Eye Popping Ellison and Company
It was a December night in 1980 and the Chillicothe girls
basketball team, in the modern day program's 7th season, hit the
road to take on Class 1 Braymer. The Lady Hornets, under second
year Head Coach Susan Sugg, was off to a 2-1 start on the season
after getting just six wins the entire previous season.
Sugg had concerns that her team hadn't played in
a week, after taking 3rd in the Marshall Tournament. She had no
reason to worry.
The Lady Hornets started strong with an 8-0
game opening run against a Braymer team that started one senior
and four sophomores while Chillicothe started Seniors Chris
Wilson and Susan Bonderer, Junior Margie Ellison, Sophomore
Linda Rupp and Freshman Ginger Craven.
By halftime Chillicothe built a 29-12 lead.
Braymer was ill-prepared for the Chillicothe full court press.
The lady Hornets outscored Braymer 28-6 in the third quarter and
43-0 in the final quarter. When the final whistle sounded,
Chillicothe had a 92-18 victory, winning by 74 points. The 92
points and the victory margin still stand as school records.
5' 6" Jr Guard Margie Ellison was one of
the benefactors off the team press,
becoming the first Chillicothe girls
basketball player in school history to crack the 30 point mark,
finishing with 31 points. 22 of them came in the second half and off
the press. The Lady Hornets team shot 38 of 102 from the floor, in
the years before the three point shot was allowed. Yes, you read
that right; 102 shots taken by the Lady Hornets. The team pulled
down 61 rebounds, led by Linda Rupp's 14.
Braymer's Coach Gary Littrell was less than happy
about the outcome, telling the Constitution Tribune newspaper that
"Chillicothe didn't take the press off until they were 46 points up"
would end the season at 12-11 overall and 3-5 in NCMC play. It
would be February before Ellison cracked double figures again:18 in
a loss at Rock Bridge. Rupp would receive all conference and
district honors. Craven would be all conference and Ellison would be
all conference honorable mention. With a wealth of talent returning,
Chillicothe would win their first district championship ever and
finish 4th in the state tournament in Sugg's final season as
Chillicothe head coach
<School Girls Basketball Records>
The Tommy-Tom Club - FORE!
early day in May 1965, the Chillicothe boys golf team joined 28
other teams from Northwest Missouri and Kansas City for the
District golf tournament at Excelsior Springs. Chillicothe was
led by 3 year letterman Tom Barnhart who had picked up several
Medalist honors in the regular season meets.
The pre-tournament buzz however
was about a different golfer, a Sophomore called Tommy from a
Kansas City area school. The 29 teams teed off, and when
the final score cards came in, Tommy of Kansas City had shot
consistently with a 36 on the front nine and a 36 on the back
nine for an even par.
Barnhart for Chillicothe had shot a tremendous
back nine with a score of 35, one better than Tommy of KC.
However Barnhart struggled a little on the front nine, shooting
a 44. Barnhart's total was 3 strokes shy of making the cut to
move on to state.
And that Tommy fellow from Kansas City? He did
ok, his Pembroke Country Day team (now Pembroke Hill) would win
the district tournament by 20 strokes and finish 3rd in the
state meet. Tommy was the district medalist and tied for 2nd
individually in the state meet. He went on to become a two-time
state medalist in 1967 and 1968.
became of Tommy of Pembroke Hill? You might have heard of Tommy...aka
Tom.....Watson, Professional Golfing legend.
Yes, for nine holes, one day in May in 1965,
Chillicothe's Tom Barnhart was one stroke better on the back nine
than a future golfing legend.
<Boys Golfing Records>
Monkey Be Gone!
Ask any Chillicothe Lady Hornets
Basketball player since 1986 who is their nemesis, the answer will
almost always be the St Joseph Benton Lady Cardinals. In the series
between the two schools, Benton has won 60 meetings and Chillicothe
Ask the 1993-94 team. They lost three games
that season: the state championship, and twice lost to Benton,
although they did beat Benton in the district finals.
In December 2001,
Chillicothe shocked Benton with a 1 point overtime win. Little did
Chillicothe know it would be 13 years and 2 weeks before Chillicothe
would once again beat the Benton. Think about that. Kids entered
kindergarten, went through elementary school, middle school and
graduated high school with out knowing what it was like to beat the
Benton Lady Cardinals.
On January 3rd, 2015 the Chillicothe Lady
Hornets finally got the Benton Monkey off their back in one of the
most significant victories in Lady Hornets Basketball history.
The Lady Hornets
were a program on the rise, thanks in part to a talented
Sophomore class and a new head coach. When the two teams walked onto
the court of the NCMC Holiday Hoops showcase, Lady Hornets fans were
hoping this group of players might be able to finally beat Benton
sometime in the next two and a half seasons.
