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Evansville, Indiana

Evansville, Indiana, USA is the home of two minor league professional, one semi-professional, and two amateur sports teams. The city is also the home to two NCAA collegiate teams, and nine high schools that participate in the Indiana High School Athletic Association. Every August, Evansville plays host to the top tier boat racing circuit of H1 Unlimited when it hosts Thunder on the Ohio along the Ohio River in downtown Evansville. Evansville has hosted Thunder on the Ohio since 1979.

Contents

Professional teams in Evansville

Evansville is currently the home of two minor league professional sports teams. These current/active teams have won a combined 1 league championship and 5 division titles.

Club League Sport Venue Established Championships
Evansville Otters Frontier League Baseball Bosse Field 1995 1 League Title; 5 Division Titles
Evansville IceMen All American Hockey League Ice hockey Swonder Ice Arena 2008 None
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Evansville Otters

The Evansville Otters are a professional minor league baseball team based in Evansville. The team is part of the West Division of the Frontier League. The Otters have won one league title and five division titles since their inception in 1995. The team plays at Bosse Field, which has been used for minor league baseball since it opened in 1915 and is the third oldest ballpark used for professional baseball on a regular basis in the United States. The Otters were previously known as the Lancaster Scouts (1993–1994).

Evansville Ice Men

The Evansville IceMen are a professional minor league hockey team based in Evansville. The team is part of the All American Hockey League. The IceMen's home stadium is Swonder Ice Arena. On February 14, 2009 Evansville IceMen goaltender Kira Hurley became the first female goalie to ever register a point in a men's professional game. Because of this achievement, Kira is in the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Kira's game memorabilia (goalie stick and game jersey) is on permanent display in the minor league section of the Hall of Fame.

Semi-Professional teams in Evansville

Evansville is the home of one semi-professional sports team. This current/active team has won 1 league championship and 2 division titles.

Club League Sport Venue Established Championships
Ohio River Bearcats Great Midwest Football League American Football Reitz Bowl & Central Stadium 2008 1 League Title; 2 Division Titles

Ohio River Bearcats

The Ohio River Bearcats are a semi-professional football team based in Evansville. The team is part of the Great Midwest Football League and their season runs from Mid-May to Late September. The Ohio River Bearcat's home field is the Reitz Bowl & Central Stadium.

Amateur teams in Evansville

Evansville is home to two Women's Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA) leagues: the Demolition City Roller Derby and the Southern Indiana Roller Derby flat track roller derby leagues. In the WFTDA, member leagues create "travel" teams who play against each other in regional matches, although some leagues that are not WFTDA members have independently arranged their own travel teams and inter-league bouts. The two Evansville travel teams are the Rollergirls of Sothern Indiana (Southern Indiana Roller Derby League), and the Dynamite Dolls (Demolition City Roller Derby League).

Club League Sport Venue Established Championships
Rollergirls of Southern Indiana Southern Indiana Roller Derby/ WFTDA Flat Track Roller Derby Swonder Ice Arena 2007 None
Dynamite Dolls Demolition City Roller Derby/ WFTDA Flat Track Roller Derby Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Coliseum 2008 None

Rollergirls of Southern Indiana

The Rollergirls of Southern Indiana are an amateur flat track roller derby team based in Evansville. The team is a part of the Southern Indiana Roller Derby and is a member of the WFTDA. The team plays at Swonder Ice Arena.

Dynamite Dolls

The Dynamite Dolls are an amateur flat track roller derby team based in Evansville. The team is a part of the Demolition City Roller Derby and is a member of the WFTDA. The team plays at the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Coliseum.

College teams in Evansville

Evansville has two universities that field teams for the NCAA: the University of Evansville (Purple Aces) and University of Southern Indiana (Screaming Eagles). These schools have a combined 6 team national championships.

School Established Division Conference National Titles Championship Sport/Years
University of Evansville Purple Aces 1854 Div I MVC 5  • Mens Basketball: (5) 1959*, 1960*, 1964*, 1965* and 1971*
University of Southern Indiana Screaming Eagles 1965 Div II GLVC 1  • Mens Basketball: (1) 1995

* NCAA College Division (now Division II) national championships

Evansville Purple Aces

The University of Evansville (UE) is a member of the NCAA Division I and the Missouri Valley Conference. UE has 14 NCAA Division I varsity sports, eight for women and six for men.

