Mazon High School "Red Devils"

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Mazon High School Building 1912 - 1955
mazonhsphoto1935ybdav.jpg
Submitted by Kerry Gonnam

Mazon School History
mazonhsbldghistorydav.jpg
Submitted by Kerry Gonnam (left click on photo for larger view)

The History of Mazon High School
 
Mazon (population 904) is located on Il. Route 47 approximately 8 miles south of Morris.  This places Mazon in the south-center of Grundy County.  "Johnny Run" creek runs through town as does the famous railroad of song, the Atchison, Topeka, & Sante Fe.
 
The origin of Mazon dates back to the 1830s. The town was given its name due to an abundance of a plant called nettle which grew in the area. Mazon is the Algonquin Native American name for nettle. The plant was used by Native Americans to make a form of rope. Mazon was officially recognized as a town in 1895.

Mazon residents began an education system for the children very early on in its settlement. In 1855 a school was built specifically for this purpose. In 1875 an addition to this school was needed to house the numerous students attending due to the growing population. The photo below depicts this building.

Mazon School 1855 - 1888
mazonfirsthsbldg18821888dav.jpg
Submitted by Kerry Gonnam (left click on photo for larger view)

In the late 1880s, either 1888 or 1889, a brick school building was constructed in Mazon. This building housed a 2-year high school. The first graduating class from this school earned their diplomas in 1893. In 1906 the course of study was increased to a 4-year high school. This building continued to serve the town in this capacity until 1912. A new brick building replaced it and the 1888 building eventually became an apartment house. See photo below.

Mazon HS Building 1888 - 1912
mazonhsbldg18881912dav.jpg
Submitted by Kerry Gonnam (left click on photo for larger view)

In 1912 a new brick high school building was erected in Mazon. This building was a 3-story structure. In 1919 a gymnasium was added to the grounds. The 1912 building served as Mazon High School until 1955 when a new high school building was constructed. This 1912 high school building was demolished to make way for a new grade school building. The gymnasium, however, remained and is still in use today as the grade school gym. A photo of the gym is available further down on this page. A photo of the 1912 building is available below.

Mazon HS Building 1912 - 1955
mazonhsphoto1935ybdav.jpg
Submitted by Kerry Gonnam (left click on photo for larger view)

The school was known as Mazon Community and later Mazon Township High School through the 1972-73 school year. In 1973 the communities of Kinsman and Verona, each of whom were operating a K-8 grade school and sending their kids to Mazon for high school, voted to consolidate their efforts completely with Mazon. The Mazon High School then became officially known as Mazon-Verona-Kinsman High School, though most people in the area had been referring to the high school in this manner since the 1955 building was constructed.

Mazon-Verona-Kinsman High School Bldg. 1955-1990
mazonvkhsbldg2011dav.jpg
Submitted by Kerry Gonnam (left click on photo for larger view)

The Mazon-Verona-Kinsman High School  district lasted through the 1990 school year.  In 1990 M-V-K was deactivated and the school district was annexed into the Seneca School System.
 
There continues to operate an elementary school and a middle school that between them serve grades K - 8 for the kids of Mazon, Verona, and Kinsman. 
  
Mazon High School Quick Facts
 
Year opened:                    late 1800s
Year became M-V-K HS: 1973
School nickname:             the "Red Devils"
School colors:                   Red & White
School Fight Song:         "Mazon High, We're True to You"
 
                                      Mazon High, we're true to you,
                                      Our Alma Mater ever dear.
                                      Mazon High, we're true to you,
                                      That we are loyal, never fear.
                                      Mazon High, we're true to you,
                                      We greet you now with cheer and song,
                                      With deeds of worth and tested courage strong,
                                      Mazon High, we're true to you.
 
                                                                  Cheer
                                      Mazon High!  Mazon High!  Mazon High! GO!
                                             The Team!  The Team!  The Team!     

Mazon High School Gymnasium 1919 - 1955
mazonhsgymyb1935dav.jpg
Submitted by Kerry Gonnam, Still in use as Grade School Gym Today

Grade School Gym Building 2011
mazonoriggym2011dav.jpg
Former High School Gym, Built in 1919

Athletics
 
Two sports are cited on the IHSA web site as winning IHSA hardware; Boys Basketball and Boys Track & Field.  It is thought that Mazon High School also offered baseball and possibly football.  We know they excelled in Track as you will read below.

Kerry Gonnam advises that Mazon HS competed in football in the 1940s and possibly in the 1950s. The school competed in baseball in the 1960s for certain and offered wrestling in the 1960s as well.