The game started with a Benton
basket. Chillicothe answered with an 8-0 run and Lady Hornet fans
kept their fingers crossed. Benton would battle back to with in one
point in the fourth. Chillicothe's Katelyn Parkey, one of five
sophomore starters and 7 sophomores that played in that game hit a
deuce and was fouled. She missed the free throw but Chillicothe got
the rebound, sent it to Parkey who nailed a trey for a 5 point play
and Chillicothe never looked back for a 44-39 victory.
Benton would beat Chillicothe twice later that season: in the
Kearney Tournament and in the MEC game. The next season Benton would
beat Chillicothe and finished with an undefeated State Championship.
<1/3/15 Benton Game>
<Girls Basketball History>
"Hack a Hornet"
late 1990's, NBA teams developed a defensive strategy of intentional
fouling called "Hack a Shaq", named after LSU and NBA Star Shaquille
O'Neal, a great player but not so good of a free throw shooter.
While the strategy was instituted by then Dallas Mavericks coach Don
Nelson, it actually went back to the Wilt Chamberlain days in the
NBA. Wilt the Stilt was a dominate force but terrible free throw
In the 1997-98 boys basketball season, the Hornets were
the stars of the court. They had been to the high school final four
two straight years, taking 4th in 1996 and 2nd in 1997. With most of
the team back including a tremendously talented Senior Class, they
were having a great season.
When the Hornets
rolled into Savannah on February 5th, 1998 they had just one loss on
the season, and that was to Liberty in the William Jewell
Tournament. They handed Savannah a 70-57 loss early in the season in
Chillicothe and expected to win this conference game as well, even
though Savannah was known as a tough place to play.
The night began with an overtime freshman game,
followed by a JV game that also went overtime. By the time the
Varsity game started it was already a long night.
The Savages elected to try their own version of
"Hack a Shaq" strategy and the Hornets All-State star Justin Bland
was their target. The Savannah defense was relentless in their
attack, doing everything they could to keep the high scoring Hornets
in check. The Hornets 6'6" 300 pound all stater would have the last
laugh, hitting 19 of 20 free throw attempts in an 84-51 Hornets
romp. The 19 free throws is still a single-game single-player school
Officials called 55 fouls in the game, with
31 on Savannah including a technical foul on the Savages bench. As a
team, Chillicothe hit 39 of 50 free throws, including 25 attempts in
the 4th quarter, when the two teams combined for 43 attempts from
the line. In addition to Bland, 7 other Hornets had their turn at
the free throw line.
By the time the three games were complete, the
clock was just shy of 10:00pm, nearly five hours of basketball
between the three games.
<1997-98 Basketball Season>
<Boys Basketball Records>
Close to Perfect
Perfection, it's the ultimate and usually unobtainable goal for the
individual athlete and sports team. On December 1981 night, one
Chillicothe sports team flirted with perfection.
The Chillicothe Hornets wrestling team were in an
early season quad meet with Lawson, Higginsville and Richmond. The
Hornets beat Higginsville 41-17 and shut out Lawson 66-0. But the
shut out is not the perfection we're talking about. Only 7 of those
matches were won by pin fall.
Hornets took the mat against Richmond, 98lbs Rodney Jones won
by pin in :39 seconds, followed by Kent Sherrow in 1:10, then Rodney
Pettinger in 35 seconds. The Hornets were on an early roll.
When the match ended, Chillicothe had rolled up
74 points, but just missed perfection when 12 matches were wins by
pin by Chillicothe, but one ended in a 5-5 tie in an era before
today's "sudden victory".
The final score was Chillicothe 74, Richmond 1.
The Hornets were one pin and 4 points away from tying a record of 78
points. Not a school record, or a state record, but a national
Hornets that took the mat that night were Rodney
Jones, Kent Sherrow, Rodney Pettinger, Rob O'Dell, Ronnie Cairns,
Ted Baker, David Vorbeck, Todd Walker Dan Thompson, John Logan, Gil
Gates, Darren Grannemann and Ed Turbyfill.
The team would end the season 3rd in the NCMC, 2nd in
District and 24th in the State tournament under Coach Doug Long with
John Logan finishing 2nd and 5 others qualifying but not placing in
In a 1940 season meet, Chillicothe won all 9 matches
against Missouri Military Academy by pins in a 45-0 victory, but it
is not know if there were any open weight classes in the meet.
