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DV’s Gunderson inks with SDSU women’s track

NORTH SIOUX CITY — Silja Gunderson knows what it’s like to win a state track and field championship, but now she just wants to get back there.

In the meantime, the Dakota Valley High School senior sealed her future Friday by signing her national letter of intent to run for the South Dakota State University women’s track team after graduation.

Gunderson won the Class A state championship in the 100-meter hurdles as a sophomore with a time of 15.42 seconds.

“The obstacles are so much fun,” she said. “I love running, but I also love having something to chase.”

It’s been a long journey since then.

One of those includes a knee injury suffered playing volleyball that severely limited her on track as a junior, although she did qualify for state in the 100 and placed 10th as part of a Dakota Valley 4×100 relay with Grace Meyer, Logan Miller and Sophie Tuttle .

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Gunderson still plays softball, but has since given up volleyball to pursue track.

“It was tough, it took a toll on my mental health,” Gunderson said. “I got quite depressed because I didn’t think I could get back to where I was.”







Sioux City Relays, Saturday

Hinton’s Bailey Boeve (5), Dakota Valley’s Silja Gunderson (4) and Sioux City West’s Kenya Harris (3) compete in the elite girls 100-meter hurdles during the Sioux City Relays, Saturday, at Elwood Olsen Stadium in Sioux City, Iowa, April 13, 2024.


Jesse Brothers, Sioux City Journal








Sioux City Relays, Saturday

Silja Gunderson of Dakota Valley competes in the girls shuttle hurdle relay at the Sioux City Relays on Saturday.


Jesse Brothers, Sioux City Journal


And the signs are there that she may be on her way to competing for another state championship.

DV ran Gunderson with Claire Munch, Tuttle and Addy Wubbena in the shuttle hurdles relay at the Sioux City Relays last Saturday and the team ran a time of 1 minute, 9.60 seconds, which is the fastest in South Dakota (all classes).

“I ran (personal bests) last weekend and I’m now faster than I’ve ever been before, so that’s super exciting,” she said. “That was literally the first time we ran together (the shuttle obstacle relay). We just put together a team and ran a good time.

After the race, the Panthers rushed back to participate in their prom later that evening.

“I haven’t eaten all day,” Gunderson said. “It was hectic going home from organizing five events to get ready.”

Gunderson wants to make the most of the opportunity she has left while she’s still at DV — like qualifying for statehood for the fourth time — but is also grateful that she’s done enough and had enough help along the way to be in a position to sign a D-1 commitment letter.

“I literally can’t describe how incredible it is (to draw),” Gunderson said. “I want to thank coaches, parents, family, God, all my supporters, everyone helped me get where I am today.”







DV's Silja Gunderson signing day

Silja Gunderson (center) of Dakota Valley poses with her mother (Renee, left) and father (Brad, right) as she signs her national letter of intent to run for the South Dakota State University women’s team after graduating from DV.


Ryan Timmerman, Sioux City Journal


Signings from other areas

Ashlynn Davis, Central Lyon, Dordt women’s track and field

Davis has a sub-30-second 200-meter dash for the Lions this season, as well as duties with the Central Lyon relay teams. As a junior, Davis qualified for the Class 2A state track meet in three relays. The best of these was a fifth place in the 4×800. The team of Davis, Afton Schlumbohm, Mary Schriever and Riley Weiler ran a season-best time of 9 minutes, 47.38 seconds at the state level.

Mariah Gerleman, Central Lyon, Northwestern College women’s golf

Gerleman just led Central Lyon to a first-place finish at the Siouxland Conference meet on Thursday, April 18. She medaled in the event as the senior matched Sioux Center’s Hope Faber for the low score of the match as both shot a 43 over nine holes at Rock. River Golf and Country Club.

Ethan Skoglund, Sergeant Bluff-Luton, Central College men’s wrestling

Skoglund went 49-7 as a senior at SB-L this winter and earned a fifth-place finish at the Class 2A state tournament at 126 pounds. During the season he won the district and Missouri River Athletic Conference championships.







Class 2A state wrestling semifinals

Ethan Skoglund, right, of Sergeant Bluff-Luton is defeated by Aaron Boone of Washington during the Class 2A 120-pound consolation rounds at the Iowa High School Athletic Association state wrestling tournament at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, Iowa, Friday. February 17, 2023.


Jesse Brothers, Sioux City Journal


Kacy Miller, West Monona, Iowa Western Community College softball

Miller, an all-stater in Class 2A, helped the Spartans earn their first state softball tournament berth in decades last summer. Since last season, she has also started for the West Monona volleyball team, placed second at the state girls wrestling tournament at 105 pounds, was the leading scorer for the Spartans’ basketball team (surpassing 1,000 career points), and is now on the list of the school. athletics team. As a junior on the diamond, she hit .424 with a .771 slugging line-up with 18 doubles, four triples, five home runs and 39 RBIs. She also stole 46 bases on 48 attempts.







West Monona vs. North Union softball

North Union’s Shelby Fraker (2) is safely in second place while West Monona’s Kacy Miller (3) awaits the roll during Monday night’s Class 2A Region 1 championship in Onawa, Iowa. West Monona won 7-6 to advance to the state tournament in Fort Dodge next week.


Tim Hynds, Sioux City Journal


The Journal’s Jared McNett shows how to download and browse the Sioux City Journal app.

Jesse Brothers