Best of 2021: Sports

My top ten favorite sports photos shot during 2021. It was a tough edit from a weird year. There was plenty of action. But in editing dozens and dozens of photos, the vast majority of those action shots paled in comparison to those fleeting emotional moments that can be so rare and difficult to capture. This year, I separated sports and news. Here are my top ten favorite news photos of 2021:

Morton running back Seth Glatz kneels for a quick prayer before the start of the Potters’ Class 6A state football quarterfinal against Mahomet-Seymour on Saturday, Nov. 13, 2021 at Morton High School. The Potters defeated the Bulldogs 40-28 to move on to the quarterfinals for the first time in school history.
Illini Bluffs first baseman Tinley Beecham jumps for joy after making the final out at first base for a 6-3 victory over Orangeville in the Class 1A softball state semifinals Wednesday, June 16, 2021 at the Louisville Slugger Sports Complex in Peoria. The Tigers went on to win the state championship later in the day.
Morton senior Raquel Frakes, left, junior Katie Krupa, middle, and senior Sedona McCartney shed tears of joy after defeating Washington 49-44 in overtime for the Mid-Illini Conference title Saturday, March 13, 2021 in Morton. Due to the pandemic-shortened season, it was the last game that the three of them would play together.
A pair of young Bradley fans, and some older ones, vie for a T-shirt tossed into the crowd by cheerleaders during their game against SIU-Edwardsville on Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021 at Carver Arena.
Metamora’s Allison DeLost celebrates as she crosses the finish line in the 4X200-meter relay Friday, June 11, 2021 during the IHSA Class 2A Girls State Track and Field Championships in Charleston. Metamora finished second in the event.
Eureka’s Mason Trent runs through a wall of fog during player introductions Friday, Oct. 15, 2021 in Eureka. The Hornets fell to the Downs Tri-Valley Vikings 29-7.
Bradley cheerleaders perform in the second half of a game between the Braves and Missouri S&T on Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021 at Carver Arena. The Braves defeated the Miners 92-66.
A fan cheers for Limestone’s Wilson Georges during the Class 2A boys state cross country championship Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021 at Detweiller Park in Peoria. Georges went on to take second place in the race.
Exhausted Pekin back Tanner Sprecher (8) waits to shake hands with the Metamora Redbirds after the Dragons’ 35-28 victory Friday, Oct. 8, 2021 at Malone Field in Metamora.
Bradley’s Darius Hannah (35) and the Braves bench celebrate his slam dunk in the final seconds to seal a 67-61 upset victory over Drake on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021 at Carver Arena in Peoria.

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