<1981-82 Hornets Wrestling>
<Hornets Wrestling Records>
The Return of Girls Basketball at Chillicothe
Row 1: Jena
McCoy, Maria Oertwig, Julie Haynes, Gail Maberry, Dawn Detweiler
Row 2: Janet Haynes, JoEllen Smith, Jan Miller, Julie Saale, Vickie
Melte, Lynn Coult, Kathy Wilson
On November 14th, 1974 a group of girls
suited up and played organized basketball for Chillicothe for the
first time in nearly 50 years. Girls sports had returned to CHS and
after weeks of practice under former Chillicothe star player and
former Hornets Coach Fred Stephens, the girls lost to Cameron in the
season opener 51-19 with Jan Miller, Kathy Wilson and Jo Ellen Smith
scoring all of the points.
Undeterred and 11 days later, Chillicothe again took to
the old CHS High School Stage which doubled as a basketball court
and faced the Marshall Lady Owls.
Chillicothe used the offense of Jan Miller's 16 points
and an improved defensive effort to pick up their first win 45-33.
Chillicothe led by just three points heading into the fourth quarter
but outscored Marshall 12-3 in the final quarter.
In addition to Miller's 16 points, Kathy Wilson
had 10, Julie Haynes 7 and Jo Ellen Smith with 6 points. A full box
score was unavailable in the Constitution-Tribune article covering
The 45 points would be their best offensive
output of the season. They would pick up a win over Moberly and
would beat Brookfield twice for their 4 wins in the initial Modern
Era Girls Basketball season. Stephens would coach one more season,
finishing 7-11 and 6-6 in the NCMC in their 2nd season. It would
take the Lady Hornets just 8 seasons to pick up a 19-7 record and a
final four appearance.
But that's a story for another time.
<Lady Hornets 1974-75 season>
<Lady Hornets Basketball Records>
Legend of Jerry Parrish
In the 100 plus years of Chillicothe boys basketball,
there have been some great Hornet players. One of the best played
more than 50 years ago and many of his records still stand.
When it came to basketball, the 6' 2" Jerry Parrish was
nearly unstoppable on the court. Decades before the three-point shot
was invented, Parrish routinely scored 30 and 40 plus points per
game for the Hornets. In his senior year, he scored over 30 points
in all but one game in a 13 game stretch, including 48 points
against Macon in a 92-60 blow out. Parish had 17 field goals and was
14 of 17 at the free throw line in the game. The 48 points stands as
a single game record to this day, and his season total of 827 points
is also still a school record. 20 days after the 48 points he popped
in 46 and later that season he had 40 points with no free throws,
making 20 field goals, a school record that was tied 31 years later.
During his three years playing varsity, the teams went a combined
73-10 with three conference championships and a trip to the
quarterfinals his Senior year when the team finished 29-2.
Parish still holds the season 2 point field goal
record of 326 and is third all time in that category. He also still
holds the season points per game record with 25.57.
The apple didn't fall far from the tree later in
life when his sons Mitch and Matt and daughter Ashley all received
all state honors, all were on district championship teams and all
three played for state championships, with Mitch and Matt on the
1981 boys Championship team and Ashley on the 1994 girls 2nd place
Early Hornet Sports Weirdness
(Picture from Chillicothe
school sports dates back more than 110 years, with Basketball starting
in 1910, Football starting in 1904 and track starting before that.
There were few rules and even fewer officials in those wild-west early
years. Here are a few examples.
Football 1905 Little is known about the first year of football
in 1904 other than they went 2-1 on the year. The first official score
of a Chillicothe football game was Oct 21, 1905 when they beat
Brookfield at home. Accounts of the day stated "Semi-official returns
place it at 45-0." That's close enough for me.
Football 1910 1909 was a banner year for Chillicothe, going
6-1. The players hoped for the same coach to return, but his $300
asking price was too high for the school board. The first game was
played with out a coach and the team lost 11-10. A player that
graduated the previous year stepped in and the team won the next 5
games, allowing only one score, to finish 5-1
Football 1915 This seasoned opened with a loss in an "Alumni
game" and ended with a win over a "Student team" that made fun of the
official team. It would be their only win of the season.
Football 1921 The team won three games in seven days during
this season, beating Maryville on a Friday, beating Braymer the
following Monday and beating Plattsburg on Thursday.
Football 1927 Chillicothe allowed just 4 points total in the
first three games combined in 1927. They also failed to win any of
them, losing 2-0 the first two weeks and ended in a scoreless tie in
week three. The team went 1-5-2, with the only win coming after the
season when it was discovered Cameron used an ineligible player in a
25-6 Cameron win. In this season, Chillicothe managed just four
touchdowns: one run, one pass, one blocked punt recovery and one
Boys Basketball 1910-11 In the first ever boys basketball game,
the Hornets lost to Trenton in overtime 33-31. They would finish this
lengthy first season at 2-1.
