Penfield High School "Tigers"

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Former Penfield High / Grade School
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Now Penfield Agricultural Museum

Penfield High School Complex Rear View 2013
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The History of Penfield High School
 
Penfield is a small farming community located just south of U.S. Route 136 on County Road 22 in northeastern Champaign County.  The town is not listed on the 2000 Illinois Census report. A guess of the population based on a map showing the number of streets in town would be about 200-250 people. Penfield is located about 16 miles northeast of Champaign. A minor branch of the Vermillion River runs through the north side of town.

Penfield's Oldest Building
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Former Church Building

The history of Penfield and its school system is in need of research. Penfield is well known as an antique tractor supporter and its former grade/high school (pictured above) is now used as an agricultural museum. Penfield High School probably was established in the late 1800's. Though it is not verified, we feel Penfield High School may have closed her doors as a high school in the late 1940's. The high school aged kids of Penfield were then bused to nearby Armstrong to attend high school. Armstrong High School is still in operation today. Penfield may have maintained its grade school status for some years after the high school closed. However, this information is not known.
 
Penfield should be commended for their excellent use of their former school building. As you can see above, Penfield residents took advantage of this great resource and put it to a worthwhile and proud usage. Other great photos of Penfield, Illinois can be enjoyed at http://www.infinityfarms.com/penfield_illinois.htm and http://www.antiquefarm.org/mainsite/museum/museum_index.html . Excellent job!!
 
Penfield High School Quick Facts
 
Year opened:              late 1800's
Year closed:               late 1940's
School nickname:       the "Tigers"
School colors:            Blue & White (?)
School Fight Song:     unavailable 
Athletics
 
Penfield High School definitely offered basketball as is evidenced by their two District Titles won. PHS probably also offered baseball and track like all other small schools of its day. We are hopeful a Penfield resident can help us out with this information.
 
Boys' Basketball
 
The Penfield boys won two District titles during their existence. It is quite possible other great seasons were enjoyed. If you have this information, please share it with us. 
 
The two title years are listed below. In 1928-29, the school won the district title with just 15 boys in the school and it did not have the luxury of having its own gym. The Penfield High School boys won the first two games of the Sectional Tournament placing them in the SWEET 16 of the IHSA Tournament in the one-class basketball tournament. Included in their wins in the Sectional were victories over Marshall and Kankakee, schools many times larger then Penfield. The PHS boys would lose in the title game to Champaign High School, who would go on to place 2nd in the IHSA Tournament that year.
 
The following season, Penfield started the season with over 30 consecutive victories before bowing out of the state tournament at the District level. Unfortunately, coaches names and records of the teams are not known.
  
We have located some scores from the IHSA State Tourney that Penfield High School participated in on a website titled "Illinois Postseason Basketball Scores". The scores that we located on this website are reprinted below. 
 
Beginning of the basketball program through 1927-28 Postseason scores, coaches' names, and records needed.
 
1928-29         SWEET 16 FINALISTS!                           Coach's name & record needed
                    Paxton District Champions     
                    District Scores Unavailable
                    Danville Sectional Tourney 2nd Place!
                    1st Rd. Beat Marshall 24-20 (O/T)
                    Semi-final Beat Kankakee 29-15
                    Title Game - Lost to Champaign 32-20
                    Leading PHS Scorers:
                    Willard 10, Inman 8, Zimmerman 2
                    Champaign Placed Second in State!
            
1929-30        Started season with 30 consecutive victories
    
1930-31 through 1933-34 Postseason scores, coach's names, and records needed.
   
1934-35         Fisher District Tournament                        Coach's name & record needed.
                    1st Rd Lost to Fisher 56-10
                    Fisher placed 2nd in District
     
1935-36         Farmer City District Tournament                Coach's name & record needed   
                    1st Rd Beat Gifford 33-28
                    Title Game - Lost to Farmer City 48-14
     
1936-37         District Tournament Champions!            Coach's name & record needed
                    District scores unavailable
                    Champaign Regional Tourney
                    1st Rd. Lost to Fisher 31-20
                    Fisher lost in semi-final round.
         
No other scores were located on the Illinois Postseason Basketball Scores website for Penfield.
            
If You Have Any Information...
 
...you would like to share regarding the Penfield High School successes we urge you to share them with us. The hard work and dedication of those who made the school work and succeed should not be forgotten. You can e-mail information to us at ihsgdwebsite@comcast.net. or write to us at:
 
Illinios HS Glory Days
6439 N. Neva St.
Chicago,  IL   60631

Penfield Veteran's Memorial 2013
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