On Friday, December 9, before a Northwest Upstate Illini Conference match-up with Orangeville High School, Fulton Varsity Boys Coach R.J. Coffey and Principal Jeff Parsons accepted a 1500 School Victory plaque from the IBCA. The milestone was achieved during the 2022-23 season.
Since the 1928-29 season, the Steamers have captured an unmatched 28 regional titles, 3 sectional crowns, and made 3 Sweet Sixteen appearance and made 2 trips to the state tournament.
Included in the presentation were the families of 3 IBCA Hall of Famers. W.F. Massey – represented by sons Mark and Evan – won 167 games, 3 regional titles and a state tournament trip in 1936 and coached the first 10 years of Steamer Basketball.
For 24 seasons, (1959-1982) Stan Borgman won over 500 games - 393 at Fulton - and won 11 reginal titles and made an appearance in the 1973 Class A Quarterfinals. Coach Borgman was a member of the original IBCA Board of Directors in 1972. The Fulton court is named after him. Coach Borgman was represented by granddaughter Devin Dierks.
Another HOF Coach was Chuck DeWild who served 10 seasons (1949-1958) and posted 172 wins and 5 regional crowns. He later served as Rockford College Coach for several seasons.
The only player from Fulton in the IBCA Hall of Fame is Eric Ottens who continued his career at the University of Evansville before his untimely passing. He was represented by his parents, Denny and Sue Ottens. He was coached by IBCA Hall of Fame Coach Barry Bauer (1995-2002) who earned 163 wins during his tenure.
An important observation regarding Steamer Basketball is the continued family legacy. Many generations continue an enviable tradition at Fulton High School. In small-school basketball – No One Does It Better!
At this time, the IBCA congratulates Coach R.J. Coffey and all Steamers players, coaches and fans – past and present – on this great achievement!