State Stories


NFHS Recognizes Illinois Coaches of the Year, Names Fieldcrest’s Tina Fortner the National Spirit Coach of the Year

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The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) has named Fieldcrest High School Competitive Dance Coach Tina Fortner its National Spirit Coach of the Year. Fortner is the 15th coach from Illinois to win the National Coach of the Year honor and the first in the Spirit category.

“It is a great honor and means a lot after all the years and time I have put in to coaching,” said Fortner. “I coach because I love the sport of dance and the girls, but this is definitely a milestone I never expected.”

“Tina Fortner represents the best of high school athletics,” said IHSA Assistant Executive Director and Dance Administrator Tracie Henry. “She is a coach who is passionate about the young ladies on her team excelling not only when they step onto the floor to compete, but also when they are in the classroom and community. She is the type of coach who leaves a lasting impression on her student-athletes and is very deserving of this exceptional honor.”

The individuals below were the NFHS State Coaches of the Year in Illinois based upon the 2013-14 school year. State honorees were submitted by the IHSA earlier this school year to the NFHS. An NFHS panel then reviewed the candidates and selected Section winners, followed by National winners. Past Illinois state honorees are archived here

*Asterisks indicates coach was also a Section Coach of the Year

NFHS State Coaches of the Year - Illinois
Coach, School - Sport
Derek Leonard, Rochester - Football (11-Player)
Chad Lakatos, Edwardsville - Boys Track & Field (Outdoor)
Neil Alexander, Lincoln Boys - Basketball
Dave Greer, Pleasant Plains - Baseball
Mark Heiderscheid, Edwardsville - Boys Soccer
Michael Powell, Oak Park-River - Forest Wrestling
Gene Jones, Metamora* - Boys Cross Country*
John Nesbitt, Hinsdale Central* - Boys Tennis*
Ken Colmone, El Paso-Gridley - Boys Golf
Michelle Meyer, Normal University - Boys Swimming & Diving
Roscoe Dowell, Cahokia - Girls Track & Field (Outdoor)
Eric Orne, Quincy Notre Dame* - Girls Basketball*
Greg Cothern, Pana - Girls Volleyball
Chad Kutscher, Rochester - Girls Soccer
Jim Scott, West Prairie - Softball (Fast Pitch)
Todd Vohland, Decatur St. Teresa - Girls Cross Country
Vince Desecki, Gurnee Warren - Girls Tennis
Robert Guy, New Trier - Girls Swimming & Diving
Patricia McGovern, St. Ignatius - Girls Golf
Tina Fortner, Fieldcrest* - Spirit*
Joe Hames, Plainfield Central - Girls Badminton
Mark Tubb, Mascoutah - Boys Bowling
Frank Navakowski, Glenbard West - Boys Gymnastics
Yun Chen, Gurnee Warren - Boys Volleyball
Jim Caliendo, Sandburg - Boys Water Polo
Lindsey Siegel, Libertyville - Girls Bowling
Kim Hostman, Geneva - Girls Gymnastics
Jeff Wimer, Stevenson - Girls Water Polo

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