Erie-Prophetstown's new softball coach was a proud pitching mentor Wednesday.
Bob Phelps, an Illinois native, who built a mound legacy working in the ASA scene in Texas, had another pair of his pitching prodigies sign to play at major colleges in the powerhouse Southeastern Conference.
Taking advantage of the NCAA's Early Signing Period were Sydney Littlejohn (Alabama) and Kelsee Selman (LSU). Littlejohn actually pitched in Moline during the ASA 14-under national tournament in 2010 for the 17th-place finisher from Texas, the American Liberty Kruzers.
Phelps, who led Sherrard to a fourth-place state finish last spring, attended both signing ceremonies, receiving the Alabama pen Littlejohn used to sign as a token of her appreciation, besides having more praise heaped on him by Selman.
``She always struggled as a pitcher until she met Bob,'' raved Selman's father, Mark. ``Kelsee owes a lot of her success to him.''
Today is Tuesday, May 21, the 141st day of 2013. There are 224 days left in the year. 1863 -- 150 years ago: On Monday the 11th inst. on Center Ridge in Mercer County,some citizens got out their cannon to celebrate the taking of Richmond. The gun wasoverloaded and burst. No one was injured, but one 30-pound piece went though thesecond story of a house. 1888 -- 125 years ago: The old folks concert at the Harper Theater last night to benefit St.Luke's Cottage Hospital, attracted a large audience. 1913 -- 100 years ago: Unless depredation by vandals in Rock Island parks is halted,special policemen will be assigned to night duty to protect the flowers and other property. 1938 -- 75 years ago: Station WHBF has received a special citation from Washington forits participation in Air Mail Week, which was observed this week throughout the nation. 1963 -- 50 years ago: A 10-year high in employment in the Quad-City area was reachedat the end of the last quarter, according to an industrial employment barometer releasedtoday. 1988 -- 25 years ago: Pee Wee teams will be able to play baseball and softball as usualon Diamond Three at Dorrance Park this summer, but after that, the ball field is doomed.County crews have put the diamond back in shape after heavy trucks marred the playingfield earlier this spring. Illinois Department of Transportation crews drove onto it to makeborings for the relocation of the junction of Illinois 84 and the Port Byron-Hillsdale road.