EDITOR'S NOTE: The Swnews4u.com Athlete of the Week is a web-only feature that will publish each Thursday throughout the calendar year.
Elijah Cannon, Sr., Riverdale baseball
We go north for this week’s Mast Water Technology swnews4u.com Athlete of the Week to highlight Riverdale senior pitcher Elijah Cannon. Last Thursday, the Riverdale ace was nearly unhittable striking out a school record 25 batters in a two-hit shutout in a 4–0 win at Darlington. The feat was all the more impressive when you consider the Redbirds (8–3, 5–1 SWAL) are not a run of the mill batting line-up, they in fact lead the Southwestern Wisconsin Activities League and were unbeaten in league play before Cannon blanked them last week.
“Just an unbelievable performance against a very good hitting team,” said Riverdale head coach Curt Thompson. “I have never witnessed anything like it.”
Cannon, who was coming off a 17-strikeout performance in a 4–0 shutout of Iowa–Grant, has struck out 63 batters in his last 28 innings and has not given up a hit during that streak.
On a cool, breezy and rainy night Cannon battled Darlington’s Cohen in a pitcher’s dual. Neither team got a hit until the with inning, but neither team could manage a run through seven innings. Cannon struck out the side in the first, second, fifth, sixth, seventh and 10th, and at one point struck out seven straight batters.
In the bottom of the ninth, Darlington got a one-out single, then after a sac bunt, Cannon issued an intentional walk. A pair of stolen bases put runners on second and third, but got out of the jam with an inning-ending strikeout.
“Elijah kept his composure,” said Thompson. “Darlington tried a couple of things with the delayed steals, but he kept his focus on the hitter.”
In the 10th inning, Riverdale scratched out a run on a Dalton Haise RBI single. Trevor Troxel’s two-run single made it 3–0 and a bases loaded walk plated the final run. Cannon worked around a hit batsman and a walk to strike out the side in the 10th to end the game.
It is thought that Cannon’s 25-strike out performance is a state record, but it has not yet been confirmed.
“This is one of those games you will be talking about forever, sitting around 10-15 years from now,” said the coach. “The story will start with, ‘remember that game at Darlington…”
HONORABLE MENTION (in alphabetical order):
Chris Andrews, Sr., Fennimore baseball
The senior right-hander struck out five and allowed just four hits in a complete-game shutout at SWAL co-leading Riverdale last Thursday. On Friday, April 22 he fanned eight in a complete game shutout at Cuba City just days after getting stitches below his eye.
Sami Brookens, Jr., Platteville/Lancaster girls soccer
The junior forward scored four goals and had an assist in last Thursday’s 8–0 victory over Galena/River Ridge. Two days earlier she scored a pair of goals in a 3–0 shutout of Dodgeville/Mineral Point. Brookens and the Hillmen are 5–2–1 overall under first-year girls’ head coach Brandon Pink and lead the SWC at 3–0.
Tommy Crandall, Sr., Hillsboro baseball
Crandall went 7-for-14 with five doubles and seven RBIs and picked up a pair of wins on the mound to lead the Tigers to four consecutive victories in the past week. Last Tuesday he struck out 11 and allowed just one run on six hits in a 7–1 complete game victory over New Lisbon. On Friday, he went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles, two RBIs and three runs scored in a 10–2 win over New Libson at the Woodside Sports Complex in Mauston, then went 2-for-4 with four RBIs in a 12–2 win over Wonewoc–Center on Saturday. Monday night he struck out nine and allowed just one run on three hits in five innings in a 9–1 victory over Necedah. The Tigers (10–3) have now won eight straight games since a 2–3 start.
Kaitlyn Kaiser, Sr., Cuba City track & field
Kaiser won four events to lead the Cubans to a second-place finish at the Christopher Becker Memorial Invitational last Friday at Cuba City. She won the 100 (12.79), 200 (27.19), long jump (17’6.5”) and the 4x100 relay (51.78).
Lane Kamps, Sr., Belmont baseball
Kamps led the Braves to three conference wins over the last week with his arm and bat. Last Tuesday, Kamps struck out 12 batters and allowed just two runs on six hits as the sixth-ranked Braves defeated Highland 12–2. Kamps also drove in a run. On Monday, Kamps fanned 11 batters and allowed just one run on two hits in a 2–1 victory over River Ridge in the second game of a Six Rivers West doubleheader. Lamps singled home a run in the top of the first inning for the Braves.
Dakota Kauffman, Sr., Boscobel track & field
Kaufmann continued his stellar senior season by winning both the 1,600 and 3,200 at last Friday’s Christopher Becker Memorial Invitational at Cuba City. A week earlier, Kauffman set a new meet record in the 800 with a time of 2:01.78 at the Fennimore Golden Eagle Invitational.
Emma Lawrence, So., Benton/Scales Mound/Shullsburg track & field
Lawrence won the 100 hurdles (16.32) and 300 hurdles (49.7) and placed second in the triple jump (32’10.25”) to lead the Benton/Scales Mound/Shullsburg girls to their first team title at the Christopher Becker Memorial Invitational last Friday at Cuba City.
Amanda Meister, Sr., Riverdale softball
Meister struck out nine and allowed a single hit in a 2–0 shutout over Iowa–Grant Monday afternoon. Meister allowed a double in the top of the fourth inning, but Meister promptly picked off the I–G base runner when centerfield Mackenzie Herried snuck in behind the Iowa–Grant base runner from centerfield to apply the tag.