If you have any information on Mazon HS please e-mail us at ihsgdwebsite@comcast.net .
 
Boys Track & Field  
 
The boys track team of 1916 brought home some real IHSA hardware.  The team finished 3rd in the "B" Meet, topping such schools as Aurora West and Normal University HS.  The results and individual winners in the meet are listed below. Excellent job Mazon Tracksters!! 
 
1915-16      H. Newport       Discus                 2nd Place
                 H. Newport       Shot Put              2nd Place
                 Drake               220 Yard Run       4th Place
                                         880 Yard Relay    2nd Place
 
                             Final Team Standings - 1916 "B" Meet
 
                             1.)   Harrisburg       -      20 points
                             2.)   Jacksonville    -      13
                             3.)   MAZON          -      10 
                             3.)   Oregon           -      10
                             3.)   Pawnee          -      10
                             6.)   Georgetown    -        9
                             7.)   Normal U-High         8
                             7.)   Aurora West   -        8
                             7.)   Byron             -        8
                             7.)   Manteno         -        8
 
Boys Cross Country
 
The Mazon High School Cross Country team had one athletes who medaled at the state meet TWICE!
 
1956-57                 Bill Mellon                   5th Place State Meet       
1957-58                                                     4th Place State Meet
 
Boys Basketball
 
The Mazon High School "Red Devils" enjoyed many great seasons on the hardwood court. Included in this was the magical season during the 1967-68 school year. The boys of this year won the Coal Valley Conference Championship, were Plano Holiday Tournament Champs and Odell District Champions.  The team was coached by Mr. Keith Houchin with a record of 24 - 5 for the year.  Members of that team included.
Rick Beeler - senior, Nicholas Walsh - sophomore, Robert Plott - junior, Dennis Jackson - senior, Daniel Arnold - sophomore, James Prindiville - junior, William Frizzell - senior, Douglas Lowery - senior,Gregory Finch - junior, Roy Ryan - junior, and David Roe - senior.
Several scores involving Mazon High School playing in the IHSA State Tourney were located on a website titled "Illinois Postseason Basketball Scores." These scores are included below.
 
1919-20   (Record Needed)        Coach Reuben Hultgren
From Eric Hultgren:  "Reuben H. Hultgren, my grandfather, taught and coached at Mazon High School after serving in the Navy during WWI.  I'm not sure what he taught that early in his career but he was the athletics coach during that time."

Mazon HS Basketball Coach Reuben H. Hultgren 1920
mazonhscoachhultgrentribute1920dav.jpg
Submitted by Eric Hultgren

Mazon HS B-ball Team/Coach Reuben Hultgren 1919-20
mazonhsbasketball191920dav.jpg
Submitted by Eric Hultgren

1921-22                     Joliet District Tournament              Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd Beat Marseilles 21-16
                                  2nd Rd Score Needed
                                  Joliet beat Gardner in title game
   
1922-23 through 1931-32  Postseason scores, records, and coaches' names needed
  
1932-33                     Dwight District Tournament           Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Reddick 29-25
                                  Reddick lost to Pontiac in 2nd Rd.
                                  Pontiac beat Morris in title game
   
1933-34                     Dwight District Runner-Up         Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd Beat Forrest 26-22
                                  2nd Rd Beat Morris 23-21
                                  Semi-final Beat Fairbury 26-23 (O/T)
                                  Title Game lost to Dwight 28-17
*The site lists Mazon as advancing to the Joliet Sectional, however this is not confirmed. Here are the results of that tournament for Mazon as listed:
                                  Joliet Sectional Tournament
                                  1st Rd Beat LaGrange 26-21
                                  Semi-final lost to Joliet 33-14
                                  Joliet lost to Thornton in title game
                                  Thornton lost to Quincy in IHSA Title game
   
1934-35                     Dwight District Tournament           Coach's name & record needed    
                                  1st Rd lost to Cullom 19-18
                                  Cullom lost to Gardner in title game
  
1935-36                     Mazon District Runner-Up          Coach's name & record needed
                                  Semi-final Beat Serena 25-24
                                  Title Game lost to Braidwood 29-18
 
1936-37                     Morris Regional Tournament         Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Serena 33-23
                                  Serena lost to Coal City in semi-final
                                  Coal City beat Braidwood in title game
 
1937-38  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.
 
