To illustrate exactly how much progress Alleman junior thrower Scott Schilb has made in 12 months, a quick glance at last year's Western Big 6 Conference meet results is needed.|
In one season, Schilb went from not scoring in either the shot put or discus to the league champion in both events.
Schilb, this week's Metro Pacesetter for The Dispatch and The Rock Island Argus, offers no headline-grabbing story when it comes to his rise from an unknown to champion. All he knows is it took a blue-collar approach to reach this point.
"A lot of determination and dedication," Schilb said. "I've been practicing and hitting the weights a lot. I'm driving to prove to people who I am."
If you did not know who Schilb was, he tried to change that last Thursday. Schilb already had some wins and was creeping up the Class 2A leaderboard prior to the Western Big 6 Conference Meet, but he used the last regular-season event for his best performance.
Schilb left no doubt, setting personal bests in the shot put (52-feet, 11-inches) and discus (155-0) to become what many believe is the first Alleman athlete to sweep the throws at the Big 6 boys' meet. He won the shot put by exactly eight feet and took the discus by more than 12 feet.
"An awesome feeling," Schilb said of the sweep.
While Schilb's wins are impressive, and the moment exhilarating, the real story behind the success comes away from the competition. Those stories center inside the Alleman weight room or on the patch of land behind the school. Those two places turned Schilb into a conference champion who could become the Pioneers' first athlete to earn a state throwing medal since 1979.
The extra time gaining strength and perfecting his technique and mechanics provided everything Schilb needed to morph into a consistent, dominant thrower. Another factor in his progression was motivation, something he easily found.
Schilb said "getting whooped up by" 2011 Moline graduate Adam Rasche last year gave him an edge.
"I'd watch him be ridiculous (with his throws)," Schilb said of Rasche, a two-time Big 6 discus and shot put champion and current Illinois State freshman. "I wanted to reach that."
So he went to work, spending almost seven days a week on throws and lifting four times. All the work resulted in his discus improving 25 feet and gaining nine in the shot put.
Add everything together and it perfectly describes Schilb as a competitor.
"He sets an example for everybody here as to what you need to do with training for whatever sport you participate in," Alleman throws coach Joey Diab said. "The example is working as hard as you can."
As of now, Schilb's dedication and determination is becoming his signature.
"It keeps getting stronger and stronger," Schilb said. "I want to be one of the elite."
Based on what's happened in the last 12 months, that seems possible.
"I've seen how much I've improved this season," Schilb said. "If I improve that much again, that would be awesome. It makes me want to work harder to become the best."
- Favorite restaurant: Arthur's Garden Deli
- Favorite music: Country
- Favorite movie: "Friday Night Lights"
- Favorite class: History with Mr. Skahill
- Favorite athletes: J.J. Watt and Reese Hoffa
- Parents: Steve and Christal Schilb, Moline
In the running
- Mary Adlfinger and Hannah Murray, Alleman: Adlfinger claimed the 3200-meter race and Murray won the shot put at the Class 2A Mendota Sectional.
- Kelsey Nystrom, Geneseo: Recorded her 100th career goal in a soccer win over Rochelle.
- Justin Remley, Moline: The sophomore won the singles title at the Western Big 6 Conference boys' tennis meet.
- Derrick Ellis, Rock Island: Won the 100- and 200-meter dashes, long jump and ran a leg on the Rocks' title-winning 4x100 relay at the Big 6 Meet.
- Mystique Thompson, Rock Island: Won the 100-meter dash title at the Class 3A Normal West Sectional and ran on the 4x100 and 4x200 relays that each established school records.
- Keith Sands, United Township: Captured the 1600 title and finished second in the 800 at the Big 6 Meet.
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