Inductees No team that won a state high school baseball championship swung its bats with more authoriy than the 1984 Morton squad.
Coached by Mike McDonald, the Potters made a stunning impact on the Illinois High School Association baseball record book, setting or tieing 99 team and individual records for both the overall two-class tournament and the Class AA division that it won.
Finishing 18-11 in the regular season, a year that started with a loss and ended with a pair of losses, Morton then used its offensive power to sweep through the Morton regional and the Limestone sectional.
It then whipped Belleville West 16-5 and Taylorville 20-8 before edging Burbank-Reavis 9-7 for the state title.
Morton's 45 runs and 46 hits were tournament records as well as its 15 extra base hits and .474 average.
First baseman Kirk Ummel was named tournament Most Valuable Player while the all-tournament team included Ummel along with outfielders Todd Ummel and Keith Dullard.
Kirk Ummel set records with eight runs batted in and three home runs while Ron Yoder had nine hits and hit .692 on a 9-for-13 performance. Yoder also had six consecutive hits.
ON THE ROAD TO STATE
Rock Island 4
Belleville West 5
No team that won a state high school baseball championship swung its bats with more authoriy than the 1984 Morton squad.
Hockey was a sport local fans could watch only if they went to Chicago or St. Louis until BardezBanian founded the Peoria Stars in 1959.
The two were with the Pekin Stars until 1970, when they formed the Peoria Blades, on the outdoor rink at Logan, in 1971. The Logan "bubble" went up the next year and the Blades, through membership in the Continental League, gave Peoria a solid taste of hockey.
BardezBanian played with the Blades for a few years, then became president while Olson always served as the team's general manager.
And the two gave hockey a boost whenever they could. BardezBanian coached the Bradley University club team for many years and both were instrumental in starting and maintaining youth hockey in Pekin and Peoria.
Both are now retired, Olson from Caterpillar's Mossville plant and BardezBanian from a management position with the City of Peoria.