Johnson off to a hot start
SIOUX CITY — The Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) on Tuesday announced the first weekly honors of the 2022 women’s soccer season, which saw freshman forward Alexa Johnson recognized as GPAC Offensive Player of the Week for her efforts in Missouri last weekend.
The Spencer High School graduate got off to a flying start to her Red Raider career, leading GPAC in goals scored in the first official week of the season. She scored four times in the Red Raiders’ two games last week, helping Northwestern start the season 2-0 for the first time since the 2011 season.
Northwestern started the season in Missouri, defeating two American Midwest Conference (AMC) opponents in William Woods (2-1) and Stephens (5-3).
Johnson scored in her first career game and started as a Red Raider in the 35th minute of last Thursday’s game against William Woods (Mon). The goal was her first and the team’s first of the 2022 season. In the 1-1 draw, Johnson struck again in the 75th minute for her second goal of the game, which proved victorious.
In the second game of the week, Johnson netted twice again in a 5-3 win over Stephens College Stars. Her second goal of the game also proved a winner, giving her her second in as many games.
Gemeda, Ripperda named runners to watch
SIOUX FALLS — Merga Gemeda, a senior from South Dakota, and Abby Ripperda, a senior from sixth, have been selected as the Summit League’s “Preseason Runners to Watch.”
Gemeda, a two-time All Summit honoree, led the Coyotes in the first five matches of the 2021 regular season before suffering a season-ending injury. During the season, he was named Summit Cross Country Runner of the Week five times to break the league record. Gemeda ran the league’s fastest 8,000 meter time of 24:23.7 at last fall’s Woody Greeno Invitational in Nebraska. He has been a USD top scorer in every race he has completed since his freshman year.
Ripperda, a two-time All-Summit pick, led the Coyotes at the Summit League Championships a year ago with an eighth-place finish in 21:56.14 in the 6,000-meter dash. She was the third Coyote woman to receive honors across the Midwest region in 2019. Since the start of the 2019 season, Ripperda has been a USD top scorer in every competition she has competed in.
In the Summit League’s cross-country preseason polls for men and women, also announced Tuesday, South Dakota finished third on the women’s side and fifth on the men’s side in head coach Nolan Fife’s first season.
Vermillion 2nd in SFC meeting
SIOUX FALLS — The Vermillion High School boys’ golf team finished second at Tuesday’s Christian gathering in Sioux Falls as the Tanagers had a score of 323, just 10 shots behind the home Chargers.
The Tanagers had four golfers who placed in the top 15. Trey Hansen led Vermillion with a sixth place, 18-hole score of 78.
Dakota Valley finished third in the team race with a score of 331. Logan Collette led the Panthers with a 77, good for fifth place. Matt DeBeer finished 12th (81).
Eli Anema was the Meet medalist with a 75.
G-LR sweeps Harris-Lake Park
GEORGE, Iowa — The George-Little Rock High School volleyball team defeated Harris-Lake Park by a set score 25-16, 25-16 Monday night.
Mustangs freshman Linsey Haken had 11 kills, while Harris-Lake Parks leading hitter Junior Delaney deBoom was with one kill.
Mustang senior Jesse DeGroot led her team with 18 assists.
Carly Koerselman had six match-sized ace serves.
Chiefs release Cochrane
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Chiefs released former South Dakota linebacker Jack Cochrane, according to the Kansas City Star on Tuesday.
The Chiefs started with 75 players, and Cochrane was one of several men fired by Tuesday’s 3 p.m. deadline.
He had three tackles in the preseason game against the Packers.
Jets release Striveler
NEW YORK — The Jets fired former South Dakota quarterback Chris Streveler on Tuesday as part of preseason cuts.
After leading the Jets to their third comeback win in the fourth straight quarter against the Giants last preseason, Jets coach Robert Saleh gave the journeyman quarterback high praise. “Streveler probably had one of the greatest preseasons in football history,” Saleh said late Sunday afternoon.