The Southern Illinois Miners announce that longtime Pinckneyville High School boys basketball head coach Dick Corn and Benton High School girls volleyball head coach Tony Phelps will be the second set of inductees into the Southern Illinois High School Coaches Hall of Fame, presented by Southern Illinois Healthcare, on July 18th before the Miners take on the Washington Wild Things at 7:05 p.m.
For Corn, who was coached at Benton High School by fellow Southern Illinois High School Coaches Hall of Fame inductee Rich Herrin, he roamed the sidelines at Pinckneyville high school for 32 years from 1975-2007, amassing an incredible record of 708 wins and 259 losses with the boys basketball program. Included in his 32 seasons on the bench were just two losing seasons while Corn's Pinckneyville Panthers teams won two state championships (1994, 2001), four super-sectional titles, seven sectional titles and and a remarkable 24 regional championships.
From 1978-96, Corn's Panthers won 20 or more games in each season, and over the course of his tenure, Pinckneyville won 20+ games 24 times in 32 years and 30 or more games four times, with all of the 30-win seasons resulting in trips to the state finals in 1988, 1994, 2001 and 2006. At the time of his stepping down as basketball coach in 2007, he was seventh all-time in the state of Illinois in combined basketball victories, with his 708 wins currently ranking 18th in IHSA history.
Tony Phelps coached the Benton Rangerettes girls volleyball program for 17 seasons, amassing a stellar record of 476 wins and only 148 losses with seven ties from 1998-2015. In that time on the sidelines, Phelps, who also coached boys basketball at Benton from 1994-97, coached his teams to 13 regional championships, five sectional championships and two super-sectional titles while having two teams qualify for the state finals in 2002 and 2004.
During his tenure, Phelps' teams only twice failed to win 20 games in a season. None of his Rangerette squads finished a season with a losing record, while eight times his teams finished with 30 or more wins. He concluded his career as a head volleyball coach with 629 wins in total over 25 seasons, having also coached in Walnut Ridge High School in Iowa before coming to coach at Benton.
The Southern Illinois Miners return to action after the all-star break this week on Friday, July 14th when they host the River City Rascals at 7:05 p.m.
The Southern Illinois Miners are the 2016 Frontier League West Division Champions, the 2014 and 2015 Frontier League East Division Champions and the 2012 Frontier League Champions. They have been awarded the Frontier League Organization of the Year award three times since their inception, and also set a new Frontier League attendance record in 2007, their inaugural season. For ticket information, contact the Rent One Park box office at (618) 998-8499. For any additional information, visit our website at www.southernillinoisminers.com.