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INA, Ill. (Nov. 17, 2013) – Rend Lake College alums from near and far gathered Saturday night at the Rend Lake Resort to celebrate years gone by and give advice to current students. The alums also met on the court Sunday for a scrimmage before the Warriors took on Illinois Central College.
During the dinner, former head coaches Wayne Arnold (1963-65), Mitch Haskins (1981-1992) and Tim Wills (1992-2010), as well as current head coach Randy House (2010-present), all took a moment to thank their players and encourage current teammates with words of wisdom. Former coach James “Hummer” Waugh (1966-1981) was not able to attend the dinner.
First up was Coach Arnold who spoke of working and coaching at Mt. Vernon Community College, as well as his many years at RLC.
“When I first started coaching, we had to play around the Mt. Vernon High School team, because we shared their gym with them,” said Arnold. “The big thing that comes to mind when I think about coaching Mt. Vernon Community College is the good players I had. They were good kids. I always told my students to be persistent but also be patient. It’s been a great ride and I see that the College continues to grow in every aspect. I think this is a great thing that the Rend Lake Athletic Department is going, and I appreciate the opportunity to speak here tonight.”
Arnold was followed by Haskins, who gave plenty of advice to the current players.
“Just remember to take care of your teammates and look out for them,” said Haskins. “Help each other and do what you love to be an example. If you can’t give 100 percent at something, then don’t do it. The Rend Lake basketball team is a solid program with a very longstanding tradition, and I am proud to be a part of that.”
Current Athletic Director Wills added the importance of alumni events and the legacy that is the men’s basketball team when he addressed the audience.
“It’s very important to keep people connected to the college they attended, and I’m proud to be a part of what these guys have done,” said Wills. “We hope to make this Alumni Weekend an annual thing, and I do appreciate everyone coming out tonight.”
Coach House added, “Basketball has blessed me a lot in my life, as it has all of you in this room. This [National Championship] trophy up here is real nice, but it’s for all of you guys. It’s a testament to you guys. It doesn’t have my name on it; it has Rend Lake College. The program is only as good as the people who were there before, and it’s a great honor to be here and to be the coach of this great group of guys.”
On Sunday, the alums came back to Waugh Gymnasium to compete in a scrimmage game against one another. Eleven former players went hard for a final score of 94-78. Those who played included Josh Davis, Brian Gamber, Shane Garner, Tommy Holder, Kyle Martin, Roger Phelps, Justin Raby, Andre Spraggins, Jared Staple, CJ Trotter and Josh Webb.
Finally, before the Warrior’s game, the 2013 National Championship banner was unveiled for all the basketball fans and alums in attendance. The Warriors would move on to win the game over the Cougars 94-75. To read more about the game, visit http://www.rlc.edu/mens-basketball/basketball-headlines/4318-warriors-take-double-digit-win-over-cougars.
For all things athletic at The Lake, visit www.rlc.edu/warriors.