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Spring Scope-Outs: HOIC softball features robust Tremont, Dee-Mack ready to take leap

Tremont softball
The Tremont Turks infield high-fives after making a play against Metamora. Jonathan Michel/Clutch Sports Media

The Heart of Illinois Conference was strong in softball last year. How strong, exactly? 

LeRoy, Class 1A’s fourth-place finisher last year, finished fourth in the regular season standings. The top half of the league beat each other up so much that no one besides LeRoy reached 20 wins. Tremont, the regular season conference champion in 2023, is set for another quality year near the top after advancing to the Class 2A sectional finals. 

The Turks bring back a handful of the conference’s best players, but so does Dee-Mack. The Chiefs were loaded up on sophomores and juniors last season and have the star power to take a jump up while other teams are focused on restocking. El Paso-Gridley brings back a dynamic duo of sisters to lead them while Eureka and Fieldcrest look to improve. Elsewhere in the conference, Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley, Tri-Valley and Heyworth make it a crowded room near the summit. 

Below, we take a look at the top returners, breakout candidates, and games to watch for each Peoria and Bloomington/Normal-area team in the Heart of Illinois Conference. Schools are listed alphabetically.

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