A pair of former Times-area softball standouts are heading west for the 16-team National Junior College Athletic Association Division I National Championships.
Delanie Johnson (So., Streator) and Rachael Quaritsch (So., Flanagan-Cornell) both recently helped Lake Land College (50-17) capture the Regional 24 championship to advance the now No. 14-seeded Lakers to an opening-round game in St. George, Utah against No. 3 seed Chipola College (Fla.) at 8:30 p.m. Central Time on Wednesday — the tourney's title game scheduled to be played on Saturday.
In the final game of the Region 24 tournament, Lake Land defeated Wabash Valley 13-2, with Johnson (three RBIs) and Quaritsch (double, RBI) each going 4-for-5.
On the season, Johnson is hitting .491 with 23 doubles, four triples, four home runs, 52 RBIs and 12 stolen bases, while Quaritsch is batting .397 with 13 doubles, three triples, a home run, 54 RBIs and 11 stolen bases.
Waubonsee College ended its season with a pair of losses in the Region IV Tournament to finish 32-18. Maddie Kawall (Fr., Somonauk) concluded a solid season with the Lady Chiefs by hitting .403 with 12 doubles, 23 RBIs and 20 stolen bases.
Joliet Junior College finished the year 38-18. Pitcher Rachel Sangston (So., Seneca) appeared in 19 games (15 starts) for the Wolves this season and went 7-6 with nine complete games. She posted an ERA of 4.81 and fanned 37 batters in 87 1/3 innings
Illinois Wesleyan University had its season come to a close after a loss in the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin Tournament to finish the season 24-19. Pitcher Hunter Simon (So., Seneca) made 16 relief appearances this season for the Titans, posting a 1-2 record and 5.91 ERA in 21 1/3 innings with 11 strikeouts.
Waubonsee Community College finished the year 30-23 after falling in the Region IV Tournament. Justin Sartori (So., Sandwich) ended a fine season, hitting .313 with 10 doubles, two triples, five home runs, and 30 RBIs for the Chiefs.
Knox College's Shelby Keen (So., Woodland) recently finished the season by earning medalist honors after shooting an even-par 73 at the Augustana College Viking Spring Invitational.
"Wow, what a round by Shelby!" said Knox head coach K.C. Harding on the school's website. "It was great to see her shoot her lowest round of her young career and take home the medalist honors in a very tough field."
Monmouth College's Haley Hoekstra (Jr., Woodland) shot an 80 at the event to finish tied for ninth.