Antioch's DeJong catching some national attention at Illinois State

  • Paul DeJong, here making a play during his high school days at Antioch, is getting national attention for his work behind the plate at Illinois State.

      Paul DeJong, here making a play during his high school days at Antioch, is getting national attention for his work behind the plate at Illinois State. Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

Updated 2/9/2015 3:46 PM

Paul DeJong, an Illinois State redshirt junior, has been named a Preseason all-American by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.

The former Antioch High School standout was named to the second team as a catcher.


The preseason honor comes following DeJong being named a Louisville Slugger Preseason All-America selection in December.

DeJong was a third-team selection as catcher/second baseman.

He was also named a Missouri Valley Conference Preseason All-Conference selection last month.

DeJong split time between three defensive positions in 2014, spending time at second base, third base and catcher.

He appeared in 54 games and led the Redbirds with a .349 batting average and .596 slugging percentage. He also led the team in hits (76), doubles (21), triples (3), home runs (9), RBI (48), runs (44), total bases (130) and hit by pitches (9) in 2014.

DeJong earned All-MVC first-team honors following the 2014 season after leading the league in doubles and ranking second in hits and total bases, fourth in RBI and fifth in home runs.

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DeJong was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 38th round of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft last June, but opted instead to return to Illinois State for his redshirt junior season.

The Illinois State baseball team opens the 2015 season this Friday with a four-game series at Arkansas State.

Women's track

Southern Illinois senior Kelley Gallagher (Vernon Hills) anchored the distance medley relay at the Indiana Relays and overtook Indiana University's runner in the last 200 meters to claim victory for the Salukis in 11.53.16.

She was also part of the distance crew that toppled the school record in the 4 x 800 meter relay.

The Chicagoland team of Gallagher, freshman Alexandra Martel (Lane Tech), senior Mobola Rotibi (Lincoln Way North) and senior Allison Gallo (Conant) finished third at a time of 9:09.22, which breaks the previous record of 9:09.60 set in 1998.

Women's basketball

Concordia-Chicago junior Morgan Jahnke (Grant) was named the school's athlete of the week.

She was named to the all-tournament team at this year's Concordia Invitational Tournament.


Jahnke excelled in many statistical areas for the Cougar women in three games.

She averaged 19.0 points per game, including a 22-point effort against NAIA third-ranked Concordia University Nebraska on Jan. 30. Jahnke also totaled 18 rebounds, 10 steals and, most impressively, 9 assists against just 4 turnovers.

• Augustana sophomore point guard Olivia Mayer (Libertyville) leads the Vikings with 86 assists.

Men's track

Lewis University junior Isaac Jean-Paul (Warren) has been selected as the Great Lakes Valley Conference Indoor Field athlete of the week.

It is the fourth time this season and third-straight week that Jean-Paul has won the award.

Jean-Paul broke his own school-record in the high jump with an NCAA automatic qualifying and first-place showing of 2.19m (7 feet, 2¼ inches) at the GVSU Quad.

"Isaac didn't even look his best," said Lewis head men's track and field coach Dana Schwarting. "He opened a little higher than usual so he could save his energy for the heights we really want to clear.

"I really feel like he can not only win a national title, but make the US championships as well."

This is the fifth time out of six tries that Lewis has captured the GLVC Field Athlete of the Week award this season.

Men's basketball

Griffin Pils (Libertyville) led Augustana with 24 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the field in a 72-70 loss to Augustana.

Libertyville signees

Ten Libertyville athletes made their commitments to continue their athletic careers last week.

Five were for football: Alex Dragin (Butler), Jacob Mansfield (St. Norbert), Jordan McInerney (Winona State), Atakan Pekpolat (Michigan Tech), Nick Rossetti (St. Thomas).

Three were lacrosse: Henry Burns (Sewanee), Peter Leone (New England College) and Connor Cleary (Aurora University).

Swimmer Matt Harrington committed to Princeton University and soccer star Mia Hollingsworth to Lee University.

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