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Dunlap’s Piper, Metamora’s Pacha win CSM Spring Athletes of the Week, presented by Dominos



A pair of Mid-Illini athletes who helped their teams earn a share of a Mid-Illini Conference championship won CSM Spring Athletes of the Week, presented by Dominos, for the week of May 6-12. 


Dunlap ace pitcher Jack Piper earned the most votes of the five nominees in the boys athlete of the week poll after a strong pitching performance in a key conference win, while Metamora softball slugger Addi Pacha was quite the opposite, hitting four home runs and driving in 17 runs during a four-game stretch. 


Get to know more about our winners and accomplishments below:


Piper won CSM Boys Athlete of the Week after receiving 41 percent of the vote total in the boys poll. The senior pitcher came up big for Dunlap in a game against Morton on May 6 that had big implications in the Mid-Illini Conference race and pitched the Eagles to a 4-0 win with a complete game shutout. He allowed just five hits to the Potters while striking out two and walking one and threw 57 of his 86 pitches for strikes. The Carroll University commit also drove in a run in a 6-3 loss to Peoria Notre Dame on May 11. So far this season, Piper has compiled a 6-1 record with an 0.70 ERA in 50 innings with 63 strikeouts and nine walks. At the plate, he’s hit .291 with 13 RBIs and four doubles as the Eagles won a share of the Mid-Illini Conference title with East Peoria. 


Get to know Piper in a Q and A here:


What have been your goals for the season?

“Personally, this season I wanted to be first-team all-conference after [being on the] second team last year. But as a team, we all feel confident in our ability to make a postseason run. The Mid-Illini Conference title was a goal in all our heads at the beginning but now, we want to go get the regional title and more!”


What’s your favorite memory of playing your sport?

“As a kid, playing 8-13U travel ball, winning a tournament anywhere always felt like such a major deal. As a kid, it always felt like you were in the World Series and just the memories of pure excitement after winning one is something I’ll always remember.”


What’s your walk-up song?

“Mr. Trouble by BigXthaPlug”


Favorite food?

“Steak”


What’s on your bucket list?

“Visit all 30 MLB ballparks”


Who’s your favorite teacher at school?

“Mrs. Benefield, she’s one of the most caring and genuine people I’ve met and not only has been a great teacher but a great person to look up to and take from. She’s always kept such an open mind and been so open to everyone and who they are.”


Who’s your role model and why?

“My dad, Damon, I couldn’t think of a better person to watch growing up. He’s taught me so much about not only baseball, but life. He’s a huge part of all of my success in my life so far. [He’s spent] late nights working with me pitching or playing whiffle ball with me as a kid even after a long day of work. He’s always been there for me and I’m so lucky to have such great parents that support everything I do.”


Pacha won CSM Girls Athlete of the Week after receiving 38 percent of the vote total in the girls poll. The Redbirds outfielder had a sublime week at the plate, highlighted by a game against Limestone on May 9 where she went 4-for-4 with three home runs and eight RBIs. Earlier that week, she went 4-for-4 with six RBIs, two doubles and another home run in a 12-1 win over IVC. In a pair of games against Pekin and Mt. Zion, she combined to add three hits and three RBIs to her total. Pacha, who recently earned first-team all-Mid Illini Conference honors, helped Metamora to a share of the conference title with a .391 average, six home runs and 33 RBIs.


Get to know Pacha in a Q and A here: 


What have been your goals for the season?

“To execute and contribute to my team as much as I can, make it ot state, and win conference for the third year in a row.”


What’s your favorite memory of playing your sport?

“Making it to super-sectionals two years in a row.”


What’s your walk-up song?

“Redrum [by 21 Savage].”


Favorite food?

“Steak with mashed potatoes.”


What’s on your bucket list?

“Travel all around Europe.”


Who’s your favorite teacher at school?

“Tabitha Cooper.”


Who’s your role model and why?

“My parents because they encourage me in everything I do and are my biggest fans. They help me achieve my goals in the classroom and on the field. They are the most hard-working people I know and I strive to be like them when I am older.”

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