ELDORADO
BY JACK BULLOCK
The Eldorado Eagles surprised many with an outstanding season in 2016-17, going 28-4 and winning a regional title for the first time since the 2003-04 season.

Last season's edition finished with the third most victories in a single season in this program's long history and captured an elusive Eldorado Holiday Tournament championship, something that hadn't happened since 2007.

Head coach Josh Bradley, a 1999-2000 grad of Eldorado, so his team graduate a pair of key players from last year's squad that topped Harrisburg to win the regional title and then dropped a close game to Robinson in the West Frankfort Sectional.

Six-foot-six forward Ethan Partridge and 6-foot-3 forward Max Kasiar have departed but an all-south player and several others with experience return to the fold for a club looking to take yet another positive step in 2017-18.

Braden Attebury is a 6-foot-4 senior who showed up in a lot of post-season awards' lists last spring when the dust settled on the season.

He will have a lot of help this season as three other starters and the sixth man return for the Eagles.

Kale Oglesby, a 5-foot-9 senior, will join 6-foot-3 senior John Meredith and 6-foot-4 senior Jake Traxler in the lineup that will be favored to win another Vienna Thanksgiving Classic title as they hope to repeat last season's 5-0 start.

Coach Bradley's other returner, the first Eagle out of the nest and onto the floor off the bench was Ray May, who is a 6-foot-3 senior.

“All five of those seniors return with a lot of varsity experience, so this should be a fun and exciting season,” said Coach Bradley, who was a forward on the 25-5 2000 team that lost to Massac County in a sectional final.

“I think our schedule is pretty tough. The Black Diamond Conference is always pretty competitive. We added Murphysboro to our schedule this season and we host Mt. Carmel this season as well.”The team had several highlights from last season, including a 50-48 win at Mount Carmel in January, beating the team that ended up finishing second in the state in 2A.

They won the Vienna “Classic” and finished second at the West Frankfort “Mid-Winter Classic” besides winning their own event.

OUTLOOK – The Eagles have the potential to be even better this season. They have the starting five to contend and the bench will be important with kids stepping up from the junior varsity. They are the conference favorites and they are also have the look of a team that could make an extended run in the post-season.

2017-18 VARSITY SCHEDULE
N20-25 Vienna "Turkey Classic" J12 @ Albion Edwards County

D1

@ Junction Gallatin County J15-20 West Frankfort "Midwinter Classic"
D5 @ West Frankfort J26 McLeansboro Hamilton County
D8 @ Fairfield F2 Fairfield
D15 Johnston City F6 @ Carmi-White County
D19 Carrier Mills-Stonefort F9 @ Johnston City
D21 @ McLeansboro Hamilton County F13 Metropolis Massac County
D26-28 Eldorado Holiday Tournament F16 Albion Edwards County
J5 Carmi-White County F19-23 IHSA Regional TBD
J9 OPEN F27-M2 IHSA Sectional TBD