Four boys basketball players from Mid-Illini Conference schools were named Thursday to the Pekin Insurance Holiday Tournament all-tournament team following the championship game at Dawson Hawkins Gymnasium.
Ben Cash (Pekin), Devin Whitelow (Washington), Ryan Altenberger (Morton) and Caleb Barber (Limestone) earned four of the 10 all-tournament spots in voting by coaches, tournament officials and media.
Yaakema Rose and Cardell McGee from tournament champion Springfield Lanphier, Francis Okoro from runner-up Normal West, Traveon Buchanan from third-place United Township, Deonte Billups from fourth-place Moline and Deandrey Robinson II from Peoria High also made the honor team.
Rose won the Jeff Stoner MVP Award and Buchanan was named Mr. Hustle.
Cash, who averaged 14.2 points per game in Pekin's four tournament games, said he was honored to be named to the all-tournament team for the first time.
"It means a lot to me," the 5-foot-11 senior guard said. "I've been working hard on my game for just about my entire life."
He's Pekin first all-tournament choice since Noah Kesselmeyer in 2014. The Dragons were represented on the all-tournament team by Bryce Hilst in 2013 and Nathan Taphorn in 2012.
Cash said he's particularly happy to share all-tournament honors with Whitelow, Washington's 5-9 senior point guard.
"Devin and I have become friends the past couple years," Cash said. "He's a good player. He guards me tougher than anybody else. He's the best player I've played against."
Pekin beat Washington 53-34 Wednesday night in a tournament game. The teams will meet again Jan. 6 at Washington in a Mid-Illini game.
"I'm looking forward to it," Cash said. "It'll be a good time."
Rose, a 5-10 senior guard, seemed stunned and briefly became emotional when he heard his name announced as the tournament MVP.
He had a big smile on his face when he was handed a trophy and plaque by family members of Jeff Stoner, who died in 1979 in a truck accident during his senior year at Pekin.
Lanphier beat Normal West 64-19 in the tournament title game. Rose scored 20 points for Lanphier, shooting 9-for-14 from the field.
Each all-tournament player who was in the gym after the tournament championship game was presented a ribbon that was draped over his neck.
Okoro, a 6-9 sophomore center who averaged 11.7 rebounds per game in Normal West's first three tournament games but struggled against Lanphier with only four points and six rebounds, immediately took off his ribbon and walked away to join his teammates.