Even though the Illinois squad of metro-east senior football all-stars lost 32-6 to Missouri on Saturday at the St. Louis High School All-Star Classic, Mascoutah High School coach Scott Battas said there were many positives during the event.
"I thought it was a good experience for the coaches and the players," said Battas, a member of the Illinois coaching staff that got to work with a 53-man roster of seniors from throughout the metro-east. "The players are coming from different places and different systems and we were trying to get them to buy into one thing for a week.
"I thought we all meshed pretty well and everybody knew their role."
The event was held at Gateway Tech High School in St. Louis.
The lone Illinois touchdown came on an 8-yard pass from Mascoutah quarterback Zach Lindsay to O'Fallon receiver Greg Gibson.
Missouri also recorded two safeties and held a decisive edge in speed, according to Battas.
The Illinois Most Valuable Player was Mater Dei defensive lineman Jordan Lampe, who had a long interception return along with a fumble recovery.
Battas said several other Illinois defensive players turned in solid games, including University of Illinois defensive line recruit Merrick Jackson from Althoff and Belleville West linebacker Pierre Gee-Tucker.
"We just didn't have much of anything go well offensively," Battas said. "We had trouble blocking them up front."
The Illinois team got one practice in at Gateway Tech and practiced throughout the week at Lindenwood University-Belleville.
Battas said the game will be held at Lindenwood-Belleville next year.
Contact reporter Norm Sanders at email@example.com or 239-2454.