Returning all but two players from a school-record breaking performance in 1997, the 1998 Salem Lady Wildcats Volleyball team etched their own chapter in the school’s record book.

Salem’s 32-3 mark broke the 1997 team’s school record for wins by a team and the Lady Wildcats were undefeated against Illinois competition until their final game.

The first of two regular season tournament championships for Salem came at Carbondale, as the Lady Wildcats went 5-0 to claim the top spot. Salem won its pool by beating Carlyle, Sparta and Carbondale and finished things off by beating Sparta again in the semifinal round and Freeburg in three sets in the championship match. Senior Audrey Husk was selected to the all-tournament team.

The 1998 Salem Wildcats cross country team earned the distinction of the best season in the program’s history at the time of their induction into the Salem High School Hall of Fame.

Salem won six invitational meets with first place finishes at Murphysboro, Granite City, Mt. Vernon, Peoria Notre Dame, Springfield and Metamora. Salem’s depth showed when it finished second at the Herrin Invitational without using its top seven runners. The Wildcats other regular season meet was a seventh place finish at the Crete Monee Invitational.

The 1997 Salem Lady Wildcats Volleyball team went where no team in the program’s history had ever gone before and no team has made it that far since at the time of their induction into the Salem High School Sports Hall of Fame.

Returning a large nucleus from the 1996 team that won 26 games and was a sectional finalist, the 1997 Lady Wildcats smashed the school record for wins in a season by going 31-5 and advanced to the Class AA Sweet 16.

All four regular season losses came during tournament play. Salem was third at the Carbondale Tournament beating Marion, Mt. Carmel and St. Jacob Triad (twice), but fell in the semifinals to eventual champ Belleville Althoff.

The 1996 Salem Lady Wildcats cross country team owns two notable distinctions in school history at the time of their induction into Salem High School Sports Hall of Fame as the owners of the program’s only sectional championship and best finish at the state meet.

Coach Kirby Phillips’ crew won three invitational meets during the regular season, as they took home top honors from the Murphysboro invitational, Springfield Invitational and the Herrin Invitational. The Lady Wildcats posted a runner-up finish at the Mt. Vernon Invitational, took third in meets at Granite City, and Metamora and a fourth place effort at Peoria.

The 1990 Salem Lady Wildcats golf team was the middle squad of a threeyear run to the state tournament. Several of the squad’s members also competed on the 1989 team that finished 13th at state and the 1991 team that was ninth.

Coach Bill Morgan’s 1990 version compiled a 19-3 regular season record. One of the biggest highlights of the regular season came when the team broke the school record for low score in a nine-hole meet when the Lady Wildcats shot a 179 in a meet against Olney at the Salem Country Club.


The 1991 Salem Wildcats football team turned in one of the best seasons in school history with a stifling defense that shut out four opponents and limited three others to only one touchdown.

The North Egypt Conference co-champions compiled a 9-2 record, a victory total topped only by the 1985 team’s 10-1 mark, and at the time of its inductions was one of only three Salem football teams to have won a playoff game.

Coach Scott Steward’s team kicked off its season with a 35-21 win over Centralia in the annual Shriners Game, as running back Brad Mabrey rushed for a school record 354 yards and had touchdown runs of 48, 6 and 57 yards.

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