County Teams Prepare For Grace-Filled Tourney

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This September, the volleyball teams from Lincolnwood, Hillsboro, Litchfield and Nokomis will join 12 other schools in raising awareness for a rare disease that is plaguing one little girl from Montgomery County.

The inaugural Montgomery County Invitational Tournament has been dubbed "A Grace-Filled Tourney and will raise funds for the research study at Washington University that is looking for a cure for infantile neuroaxonal dystrophy (INAD), a rare genetic condition that causes nerve function to decrease and affects five-year-old Grace Herschelman of Hillsboro.

The 16-team tournament is a joint effort between the Lincolnwood and Hillsboro athletic departments and will be played in four gyms at the two schools on Sept. 8 and 9.

The brainchild of Lincolnwood volleyball coach Kimberly Denney, the tournament will feature four pools of four playing on Sept. 8, with crossover bracket play occurring the following day.

Lincolnwood, Madison, Father McGivney and Roxana will play in the "Beat INAD" pool at the Lincolnwood main gym, while Nokomis, Staunton, South County and Ramsey will play in the Lincolnwood multi-purpose gym in the "Hope" pool.

In Hillsboro, at the high school gym, Hillsboro, Auburn, St. Elmo/Brownstown and Morrisonville will play in the "Grace" pool, with Litchfield, North Mac, Vandalia and Lovejoy playing in the "Purple" pool at the Hillsboro Junior High gym.

The tournament is currently accepting sponsorships for the tournament T-shirt for $100 apiece, with proceeds going toward INAD research. Twenty-four area businesses and individuals have already signed up to sponsor the event. Several others have also signed up as program sponsors with contributions of $30 or more.

For more information on the tournament and how to become a sponsor, go to montgomerycountyinvitational.weebly.com or call Lincolnwood at 217-229-4313. For more information on Grace's journey, go to agracefilledjourney.com or www.facebook.com/agracefilledjourney.

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