PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – Metamora Township men’s basketball is looking for its first state basketball title as they face East St. Louis in the semifinals this Friday.

The Redbirds have had an impressive season, and they hope to avenge last season’s state title loss.

School Superintendent Sean O’Laughlin said that all successful teams can teach us valuable lessons.

“Anytime you have a program, whether it’s basketball, softball, robotics team, any team that is competing at a high level and having success, it is just a great reminder for kids, the importance of time, desire, and effort.”

Metamora Township has had a long history of athletic success, winning state championships in both football and softball. This history has led to a devoted fandom, which O’Laughlin says extends beyond the United States.

“It is interesting, we actually had people in about nine countries watching our game, so we’ve got a huge local following, and even people watching the Redbirds internationally, so it’s been exciting for the whole community.”

The semifinal against East St. Louis will take place this Friday at 11:45 a.m.