SVM area roundup for Saturday, Sept. 2: Sterling’s Dale Johnson wins Galesburg XC Invite

Rock Falls volleyball 2nd, Newman 3rd at Rock Falls Rocket Invite

Kaneland’s Evan Nosek tries to run down Sterling’s Dale Johnson during the Sycamore Cross Country Invitational Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2023, at Kishwaukee College in Malta.

Boys & girls cross country

Galesburg Invite: At Galesburg, Sterling’s Dale Johnson easily outpaced the competition to win the boys championship. His time of 15:16.00 was almost 22 seconds faster than Geneseo’s Dylan Gehl, the second-place finisher (15:37.90). 18 teams and 154 runners competed in the boys race on Saturday.

The Golden Warriors’ Parker Janssen (16:39.70) came in 13th and Aalin Schmidt (17:17.80) finished 22nd. Parker Blakeslee (17:37.20, 29th), Charles Johnson (17:44.30, 31st) and Owen Anderson (17:58.80, 36th) also placed top 50 for second-place Sterling (93 points). Morton was the boys team champion with 36.

The Sterling girls finished eighth out of 13 teams with 156. Dunlap was the girls team champion with 69. The Golden Warrior girls placed four runners in the top 50 of the 124-runner field. Rhylee Wade (19:34.90, 8th) and Delia Block (19:57.20, 14th) led the group, while Jaz’Mya Castaneda (21:51.90, 37th) and Lainey Zuithoff (22:37.30, 50th) also finished in the top half.


Rock Falls Rocket Invite: At Rock Falls, the Rockets placed second in their Saturday tournament, defeating Morrison 20-16, 20-6, Princeton 20-11, 20-5, and Bureau Valley 20-4, 20-14 in pool play. In tournament play, Rock Falls took down Newman 25-11, 25-13, then lost to La Salle-Peru 25-21, 22-25, 10-15 in the championship.

Leaders for the Rockets were Denali Stonitsch with 97 assists and 18 digs, Claire Bickett with 41 kills and 21 digs, Nicolette Udell with 45 kills, and Carli Kobbeman with 43 digs and five aces.

Newman finished third. The Comets defeated Riverdale 18-20, 21-19, 15-5, and Rockford East 20-17, 20-9 in pool play. They later took down Princeton 25-17, 23-25, 15-9 in the third-place match. They lost 20-17, 20-16 to eventual champion La Salle-Peru, as well as 25-11, 25-23 to second-place Rock Falls.

Leaders for Newman were Kennedy Rowzee with 38 kills and 8.5 blocks, Jess Johns with 30 kills, seven aces and six digs, Molly Olson with 91 assists, 21 digs and nine aces, and Addison Foster with 39 digs. Sam Ackman had 29 digs and seven aces for the Comets.

Oregon Tournament: At Oregon, Eastland finished the weekend 3-2, defeating Kirkland-Hiawatha 25-8, 25-11 and Erie-Prophetstown 25-22, 27-25 in pool play. It beat Dakota 25-15, 25-15 for seventh place. The Cougars lost to Aquin 11-25, 18-22 and Orangeville 21-25, 25-17, 9-15.

Leaders for Eastland were Trixie Carroll with 50 kills and 10 aces, Olivia Klinefelter wih 35 kills, 29 digs and nine aces, Jenica Stoner with 95 assists and Morgan McCullough with 27 digs.

Carroll was named to the all-tournament team.

Oregon beat Mendota 25-22, 25-23, Orangeville 25-22, 25-18, and South Beloit 25-9, 25-14 in pool play on Friday. On Saturday, it lost 12-25, 25-21, 15-12 to Aquin, then 25-22, 25-9 to Durand, finishing fourth.

The Hawks’ Kenna Wubbena and Madi Shaffer were named to the all-tournament team.

Forreston lost 25-13, 25-13 to Erie-Prophetstown to finish 12th.

The Cardinals’ Jaiden Schneiderman was named to the all-tournament team.

Boys golf

Mercer County Golf Invite: Sherrard won the 14-team event with a 324 score, while Illini West was second with 353 and Erie-Prophetstown placed sixth with a 371.

Mercer County’s Carson Boelens was the medalist with a 76.

The Panthers’ Blake Geuns shot an 88 for 13th overall, Caden VanHorn carded a 91 to tie for 17th, Sawyer Copeland tallied a 95 to tie for 25th, and Dane Ryan chipped in a 97 to tie for 30th.

Girls golf

Mercer County Golf Invite: Rockridge was the team champion with a 386 score, while Erie-Prophetstown finished eighth with 442 at the 10-team event.

Hannah Huisman led the Panthers with a 105, while Michelle Naftzger shot a 108, Isabella Johnston fired a 112 and Jaelin Hawkins added a 117.

Girls swimming

Sterling Invite: At Sterling, Moline won the seven-team event with a 406 score, while La Salle-Peru placed second (388.5) and Sterling took third (352).

Hazel Pham won the 50 freestyle in 26.99 seconds and placed third in the 100 freestyle (1:00.07). Later, she teamed up with Kate Austin, Madison Austin and Sammie Knox for second-place finishes in the 200 freestyle relay (1:46.40) and the 400 freestyle relay (3:53.32).

Madison Austin won the 100 freestyle in 53.63 seconds and was a very close second in the 200 freestyle, swimming a 1:58.37 (just .05 seconds behind Moline’s Olivia Gustafson).

Kate Austin had a third-place finish in the 100 backstroke (1:07.09).

Presley Winters took second in the diving competition (348.5).

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Dan Wussow

Dan Wussow

Dan is the sports editor for Sauk Valley Media. Previously, he wrote for The Post-Crescent in his hometown of Appleton, WI.