1938-39                     Dwight Regional Tournament        Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Dwight 32-25
                                  Dwight beat Coal City in title game
                                  Dwight won Sectional also.
                                  Dwight lost to Champaign in Sweet 16
 
1939-40                     Dwight Regional Runner-Up      Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd Beat Chatsworth 33-32
                                  Semi-final Beat Coal City
                                  Title Game lost to Dwight 41-37
 
1940-41                     Marseilles Regional Tournament  Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Streator 51-24
                                  Streator beat Marseilles in title game
                                  Streator lost in Sweet 16 Rd to Canton
                                  Canton placed 4th in IHSA Tourney
 
1941-42                     Streator Regional Tournament      Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Streator 59-40
                                  Streator beat Morris in title game
                                  Streator lost in Elite 8 Rd to Paris
                                  Paris lost in State Championship game
  
1942-43  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.
 
1943-44                     Dwight Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Pontiac 79-37
                                  Gardner beat Pontiac in title game
  
1944-45                     Dwight Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Pontiac 71-42
                                  Coal City beat Pontiac in semi-final
                                  Coal City beat Gardner in title game
   
1945-46                     Dwight Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Gardner 37-33
                                  Gardner lost to Pontiac in semi-final
                                  Pontiac beat Cullom in title game
1946-47                     Dwight Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Forrest 70-43
                                  Forrest beat Coal City in title game
  
1947-48                     Dwight Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Pontiac 52-31
                                  Coal City beat Pontiac in semi-final
                                  Forrest beat Coal City in title game
1948-49                     Dwight Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Coal City 54-36
                                  Forrest beat Coal City in title game
1949-50                     Piper City District Tournament       Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Cullom 54-32
                                  Cullom lost to Odell St. Paul in title game
  
1950-51                     Chatsworth District Tournament    Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Cullom 42-24
                                  Cullom lost to Odell St. Paul in title game
  
1951-52                     Earlville District Tournament          Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Earlville 91-27
                                  Earlville lost to Minooka in title game
1952-53                     Gardner Regional Tournament      Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Gardner 46-44
                                  Gardner lost to Braidwood in semi-final
                                  Braidwood lost to Pontiac in title game
1953-54                     Pontiac Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Dwight 56-40
                                  Dwight lost to Braidwood in semi-final
                                  Pontiac beat Braidwood in title game
  
1954-55  Postseason scores, record, and coach's name needed.
  
1955-56                     Gardner Regional Tournament       Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Pontiac 96-75
                                  Pontiac beat Coal City in title game
  
1956-57                     Mazon Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd Beat 54-41
                                  Semi-final lost to Pontiac 63-57
                                  Pontiac beat Coal City in title game
  
1957-58                     Wilmington Regional Tourney        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Coal City 63-62 (O/T)
                                  Coal City lost to Wilmington in semi-final
                                  Wilmington beat Pontiac in title game
            
1958-59                     Dwight Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd Beat Coal City 61-57
                                  Semi-final lost to Pontiac 61-46
                                  Pontiac beat Kempton in title game
1959-60                     Gardner Regional Tournament      Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Braidwood 58-41
                                  Braidwood beat Wilmington in title game
1960-61                    Mazon Regional Tournament         Coach's name & record needed
                                 1st Rd lost to Wilmington 59-49
                                 Wilmington lost to Odell St Paul in semi-final
                                 St. Paul beat Braidwood in title game



Mazon HS Basketball 1960-61
mazonreddevilsbeatbraidwood1961dav.jpg
Submitted by Kerry Gonnam

1961-62   20 - 6        Coal Valley Conference Champions       Coach's name &record needed
                                  Pontiac Regional Scores
                                  1st Rd Beat Dwight 77-58
                                  Semi-final lost to Pontiac 78-63
                                  Pontiac beat St. Paul in title game

Article Regarding Regional Tourn. - 1961-62 Season
mazonregional1962dav.jpg
Submitted by Kerry Gonnam

1962-63                    Dwight Regional Tournament          Coach Keith Houchin
                                 1st Rd lost to Braidwood 79-40
                                 Braidwood beat Pontiac in title game
  
1963-64                    Gardner Regional Tournament        Coach Keith Houchin
                                 1st Rd lost to Reddick 68-35
                                 Reddick lost to Pontiac in semi-final
                                 Pontiac beat Coal City in title game
 
1964-65                     Pontiac Regional  Tournament       Coach Keith Houchin
                                  1st Rd Beat Dwight 71-65
                                  Semi-final lost to Pontiac 64-59 (O/T)
                                  Coal City beat Pontiac in title game
  
1965-66                    Dwight Regional Tournament          Coach Keith Houchin
                                 1st Rd lost to Coal City 57-49
                                 Braidwood beat Coal City in title game
 
1966-67                     Pontiac Regional  Tournament       Coach Keith Houchin
                                  1st Rd Beat Wilmington 58-45
                                  Semi-final lost to Dwight 56-48
                                  Dwight beat Pontiac in title game

