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Flaten: Monticello girls cross country team wins Illini Prairie Conference meet and more from the week in high school sports
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PREPS ROUNDUP

Flaten: Monticello girls cross country team wins Illini Prairie Conference meet and more from the week in high school sports

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Charleston Girls Regional 7 10.07.20.JPG

Tuscola golfer Marley Good putts at the Class 1A Charleston Regional. Good advanced to the sectionals with teammate Makenna Fiscus. 

ST. JOSEPH — The No. 1-ranked Monticello girls cross country team kept up their winning ways Saturday by claiming the Illini Prairie Conference Meet in St. Joseph.

The Sages won with a score of 29, ahead of second-place Tolono Unity at 45. Monticello’s sophomore runner Mabry Bruhn remains undefeated on the season with a first-place time of 17:19, 50 seconds ahead of her teammate Grace Talbert who finished second at 18:09.

“(Grace) ran a lifetime best today and I'd have to say she is a runner of the day on the girls side,” Monticello boys and girls cross country coach David Remmert said. “She ran 18:18 last year at the state meet and she ran an 18:09 today and she ran a super race today.”

The Sages are top-ranked cross country team in Illinois, according to MileSplit Illinois, and they grabbed four of the top six positions as Estella Miller was fifth (18:26) and Rachel Koon was sixth (18:52).

“I felt really good with both (the boys and girls) races overall and the top four girls did very well,” Remmert said. “I felt like the girls had a pretty good command of that race and our runner Rachel Koon was recovering from being sick and so we talked about having her easing into it and just trying to help the team as best she could and she certainly did that.”

The boys team finished second, five points behind Stanford Olympia, 39 to 44. Sages junior Jackson Grambart finished second at 15:40 and senior Josh Baysore was third, two seconds behind at 15:42. Junior Ed Mitchell was sixth at 16:19.

“Ed is our No. 3 guy and he had a back issue and he didn't run in the first number of meets. But we are now at a place where (the boys) have finally been training awhile and have some training miles under their belt,” Remmert said. “We find ourselves kind of in a good spot now because these kids are finally starting to see their fitness improve and it is really showing out on the race course.”

With COVID-19 restrictions limiting the number of participants running at a time, the meet was run with the top four runners from each team starting together and then runners No. 5-7 ran in a second race.

“I think this is the format that they will use for the regionals and sectionals and it takes a little getting used to,” Remmert said. “I'm not used to separating our No. 5 kid from the top four runners because five runners score in cross country, so that makes it a little harder to judge how we are really doing.”

GIRLS GOLF

Tuscola’s Good looking forward

At Wednesday’s 1A girls golf regional at Charleston, Tuscola sophomore Marley Good trimmed 10 strokes from her front nine score during her back-nine performance.

“At (the CIC conference tournament) I didn't do the best, so I really just wanted to come out and golf and have some fun and try to do my best,” Good said. “On the front nine, I did not do so well and I had a 55 but on the back nine I got a 45, so I finally got it together."

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As a team, Tuscola finished fourth and, in a normal year, would have advanced as a team to the sectional competition. But with this season’s COVID-19 limitations, just two teams advanced. Good will be joined by sophomore teammate Makenna Fiscus in advancing individually to the 1A Rochester Sectional at the Rail Golf Course in Springfield.

“I'm really excited that McKenna is going, too, and she's a really good competitor. I'm really excited to get to go,” Good said. “This season I have improved my score from last year by about 10 strokes and I practiced a lot over the summer and I think I've been doing really well this season.”

FALL BASEBALL

Altamont wins NTC Tournament

The National Trail Conference baseball tournament needed extra innings to determine its champion, as Altamont’s Jake Hammer hit a solo home run in the eighth inning to give the Indians the 5-4 win over Effingham St. Anthony on Friday.

The game was a back and forth battle as the Bulldogs took a 1-0 lead in the first inning and Altamont responded to lead 2-1 in the third inning. St. Anthony scored three runs in the fifth inning to lead 4-2 and Altamont slowly took the lead again with single runs in the sixth, seventh and eighth inning.

Colton Fearday was 4-for-4 with two RBIs for St. Anthony at the plate and he allowed three hits and two earned runs in his four innings on the mound.

Altamont’s Bradin Baucum picked up the win in relief after starting pitcher Kienon Eirhart pitched seven innings, allowing three runs on seven hits and striking out four.

What to follow this week

The fall postseason continues as the boys golf Class 1A sectional will be held at Tuscola’s Ironhorse Golf Course where the Sullivan and Monticello teams will compete. Moweaqua Regional medalist Zachary Rogers, from Bement, and St. Teresa’s Cody Dodson will also be in action in Tuscola.

At the girls golf Class 1A Rochester Regional, the Charleston team will compete and medalist Ashley Long, from Monticello, will also be in action. Effingham St. Anthony will tee off at the 1A Salem Sectional at Salem Country Club.

Girls tennis sectionals will be held Friday and Saturday, Oct. 16-17 and sectional brackets will be announced on Wednesday. Local teams will compete in the 1A Champaign Central Sectional (Maroa-Forsyth, St. Teresa, Mount Zion) and the 1A Effingham St. Anthony Sectional (Charleston, Effingham, St. Anthony, Mattoon, Shelbyville, Teutopolis).


PHOTOS: Charleston regional girls golf

Contact Matthew Flaten at (217) 421-6968. Follow him on Twitter: @MattFlaten

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The beginning of a cross country regional and sectional race is normally one of the most chaotic events in high school sports. More than 100 runners are lined up together behind the starting line waiting for the gun to fire and they would dash down the course in tight-knit packs on their three-mile journey. Family and friends were packed in closely along the rope barriers and the team tent area was a circus of action as runners quickly came and went to prepare for a race.

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