Basketball: Players announced for return of Illinois Valley All-Star Games

First all-star event since 2019 is April 20 at St. Bede

St. Bede's Ali Bosnich lays up a shot against Morgan Park during the 1A Sectional game on Tuesday Feb. 20, 2024 at Gardner-South Wilmington High School in Gardner

After a five-year hiatus, the Illinois Valley All-Star Basketball Games are returning.

The event was held annually from 2012-19 before COVID-19 caused the cancelation of the 2020 event. The games first were held at Putnam County High School and later at IVCC.

This year’s games will be April 20 at St. Bede Academy.

The girls game will start at 4 p.m. with the boys game at 6 p.m.

Participants for the event were announced Tuesday. Area coaches nominated players and voted on which area seniors would play.

For the girls, NewsTribune and Bureau County Republican Player of the Year Ali Bosnich of St. Bede and The Times Player of the Year Paisley Twait of Serena highlight the roster.

Also selected for the girls game are La Salle-Peru’s Kaylee Abens and Bailey Pode; St. Bede’s Ella Hermes; Hall’s McKenna Christiansen; Putnam County’s Gabby Doyle, Ava Hatton and Maggie Richetta; Princeton’s Miyah Fox; Marquette’s Lilly Craig; Serena’s Makayla McNally and Gwen O’Connell; Somonauk-Leland’s Haley McCoy; Fieldcrest’s Kaitlin White and Aliah Celis; Earlville’s Madyson Olson; Midland’s Sophie Milloy and Ava Bade; and Dwight’s Kassy Kodat.

The girls teams will be coached by St. Bede’s Stephanie Mickley and Serena’s Jim Jobst.

A trio of players from Fieldcrest’s 33-win squad – Brady Ruestman, Jozia Johnson and Connor Reichman – and a foursome from Serena’s 31-win team – Tanner Faivre, Richie Armour, Hunter Staton and Carson Baker – headline the boys roster.

Also selected for the boys were Ottawa’s Cooper Knoll, Marquette’s Denver Trainor, Streator’s Logan Aukland, Princeton’s Daniel Sousa, Bureau Valley’s Corban Chhim, Putnam County’s Orlando Harris, Mendota’s Izaiah Nanez, Seneca’s Lane Provance, Woodland’s Jonathan Moore, Earlville’s Griffin Cook and Ryan Browder, Flanagan-Cornell’s Kesler Collins and Midland’s Keegan Faulkner.

Serena’s Dain Twait will coach one of the boys teams. The other boys coach has not been confirmed.

The teams will be evenly divided by the coaches once players confirm they can participate.

Jonathan Moore makes a crosscourt pass to a teammate while being pressured by Marquette at Woodland School on January 30, 2024.