for a total of 24 yards and McMillen, 36. England had the touchdown catch good for 60 yards. Jake Franklin had a catch good for 5 yards and Moeller, 1 catch, 3 yards. The other pass in the game was Miller-to-Moeller for 3 yards.

In other SCC games on Friday, it was Litchfield (1-2) over Piasa SW (1-2), 15-14 and Carlinville (2-1) thumped Greenville (1-2), 56-26. Vandalia (2-1) blanked Staunton (0-3), 43-0.

Volleyball Panthers 6th at Shelbyville; Top Tornadoes


MEMBERS OF THE All-Tournament Team at the Shelbyville Volleyball Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 12, were senior Lexi Siegert, left and sophomore Shayna Stremming.

The Pana High School volleyball team finished sixth in the Shelbyville Invitational played Saturday, Sept. 12, in Shelbyville. They posted a 2-3 record on the day.

But Thursday, Sept. 10, the Panthers traveled to Taylorville and came home victorious in the varsity contest, 26-24, 25-21.

Shelby Tourney–

Pana went 1-2 in pool play then defeated Cowden-Herrick in the semi-finals to get into the fifth place game with Edwards County. Pana lost the match, 25-14, 17-25, 10-15.

The Panthers did get two players on the all-tournament team. Senior Lexi Siegert and sophomore Shayna Stremming received the honors.

In Pool “B” play, Pana won its first match over Decatur MacArthur, 25-15, 25-22. However, over the next two matches, they fell to Casey-Westfield, 25-20, 22-25, 12-15 and to Monticello 25-17, 21-25, 14-16.

The second win of the day was over Cowden-Herrick/Beecher City, 25-15, 25-11 before losing to Edwards County.

At Taylorville–

Led by junior Colleen Weddle with 4 kills, the Panthers beat their arch-rivals in a pair of close games, 26-24, 25-21.

Weddle had 4 blocks as well.

Lexi Siegert and Jenna Dudra accumulated 3 kills apiece with Siegert getting 6 blocks and Dudra, 3. Shayna Stremming had 2 kills. Brenna Dameris led the team with 8 blocks and Claire Holthaus made 3.

It took three games for Taylorville to defeat the Pana junior varsity, 19-25, 25-21, 12-15.

It was the JV Panthers first loss of the season as they are 4-1 on the season. They are 2-0 in the South Central Conference.

The freshmen opened the evening with Pana on top, 25-16, 25-17. They improve to 7-1 overall and 1-0 in the SCC.

Two home matches are on the schedule for the Panthers this week and both are conference matches. The varsity record is 8-7 overall with a 2-0 mark in the SCC. On Tuesday, Sept. 15, Pana hosts Gillespie and on Thursday, Sept. 17, the Greenville Comets come to town. Both nights there is a freshman match starting at 5:00 p.m., followed by JV action at 6:00. The varsity matches have 7:00 p.m. start times.