PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — Two-time World Series champion Ben Zobrist heads up the Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame class of 2022, announced Saturday night.

Zobrist, a Eureka native, played 14 seasons in the big leagues and won World Series titles with the Cubs and Royals. He is joined in the class by two-time Metamora football state champion coach Pat Ryan, 51-year Metamora cross country coach Gene Jones, former Illinois State and professional softball player Priscilla Welch-DeLaere of Pekin and longtime East Peoria cross country coach Ed McGraw, who helped start the Illinois Valley Striders.

Former Metamora High School football contributor and scout Chuck Leonard is this year’s Neve Harms Award winner for meritorious service to sports in the Peoria area.

The Hall of Fame induction dinner is March 25 at the Peoria Civic Center Ballroom.

There are six teams that will join those individuals in the hall of fame class, as announced last month. Five are area football teams the finished as state runner-up: Limestone’s 1983 team and four of Ryan’s Metamora’s second-place squads from 1996, 1997, 1999 and 2000.

The Illinois Central College’s 2005-06 women’s basketball national championship team is also headed into the hall as part of this 2022 class.

Tickets for the induction dinner are $55 before March 1 and $65 up until the purchase deadline of March 31. Tickets can be purchased by calling Susie Stockman at (309) 691-3553.

The event starts with a social hour at 5 p.m. with the dinner beginning at 6 p.m.

Zobrist was a three-time all-star in the big leagues and drove in the go-ahead run in the tenth inning of Game 7 to help the Cubs win the 2016 World Series. He was named MVP of that World Series.

Ryan was 268-76 in 30 years as Metamora’s head football coach. He took 24 teams to the state playoffs, won state titles in 2007 and 2009, and led the Redbirds to five state runner-up finishes.

Jones won 32 boys conference titles and qualified 16 teams for state as the Metamora cross country coach from 1970-2021. In 39 years coaching the girls cross country team, he won 19 league titles and had 15 state appearances.

Welch-DeLaere was a standout student-athlete at Pekin High School, where she was the first female to earn 12 varsity letters. She was a three-time first-team all-Missouri Valley Conference softball player at ISU and was named to the MVC’s All-Centennial team, then played four seasons in the Women’s Pro Softball League where she was a 1998 All-Star for the Virginia Roadsters.

McGraw was the longtime East Peoria High School cross country and coached distance runner Tim Broe, who reached the 5,000 meter finals at the 2004 Olympics. He co-founded the Illinois Valley Striders, which has hosted hundreds of running events in and around the Peoria area, and is known nationally for the Steamboat Classic Race.