A pair of coaches reached milestones over the past week while district titles were claimed on the links for the area girls’ golf teams. Also, district titles were won in softball and four local tennis teams claimed their tickets to the state semifinals next weekend. It is also a big weekend on the football field with a pair of outstanding matchups.

Let’s check out all the action in this week’s Friday Fast Break.

Congratulations to St. Dominic volleyball coach Courtney Bland on winning her 400th match as a head coach a few weeks back. She has now won 413 matches in her career and is leading the Crusaders to another outstanding season. Also, congratulations to East St. Louis football coach Darren Sunkett on achieving 200 wins this past weekend as the Flyers defeated Alton last Friday evening.

Photo Credit – St. Dominic High School

On the links in girls’ golf, St. Joseph’s Academy and Visitation both won their districts this past Monday as they look to repeat as state champions next week. The Angels won their Class 4 district at the Golf Club of Wentzville with a score of 301. Rylie Andrews paced St. Joe’s by winning the individual title with an even par round of 71 while teammate Isabella Buckley tied for third with a four-over par round of 75. Visitation claimed their district crown at Wolf Hollow Golf Club with a team score of 328 while Washington placed second with a score of 369. On the individual side, Evangelina Brown of Mehlville claimed the individual title with an even-par round of 71 while Therese Robson, Avery McLaughlin, and Ava Sanford led the charge for Viz by placing third, fourth, and fifth respectfully.

The MSHSAA girls’ team tennis semifinals are set for next weekend at the Cooper Tennis Complex in Springfield, Mo., as four local teams won matches this past Monday to advance. In Class 1, Clayton moved on to the final four with a pair of 5-0 victories over Helias and St. Charles. In Class 2, Fort Zumwalt South defeated St. Pius X 5-0 and Ladue beat Villa Duchesne 5-0 to advance to the semifinals. In Class 3, St. Joe’s defeated Howell 5-0 to move on to the final four as well.

In the MSHSAA softball districts, Westminster defeated Ursuline 4-3 to move on to the state quarterfinals next week while many of the remaining district titles will be claimed today as many of the championship games will take place Friday.

There are a pair of big-time matchups on the week eight football schedule this weekend with two undefeated teams doing battle and another game in Illinois that will determine the Southwestern Conference Champion.

Cardinal Ritter will take their perfect 7-0 record to Hillsboro to take on the 7-0 Hawks in a marquee matchup Friday at 7 p.m. The Lions are the top-ranked team in Class 3 and are coming off a 50-0 victory over Lift for Life last week. Ritter has only given up 27 points on the season and has shut out their past three opponents. Carson Boyd leads the Lions offense with 682 yards through the air with 14 touchdowns while Antwon McKay Jr. has added 864 yards passing with another eight scores. The Ritter ground game is paced by Marvin Burks, who has 772 yards rushing with nine touchdowns. Fredrick Moore has caught 27 passes for 688 yards and 13 scores to lead the receivers. On the defensive side for the Lions, Lawrence McConnell and Makhi Mixon each have 45 stops to their credit. Hillsboro is also perfect on the year after a 79-0 win over DeSoto last week and has an offense that has scored over 40 points in all but one of their games this season. Austin Romaine leads the Hawks rushing attack with 631 yards and nine scores while Jaxin Patterson has added 513 yards and another nine touchdowns. Romaine is the main figure for the Hawks defense as he leads the way with 74 tackles on the year.

Over in Illinois, the SWC title is up for grabs as Edwardsville takes its 6-1 record to Clyde C. Jordan Stadium to take on East St. Louis Friday at 7 p.m. The Tigers are coming off a 28-27 overtime win over Belleville East last week as they have won three consecutive games since falling to O’Fallon. Quarterback Jake Curry leads the Edwardsville offense with 1,243 yards passing and 15 scores while Daion Gaston has been his favorite target as he has caught 26 passes for 425 yards and six scores. Dalton Brown paces the Tigers defense with 57 tackles and a pair of interceptions. The Flyers are 5-2 on the year and enter the contest riding a four-game winning streak while allowing only 21 points over that stretch. Robert Battle leads the East St. Louis high-powered offense with 1,089 yards through the air and 13 touchdowns while adding another 312 yards rushing and six more scores. TaRyan Martin is the Flyers leading ground gainer with 534 yards rushing and nine touchdowns. Dominic Dixon anchors the East St. Louis defense with 77 stops and five sacks to his credit.


Jim Powers
Jim Powers

Jim Powers has been covering prep sports in the St. Louis area for 15+ years and a part of the Missouri State High School Activities Association Championship Broadcasts for the past 11 years. Powers is also a part of the Fox 2 Verlo Mattress Prep Zone Friday nights at 10:10 during the football and basketball seasons. If you have a prep sports story, please contact Jim at japowers2421@yahoo.com. Follow Jim at @hssportscaravan