A quick look back, who would have guessed?

Wow. How fast life can change.

Last August, if you had asked what I thought would be happening with all the St. Joseph-Ogden sports team by today, I would have predicted the baseball team would have just five losses and the softball team would have just notched their 20th win of the season.

Softball player Bailey Downing would have crushed the prep national home run record by now and looking to do more damage before SJO clawed their way into a Class 2A state semifinal game. Between calls and emails from college coaches from major programs from around the country, Atleigh Hamilton would be routinely jumping her winning state mark last spring. Pitcher Keegan McCarty would be carrying a 6-win, 1-loss pitching record and Drew Coursey would lead the team in RBIs for the Spartan baseball team.

I'd say head track coach Jason Retz would be writing a letter of apology and a check to help replace Unity's new synthetic rubber track after the speedy boys 4x200 spikes absolutely shread the center lane from a 22 second time better than last year's state qualifying mark.

The juggernaut Spartan athletic program and the dedicated athletes who proudly wear the uniforms would be firing on all cylinders across the board with postseason play just weeks away today. Who can argue that there wasn't a real good chance that there would be at least two new IHSA state trophies in an already crowded trophy case at the high school?

Then along came this doggone pandemic.

Before things get worse, while we wait for the Asian giant hornet invasion - they aren't threatening to humans or pets, and a perhaps a little tectonic plate action from the New Madrid Fault Line, let's look back to the first six Sentinel headlines that started off what looked like a seemingly normal 2019-2020 school year.

August 26, 2019
Our first story of the school year was a photo page featuring the football team's fall kickoff event where head coach Shawn Skinner said, "We don't have one or two leaders. We have a team of leaders right now." Click on the photo of the page to read the article.

August 28, 2019
Keeper Mason Behrens fended off 9 of 12 shots. SJO volleyball team looses to St. Teresa, who later took the 2A title months later. Click on the photo of the page to read the article.

August 28, 2019
University of Illinois freshmen Abigail Schlueter and Rylee Sjuts were two of 159 underclassmen designated Chancellor’s Scholars in the Campus Honors Program this fall. Click on the photo of the page to read the article or here.

August 30, 2019
Football dad's ready the field for the Spartans home football game. See who was involved by clicking on the photo of the page to read the article or follow the link here.

August 30, 2019
Emily Bigger was credited with 22 assists, nine digs and three kills leading the team to a 25-15 and 25-13 victory. Click on the photo to read more.

August 30, 2019
Two hundred and 27 minutes into the season, roughly a little more than two and half games, senior Zack Seeley finally nailed the soccer team's first goal of the season. Click on the photo to read the entire article.

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