Boys Basketball 1918-19 The team
lost at Mexico 83-3, the worst loss in history. The Cresset proclaimed
the team was proud to lose to the best team in the state.
Boys Basketball 1928-29 If you thought 3 football games in a
week was tough, try five basketball games in two days. It was the
Boonville tournament and on Day One Chillicothe beat Jefferson City,
then lost to California by one point. On Day Two, Chillicothe beat
Lancaster, beat Fayette and lost to Armstrong by one point.
Are These Unbreakable Records?
(1969-70 Hornets Basketball Team)
There is an old saying that says "records are meant to be broken." However, there are a few records in Hornet sports that have stood the test of time and may never be broken.
Football - One-Two Combination
In the early days of football, towns of all sizes formed
teams to compete in the growing wildcat sport of football. Some of
these towns probably should not of bothered. On Nov 24 1921
Chillicothe beat Pattonsburg 84-0. Two notable performances came from
QB Bertram Clark who scored 9 touchdowns and 54 points, and Russell
White who kicked 12 of 12 Extra Points. Given the modern day "4th
quarter running clock" combined with attempts to schedule quality
opponents and bigger roster numbers, these are good candidates for
Football - Back to Back
November of 1921 was a banner month for Hornet
football. Chillicothe beat Hamilton 81-0 on the 18th and 6 days later
beat Pattonsburg 84-0. I really don't see back to back 80+ point games
ever coming again in Hornets Football.
Football - Most Points
In the 1920 season, Meadville's varsity football team
played Chillicothe's 2nd string (now known as Junior Varsity) and beat
them fairly handily. In proof that trash talking is nothing new,
Meadville stated they could beat the Chillicothe Varsity team just as
easily. On Nov 10, 1920 Meadville showed their mouth was bigger than their
talent when Chillicothe won 90-6. No official scoring rundown or individual stats are
available for this game, which are the most points ever scored by
Chillicothe football. Again, with modern rules and sportsmanship, this
one likely will never be broken.
Basketball - Who Wants In?
Chillicothe boys basketball was having a pretty good
game against Cameron in 1942 when Coach Pat Bradshaw starting using
substitutes in the game. Then more, and more, calling up "middle
school players" which I assume were freshmen players. By the time the game
ended, 19 Chillicothe players got into the game. I'm not sure this is
even allowable anymore by state rules.
Basketball - Shoot the Ball!
basketball was a high scoring season, The top 6 single game team
scores in history all came from that season, including a 118 point
effort against Marceline. With the 4th quarter mercy rule now in
effect, this may last for another 45 years.
Basketball - Try A Little Harder
Modern day "running clock" rules make some of these
records unbreakable. Two such efforts came for the Boys in 1953 when
they beat Milan on the road by 80 points, and the girls who beat
Braymer in 1980 by 74 points. These will stand for a while longer.
Listen to the 1985 Hornets Football
State Championship Game
Kansas City Center 14
Site: Busch Stadium, St Louis
1st Quarter Part 2
3rd Quarter Part
The original 85 Show-Me Bowl Broadcast on KCHI Radio
with Russ Green and Butch Shaffer
Special thanks to
Jason Graves for providing the original recording
Fun Facts from
(1922 Lady Hornets
-In the 1936 Football season, Dick Gale scored 13 out of the teams 14 touchdowns on the season including all 13 rushing and 1 of 2 receiving touchdowns
- The Chillicothe Boys Tennis team won 23 straight regular season matches between 1973 and 1976 including undefeated seasons in 1973, 74 and 75
- In 1976 the Hornets Basketball team beat Moberly at home 98-97 in 6 overtimes, which was a state record at the time.
- In a 1921 football game vs Pattonsburg, the Hornets
Bertram Clark scored five rushing touchdowns, caught two touchdown passes, had a punt return for touchdown and threw one touchdown pass, all in one game.
- The Cross Country team scored a perfect 15 points in a two team meet at Brookfield in 1978, taking all top five individual place finishers
- Chillicothe's first Volleyball team in 1994 included five players that would be members of the Girls basketball team that finished 2nd in state that winter.
- The Boys Track team has had 11 shot put and 9 discus state medalists, more than any other event
- In 1940, Leland Fair became a state wrestling champion by winning just two matches at the state meet. He also received a bye in the first round. There was no district qualifying tournament
- Rob Young is the only Hornet in history to be on a state championship football and state championship basketball team. He was a reserve End on the 1978 Football championship team as a Sophomore, and was a member of the 1981 Basketball state championship team as a Senior
- The Lady Hornets Softball team beat Cameron 21-0 in two and a half innings in 2000: 11 runs in the 1st and 10 in the 2nd off 13 hits.
