It was going to be a difficult task for the Green Wave heading into this season.

Everyone knew that.

The team lost a Division I player and its all-time leading scorer in Mallory Ramage, as well as three other significant contributors from a team that went 29-3. 

What the MHS girls basketball team is doing right now should be noticed, even if the team owns an 8-9 record going into a rivalry game with Charleston. 

Mattoon had the No. 4 ranked team in Class 2A for most of the game. Teutopolis was the Charleston Holiday Tournament winner and is now 13-2 record this season. Mattoon led this team 34-22 at the break before losing 60-57 in overtime. 

This game is one of many for a tough January schedule.

After taking on Charleston on Saturday, Mattoon plays Mahomet-Seymour, who has received state-ranked votes, as well as the No. 1 ranked team in Class 3A – Lincoln. After that, the team plays a tough Decatur MacArthur squad, Urbana, St. Joseph-Ogdon, Taylorville (another team with state votes) and 13-4 Effingham. 

“We have a tough schedule,” said MHS coach Troy Haacke. “Seven of our losses are within six points. According to MaxPreps most of our conference is ranked in the top 25 of the state.  I am looking forward to this upcoming stretch.  T-town is always a fun game. It’s a challenging game for us because of their length.  Then we play Charleston on Saturday, I know they are down, but it is still a rivalry game.  Then two tough conference games next week against Mahomet and State ranked number 1 Lincoln.  These are the games that make you better.”

Mattoon is competing in all of these tough games. The team might be 0-5 in the Apollo, but their losses are close. That includes the following

  • 52-46 loss to Pana
  • 45-40 loss to Effingham
  • 61-59 loss to Taylorville
  • 42-38 loss to Mount Zion
  • 49-45 loss to Mahomet-Seymour
  • 45-41 loss to state-ranked Galesburg
  • 60-57 loss to state-ranked Teutopolis

“We need to continue to work on our defense, our rebounding and to be able to play through our offense,” said Haacke. “The girls have learned that we are never out of a game.  We are continuing to work and get better and we want to finish the second half strong.”