1967-68        24 - 5    Odell District Champions            Coach Keith Houchin
                                    Coal Valley Conf. Champs
                                    Plano Christmas Classic Champs
                                    (Beat Lisle Sr. HS, a much larger school)
                                  Odell District Scores
                                  1st Rd Beat Cullom 54-40
                                  Semi-final Beat Flanagan 57-47
                                  Title Game Beat Reddick 48-42 (O/T)
                                  Dwight Regional Tournament      
                                  1st Rd Beat Herscher 85-53
                                  Semi-final lost to Pontiac 75-50
                                  Pontiac beat Dwight in title game
 
1968-69                     Pontiac Regional Tournament        Coach's name &record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Pontiac 105-63
                                  Pontiac beat Reddick in title game
  
1969-70                     Cullom District Tournament            Coach's name & record needed    
                                  1st Rd lost to Cornell 68-59
                                  Cornell lost to Redick in title game                   
 
1970-71                     Mazon District Tournament            Coach Lawrence Ahern
                                  1st Rd lost to Odell 69-49
                                  Odell lost to Reddick in title game
 
1971-72                     Marseilles Class 'A' Regional         Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Marseilles 70-55
                                  Marseilles beat Minooka in title game
 
*1972-73                    Mazon Class 'A' Regional              Coach's name & record needed
                                  1st Rd lost to Minooka 67-50
                                  Minooka lost to Wilmington in title game
    
*School became officially known as Mazon-Verona-Kinsman in the summer of 1973.

                                                                   
Girls Basketball
 
Mazon High School organized a Girls Basketball team before the days of Title IX and competed in unofficial IHSA state tournaments before actual Tournament play started in 1977. The earliest recorded team played for Mazon High School in the 1919-20 school year. An article from the Mazon HS yearbook of 1920 is available as provided by Catherine Sidwell. Catherine's grandmother, Thelma McClellan, played on this team. There are a couple of other schools on this site that had these teams as well. MHS's teams excelled in the early 1940's as they took second place in the Tournament three straight years in a row from 1941 to 1943! On top of that, they had a third-place finish in 1944.

Mazon HS Girls Basketball - 1919-20
mazongirlsbasketballthelma1920dav.jpg
Submitted by Catherine Sidwell (From 1920 Mazon HS Yearbook)

Wrestling

Wrestling was a part of the athletic program in the early 1960s for certain. If you have any further information please contact us.

1963-64                Coach Tom Kroll 

Baseball
 
The Red Devils participated in baseball in the 1960s as well. It is likely the school fielded a team from the 1920s through the 1970s, possibly into the final year the school was open (1989-90). If you have any information regarding the Red Devil baseball program, please contact us.

Football
  
Football was offered at Mazon High School for several years from 1947-51 before it was discontinued. Thanks to our good friend and conference historian Tom Sikorski, we have been able to locate information about the school's football program:

1947  0-2        Coach unknown (only two games found)
1948  0-7        Coach unknown
1949  3-5        Coach George Walker
1950  3-4-1     Coach unknown
1951  0-6-1     Coach unknown (missing one game)

Need More Information 
 
If you have information you would like to share with us regarding Mazon High School please complete a Guest Commentary Form. We would especially like a photo of the original High School building and great sports teams of MHS history. You can e-mail this information to us at ihsgdwebsite@comcast.net or write to us at:
 
Illinois HS Glory Days
6439 N. Neva St.
Chicago, Il.   60631   

Mazon HS Freshman Class of 1920
mazonhsgrandmasclass1920dav.jpg
Submitted by Catherine Sidwell (From 1920 Mazon HS Yearbook)

Mazon HS Photo Montage - 1920
mazonhsyearbookphotomontage1920dav.jpg
Submitted by Catherine Sidwell (From 1920 Mazon HS Yearbook)

Mazon HS Photo Montage - 1920
mazonhsyearbookphotomontage31920dav.jpg
Submitted by Catherine Sidwell (From 1920 Mazon HS Yearbook)

Mazon HS Freshman Class Officers - 1920
mazonhsclassofficers1920dav.jpg
Submitted by Catherine Sidwell (From 1920 Mazon HS Yearbook)

Mazon HS Basketball Players - 1920
mazonhsmcclellanfredbasketbal1920dav.jpg
Submitted by Catherine Sidwell (From 1920 Mazon HS Yearbook)

The photos above were submitted by Catherine Sigwell. Catherine's grandmother and uncle were Fred McClellan (photo to the left) and Thelma McClellan, pictured in the photo to the right.

Mazon Township High School
mazontwshphs191255mons.jpg
1912 - 1955