Local teams honored by District 7 Board of Education | #Education


Monday’s Edwardsville School District 7 Board of Education was a night of celebration after one of the most successful spring sports seasons.

The Liberty and Lincoln Middle School boys and girls track and field, the Edwardsville Ultimate Frisbee, the Edwardsville softball, the Edwardsville boys track and field and the Edwardsville baseball teams were all recognized at Monday’s meeting.

“This is an unprecedented evening,” School Board President John McDole said. “Over the last three years I’ve been on the board and going back, we’ve had teams and individuals that have achieved success … recognized at a board meeting. Tonight because of an outstanding month or two of success achieved by students in our district, we have six groups to recognize this evening.”

Liberty Middle School athletic director Michael Cory and Lincoln track and field coach Mark Tschudy took to the podium first to celebrate the four top-10 finishes at the IESA seventh- and eighth-grade boys and girls track and field state meets on May 12-13 in East Peoria.


“This is the part of my job that I really love. I love getting to stand up here and acknowledge the kids when they have done outstanding things,” Cory said. “This track season, across the board, was really amazing.”

Tschudy added, “It’s an honor to be here to recognize the effort and the great year the kids had.”

The Edwardsville Liberty seventh-grade girls track and field team led the way with a second-place finish.

The Lincoln eighth-grade girls finished fourth to claim the program’s first state trophy, while the Lincoln seventh-grade boys finished fifth and the Lincoln eighth-grade boys team was eighth.

State championships were won by Liberty seventh grader Sophie Shapiro (100-meter hurdles, 400-meter dash) and Lincoln eighth grader Joi Story (discus).

Edwardsville High School Principal Steve Stuart introduced each of the four high school teams.

“I would like to thank Dr. (Patrick) Shelton, President McDole and the entire Board of Education for allowing us to come here tonight to celebrate the accomplishments of our outstanding student-athletes,” Stuart said. “To say EHS had an outstanding spring would be an understatement.”

First up was the Ultimate Frisbee club team, which won its first Illinois Ultimate High School Division I championship in its sixth season.

The Tigers defeated Oak Park-River Forest 13-10 in the championship match on June 4 after beating Neuqua Valley 10-5 in the semifinals and Naperville Central 13-5 in the quarterfinals. It is the program’s first Division I state title in its seven-year history. It won DII championships in 2016 and 2018.

Edwardsville finished with a 23-4 record.

The Edwardsville softball team was honored next after its third-place finish at the Class 4A state tournament on June 10 in Peoria.

EHS finished with a 33-4 record, including a 4-3 win over Barrington in the third-place game after losing 2-0 to eventual state champion St. Charles North in the semifinals.

It was the second third-place finish in program history and first since 2007. In the program’s other state tournament appearance in 2009, it finished second.

The Tigers also won their ninth straight Southwestern Conference championship, the Edwardsville Regional championship, the Pekin Sectional championship and the Illinois Wesleyan Super-Sectional championship.

“If you didn’t get the opportunity to watch the girls this year, they were a very special group. They were great friends and they competed day in and day out. They make great grades, do good things in the classroom and competed together as a team throughout. They earned everything they got this year,” EHS assistant softball coach Caty Happe said.

Next up was the Edwardsville boys track and field team, which finished second at the Class 3A state meet on May 28 in Charleston.

Batavia won the state championship with 37 points, followed by EHS and Gurnee Warren in second with 30 points. Minooka was fourth with 29 points.

It was the seventh top-four finish at state for coach Chad Lakatos at Edwardsville. EHS won team championships in 2017 and 2015 and took second in 2016, 2014 and 2012.

“We had a great season,” EHS boys track and field coach Chad Lakatos said. “Thank you for allowing us to recognize our kids. I’m super excited with what’s coming up.”

Senior Ryan Watts, an Iowa State recruit, became the first Tiger runner since Stephen Pifer in 2003 to sweep the 1,600-meter and 3,200-meter runs.

Also earning state medals for EHS were Jordan Brooks and Malik Allen with fourth- and seventh-place finishes, respectively, in the triple jump and Geordan Patrylak with a ninth-place finish in the 1,600-meter run.

Lakatos closed by presenting Dr. Shelton with a second-place state medal.

Wrapping up was the Edwardsville baseball team, which won the program’s fourth state championship and second in three seasons with a 3-2 win over Mundelein on June 10 in Joliet. A day earlier, the Tigers defeated nationally-ranked Brother Rice 7-4 in the semifinals.

EHS also won state championships in 1990, 1998 and 2019.

Edwardsville finished the season with a 36-4 record and the No. 1 spot in the Illinois Prep Baseball Report Power 25 poll.

The Tigers also won the Southwestern Conference championship, the Alton Regional championship, the Illinois Wesleyan Sectional championship and the Illinois Wesleyan Super-Sectional championship.

“These players represented our community in a great fashion. We won a state championship, but … I had multiple coaches that talked about how well the players carried themselves,” EHS baseball coach Tim Funkhouser said. “When the heat was on and everything was on the line, the guys showed their true mettle and persevered. They persevered with respect of the game, respect for the community and to represent the E. I couldn’t be prouder of these guys.”

This spring, Edwardsville High School won three regional championships, seven sectional championships, two super-sectional championships and won three state trophies. The Edwardsville boys tennis team finished 17th at the state tournament and the girls soccer team won its third sectional championship.

“We had an unbelievable spring,” Lakatos said. “Go Tigers.”



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