HAVANA, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — Havana has gone through the postgame handshake line 27 times this year.
And 24 times the Ducks have been the winning team.
“I think this year we’ve done well,” said senior Jennifer Bonnet. “We are on a winning streak lately. I think we all hope to make it far.”
Indeed, Havana (24-3) is on a winning streak, they have won eight in a row ahead of Thursday’s game with Illini West. In 17 of the past 20 seasons, the Ducks have won at least 20 games.
But despite the success, Havana is still looking for its first ever trip to state. And the Ducks are in search of their first regional plaque in seven years.
“When I first came to Havana, we were in a similar situation. They had some success at the younger levels, success during the season but were stuck at the regional spot,” said coach Michelle Brady. “I’m hoping this is the year. If we can get past regionals, I’d put this team against anyone.”
Brady was an assistant under Jerry Wilson, who won four sectional titles between 2008-15. Wilson retired in 2016 and Brady took over the program.
The four seniors on this team played on a seventh grade state champion in Havana. They believe this is the team that can break through and get to CEFCU Arena and win a high school state championship.
“It’s been a really long time since we’ve had that success. We’re grown up now,” said senior Taryn Wickman. “That would be amazing to get back there. That feeling was unbelievable.”
First things first, the Ducks have to win that elusive regional championship.
“Since freshman year, our biggest goal was to get to (CEFCU) Arena,” said senior Kaity Robison. “Now that it is our final year, we want to get back to where we were and bring back the success we had in junior high.”