Track & Field Info Meeting on Dec 2nd

There will be a short informational meeting for Girls Track & Field in the Little Theater on Wednesday, December 2nd  from 3:30-4:00pm.

Please feel free to invite anyone else that might be interested in track & field to the meeting!

If you are currently participating in a winter sport and cannot attend the meeting, stop in and see Coach Plunkett in C350 sometime during the day on Dec. 2nd.

Here is some important info about Girls Track & Field to consider:

To join:  You will need to register online ( before Jan.19th.

Indoor portion of the season (Jan.19-Mar.19)

  • Track & Field officially begins on Jan.19. Any athlete who is still playing a winter sport such as basketball, gymnastics, etc., may begin track when your winter sport season ends.
  • Consists of 8-9 indoor meets concluding with the WSC Indoor Conference Championship Meet.

Outdoor portion of the season (Mar.21-May 9)

  • Consists of 8-9 outdoor meets concluding with the WSC Outdoor Conference Championship Meet.

VARSITY ONLY State Series portion of the season (May 9-21)

  • Consists of the IHSA Sectional state qualifying meet for the top 2 athletes in each of the 14 individual events and 4 athletes for each of our 4 relay teams concluding with the IHSA State Championship Meet.

As you may already know, the DGS Girls Track & Field program has developed a strong winning tradition due the dedication and commitment of the athletes and coaches.

If you have any questions about the 2016 girls track & field season:

  • Contact Coach Plunkett in Room C350 before school OR by email
  • Check out more info on the Girls Track & Field web site at

And the award goes to…

The DGS girls cross country team celebrated the 2015 season at Awards Banquet on Monday night. All of the athletes received their participation awards (freshman numerals, sophomore letter, JV letter, or varsity letter) as well as some special awards that were given.

Two ‘Most Improved’ awards were given out. Freshman, Julie LaLonde earned the award for greatest improvement from the beginning of the season until the end. She improved her time from 26:59 in the first meet down to 21:38 in the final meet (nearly 5 1/2 minutes). Senior, Allie Cheevers earned the award for improvement from the 2014 season to the 2015 season. Allie dropped her time from 20:29 down to 19:29.

The ‘Sportsmanship’ award was given to sophomore, Riya Bhasin. The basis for this award is commitment, compassion, and courage. Riya stood out as athlete who cares greatly for her team and selflessly would do anything to help and encourage her teammates.

Junior, Katie Stapleton was recognized as the ‘Most Valuable Athlete’. Katie has contributed both leadership and enthusiasm to our team. She was the varsity conference champion, the regional champion, and our top runner in every meet we ran. Katie holds the #3 position on the DGS all-time 3-mile record board (17:36).

On a less serious note, our seniors presented the following ‘mock awards’:

  • Izzy Taylor (cutest running clothes)
  • Katie Stapleton (best stride)
  • Melissa Weidner (best kick)
  • Katie Meyr (most spirited)
  • Annie Engel (most likely to get lost on a run)
  • Emily Qualizza (most likely to run an ultra marathon)
  • Becky Versaskas (best hair after a race)


2015 CC Season Pictures!

2015 Cross Country Season Pictures


DGS finishes 20th at State!

The DGS girls cross country team placed 20th at the IHSA State meet yesterday afternoon. The girls ran a competitive race and made all of us very proud. Katie Stapleton (Jr) was our first finisher in 43rd place, running 17:36, a season best. Becky Versaskas (Fr) ran 18:05, also a season best. Melissa Weidner (Fr) ran 18:20, yet another season best. The next 4 girls ran within 20 seconds of their season best times. Michaeala Hackbarth (Sr) ran 18:34, Jillian Boyle (Sr) ran 18:46, Gillian Thomas (So) ran 18:55, and Emily Qualizza (Sr) ran 19:03. With our top 3 finishers returning for next year along with 6 other girls from our state meet roster, things look good for another strong season next year!

DGS State Meet Tradition

The Downers Grove South girls cross country team is no stranger to the IHSA State Meet. When the Mustangs travel to Peoria this weekend, it will mark the 5th consecutive and 12th overall trip for the entire varsity team to compete at the Illinois State Meet.

This tradition began back in 1983 when DGS qualified and placed 7th as a team. That team was led by freshman, Christine Slabich, who placed 17th as an individual, earning all-state honors. Christine Slabich continued to be a key DGS runner when she led the Mustangs back to State in 1984 and 1985 where the team finished 8th and 5th respectively. The 5th place finish is the highest finish ever for DGS at the State Finals. Slabich also earned individual all-state recognition both of those years, improving to 12th place in 1984 and eventually 9th place in 1985 (the 2nd highest finish ever for a DGS runner at State).

In 1987, during her junior year, Becky Mizener qualified as an individual and placed 15th to earn all-state honors. The following 3 years proved to be outstanding years to be a Mustang. In 1988, the team qualified and finished in 6th place, helped by 2 all-state finishes. Mindy Sick and Tina Stec (both juniors at the time) placed 7th and 23rd overall as individuals. Mindy’s 7th place finish is the highest individual finish ever for a DGS runner at State!

