Saturday offered local high school sports fans the opportunity to see three different athletic disciplines in postseason form, with football teams qualifying for the semifinals, one local girls volleyball team winning bronze at state, and girls swimmers at sectionals.
Scores and recaps are organized by class and sport:
Lena-Winslow 67, Aquin 28: The 12-0 Panthers rolled to a 60-point first half en route to another dominant performance against another NUIC opponent. The Panthers are one win away from reaching state, a home game against Forreston.
Forreston 42, Princeville 0: An emotional Cardinals team, honoring fallen Forreston firefighter Greg Wood before the game, delivered an inspired performance,. The Cardinals displayed their dynamic ground game, and are now one win away from returning to state, traveling to Lena-Winslow in the 1-A semifinal that every NUIC fan had circled when the brackets came out.
Newman 40, Orion 14: The Comets improved to 12-0 with another terrific outing on offense, and are one win from state, drawing fellow undefeated Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley in a 2-A semifinal clash.
Byron 13, Williamsville 0 - The 12-0 Tigers' defense shut down a Bullets offense that had scored more than 40 points per game this season, sending Byron to the 3-A semifinals against IC Catholic. The Tigers will host that game, a win away from going to DeKalb and playing for a state title.
Raby 38, Dixon 13 - The Dukes' offense couldn't get much going in Chicago against the Raiders, as Dixon's historic season scoring the ball came to an end in the quarterfinal round, ending the careers of a star-studded senior class that helped the program make huge strides in their four-year tenure.
Morris 14, Rochelle 9 - The Hubs' inspired run to the quarterfinals in Kevin Crandall's final year as head coach ended at Morris in a Big 12 rematch, as the Redskins hung on for a five-point victory.
Sterling 22, Marian 10: The Golden Warriors remained perfect this season, winning a big road game in Woodstock. Sterling will host the 5-A semifinals against Phillips from Chicago, setting up a showdown for a spot at state between two 12-0 teams.
Hoffman Estates 35, Belvidere North 10: The Blue Thunder's first home playoff game of the year was their final contest of the season, as Hoffman Estates built an early lead and never looked back in Boone County, eliminating the NIC-10's final representative from the playoffs.
1-A Girls Volleyball
Durand 2, Newark 0 - The Lady Bulldogs ended their historic season on a winning note, winning in straight sets against Newark in the 1-A consolation match to capture third place in the program's first ever trip to state. The Lady Dawgs completed a 35-2-1 record this year.
Girls Swimming Sectional
Boylan defeated Byron by two points in the team standings to win the sectional championship at Byron. Here are individual event state qualifiers:
-Belvidere's 200-yard medley relay team of Mikayla Gavina, Madelynn Marunde, Hannah Cunningham, and Sydney Wright
-Byron's 200-yard freestyle relay team of Gretchen Bushman, Kylie Shaw, Leah Drengenberg, and Katie Drezen
-Belvidere's 400-yard freestyle relay team of Mikayla Gavina, Madelynn Marunde, Hannah Cunningham, and Sydney Wright
-Belvidere's Madelynn Marunde, 200-yard freestyle & 500-yard freestyle
-Rockford Christian's Briana Stoffregen, 200-yard individual medley
-Boylan's Nhia Caras, 50-yard freestyle & 100-yard freestyle
-Byron's Gretchen Bushman, 100-yard butterfly
-Belvidere's Mikayla Gavina, 100-yard backstroke
-Boylan's Victoria Dolan, 100-yard breaststroke
-Rochelle's Aubrey Headon, 200-yard freestyle, 50-yard freestyle, 100-yard freestyle, 100-yard breaststroke (disability division)
-Rochelle's Allison Cole, 50-yard freestyle, 100-yard freestyle (disability division)