- On Feb 20, 1981 the Hornets Basketball team beat Kirksville 14-7. Earlier in the season, Chillicothe beat them at Kirksville 72-31.
- In 1997 the Lady Hornets Tennis team beat Cameron 9-0. The team members combined to win 84 games and lost just 5 in the match.
- The Lady Hornets golf team were a perfect 9-0 in their first two seasons in 1973 and 1974
- The first Girls State Track meet included an event called the Softball Throw. Chillicothe had two entries in the event, but did not win a medal.
- The Boys track team won a state team title in 1939 by scoring a total of just 13 points and had only one individual champion: Joe Shy in the 220 yard dash.
- In 1922 the Chillicothe Girls Basketball team beat Wheeling 26-1.
Joe Shy - The Best of the Best
and field is the one sport that has been around Chillicothe at
least as long as football. In the nearly 110 year history of
Hornet track and field, one name stands alone at the top, and
that name is Joe Shy.
Shy was the key member of the 1939 team that won championships in both the indoor and outdoor state meets.
In the 1939 Indoors meet, Shy won gold in the 60 hurdles, setting a new record of 7.3 in the prelims, then winning the finals in 7.4 seconds. He was also 2nd in the 60 yard dash and Long (aka Broad) Jump and was a member of the 2nd place Medley Relay team.
In the 1939 outdoors meet Shy had his ups and downs, despite scoring 11 of the team's first place 13 points. If he would of entered as a one man team, he would of finished 2nd in the team events, a half point behind what would of been the champion team.
Shy won the 200 yard dash, was second in the 120 high hurdles and second in the broad jump. In his 4th event, the 200 meter low hurdles, Shy clipped a hurdle and fell. He was able to finish uninjured, but didn't medal in the event.
Shy was far more than a one year wonder, earning 2nd in
the 200 low hurdles in the 1938 outdoor meet. Shy routinely set meet records in every meet his Junior year.
After high school Shy went to college at the University
of Missouri, where his name became well known in track circles
around the world. Shy was conference champion in the Indoor
60-yard hurdles (1942); Outdoor 220-yard low hurdles (1942);
Outdoor 100-yard dash (1943) and Outdoor 200-yard dash (1943).
Shy earned All-American honors in 1943 based on his performance
at the national meet in the 330-yard dash, but his crowning
achievement was his time in the low hurdles in
1942, which tied the world record for the event.
Shy was pushed into duty in the sprints when Mizzou's
top sprinter Owen Joggerst, was injured. Shy rose to the
occasion, going undefeated in the 100 and 200-yard dashes during
that outdoor season.
After graduation, Shy was a regular participant in running
events around the country for most of his adult life. In 2005,
Shy was inducted posthumously into the University of Missouri
Athletic Hall of Fame.
<Joe Shy's CHS 1939 Boys Track Season Results> <Joe Shy's CHS 1938 Boys Track Season Results>
David White - Hornets Football
He electrified fans and confused defenses. Catch up with Chillicothe's original offensive triple threat weapon, three time all state running back David White.
Here David talk about Coach Fairchild, his teammates and how football helped shape his success in life.
<Listen To The Interview>
David White's Chillicothe Football Career 1986 - 1989
Career Points Scored: 354 (2nd all time); Career Touchdowns (All): 58 (2nd all time); Career Rushing Touchdowns: 43 (4th all time); Career Receiving Touchdowns: 13 (7th all time); Career Rushing Attempts: 464 (7th all time); Career Rushing Yards: 3,518 (3rd all time); Career Avg Yards per Carry 7.48 (8th all time); Career Passing Attempts: 106; Career Passing Completions: 65; Career Passing Yards: 1,211 (10th all time); Career Completion Percentage: 61.32% (1st all time);
Career Yards Per Completion: 18.63; Career Passing Touchdowns: 10; Career Receptions: 94 (2nd all time); Career Reception Yardage: 1,283 (2nd all time); Career Yards Per Reception: 13.65
Triumphant Basketball Turnaround
Boys Basketball Team)
One thing is universal in
sports: no one likes to lose. No matter the team or individual
sport; coaches, players and fans all want a winning season.
From after World War II into the early 50s,
Chillicothe had a string of successful teams on the Basketball
court, winning NCMC titles in 1946-47 under Coach Carl Miles
followed by 1947-48 and an undefeated NCMC title in 1948-49 under
Coach Elgie Posey.
