‘Voice of the Slicers’ to be honored Saturday
Chip Jones, who announces LaPorte High School games on WLOI/WCOE, was named the 2016-17 IHSAA Distinguished Media Service Award winner for District 1.
A life-long resident of La Porte, Jones earned the “Voice of the Slicers” moniker for his years of calling play-by-play on his hometown’s radio station. Since 2000, he has called all home and away games in football, boys basketball and baseball, as well as dozens of girls basketball games during that time. It’s estimated he has announced more than 150 football games, 315 boys basketball games and 435 baseball games.
His contributions to education-based athletics will be recognized on Saturday afternoon at La Porte High School when the Slicers host John Glenn in boys basketball. IHSAA Commissioner Bobby Cox and Sports Information Director Jason Wille will make the presentation.
“Chip is well-respected and well-known for his talents as an announcer, not only in La Porte, but also in those communities competing against the Slicers,” said La Porte Athletic Director Ed Gilliland. “I would anticipate there are not many schools that have all home and away games in three sports plus IHSAA tournament games, broadcast on a local radio station.”
His career spans way more than just Slicers’ games over the years.
“My first experience with sports broadcasting came in high school," Jones said. "WLOI/WCOE was doing La Porte football games live and then broadcasting New Prairie games tape delay. My job was to drive to New Prairie’s game, serve as a spotter during the first half, then drive the first half tape back to the station.
“In the early 90s a friend of mine was the program director at WEFM in Michigan City. I starting spotting, keeping score and doing some color for him at Michigan City and various schools in Southwest Michigan. When he left I became the play by play voice for those games. I started doing some La Porte games for WCOE during this time, filling in for and helping the sports director. I started broadcasting all home and away Slicer football, boys basketball and baseball games, plus some girls basketball games, in the 2000-01 school year and have been doing them ever since. I’m also grateful for my two main color men over this period — the late Jim Fanselow and my current partner Steve Manering.”
WLOI/WCOE has been doing all of La Porte’s basketball and football games since at least the 1940s and has carried all home and away baseball games since that tournament started in 1967.
Chip is a 1974 graduate of La Porte High School and was an outstanding athlete, lettering all four years in both baseball and basketball under hall of fame coaches Ken Schreiber and Skip Collins. He was a four-year starter in baseball and was a member of the 1971 state championship team, the 1973 state runner-up team and captained the 1974 squad. He played baseball at Indiana University through 1978. Jones is in the Slicer Old Timers Baseball Hall of Fame and was inducted into the Hubner Athletic Hall of Fame at La Porte High School in 2015.