It wasn’t a victory, but it was a good day Thursday for the Pekin girls tennis team.

With No. 2 singles player Caitlin Dunn and No. 6 singles player Gina Olsen out with an injury and illness, the Dragons still gave visiting Peoria Notre Dame a battle before losing 6-3 in a non-conference match at the John Moss Courts.

“We were disappointed about the loss, but I was very proud of how everyone on our team competed until the bitter end,” said Pekin coach Gary Garver.

“We grew up (Thursday). It will help us as the season continues.”

Pekin freshman Amara Howell moved up to No. 3 singles and won 6-2, 7-5. Dragons frosh/soph player Ashley Stilling slipped into the No. 6 singles slot and won 6-3, 6-0.

With their normal doubles partners out, Pekin’s Jaclyn Mulvey and Rachel Bresnahan teamed up and won at No. 1 doubles.

After winning the first set with some aggressive play, Mulvey and Bresnahan fell behind 5-2 in the second set before roaring back to win 6-2, 7-6 (4).

Garver said three close, well-played matches didn’t go Pekin’s way, but he was pleased with his players’ effort and determination when the going got tough.

Lauraella Everhart lost 7-6 (5), 7-6 (1) at No. 5 singles.

Zariah Wherry lost the first set, won the second set, then lost the tie-breaker 6-4, 3-6, 10-8 at No. 4 singles.

Stilling and frosh/soph doubles partner Brogan Gresham played No. 3 doubles. Notre Dame dropped the first set but rallied for a 3-6, 7-5, 10-4 win.

Here are the match results:

• No. 1 singles — Maria Coulter (PND) def. Jaclyn Mulvey 6-1, 6-2.

• No. 2 singles — Syndee O’Donnell (PND) def. Rachel Bresnahan 6-3, 6-4.

• No. 3 singles — Amara Howell (P) def. Grace Couri 6-2, 7-5.

• No. 4 singles — Natalie Giavani (PND) def. Zariah Wherry 6-4, 3-6, 10-8.

• No. 5 singles — Fiona Tomlin (PND) def. Lauraella Everhart 7-6 (5), 7-6 (1).

• No. 6 singles — Ashley Stilling (P) def. Abrianna Radee 6-3, 6-0.

• No. 1 doubles — Mulvey-Bresnahan (P) def. O’Donnell-Giavani 6-2, 7-6 (4).

• No. 2 doubles — Coulter-Couri (PND) def. Wherry-Everhart 6-1, 6-4.

• No. 3 doubles — Tomlin-Radee (PND) def. Everhart-Brogan Gresham 3-6, 7-5, 10-4.

Pekin will play host Saturday to the annual Pekin Invitational.

THAT’S NO. 1:The drought is over for the Illini Bluffs boys soccer team.

The Tigers beat Canton 4-0 Thursday for their first victory of the season.

Four players scored for Illini Bluffs (1-3-2). Jake Larson (24:00), Lance Crisp (48:48), Reid Sondgeroth (70:00) and Cam Scott (75:00) had the goals. Rademaker also had two assists. Scott had an assist and so did Griffin O’Connor. Goalie Braden Cox made seven saves.

“We finally converted some chances,” said Illini Bluffs coach Gerard Smith. “Nolan Rademaker played particularly well. He assisted on two goals and he had two goals disallowed because of offside calls.”

Smith was happy to see the 28 shots the Tigers piled up.

“Hopefully we can gain confidence from this and move on to where I think we should be,” he said.

NOT SO RICH: Peoria Richwoods beat the visiting Pekin boys soccer team 2-0 Thursday in a non-conference match.

Spencer Wagner (25:12) and Nick Abboud (76:04) scored for the Knights, both unassisted. Goalie Jefferson Kohlmer made six saves in recording the shutout.

Goalie Riley Brashaw made seven saves for the Dragons (1-6), who will play host to Mid-Illini Conference opponent Canton at 4:15 p.m. Tuesday at Coal Miners Park.

TOUGH TREMONT: It has been quite a week for the Tremont boys golf team.

A 7-0 record gave the Turks a 10-1 mark for the season. While that’s impressive, so is the fact that seven players scored for Tremont this week.

The latest Turks wins came against Brimfield, Havana and Midwest Central on Thursday on the front nine at Crane Creek.

Tremont (181) was 17 strokes better than Brimfield (198). Havana (211) and Midwest Central (233) were further behind.

Tim Rice (44), Nolan Leiva (45), Landon Pflederer (45) and Joel Wockley (47) scored for the Turks. Torrin Lawson (48) and Colton Polhemus (60) also competed for Tremont.

Kendal Heberer (54) led Midwest Central. Caleb Uselton (56), Caleb Stewart (59) and Caleb Richardson (64) also scored for the Raiders and Brenden Garman (70) also competed.

RAIDERS LOSE: Brimfield defeated the Midwest Central volleyball team 26-24, 25-17 Thursday.

Taylor Canada, Grace Charlton and Nicole Uselton each had seven digs for the Raiders. Gracie Rademacker had seven assists and Uselton had four kills.

TURNING DuPAGE: When the East Moline football team took the field against East Peoria on Friday, Jim DuPage was in familiar territory.

DuPage, 32, is a Pekin graduate who went on to play collegiately at St. Ambrose University. He was previously the East Moline sophomore coach but was named the head coach in April.

DuPage led East Moline to a 46-6 win over Chicago Charter Tech in Week 1 in a game called at halftime. Charter Tech was already undermanned with a roster of 19 that dwindled because of injuries.

East Moline has finished with two or fewer wins 12 consecutive seasons.

Peoria Journal Star contributed to this report. Steve Stein can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @SpartanSteve.