The Amazing Appleknockers: Illinois' Cinderella Basketball Teamby Anne Ryman, Teri Campbell
In 1964, Cobden was a quiet village of 900 residents tucked away in the Shawnee Hills of Southern Illinois. The high school's basketball team changed that, grabbing the attention of sports fans throughout Illinois as it made a dramatic run to the finals of the Illinois state high school basketball tournament. An unusually tall and talented team with a catchy mascot… See more details below
In 1964, Cobden was a quiet village of 900 residents tucked away in the Shawnee Hills of Southern Illinois. The high school's basketball team changed that, grabbing the attention of sports fans throughout Illinois as it made a dramatic run to the finals of the Illinois state high school basketball tournament. An unusually tall and talented team with a catchy mascot, the Appleknockers, Cobden played at a time before schools were divided into classes based on enrollment. The school had just 147 students, and the Appleknockers defeated schools that were many times their size as they moved along the tournament trail.
This true account traces the background of the Appleknockers' coach, Dick Ruggles, and how a young man from Boston wound up coaching in the hillside farming community. The story covers the two years that Ruggles served as Cobden's coach, the two most successful basketball seasons in the school's history. It also reveals the obstacles, tragedies, and triumphs the players faced, both on and off the basketball court.
The achievements of the Appleknockers were widely covered in newspapers from Evensville, Indiana, to St. Louis, Missouri, to Chicago. Their readers were drawn to the underdog team, and the Appleknockers moved from the sports pages into Illinois folklore. People from Illinois and the surrounding states are still talking about the Appleknockers nearly a half century later, which speaks to the enduring and far-reaching appeal of this team and its story.
- Lusk Creek Publishing
- Publication date:
- Sales rank:
- Product dimensions:
- 6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.90(d)
- Age Range:
- 10 Years
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Story telling at its best. More than just high school basketball, this is a beautifully written account of 1960's small town culture, ethos and pride. Capturing the story almost 50 years after the fact adds to the drama and deepens the perspective. I've searched and can't find any other work produced by these authors. Can that be true?
A wonderfully written piece of small town "Americana" that rivals the Andy Griffith show for telling the small town story of America in the 1960s. The story kept me interested from beginning to end as I fell in love with the team just as the state of Illinois did back when this was happening. An excellent read!!!!--- Scott P.
A heartwarming story about a little team that "could" and a community that rallied their cry! Cobden, Illinois is home to the Appleknockers - a team mascot as original and unique as this story about a group of guys that just wouldn't give up! Both authors are from this amazing little town in Southern Illinois and went to school with many of these families. Each player interviewed got to relieve a moment in history and tell his story again from his perspective......reliving and reviving the excitement! It's an Amazing story written with passion and care to detail. It will make you laugh, shed a tear and wish you were there in 1964 cheering the Appleknockers on!
I enjoyed this book so much! It was an interesting read that held my attention the whole time. I found it hard to put down. I love the name Appleknockers and hope to get to Cobden, IL one day to see the "Home of the Appleknockers." I would recommend this book to everyone.
Appreciation to the authors, Teri Campbell and Anne Ryman, for writing this wonderful book so everyone would know about THE AMAZING APPLEKNOCKERS. Thank you to the team and coach for the best basketball ever played!!
This book tugs at your heart and takes you back to a simpler time when discipline, work ethic, and responsibility reigned supreme. I did not grow up in Cobden, but I felt as though I had after reading it. I don't ever remember reading a book which made me laugh out loud, cry like a baby, and at times be angry. To look at the cover and the title one may assume The Amazing Appleknockers is another sports story. It is far from just about basketball. I would highly recommend all kids who play the game, coaches who coach, and parents whose children play basketball or for that matter any sport READ THIS BOOK! It is a story which needed to be told and it was told well!
Sports fan or not an exciting a heart warming read. Big City, Small city, urban or rural this book will captivate your soul. If you enjoyed the movie Hoosiers; you will absolutely love this book. Takes place in the heartland of America where basketball is king and where the small rural American work ethic is paramount. It is filled with the "thrill of victory and the agony of defeat"...your life will never be the same as you read of this amazing time with an amazing group of characters as they lived and struggled to acheive an amazing goal....Jim; Bakersfield CA
This book is, in a word, AMAZING!! It is truly one of the best books I have ever read. The Amazing Appleknockers filled me with every emotion and I could not put it down. The players, coach, and townspeople of Cobden became like part of my family as I read the book. I never wanted the story to end!!