JACKSONVILLE — McKendree University senior forward John Steppe, of Effingham, collected one of the top individual academic honors from the Great Lakes Valley Conference on Thursday as he was named the 2012-13 GLVC Men's Basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
"John has done a tremendous job of balancing academics and basketball," said McKendree men's basketball coach Harry Statham. "He was the recipient of the Biology Award at our Honor's Day Convocation and was also voted our Most Valuable Player in men's basketball.
"John was a leader of our team and was a consistent, high-level performer in every GLVC game. I am thrilled to see him recognized for his dedication and hard work."
Steppe was a second-team all-GLVC selection for the Bearcats, averaging 17.8 points and a team-best 7.4 rebounds per game. His 91 assists led the team and he shot 79 percent from the free-throw line.
Steppe became the 47th member of the Bearcats' 1,000-point club with a 27-point effort at Lincoln University. He finished with 1,462 points and ranks 26th on the Bearcats' all-time scoring list.
Steppe finished in the Bearcats' career top 10 in 3-point field goals (191), assists (321) and steals (134).
In the classroom, Steppe graduated with a cumulative grade-point average of 3.68 while majoring in biology. That includes a perfect 4.0 GPA in his final semester.
Earlier this week, Steppe was one of 159 McKendree student-athletes honored as a 2012-13 Academic All-GLVC recipient.
"This is definitely a great honor," said Steppe. "I have always tried to put my work in the classroom first, and basketball second. To have this award come in our first year in the GLVC makes this even more special.
"I have had a great experience at McKendree, building relationships with my professors, coaches, fellow students and everyone I have come in contact with over the years. I would do it all again."
Preseason honor for Lane
Illinois College senior offensive lineman Keith Lane from Highland has been named to Beyond Sports Network's Division III Preseason All-America Team.
Lane, a second-team Preseason All-American, was a BSN All-America honorable mention selection following the 2012 season.
Lane, returns to Illinois College following a standout junior campaign. He anchored the Blue Boys offensive line, which helped the IC offense to rank seventh in scoring offense and eighth in total offense among all NCAA Division III teams.
Lane, an all-conference selection each of the past two seasons, did not allow a sack in 2011 or 2012.
Illinois College, located in Jacksonville, opens the 2013 football season Sept. 7 at Hanover College.
Lynx to host soccer camp
The Lindenwood University-Belleville men's soccer program will be hosting its first camp July 28 at the school. The camp runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the cost is $40 per player.
The camp is designed for players to sharpen their skills and pursue playing at the college level. Participants must bring a soccer ball, shinguards, indoor and outdoor shoes and a water bottle (water will be provided).
To register, email coach Dan Hogan at firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your name, age, phone number, and email address.
Registration will take place at 8:30 a.m. on the day of the camp. Players under the age of 18 will need a parent or guardian to sign the waiver form before attending.
Indoor soccer returns to STL
After seven years without a professional indoor soccer team in the area, the St. Louis Ambush will begin play when the 2013-14 Major Indoor Soccer League season kicks off this fall.
The home opener is slated for mid-November at the Family Arena in St. Charles.
St. Louis has a long and distinguished place in professional indoor soccer history -- from the Steamers at the old Arena on Oakland Avenue to Ambush teams of the 1990s to the more recent incarnation of the Steamers that came within a hair of capturing the 2005-06 MISL Championship.
Daryl Doran, former Ambush player and coach of the 1994-95 championship team, will be the head coach of the new Ambush.
For more information about the St. Louis Ambush, visit www.stlouisambush.com or call the team office at 636-395-0896.