EDITOR'S NOTE: The Swnews4u.com Athlete of the Week is a web-only feature that will publish each Thursday throughout the calendar year.
Maguire Fitzgerald, Sr., P/3B, Fennimore baseball
FENNIMORE — For the second time in a month, Fennimore senior Maguire Fitzgerald threw a five-inning no-hitter. The Fennimore fireballer had it all working in Friday’s 10–0 shutout of visiting Iowa–Grant. Fitzgerald also threw a five-inning no-hitter against Southwestern on April 5.
“Maguire was absolutely lights out against Iowa–Grant,” said Fennimore head coach Brent Sheckler. “He had his command exactly where he wanted he. He was hitting hit spots and mixing his speeds. He was never really behind in the count. It was really one of the best pitching performances I have seen.”
Fitzgerald (5–1) struck out eight and needed only 66 pitches to complete the five-inning no-hitter. Only one of the 15 batters he faced reached base. Keaton Durni reached on an error by first baseman Noah James to lead off the third inning, but the Golden Eagles (8–5, 6–2 SWAL) quickly erased the threat with 4–6–3 double play. Fennimore scored a pair of runs in the second thanks to a pair of I–G errors and a Fitzgerald single. The Eagles added exploded for seven runs — five with two outs — in the third inning.
Senior Trevor Wanek walked and scored on a wild pitch. Fitzgerald doubled and scored on Druw Fifrick’s RBI single to make it 4–0. Taggen Gommel, Gavyn Muench added RBI singles, and senior Derek Kephart blasted a three-run homer to cap the rally.
HONORABLE MENTION (in alphabetical order):
Riley Christensen, So., Belmont baseball
Chrisitensen went 4-for-8 with four RBI, three runs scored and hit homers in each game to lead the Braves (7–6, 5–3 SRC) to a sweep of visiting Black Hawk last Friday, 12–2 and 10–5. Christensen also went 2-for-3 in Belmont’s 11–1 five-inning victory over River Ridge on Monday and 3-for-4 with the go-ahead RBI double in last Thursday’s 7–6 win over Southwestern.
Nikki Knebel, Sr., SS, Belmont softball
Knebel went 2-for-3 with a pair of solo home runs in top-ranked Belmont's 5–1 victory over Potosi Tuesday afternoon. Knebel has gone 8-for-15 with four extra-base hits and 11 RBI in the undefeated Braves' (16–0, 11–0 SRC) last five games. She also went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles and two-RBI in a key 10–0 win over previously unbeaten Highland (14–1) last Wednesday. She drove in three runs in a 17–1 win at Monticello on Thursday, then went 2-for-4 with four RBI in Friday's 14–0 win over Pecatonica.
Reid Larson, Sr., Fennimore track and field
Larson had three very good performances at last Friday’s River Valley Invitational, winning the 110-meter high hurdles with a time of 15.61. He also set a new personal record of 15.55 in the prelims. Larson nipped Prairie du Chien’s Ben Teynor (41.80) at the finish line to win the 300 hurdles by 0.13 seconds with a time of 41.67. He also finished third in the long jump at 20’4.25”. Larson’s current sectional ranks are first in the 300s, second in the 110s, sixth in the long jump and seventh in the triple jump.
Kayci Martensen, Fr., Benton/Scales Mound/Shullsburg track and field
Benton freshman Kayci Martensen dominated the distance runs for the Lady Zephyrs at Friday's Deerfield Invitational with first-place finishes in the 800 (2:19.41), 1,600 (5:10.51) and 3,200 (11:10.15) meter runs.
Mya McCarthy, So., P, Iowa–Grant softball
McCarthy pitched the Panthers to three straight SWAL victories and a share of first-place in the past week. The sophomore hurler struck out nine, walked two and allowed just one run on one hit in eight innings in Monday’s 2–1 extra inning victory over Mineral Point. With the win McCarthy’s Panthers improved to 11–5 overall and 10–2 in the SWAL to pull into a first-place tie with the Pointers. She also struck out 10 and walked two in an 11–5 complete game victory at Fennimore last Thursday afternoon. McCarthy struck out eight in a three-hit shutout over Southwestern last Monday.
Cade Rohrbach, Sr., Platteville boys golf
Rohrbach fired a 2-over-par 74 to win medalist honors and lead Platteville to the team title at last Wednesday’s River Valley Invitational at the House on the Rock Resort. He then shot a 42 last Thursday to tie for third at Prairie du Chien’s SWC mini meet and carded a 2-over-par 39 to win medalist honors on his home course at Tuesday’s Platteville SWC mini meet. Heading into Thursday’s final SWC regular season meet Thursday at River Valley, Rohrbach is 0.5 points behind junior teammate Nate Busch in this year’s individual SWC standings.
Nolan Strang, Sr., P, Shullsburg/Benton baseball
Strang helped his father Tim Strang earn his 300th career victory, earning the win on the mound working 4 1/3 scoreless innings allowing three hits and three walks. He also went 2-for-4 at the plate with three runs batted in and two runs scored and after he left the mound he secured the final out of the game by catching a deep fly ball in right field. Strang also was 5-for-5 with a double, three RBI and three runs scored in a doubleheader sweep over Monticello/Albany, 10–0 and 14–1, on Friday, May 3, as the #4-ranked Miner–Zephyrs (16–1 overall, 9–0 Six Rivers) ran their current winning streak to 16 games.