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Vote: CSM Fall Athletes of the Week: Sept. 25-Oct. 1 2023

Updated: Oct 4, 2023

Fall is now officially in the air and so is our CSM Fall Athletes of the Week poll, presented by Jake Weston State Farm.


The end of September saw dozens of area golfers advance deep into the postseason, cross country meets with high levels of competition, and volleyball, soccer and football heating up with many athletes hitting their stride.


The following athletes are our nominees for CSM Fall Athletes of the Week with information on their standout performances. There are polls for Boys Athlete of the Week and Girls Athlete of the Week.


UPDATE: Henry Drozd of Richwoods boys soccer and Madison Hubner of Pekin girls volleyball won our Boys and Girls Athlete of the Week polls, respectively. Drozd received 43 percent of the vote total in the boys poll and Hubner received 47 percent of the vote total in the girls poll.


Boys Athlete of the Week nominees:


Isaiah Hill, Elmwood boys cross country


Hill won the title at the Elmwood Invitational on Saturday with a blazing time of 15:14.00, twenty seconds clear of the second-place finisher. Hill’s clutch performance helped the Trojans beat Eureka by one point for the team title. On Tuesday, he won the Prairieland Conference Meet with a time of 16:00.4.


Henry Drozd, Richwoods boys soccer


Drozd, a junior goalkeeper, defended the Knights’ castle to perfection last week, posting shutouts against Centennial, Roanoke-Benson/Eureka and Limestone. Thanks to his 11 saves on the week, including five against Limestone, Richwoods won all three games to advance to 8-6-3 on the year.


Jack Wenzel, Normal West boys golf


Wenzel emerged in a crowded Class 3A Bloomington Regional to shoot a 72 at Prairie Vista Golf Course and win medalist honors by two strokes over Pekin’s Owen Gruden. The Wildcats senior overcame two early bogies and finished his front nine with a pair of birdies before parring every hole on the back nine to clinch the title. Wenzel’s round also helped Normal West earn the third and final advancing spot to sectionals.


Tino Gist, Peoria High football


After two weeks of not playing, Gist made a dominant return to the field in Peoria High’s 76-13 win over Richwoods. The senior quarterback and three-year starter completed 20 of 23 passes for 316 yards and six touchdowns to five different receivers in just the first half, before he was pulled out due to the Lions’ large halftime lead.


Yonas Wuthrich, Morton boys cross country


Wuthrich helped a stellar Potters cross country team at the Peoria High Invitational at Detweiller Park on Saturday, running a 15:30.70 to finish 25th in the Class 3A race. The time was his fastest of the season by 14 seconds and the Potters finished fifth out of 44 teams.


Girls Athlete of the Week nominees:


Ella Coulter, Peoria Notre Dame girls golf


Coulter has shined bright for the Irish this season and continued doing so by taking home the medalist title at the Class 1A Peoria Notre Dame Regional with a five-over-par 77 at Kellogg Golf Course. The senior, who won the Big 12 Conference Championship recently as well, will make her third straight appearance at state this weekend.


Teagan Sullivan, Dunlap volleyball


Sullivan has been a standout for the Eagles all season long and had some of her best performances of the season last week with a team-high 15 kills in a 25-17, 25-20 win over Pekin on Thursday. Going up against Metamora, the current leader in the Mid-Illini, on Tuesday, Sullivan posted an 11-kill, 12-dig double-double as the Eagles fell in a closely contested 3-set match.


Natalie Bierbaum, Normal U-High girls cross country


Bierbaum finished third out of 267 runners in the Class 1A race at the Peoria High Invitational on Saturday, running the three-mile course at Detweiller Park in 17:01.90. The Pioneers finished in 10th and the sophomore set a new personal record with her time.


Madison Hubner, Pekin girls volleyball


Hubner had a breakout weekend at the Pekin Invitational, where the Dragons defeated Eureka and Peoria Notre Dame. The senior setter earned all-tournament honors thanks to 64 assists across Pekin’s 5 matches. Hubner had nine digs in a three-set loss to perennial power IVC and added a team-high four aces in the Dragons’ match against Dunlap.


Ihnera Gerongay, Normal U-High girls golf


Gerongay and the Pioneers are a force to be reckoned with heading into the girls Class 2A State Tournament this weekend after the senior shot a 73 at the Rantoul Regional. The round put her in third place at the tournament and allowed U-High to win it with an impressive team score of 298.




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Valentino Gist all the way!!

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