ST. JOSEPH (WCIA) — St. Joseph-Ogden has long been the standard for success in central Illinois and once again, the Spartans are in position to make some more history. SJO wrapped up its regular season on Monday with a 32-2 record and an Illini Prairie Conference championship. The Spartans are a top seed in the Millikin sectional and are looking for their ninth-straight regional title. Playing a tough schedule has been a staple for head coach Josh Haley, who has made two trips to state, finishing runner-up in back-to-back seasons in 2016 and 2017.

“Anytime you’re in big games it helps you preparation wise,” Haley said. “You’ve been in those heart pumping moments and I think it helps the kids, it helps the coaching staff. We have a routine as far as how we scout, how we prepare, and then how we get into the game. I think all our past success helps us each season.”

St. Joseph-Ogden opens up postseason play on Wednesday facing Paxton-Buckley-Loda at the Hoopeston Area Regional. If they win, the Spartans will face either Bismarck-Henning-Rossville-Alvin or Clifton Central for the title on Saturday at 10 a.m.