The eagle is considered the “king of the skies.” It’s also known as a symbol for strength and power. Consider Dunlap High School’s nickname well earned this calendar year, because the Eagles were the kings of area athletics in the Journal Star area.

That power and strength began to flex in the spring as Dunlap captured the Class 2A girls track and field state title in dominating fashion, becoming the first team to win all four relays en route to the championship. A week later, the Eagles won the 1A state title in boys tennis, led by singles state champion Victor Spolidorio.

The fall added more gold, as the girls cross country team cruised to a 2A state championship and Emma Theobald swam to a state title in the 100-yard butterfly. A week after winning state, the Dunlap girls cross country team placed 11th at the Nike Cross Nationals Midwest Regional at Indiana State University. Then there was the record-setting football team that earned its first Mid-Illini title and rolled to a 13-0 record and a berth in the Class 5A state title game, where it took home the second-place trophy.