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High School Highlights

Steve Robinson Photo
Steve Robinson

Returning this fall

2015 Redbird Football Schedule, Information
The Illinois State University 2014 Missouri Valley Football Conference champions are ready for another year of wins, record-breakers, and hearing the cheers of Redbird fans! The regular season schedule has five home games and six away games including:
September 5 @ 11 a.m. at Iowa
September 12 @ 6:30 p.m. vs. Morgan State
September 19 @ 6 p.m. at Eastern Illinois
October 3 @ noon vs. Northern Iowa
October 10 @ 6 p.m. at Youngstown State
October 17 @ 2 p.m. at Missouri State
October 24 @ 2 p.m. vs. Western Illinois
October 31 @ noon vs. Indiana State
November 7 @ 2 p.m. at South Dakota State
November 14 @ 2 p.m. at Southern Illinois
November 21 @ noon vs. South Dakota
Coverage of all Missouri Valley Football Conference games can be viewed on ESPN3. You can also follow the Redbirds all season long on the “Voice of the Redbirds,” WJBC.
Single game and season tickets are available at GoRedbirds.com. Don’t forget to buy your parking/tailgate pass for any home game!
Out-of-towners interested in attending a home football game can also check out the Bloomington-Normal Marriott Hotel’s Alumni Tailgate Package. This package includes an overnight (standard rate room), breakfast buffet for two, two tickets to the Illinois State football game, and access to the Marriott tailgate tent. This package excludes the Family Weekend (October 3) and Homecoming (October 24) games. To book this package, contact the Bloomington-Normal Marriott at (309) 862-9000.

Redbird Rally Tailgate Scheduled Prior to Football Game at Iowa
The Illinois State Athletics Department and the ISU Alumni Association will host the Redbird Rally Tailgate prior to the season-opening football game at Iowa, Sept. 5. The tailgate will be held at the Hawkeye Village in the Duane Banks Iowa Baseball Complex. The Redbird Rally Tailgate will begin at 8:30 a.m., and is free for Redbird fans with no advance registration needed.
Fans must enter the tent through the third-baseline entrance. Food and beverages will be available for purchase, in addition to a cash bar. For $5, fans will have the choice of a brat or hamburger, with a bag of chips. Water and soft drinks will be available for $2, while beer and wine will be sold for $4 each.
A program will begin at 9:45 a.m., with President Larry Dietz and Director of Athletics Larry Lyons, prior to the 11 a.m. kickoff between the Redbirds and the Hawkeyes. WJBC will also have a live-remote broadcast during the tailgate.
The game will be the first-ever meeting of the two programs on the gridiron, and first for the Redbirds against a Big Ten Conference foe since 2010. Tickets for the game are still available online at GoRedbirds.com/tickets, by phone at (309) 438-8000, or in person at the Redbird Arena box office.

Photo Galleries from Alan Look Photography - Bloomington - Normal's Best Look in Sports Action Photography

