EDITOR'S NOTE: The Swnews4u.com Athlete of the Week is a web-only feature that will publish each Thursday throughout the calendar year.
Luke Fugate, Sr., RB/LB, Platteville football
Senior Luke Fugate is this week’s co-Mast Water Technology Swnews4U.com Athlete of the Week after playing a pivotal role in Platteville’s 35–6 victory over previously unbeaten Lancaster. Fugate was instrumental in the upset on both sides of the balling, rushing for 137 yards and three scores on offense, while recording seven tackles and a key fumble recovery in the first quarter on defense.
Platteville (7–2, 4–1) clinched a share of the Southwest Wisconsin Conference title with the win.
Fugate recovered a Lancaster fumble on the Arrows’ third offensive play so set up a 10-yard Ethan Bernhardt to Cam Brant touchdown pass. After a short punt, Fugate scored eight-yard touchdown run midway through the second quarter, then scored again from three yards out with 1:04 left in the opening quarter to make it 21–0.
Fuguate’s biggest play of the night came early in the second quarter, when the speedy senior took a toss and race around the right end for an 82-yard touchdown run.
“I’m so proud of every individual on this team,” said Platteville head coach Kyle Craig. “They have embraced the day-to-day grind that it takes to improved throughout the year and focused on what it takes to win some very tough games. It’s a true credit to their preparation, effort, and the leadership that exists. The group wanted to cement a place in Hillmen football history and they did just that.”
Fugate, Craig and the Hillmen will open the WIAA Division 4 playoffs Friday at home as a two-seed against seventh-seeded East Troy (5–4).
Lydia Murphy, So., Lancaster cross country
Sophomore Lydia Murphy shares this week’s Mast Water Technology Athlete of the Week award after taking home top honors at last Thursday’s Southwest Wisconsin Conference cross country meet while leading the Lancaster girls to a third-place team finish.
Murphy blew away the field winning SWC medalist honors for a second straight year with a time of 19:05.3, more than 50 seconds faster than runner-up Brelynn Updike (19:55.9) of Platteville.
Murphy and the Flying Arrows will return to action Saturday at the WIAA Division 3 Fennimore Sectional. The boys’ race begins at 11 a.m., followed by the girls’ race at noon. The top two teams, as well as the top two individuals not on a qualifying team advance to next Saturday’s WIAA State Championships in Wisconsin Rapids.
Murphy and the entire Lancaster girls’ cross country team qualified for state a year ago, finishing eighth out of 16 teams. Murphy placed seventh individually with a time of 19:40.67.
HONORABLE MENTION (in alphabetical order)
Peyton Heinberg, So., Darlington boys’ cross country
The Darlington junior won the boys’ race at the SWAL conference cross country meet with a winning-time of 17:04, ahead of junior teammate Tanner Evanstad (17:18), to lead the Redbirds to a ninth straight conference title last Thursday afternoon in Fennimore.
John Ross Linscheid, Sr., QB, Highland football
JR Linscheid completed 4 of 11 passes for 117 yard and three touchdowns and rushed for 124 yards and a fourth score on 14 carrier to lead the Cardinals (6–3, 6–2) to a 29–6 victory over Benton/Scales Mound in last Friday’s regular season finale.
Ilse Mendez, So., Darlington girls’ cross country
Mendez paced the Darlington girls’ cross country team with a third-place finish (20:39) to lead the Lady Redbirds to the conference title at last Thursday’s SWAL Championships cross country meet in Fennimore to complete the Darlington sweep of conference titles.
Trevor Neuroth, Jr., WR/DB Fennimore football
The speedy junior caught five catches for 171 yards, including a 78-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter. Neuroth leads the SWAL with 899 yads and eight touchdowns on 39 receptions. The big-play specialist is averaging 23.1 yards per catch.
Kordell Stillmunkes, Jr., RB/DB, Cuba City football
The junior halfback rushed for 225 yards and scored all six touchdowns in Cuba City’s 42–0 victory over Boscobel (1–8, 1–5 SWAL) last Friday night. The Cubans (4–5, 3–3) clinched a playoff berth with the win.