After Coach Posey left, Bob Moore took over and put
together an average 14-9 season in 1949-50. However, when the
1950-51 season started, things didn't fair too well. Straddled with
an extremely undersized team with no seniors, the Hornets limped to
one of the worst seasons in history: 3-17.
Changes were due for the upcoming 1951-52 season. They
came first in the form of new head coach John Griste, who had
already doubled the win total of the football team from 1 win in
1950 to 2 wins in 1951. His results with the basketball team would
be even better.
The second addition to the Hornets 1951-52 basketball
team were two transfer students that brought some height back to the
team. Newcomer Bob Hoerr averaged 11.62 points per game in 26 games
with Chillicothe and fellow newcomer Albert Runge, whose first game
with Chillicothe was in mid January, finished with a 13.57 average
in 14 games. The two helped Chillicothe to average an additional 16
points per game over the previous season.
The final change that helped the 1951-52 Hornet
Basketball season was experience. Short, inexperienced juniors had
become experienced seniors. Emmitt Wallace led the team with
341points in 26 games and helped guide the team to a 19-7 record and
a 10-2 NCMC record, good for 2nd place. Wallace also became the
first ever Hornets basketball player to be named to the All-State
team, earning a spot on the 2nd Team. The following year, Coach
Griste would win both a Conference and regional championship.
<Basketball Records> <1951-52 Basketball Season Results>
Listen to the 1978
Hornets Football State Championship Game
Chillicothe 42, Washington 0
Site: Chillicothe High School Field
The original 1978 Show-Me Bowl on KCHI Radio with Dennis Dolan and Dave Brown.
Special thanks to Scott Stephens for providing the original recording
<1978 Football Season> <Football Records>
Flirting With The Pro's - A
Conversation With Ardell Johnson
Johnson RB/DB 1968-70
He was a member of Chillicothe's 1st State
Champion team, a Nebraska Cornhusker and a
brief member of the Washington
Listen to Ardell Johnson talk about his team,
his coach, and what it's like to hear your
name called on NFL draft day.
<Listen to the Interview>
Ardell Johnson Career Hornet Football Statistics 1968 - 1970
Career Points Scored: 210; Career Touchdowns (All): 35; Career Rushing Touchdowns: 24; Career Receiving Touchdowns: 11; Career Carries: 176; Career Yards: 1,350; Career Average Yards Per Carry: 7.67; Career Receptions: 54; Career Receiving Yards: 1,005; Career Average Yards Per Catch: 18.612
The First Great Hornet Athlete -
Chillicothe high school has had great success in sending athletes to college and, in a few cases, brief careers in the professional leagues. However in the 100-plus years of athletics at CHS, who was the first to generate statewide laurels? It was a track star named Earl Steele. Here's what the 1907 Chillicothe Cresset School Yearbook says about Steele.
The Chillicothe High School has an athlete who will, before
long, hold the world's record for the mile run, and that
athlete is Mr. Earl Steele, a popular member of the Senior
Mr. Steele by frequent runs to his home, nine miles
from the city, has developed into a "miler" with good speed
and wonderful endurance.
At the track and field meet, held at Chillicothe he easily
took the first places in the mile and half mile run and third
place in the quarter.
On May 4th, Mr. Steele entered the mile run at the
Inter-High School meet held at Columbia, MO. At this meet
there were some fast hard-trained runners but for the first
three-quarters Steele made those runners travel faster than
they ever dreamt they could go.
He led the race until within one hundred yards of the
line when two runners "sprinted on him" and all three coming
in close together. Steele got third prize, a bronze medal. The
judges of the meet were surprised at his speed and endurance
and spoke favorably of him as a "miler." His time was about
Steele ran in the Class B Mile race at the Washington
University track meet, held in St Louis, Saturday May 18 and
easily took the gold medal. He sprang ahead on the start and
kept the lead the entire mile, winning by 60 yards. Although
running in B class he made the best record of all "milers" in
both classes. His time was 4:48 lowering the High School
record 3 seconds.
Without a trainer he has his time down to 4:48 and next
year under a coach, he is sure to lower that record. Here's
wishing him "success."
Steele's time of 9:50 held for three years before being broken by 1.2 seconds by another Missourian.
Steele was also a member of the 1911 four-mile relay team whose
record of 18:56 stood for several years.
Football, 1928 Style
John Irvin - Senior Year Picture From the 1929 Chillicothe Cresset - Football Pages
"Irvin - "Mooney" -
"A dependable, hard hitting halfback. On the defense he was always
at the right place at the right time"
Chillicothe Hornets 1928
It was a time of
leather helmets, few rules and makeshift
facilities. Find out what Hornets football was
like 81 years ago from a member of the 1926,
27 and 28 Chillicothe football teams.
