DeKALB – Students packed in tight under the baskets, an enthusiastic crowd and a lot of money raised for athletics.
It may have had a new name, but it was the same DeKalb-Sycamore doubleheader Friday night at the Northern Illinois University Convocation Center.
The Sycamore girls beat DeKalb, 41-32, in the first game of the First National Challenge – formerly the Castle Challenge – then the DeKalb boys beat Sycamore, 51-33.
The crowd was announced at 4,092.
At halftime, First National Bank Illinois Market President Tim Struthers presented the schools with a combined check for $70,000.
“I’ve been doing this for about 14 years, and every time is a really good feeling,” Struthers said. “The money is a great thing, but the best thing is seeing the pure, wholesome environment of these schools coming together. It’s a very uplifting and rewarding experience.”
In 16 years, the event has raised a total of $980,000 for the two schools.
For coverage of the games, turn to Sports, page B1.