SouthtownStar Athletes On Campus: Ethan Wood runs to MVP honors for Illinois Wesleyan men’s cross country
By Mike Walsh For Sun-Times Media January 24, 2014 6:30PM
Ethan Wood, of Illinois Wesleyan. | Supplied photo
Updated: February 27, 2014 6:09AM
Lemont graduate Ethan Wood was selected the Most Valuable Performer for Illinois Wesleyan’s men’s cross country team for the 2013 season.
Wood, who was one of eight Titans earning a letter, was the low finisher for Illinois Wesleyan in four meets during the season. The senior’s best performance was a 19th-place finish in the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin meet Nov. 2 at St. James Farm in Warrenville.
Wood’s time of 26 minutes, 27 seconds helped Illinois Wesleyan finish fifth as a team.
In addition to the CCIW meet, Wood was the Titans’ low finisher at the Wheaton Invitational (Sept. 21) with a time of 26:22, the Augustana Invitational (Sept. 28) with a reading of 26:12 and the Brooks Invitational (Oct. 19) with an effort of 26:03.
In women’s cross country, junior Kelsey Buerger was one of nine athletes earning a letter for the Titans.
Buerger (Andrew) posted her best time of the season Nov. 16 at the NCAA Regional in Rock Island.
Buerger’s time of 23:27 was good enough for 68th place as an individual as Illinois Wesleyan finished eighth in the 38-team field.
Walsh is worthy
Lewis sophomore middle blocker Bobby Walsh (Mount Carmel) was named Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association’s Defensive Player of the Week for the period ending Jan. 13.
In seven sets, against Stanford and Pacific, the 6-foot-9 Walsh averaged 1.86 blocks-per-set, including four solo blocks and nine block assists. Walsh also hit .269 with 10 kills and three errors in 26 attempts to average 1.43 kills-per-set for the weekend.
The Flyers lost in four sets to Stanford and swept Pacific in three sets.
Against Pacific, Walsh had a career-high three solo blocks and five block assists. He also led the Flyers with seven kills in the win in Stockton, Calif.
“I am excited for Bobby,” Lewis men’s volleyball coach Dan Friend said in a statement. “Bobby has been the anchor for our team defensively, and at the same time, he has been producing offensively against Top 5 nationally ranked teams.”
Aurora University tight end Ryan Mizgate (T.F. South) earned several accolades for his performance during the 2013 season.
Atop the list was the Lansing native being named a 2013 Division III All-American by the American Football Coaches Association.
In addition to his AFCA All-American honor, Mizgate was named a 2013 Second-Team All-American by Beyond Sports Network, a d3football.com Third-Team All-Region tight end and Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference First-Team All-Conference.
In his final season with the Spartans, Mizgate set an Aurora single-season record with 50 catches, totaling 817 yards and seven touchdowns.
Along with those honors, the senior also was named a 2013 Division III All-American for the third time, this time by The Associated Press on the Little All-American Team. Mizgate was named to the second team.
Aurora was 3-7 overall and 2-4 in the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference in 2013.