Spring Athletes of the Year

The County Star concludes its look back at the 2017-18 athletic year by naming its Athletes of the Year for the Spring sports season, which includes boys’ and girls’ track and field, softball and baseball.

Boys’ Track & Field - Steven Migut, senior ​Migut concluded his high school track career by winning an elusive individual state championship in the 300 intermediate hurdles last month at Charleston. The West Point-bound football recruit was a member of the 2015 Class 1A state champions, and ran a leg on the 4 X 200-meter relay quartet that won a state title that year. Migut qualified for the state finals eleven times during his four years at Unity, but did not win an individual title until his last race of his career. Migut had a hand (or leg) in scoring 19 of Unity’s 22 points at the Class 2A state meet this year, winning the 300 hurdles, placing second in the 110-meter high hurdles and finishing ninth in the 4 X 100 relay. During the 2018 season, Migut set three new school records, setting new marks in the 200 meter dash (22.19), the 110 high hurdles (14.9), and the 300 hurdles (38.18). During his prep career, he also ran legs on the 4 X 100 relay team (42.70) and the 4 X 200 relay (3:21.90) that set school records in 2015 and 2016, respectively.

Girls’ Track & Field - Taylor Millsap, senior ​A two-time state champion as a member of the Rockets’ girls’ cross-country team, Millsap placed seventh in the pole vault at the Class 2A state meet at Charleston, the third time during her high school career that she has scored points in the pole vault at state. A four-time qualifier for the state finals in her event, Millsap is a co-holder of the Unity record in the pole vault at 11-feet, 9-inches. Millsap placed second at the Illini Prairie Conference meet, and placed fourth at the sectional to advance to state. The News-Gazette named Millsap to the Second Team on its All-Area Team in Girls’ Track & Field.

Softball - Elyce Knudsen, sophomore ​Like Migut, a two-sport Athlete of the Year, Knudsen excelled on the diamond as well as on the hardwood, earning All-State recognition in both basketball and softball. Knudsen had the hottest bat for the Rocket softball team, hitting a scorching .636, with 68 hits in 107 at-bats. The shortstop belted four home runs, drove in 23 runs and scored 43 times, stealing a team-high six bases to boot. Knudsen also flashed the leather for coach Aimee Davis, starting or turning several double plays that shut down enemy rallies. A Second Team All-Stater, Knudsen was also a First Team All-Area pick by the News-Gazette and a Second Team All-Conference choice by Illini Prairie Conference coaches.

Baseball -Gunnar Bailey, sophomore ​ The versatile Bailey was the Rockets’ leading hitter with a .315 average, and also topped the squad with seven stolen bases. Bailey evolved into Unity’s lead-off batter, played shortstop defensively and also pitched as a starter, as well as in relief for coach Tom Kimball. As a junior, Bailey could be a key cog in a Rocket team hoping to bounce back from a sub-par 2018 season.

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