*Update: Mr Irvin passed away in January of 2016 at the age of 104.*
<Listen to the Interview>
Short History of
Hornets Basketball Tournaments
High School Basketball Tournaments
were not always the eight team cut and dried
weeklong affairs popular today. In the early
years, the standard tournament format in the
regular season was sixteen teams, single
elimination with first and third place
games. Saturday was normally a doubleheader
day for players with semifinal games in the
afternoon and first and third place games
that night. Regional Tournaments, now called
District Tournaments, also featured somewhat
meaningless third place games.
Perhaps the most unusual tournament was the regional tournament of 1948. Chillicothe sported a 20-2 record heading into the championship showdown with Maryville. The Hornets lost 39-16, but both teams were given berths into the State Tournament, with Chillicothe receiving a #4 ranking. In their first ever State Tournament game, the Hornets lost in Springfield to Rocky Comfort 45-34
Bert Who? Learn the Story Of the Former Hornet That Has A
Football Field Named After Him
At 5'6" and 144lbs, he was slightly below average size for a
football player of his day. However, when Bertram Clark stepped
onto the Hornets football field, he was far from average. Clark
started in the Hornets backfield for four years from 1918 thru
1921, playing both Quarterback and Running Back. Clark was a
threat from anywhere on the field, scoring by the run, the pass,
special teams and even by the rare field goal. In a 1921 romp
over Pattonsburg, Clark had five rushing touchdowns, three
receiving touchdowns, one punt return touchdown and passed for
After graduation, Clark headed to Principia Junior College then transferred to University of Missouri at Columbia where he lettered in 1925, 26 and 27. In 1996,Clark was inducted into the University of Missouri Hall of Fame. This is what
MU website says about Chillicothe's
"A native of Chillicothe, Clark was an all-conference and
honorable mention all-America halfback in 1926. He holds
special distinction, having scored all of his touchdowns in
three consecutive upset victories over Nebraska- 9-6 in 1925,
14-7 in 1926, and 7-6 in 1927. He later spent 44 years as a
coach, athletic director and college administrator at
Principia College in Elsah, Ill., where the football stadium
is named for him. His grandson, Tim, was an all-conference
infielder on the Missouri baseball team in the mid-1980s.
Clark, who was a gold medalist at the Senior Olympics in 1985,
lived in St. Louis until his death in 2001."
After graduation from Mizzou, Clark returned to Principia college
where his 1933 football team went undefeated, untied and un-scored
upon for the season. Clark was inducted into
Principia's hall of fame in 2006.
End of an Era - Old Chillicothe High School Torn Down
After standing proud for more than 80 years and more than 100,000 students, the old Chillicothe High School building has been torn down.
The Game The Hornet's
Weren't Supposed To Win
Chillicothe hit the Hearnes Center floor in March 1982, few people
were giving the defending State Champions a chance against legendary
basketball powerhouse St Louis Vashon. The Hornets under the
guidance of Coach Rich Fairchild calmly showed a stunned Hearnes
Center crowd patience, teamwork and incredible desire to calmly pick
apart the nationally ranked Vashon team. Coach Fairchild used just a hand full of players to pull off one of the biggest upsets in Hornets
history, 61-53. The next day however, The Hornets could not
duplicate that feat and lost the title game to Logan-Rogersville
Vashon would have to wait 16 seasons for a rematch. They
would fair no better in front of a packed Hornets Field House on a
cold Saturday in December 1997, when a half court shot at the buzzer
failed, and Chillicothe again upended Vashon 50-49.
Challenge! We've been Challenged!!!!
(Chillicothe High School 1915)
1915 was not a good year for Hornets football. They had only a four-game
schedule and lost all four games by a combined score of 81-12, including a
loss to a make-shift team of Chillicothe High School Alumni. So, when a
group of fellow classmates taunted that the team was so bad, even they
could beat them, the football team readily accepted the challenge.
The game was treated as a full regulation game with officials, paid attendance and newspaper coverage. It didn't take long for the upstart students to realize they had underestimated their 0-4 school team. It was the Hornets team that had the last laugh, with a 51-0 thumping of the students
Back to Back Football Blowouts
(1921 Starting Offense: RE Rex Oren, RT Howard Carr, RG Jim Davis, C Lee Steen, LG Fred Wagner,
LT Harold Inman, LE Joe Mallory, QB Bertram Clark, , LHB Russell White, RHB Jim Steen FB Rudy Stucker)
The Hornets Football team has had
their fair share of big wins over the years, but in the days before
State Playoffs and Conference races, Chillicothe did something that
likely will never be done again. They outscored their opponents by a
combined 165-0 in back to back games.
