An event showcasing some of the top high school senior basketball talent in West Central Illinois returns to Alice Ingersoll Gym on Saturday, March 23.

An event showcasing some of the top high school senior basketball talent in West Central Illinois returns to Alice Ingersoll Gym on Saturday, March 23.


The 14th annual Kiwanis Club of Canton All-Star Basketball Games draws players from 28 high school and co-op teams. The programs have been divided into north and south squads for the girls and boys teams. Forty nine players representing those schools and co-ops have been invited to participate with 11 alternates also being named.


Players were nominated by their coaches. The selection criteria used by the Kiwanis Club included basketball statistics and skills, along with other aspects including academic performance and leadership abilities.


Coaches for the contest were selected by the event organizers. Jim Robertson of Illini Bluffs will coach the girls north squad, while Greg Bennett will lead the girls south team.


On the boys side, Jimmy Jordan of Peoria Heights will coach the north, while Tony Wherley of Illini Central will guide the south.


The girls game begins at 6 p.m. with the boys game to follow at approximately 8 p.m. A full concession stand will be open throughout the evening.


In addition to the games, the girls and boys players will be paired together in a “2ball” shooting competition that will begin at 5:15 p.m.


In the “2ball” competition, each two-player team has one minute to score as many baskets as possible from designated shooting spots marked on the court. Each spot is worth a different point value based on the difficulty of the shot. At the end of each round, the higher scoring team advances.


“2ball” play will continue at halftime of the girls game and conclude between the girls and boys games.


At halftime of the boys game, a “rainbow shot” shooting contest will take place with fans in attendance and the all-stars invited to participate.


Tickets will be available at the door on game night. For adults, tickets will be $5, while students age 6-high school, tickets will be $3. Children ages 5 and under will be admitted for free. There will be no advanced ticket sales.


The Kiwanis Club of Canton was chartered in 1978 and has always emphasized projects and programs to help youth in the community. Net proceeds from the all-star games will be used by the club to continue the youth emphasis.