Millikin Sports Update

The fall sports season is in full swing, and the Big Blue are looking for a successful start to the 2018-2019 year. From women’s golf to football, here is a quick sneak peek at how each team has fared so far.

The women’s golf team is led by junior Meghan Whitlock. She shot her career low at the CCIW preview, and along with Gaby Correa, tied for ninth at the tournament with a ninety-one. The team is young, with many freshman golfers including Paige Slabaugh who tied for twelth at the preview. Their home tournament took place over the weekend, leaving just the CCIW Championships in Joliet, Illinois from September 27-29 for the fall season.

The men’s golf team has also been in action. They have just their home meet left in the fall season. They placed fourth in their first tournament, and third in the second they participated in.

Next up is the cross country team. The men began their season by taking second at Illinois Wesleyan’s Opener and third at the Prairie Star Invitational hosted by the University of Illinois Springfield. Their home meet takes place on September 28, and their last hurrah before the CCIW Championships is the Kollege Town invitational in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Leading the Millikin men this season are Joey Davies and William Powell.

On the women’s side, sophomore Mackenzie Dixon is once again dominating on the course, and newcomer Victoria Mineo is also performing well. The women also took second and third in the same Invitationals as the men.

The Millikin volleyball team lost a few stellar players to graduation, but there is still some talent. They secured their first CCIW conference win against Augustana College in a back and forth match. Junior Marissa McElroy has been impressive, tallying a career high seventeen kills in a match this season. Back to lead the team in her final season is Emily Seegmiller. But, there are plenty of young faces including Sarah Bingenheimer, Lauren Brummel, Gabrielle Coulthard, and Alyssa Vignos. The team is looking to make their third straight NCAA Tournament appearance.

For the men’s soccer team, the season started off well. The men began at 2-0, and their conference season kicked off last weekend. Senior Pat Dolan, junior Austin Taylor, and junior goalie Isaac Hopper lead the team as captains. Brayden Nokes leads the team in goals scored with three, and Taylor has tallied four assists.

On the women’s side, the team lost five straight before taking home two victories in a row. They also started the conference season over the weekend, against North Central College on the Cardinals home turf in Naperville. Junior Lucy Koger leads the team with two goals on the season, and she and fellow junior Kat Stiles have both tallied two assists.  

The Millikin men’s tennis team has just a short season in the fall, but they are making the most of it. They hosted the CCIW Fall Invite. Junior Jacob Palley took first in the singles flight, and Colin Sandgren took fifth in the same flight. The two then finished third in one doubles. This weekend, they play in the ITA Tournament in St. Louis, MO, and then they will reconvene in February for their spring season.

For the women, their full season is in the fall, opposite the men. They still have a plethora of matches left. Danielle Beard boasts the overall best record, at 5-2. The team secured their first CCIW conference win of the season against North Park by a margin of 5-4. Their next matchup is in Bloomington against Illinois Wesleyan. Triathlon made the National tournament. The team has just five participants, but the program is likely to grow soon. They had just four other meets that they participated in, but the team fared well.

Last but not least, football. The Big Blue football team began their season with two wins. Granted, they were not pretty wins by any means, but a win is a win. The offense is once again led by quarterback Nicco Stepina, and sophomore Jazontae Howard has been electric to this point in the season. Plus, Stepina has Jordan Smith and Gerald Perry to throw to among a host of other receivers. In addition, the Millikin defense is led by captain Matt Brown who is already off to a stellar start to the 2018 season.

The fall sports season sets the tone for the rest of the year, and the Big Blue are hoping to continue a great one as it progresses.