June at Illinois Central College is certainly a busy time, as prep sports converge on the Cougarplex for summer competitio. Just ask Morton’s Courtney Jones and Lindsey Dullard.
Monday nights are for volleyball, Wednesday nights are for basketball. ICC hosts summer games for area teams during the month of June. Which means many high school athletes are spending a lot of time in East Peoria.
“I look forward to the Monday and Wednesday nights, going like ‘Oh hey, I get to go play at ICC, you guys should come watch,'” said Jones. “So yeah, it’s great.”
“We come here a lot, it’s almost like our second home in the summer,” Dullard said. “June is a very busy month, but with all the girls, it makes it so much fun to be around them and with them every day.”
June is an important time for growth. Without having to focus on schoolwork, athletes can lock in on improving on their skills and working on team chemistry ahead of the new school year.
“It’s a lot of hard work, but it definitely pays off, especially in the summer,” Dullard said. “You gotta work to get better and so it’s just a lot of fun.”
“Now we have some younger classmen coming up with us, so that’s something I’m really looking forward to,” Jones said. “Getting to know them and getting to know each other and working with that, so I’m really excited.”
ICC has proven to be a great facility for coaches, as well. It provides a convenient location for many central Illinois teams and some high quality competition.
“It’s so awesome to have this facility close by for kind of a central location for a lot of schools that can come take advantage of an easy spot to get to and a good location,” said Morton girls basketball coach Bob Becker. “And maybe a possible place for people to come play later into college, whether its volleyball or basketball or whatnot.”