The University of Evansville athletics department was built upon a foundation of success in men's basketball, including NCAA College Division (now Division II) national championships in 1959, 1960, 1964, 1965 and 1971. The team was led by legendary coach Arad McCutchan from 1946 to 1977 who led the Purple Aces to a 515-313 record. In 1977 UE began playing in NCAA Division I athletics.

Southern Indiana Screaming Eagles

The University of Southern Indiana (USI) Athletic Department is a member of the NCAA Division II and the Great Lakes Valley Conference. USI sponsors 15 varsity intercollegiate sports.

Since 1990, all 15 Screaming Eagles teams have participated in their respective national tournaments and/or were ranked at the national level. USI claimed one national championship (men's basketball, 1995), finished three times as the national finalist (men's basketball, 1994 and 2004; and women's basketball, 1997), and earned one third-place finish (men's cross country, 1982).


Defunct professional teams in Evansville

Evansville has had a long history with professional sports teams. Past professional organizations have included the NFL, Triple-A minor league baseball, arena Arena football, and professional basketball. Past Evansville major league, minor league, and semi professional teams have won a combined 15 championships.

Former professional baseball teams

Team Sport League Played Venue Class Affiliation Championships
Evansville Baseball Northwestern League 1884
Evansville Hoosiers Baseball Central Interstate League 1889
Evansville Baseball Illinois-Indiana League (Two-I League) 1892
Evansville Blackbirds Baseball Southern League 1895
Evansville River Rats Baseball Three-I League 1901- 1902 B None
Evansville River Rats Baseball Central League 1903- 1910 B Central League Title 1908
Evansville Strikers Baseball Central League 1911 B None
Evansville Yankees Baseball KITTY League 1912 D None
Evansville River Rats Baseball Central League 1914- 1915 Bosse Field B Central League Title 1915
Evansville Evas Baseball Central League 1916- 1917 Bosse Field B None
Evansville Black Sox Baseball Three-I League 1919 Bosse Field B None
Evansville Evas Baseball Three-I League 1920- 1923 Bosse Field B None
Evansville Little Evas Baseball Three-I League 1924 Bosse Field B None
Evansville Pocketeers Baseball Three-I League 1925 Bosse Field B None
Evansville Hubs Baseball Three-I League 1926- 1931 Bosse Field B None
Evansville Bees Baseball Three-I League 1938-1942 Bosse Field B Boston Bees, 1938-1940
Boston Braves, 1940-1942
None
Evansville Braves Baseball Three-I League 1946- 1957 Bosse Field B Boston Braves, 1946-1953
Milwaukee Braves, 1953-1957
Three-I League Title 1946, 1948, 1956, 1957
Evansville White Sox Baseball Southern League 1966- 1968 Bosse Field AA Chicago White Sox, 1966-1968 None
Evansville Triplets Baseball American Association 1970- 1984 Bosse Field AAA Minnesota Twins, 1970
Milwaukee Brewers, 1971-1973
Detroit Tigers, 1974-1984
American Association Title 1972, 1975, 1979
Evansville Outlaws Baseball National Semi-Pro Baseball Association 1990- 2007 Various Semi-Pro N.A. US Baseball Congress Semi-Pro World Series Champions 1997, 1998, 2001, 2004, 2005, 2007

Former professional football teams

Team Sport League Played Venue Championships
Evansville Crimson Giants Football National Football League 1921- 1922 Bosse Field None
Evansville Vipers Football Ohio Valley Football League, 2000-2006
Mid Continental Football League, 2006-2007
2000- 2007 Goebel Soccer Complex None
Evansville BlueCats Football National Indoor Football League, 2003-2005
United Indoor Football, 2005-2007
2003- 2007 Roberts Municipal Stadium None
Evansville Express Football National Women's Football Association 2004- 2005 Goebel Soccer Complex None
Tri-State Titans Football Mid Ohio Football League 2008- 2009 Goebel Soccer Complex None

Former professional basketball teams

Team Sport League Played Venue Championships
Evansville Agogans Basketball National Professional Basketball League 1950-1951 Old Evansville Central High School Stadium (Current Downtown Evansville YMCA Stadium) None
Evansville Thunder Basketball Continental Basketball Association 1984-1986 Roberts Municipal Stadium None

Evansville events hosted

Thunder on the Ohio

Every August, Evansville hosts Thunder on the Ohio. Thunder on the Ohio is a hydroplane boat race in the H1 Unlimited season. The race is held on the Ohio River in downtown Evansville. Evansville has hosted Thunder on the Ohio since 1979. The winner of Thunder on the Ohio receives the Four Freedoms Trophy, which is named after the nearby Four Freedoms Monument which rests along the Ohio River. The race has frequently been broadcasted on ESPN and the SPEED television network.