It was 1921 and football was slowly taking hold in the
world of sports, despite attempts to have it outlawed and labeled as
brutal and barbaric. More high schools were forming teams and in the
years before conferences became popular, schools played neighboring
towns mainly in an effort to reduce costs of travel by train.
Under second year coach Tom Moles, Chillicothe had won
two in a row to improve to 5-4 for the year. With two games left on
the schedule, the Hornets had their sights set on a second straight
winning season. On November 18, 1921 the team and fans boarded the
train and headed to Hamilton for a Friday afternoon game.
Chillicothe built a 48-0 lead at the half, then added another 33
points in the 3rd quarter. The game was called due to darkness at
the end of the 3rd quarter for a 81-0 Chillicothe win. Few other
details are known about the contest.
The final game of the season was a Thanksgiving Day
showdown with Pattonsburg on the C.B.C. field. Chillicothe forced
Pattonsburg to three plays and punt to start the game. Chillicothe's
Quarterback Bertram Clark fielded the punt and returned it for
Chillicothe's first touchdown. Clark added a 12 yard run later in
the quarter and by halftime, Chillicothe had built a 28-0 lead.
Three more touchdowns in the 3rd quarter gave Chillicothe a 49-0
lead. The Hornets didn't let up, putting 35 points on the board in
the 4th quarter for an 84-0 win. Chillicothe had the ball inside the
five yard line at least four other times but did not score. Clark
scored nine touchdowns in the game, including five rushing,
three receiving and one by punt return, plus threw one touchdown
pass. Team Captain Rudy Stucker had two touchdown runs and threw
three touchdown passes. Chillicothe Kicker Russell White also went
12-for-12 on extra point kicks. Clark would go on to become a
three-year letter winner for the University of Missouri Football
In the Beginning
(1905 Chillicothe High
educational facilities of some form have been around Chillicothe
since the earliest days of settlement, the first 4-year school
building was built in 1875 with the first official Chillicothe High
School Senior Class graduating in 1877. Prior to this school
building, education was only offered through the Junior year. In
1901 a new School was built at a cost of $25,000 that served the
district until the early 1920's.
There is no definite starting date for most Chillicothe
High School athletic teams, however the 1903-04 and 1904-05 school years mark the
apparent beginning of Chillicothe High School sports. Newspaper coverage was sparse in the early days and there
were no grand announcements made of new athletic teams. In the earliest days, athletic teams
were often frowned upon by School Administrators who feared it would deter from
the learning process. Around 1920 School Officials began to recognize the
importance of physical fitness as a part of the educational process.
Chillicothe fielded High School Football, Baseball and Track teams as early as 1904. The exact date of the first Chillicothe football game is not known, but tan early yearbook makes mention of the "old rugby boys" playing the first season of football in 1904. The 1908 Chillicothe yearbook made note of the first year of football in 1904, stating the played three games and won two of them.
Boys Basketball began in the 1910-11 season while
Girls Basketball was a highly successful fall sport for Chillicothe
briefly in the 1920s before being turned into an intramural sport,
where each class would field a team and all four would play for the
"Class Championship". Baseball was played as early as the 1903-04
school year when the team went 4-3 with wins over Liberty, Cameron
and Braymer twice and losses to Moberly, Liberty and Cameron. The
first Chillicothe School Yearbook was published in 1904 but these early yearbooks were
printed in the spring, usually before Baseball and Track seasons were completed,
or in some cases started. Chillicothe fielded Baseball teams sporadically until around 1915 when it
diminished into an intramural only sport. A competitive baseball team returned
in 1922-23 school year under Coach John Huntz but apparently only existed for a
couple of years. The popularity and success of the Chillicothe Track program
attracted most of the athletes at a cost to the baseball program. Track and
Field teams competed as early as the 1903-04 school year but
consisted only of a home meet and an overnight meet in Maryville, which
most likely was a sort of "regional championship" held at the
college. Boys Golf and
Tennis were mentioned as early as the 1926-27 season and there was even mention
of a Girls Field Hockey team for a couple years starting in 1927-28. Wrestling
made a brief and successful appearance in the 1930s before being shelved until the 1960s,
Early sporting facilities were sparse to
non-existent as were qualified officials. Football teams would
play in parks or farmers pastures with ankle to calf high grass.
Basketball was played where ever there was space including
skating rinks, factory buildings and in the case of one girls
game, a school hallway. It would be the 1920s before modern day
facilities were built. 1915 marked the first mention of Red and
Black as Chillicothe school colors, and the nickname "Hornets"
followed in 1916.