Tina came back in 1989 to lead DGS to equal the best ever team finish (5th place) with her 13th place individual finish. Sophomore, Julie Klinkenberg joined her as an all-state runner in 1989 with her 18th place finish. The entire team returned again in 1990 to place 6th led by a top 40 trio of juniors in Melinda Wagner – 33rd, Julie Klinkenberg – 35th, and Myrna Cantu – 36th. In 1991, Myrna Cantu came back as a senior to place 12th overall and earn all-state recognition.

The Mustangs suffered a drought of state qualifiers until 1998 when Carly Nuzbach qualified as an individual her senior year and finished in 69th place. She was followed by Melissa Malter‘s 109th place finish as a sophomore in 2000. It was in 2001 that the Mustangs finally returned to the State meet as a team and finished in 21st place. Ashley Jones (Sr) led the team with her 108th place finish. Melissa Malter competed at State for the 3rd year in a row when she individually placed 102nd as a senior in 2002.

In 2007, Casey Harms (So) placed 87th as the lone DGS individual qualifier. When Harms returned to State as a senior in 2009 along with her teammates Jacquelyn Thate (So) and Rebecca Stearns (So) the current streak of Mustang qualifiers was set in motion. The aforementioned trio of girls placed 132nd, 106th, and 140th respectively. In 2010, Katie Strelau (So) finished 95th as the last individual qualifier DGS has sent to State.

Freshman, Amanda Thate (28th place), along with Katie Strelau (62nd place), led the team’s return to Peoria and a 12th place finish in 2011. This was the first of what has grown into a 5 year streak of qualifying the team for State. The Mustangs came back and finished in 15th place in 2012. This team was led by junior, Haley Alber‘s 65th place individual finish along with sophomore, Abby Kargol‘s 70th place and senior, Amy Rotunno‘s 74th place finish.

2013 marked the best DGS team finish since 1990 when the Mustangs brought home 9th place overall. Amanda Thate (Jr) and Haley Albers (Sr) paced the team with their 34th and 41st place individual finishes. Last season, sophomore, Katie Stapleton, was the top finisher (120th place) for the 2014 DGS team that finished in 21st place at State. Katie looks to lead the team again in 2015 as they are set to compete in this year’s State Meet.

DGS IHSA State Team Qualifiers & State Place

  • 1983 – 7th place
  • 1984 – 8th place
  • 1985 – 5th place
  • 1988 – 6th place
  • 1989 – 5th place
  • 1990 – 6th place
  • 2001 – 21st place
  • 2011 – 12th place
  • 2012 – 15th place
  • 2013 – 9th place
  • 2014 – 21st place

DGS IHSA All-State Athletes & State Place

  • Christine Slabich (1983)  17th place
  • Christine Slabich (1984)  12th place
  • Christine Slabich (1985)  9th place
  • Becky Mizener (1987)  15th place
  • Mindy Sick (1988)  7th place
  • Tina Stec (1988)  23rd place
  • Tina Stec (1989)  13th place
  • Julie Klinkenberg (1989)  18th place
  • Myrna Cantu (1991)  12th place


DGS Qualifies for State!!

The Downers Grove South girls cross country team traveled to Katherine Legge Memorial Park in Hinsdale for Saturday’s IHSA Sectional meet. The conditions were tough with the rain and the muddy course, but the girls ran well and finished 4th out of the 18 teams competing. The top 5 teams all advance on to next week’s State Championship meet in Peoria, so our season continues on for one more week. The course is challenging enough in good weather conditions, but the non-stop rain turned the course into a muddy mess that included two trips over a swollen creek. The creek claimed plenty of victims, including 5 out of the 7 Mustang runners. Junior, Katie Stapleton, was leading the race at the 1 ¼ mile mark when she crashed hard exiting the creek. Katie recovered, worked hard to make up some of the lost ground. She led our team again running a good time of 18:25 while finishing in 8th place. The top-10 finish also earned Katie all-sectional honors. Melissa Weidner (Fr) continued to work her way up the varsity ladder and finished in 28th place with a time of 19:02. Michaela Hackbarth (Sr) and Becky Versaskas (Fr) helped hold together a solid DGS pack and finished 30th (19:12) and 31st (19:16) respectively. Jill Boyle (Sr), coming off a rough Regional race, anchored the DGS scoring and secured the trip to State with her 34th place finish in 19:21. Natalie Olsen (So) and Emily Qualizza (Sr) rounded out the varsity team finishing in 40th place (19:40) and 53rd place (20:09) respectively. This has been a typical season, filled with lots of amazing races, but also some unfortunate injuries and other obstacles. I couldn’t be more proud of how the girls stepped up and got the job done today. Only 25 out of the 150+ teams in our 3A classification advance to the State meet each year and it is no small accomplishment. This marks the 5th consecutive season that the DGS girls will be competing with the entire varsity team at the State meet.

Next week’s IHSA Girls 3A State Championship race will be held Saturday, November 7th, at Detweiller Park in Peoria at 1:00pm.