20141206 Northern Iowa at Illinois State - Images by Alan Look

20150110 Carthage Reds at Illinois Wesleyan Titans Men's and Women's basketball photos - Images by Alan Look

20150128 Missouri State at Illinois State - Images by Alan Look

20150130 Bradley at Illinois State women - Images by Alan Look

20150124 Boys Championship Game - Fieldcrest v Ridgeview photos - Images by Alan Look

Corn Kernels
News about the Normal CornBelters

Steve Robinson Photo
Steve Robinson

CornBelters right hander Race Parmenter hungers for shot at majors

Right-hander Race Parmenter had experience as a starter in college at University of California-Irvine. But his professional career, first with the Frontier League’s Southern Illinois Miners, and now, with the Normal CornBelters, has been as a closer.
Somehow, that seems appropriate for a guy who graduated with a degree in Criminal Justice, Law, and Society: He could enter law enforcement putting away bad guys after his baseball career was spent putting away the last-of-the-9th-inning batters.
The 24-year-old Newport Beach, Calif. Native became a free agent after two years with the Miners. That also included being picked up by the Atlanta Braves for a month during the 2014 season. But an elbow injury he suffered while with the Miners before joining the Braves organization was key in cutting short what he had hoped would be the start of a stint in the Minors, with hopes of making the Majors.
After last season ended, Parmenter became a free agent. He said he put in a call to Normal CornBelters Manager Brooks Carey to see if Carey would be interested in his services. Obviously, he was.
“I called Brooks and some players who’ve played here in the past,” Parmenter said about the route he took getting to The Corn Crib for this season. “I’ve heard good things about being here.” Those things included, “It was a good atmosphere, and a good city.”
“Brooks was a pitcher in Triple-A,” Parmenter reminded. “I heard he has a lot of good connections. I just heard good recommendations from former players.”
Speaking as a once-former opponent of Normal’s, the impression Parmenter had as an opponent was that The Corn Crib is a good place to play. He called the park “pretty relaxing.”
Advancing his dream of playing meant playing in a Division 1 school and keeping the thought of getting to the pros in front of him. “I’ve just taken it year by year, just trying to climb the steps,” Parmenter said.
A call in October 2013 from Atlanta Braves officials sent him to spring training with the club. But whereas the fans feel the excitement of a new season when visiting in March, “It means pretty long days followed by intersquad games,” Parmenter explained.
“But it was pretty exciting putting on a Braves jersey,” Parmenter said, adding, “The feeling that putting on the jersey gave me was ‘I’m here. This is my dream.’ It felt kind of surreal just because I wanted that. And once it finally happened, it felt routine.”
But that routine feeling gave way to worries for Parmenter that he wasn’t performing as he should while with the Braves at their Class A team in Rome, Ga. He said that kind of thinking may have led to his slide, followed by the Braves releasing him.
As of Aug. 15, Parmenter was 1-2 with Normal with an Earned Run Average of 1.99 after pitching 45.1 innings. In that period, he has struck out 45 and walked 7. He has allowed 11 runs, 10 of them earned. He has given away two homers.
Parmenter has no problem classifying his wanting to get back into the minors as a hunger on his part. “I have no problem with that classification because even with the taste of it I got with the Braves, and I liked it but didn’t perform, I want to go back and prove to myself that I can succeed with an affiliated team.”
Here’s to hoping Parmenter does not lose that hunger to get back to the minors and that, should it happen again, it carries him further than either he or any of us thought it would.
Ten Straight Wins Ahead Of Frontier Greys This Weekend, Followed By Last Road Trip: The CornBelters, presented by Illinois Corn Farmers, extended their winning streak to a franchise record 10 games on Sunday afternoon in a 5-4 win in 10 innings at the Corn Crib over the Washington Wild Things. The ‘Belters started this week with a day off Monday and a three-game road series at Lake Erie. On Friday, Aug. 21 through Sunday, Aug. 23, the Frontier Greys visit The Corn Crib. Beginning with the series against the Greys, there are 15 regular season games remaining.
Four separate CornBelters players are all placing second in separate categories as the Frontier League weekly stats come out. CornBelters First Baseman Aaron Dudley’s .359 batting average is in second place league-wide behind that category’s leader, River City’s Brian Hansen; ‘Belters 3rd Baseman Richard Lucas finds himself in second place in Runs Batted In with 64, just one behind league leading Taylor Ard of River City; Shortstop Pat McKenna’s 19 home runs puts him second in the league in that statistic, just five behind league-leader Ard’s 24; and Pitcher Michael Schweiss finds himself second in the league in strikeouts with 113, putting him 10 behind the leader in that category, River City’s Matt Bywater..
Friday & Saturday games against the Greys start at 6:30p.m., while Sunday’s day game starts at 3p.m. After another league-imposed Monday off on Aug. 24, the ‘Belters will take their last road trip of the regular season, playing three at Gateway Tuesday through Thursday, Aug. 25-27, and three at Rockford. The games in Rockford will be Friday through Sunday, Aug. 28-30. After taking Aug. 31 off, the ‘Belters’ final homestand of the regular season features three games against Evansville Tuesday through Thursday, Sept. 1-3, and the regular season wrap-up of three games against the Aviators Friday through Sunday, Sept. 4-6

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