Thunder on the Ohio has been an Unlimited hydroplane mainstay for 30 consecutive years. "Ideal Evansville" replaced Owensboro, Kentucky, on the unlimited calendar in 1979. Evansville was the world headquarters of Atlas Van Lines, Inc., which sponsored Bill Muncey's race team. Muncey played a major role in Evansville being awarded its first sanction.

Prior to Thunder on the Ohio, the 725 Cubic Inch Class boats, the forerunners of the modern unlimiteds, raced at Evansville from 1938 through 1940.

Dave Villwock has won more Evansville races than anyone else, including seven with Miss Budweiser.

Evansville high school state championships

Evansville has a proud high school sport heritage, including 48 team championships. Evansville has 9 active city high schools that participate in the Indiana High School Athletic Association. The 48 team titles won by Evansville city high schools includes 14 football titles, 12 wrestling titles, 6 basketball titles, 5 tennis titles, 4 baseball titles, 4 soccer titles, 2 golf titles, and 1 softball title. Defunct IHSAA high schools from Evansville that are no longer active include Evansville Rex Mundi and Evansville Lincoln.

School Established Conference State Team Titles Championship Sport/Years
Evansville Bosse 1924 SIAC 3  • Boys Basketball: (3) 1943-44, 1944-45, 1961-62
Evansville Central 1854 SIAC 0
Evansville Day School 1946 IHSAA Independent 0
Evansville Harrison 1962 SIAC 1  • Girls Golf: (1) 1988-89
Evansville Mater Dei 1949 SIAC 15  • Baseball: (1) 1998-99  • Boys Basketball: (1) 2003-04  • Football:(1) 2000-01  • Wrestling: (12) 1985-86, 1994-95, 1995-96, 1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99, 1999-00, 2000-01, 2001-02, 2002-03, 2005-06, 2006-07
Evansville Memorial 1922 SIAC 15  • Baseball: (3) 1977-79, 1988-89, 1992-93  • Football: (2) 1937-38*, 1958-59*  • Boys Soccer: (2) 2007-08, 2008-09  • Girls Soccer: (2) 1996-97, 2008-09  • Softball: (1) 2001-02  • Girls Tennis: (5) 1990-91, 1992-93, 1993-94, 1994-95, 1995-96
Evansville North 1956 SIAC 2  • Boys Basketball: (1) 1966-67  • Boys Golf: (1) 1999-00
Evansville Reitz 1918 SIAC 12  • Girls Basketball: (1) 1980-81  • Football: (11) 1933-34*, 1940-41*, 1948-49*, 1953-54*, 1956-57*, 1957-58*, 1960-61*, 1961-62*, 1971-72*, 2007-08, 2009-10
Evansville Signature 2002 IHSAA Independent 0

* = indicates title won before IHSAA State Tournament was initiated

Notable Evansville athletes

Baseball

Basketball

Cycling

  • Frank Kramer, 18-time national sprint bicycling champion, 2-time Grand Prix de Paris Champion, first American to win the World Professional Sprint Championship, US Bicycling Hall of Famer

Football

Golf

Ice hockey

Horse Racing

  • Chic Anderson, sportscaster
  • Hillsdale the Thoroughbred, one of only 5 horses in history to sweep the prestigious Santa Anita's Strub Stakes Series

Soccer

Tennis

  • Byron "Buddy" Buckley, Indiana High School Tennis Coaches Hall of Famer
  • Louise Owen, tennis player
  • Sara Turber, formerly ranked second in the world in Lawn Tennis
  • Woodie Sublette-Walker, Chief of tennis officials for the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta

Track & Field

  • Charles Hornbostel, US Olympic Track & Field team member in 1932 and 1936

Wrestling

Gallery

References


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