Carle physicians, athletic trainers and ambulance personnel will be at the ready on the field of the University of Illinois’ Memorial Stadium during the post-Thanksgiving state football championship games organized by the Illinois High School Association (IHSA). Three athletic trainers from Carle Sports-Med, five Carle physicians and Carle Arrow Ambulance will be on hand to assist the best of the best high school football teams from throughout the state.
This is the first time since 2018 the IHSA State Championship games are at Memorial Stadium. There will be four games on Friday, Nov. 25 for 1A, 2A, 3A and 4A schools. On Saturday, Nov. 26, division 5A, 6A, 7A and 8A schools will compete.
“It’s a privilege to have our name associated with the IHSA,” John Flannell, MS, ATC, PES, Sports Medicine supervisor for Carle Orthopedics and Sports Medicine.
Most of the schools have medical coverage for their teams, but some may need some additional assistance. “We are there to support them,” he said.
Carle physician, Steven Sparenberg, DO, specializes in wound healing and is volunteering to work with the IHSA state football championship games again, as he has for years.
“It’s always exciting to be on the University of Illinois field and see teams that have worked so hard together to get there. Our Carle athletic trainers are very competent, professional and a joy to work with.”
Sparenberg said being on the sidelines means having the privilege to see up close some amazing plays. “One always feels the excitement and energy ramping up from the sidelines for both teams. When Monticello went to state in 2018 and won, it was amazing being on the sidelines with Carle athletic trainer Kelly Harrington, ATC.”
Casey Hug, ATC, said the athletic trainers meet with high school athletic staff before the game to let them know where Carle athletic trainers stand during the games if needed and all they need to do is motion for help.
Program coordinator Kristen Streeter, MS, LAT, ATC, PES, said the high school championship games provide
another opportunity for Carle representatives to act as hosts for the event and provide assistance and communication with team personnel should an injured player need hospital attention.
Orthopedics and Sports Medicine,