Moffat County fall sports teams clean up in awards
From team honors to regional and state accolades, members of Moffat County High School’s fall sports teams picked up many awards.
In a season that saw them run all the way to the 3A state finals, the MCHS cross country teams received plenty of acknowledgments.
After placing ninth at state, Wyatt Mortenson — who also placed sixth in the boys medium school race during the Nike Cross Southwest Regional meet Nov. 17 in Casa Grande, Arizona — earned All-State Second Team from Colorado High School Activities Association.
Mortenson also took All-Conference First Team along with MCHS girls Halle Hamilton and Makenna Knez. All-Conference Honorable Mention went to Chris Carrouth, Liberty Hippely and Kelsey McDiffett.
Coach Todd Trapp noted that Carrouth, Knez, Hippely, AJ Barber, Theo Corrello and Allison Villard gained Academic All-State First Team for the fall, while he also presented his MC LEAD Dog Award to Mortenson, Knez and Hippely during a team awards ceremony in late November.
MCHS soccer’s fall season saw the Bulldogs finish 2-13 overall with senior leaders Josh Pando and Pedro Romero each earning Academic All-State honors.
Coach Nathalie Boelens provided Pando with the 2018 Academic Award and named Romero the team MVP for the year.
Boelens also honored foreign exchange students Guillermo Estacha and Vlajko Pavlovic — the team’s leading scorer — for their contributions on the field with the 2018 Coach’s Award and the Golden Boot Award, respectively.
Best Defense went to Davd Rodriguez and Max Rodriquez took Best Hustle.
Bulldogs finished the year 3-6 overall, and despite tough competition amid the 2A Western Slope League, Jamie Nelson was able to provide seven gridiron athletes with All-Conference titles.
Jared Baker, Cale Scranton and Victor Silva were named to the WSL’s First Team, with Honorable Mentions for Colby Beaver, Josh Teeter, Corey Scranton and Angel Rodriguez.
Statistically, MCHS did well in the league, as Baker led the conference in sacks with seven, and Teeter was second in tackles at 95.
On offense, Beaver’s time as quarterback put him at third in passing yardage with 1,224. 624 of those were from catches by Cale Scranton, who finished fifth in WSL receiving yardage.
A 5-15 season for the Lady Bulldogs in their first year under head coach Jessica Profumo was not without achievement.
Tiffany Hildebrandt took 3A WSL All-Conference Honorable Mention as the team leader in kills (77). Senior setter Ebawnee Smercina was the leader in assists at 241, ranked sixth in the conference.
Olivia Profumo had the group’s best kill accuracy, 39.4 percent on her attempts, fourth in the league.
Up front, Jenna Timmer and Jaidyn Steele were the team’s top blockers, with Timmer fourth in the league at 53 and Steele seventh with 47.
Torin Reed broke the Bulldogs’ cold streak in qualifying for the state tournament as the first Moffat County golfer to make it to the final round since 2015.
After placing 12th with an 82 at the 3A Region 4 Tournament in Gunnison, Reed went on to shoot 179 and place 67th across two days at the 3A State Championships in Boulder.
Mackenzie Marshall was part of a high-achieving Meeker program this fall, which went to 3A state for the third straight year, this year making it as far as the quarterfinals.
Marshall achieved All-Conference and All-State distinctions from CHSAA and All-State through Colorado Coaches of Girls Sports as the Lady Cowboys’ leading pitcher. She was the runner-up in strikeouts (72) for 3A District 5 and third in the team’s batting average count at .526.
The season is under hiatus and will pick up again in the spring for Moffat County competitors, but the fall treated them well in the rankings.
Kinlie Brennise leads the Colorado High School Rodeo Association All-Around rankings for girls and is ranked first in her specialty, breakaway roping. At fourth in pole bending and fifth in both barrel racing and goat tying, her chances of going to nationals are positive providing the spring goes according to plan.
Routt County cohorts Jace Logan and Keenan Hayes, who compete alongside MCHS athletes, also remain high in the listings. Logan leads boys All-Around and the steer wrestling, currently third in tie-down roping. In spite of an injury in the arena early in the fall, Hayes remains in second place in bareback riding and was able to claim titles in the Junior National Finals earlier this month.
Elsewhere, Craig’s Dillon Burch sits at third in bull riding rankings with Hamilton’s Clay Durham in fifth as they anticipate the coming second half of the schedule.
So much for the models that predicted a cool, wet summer for us here in western Colorado — at least I think it’s hot this July. Ranchers are probably relieved that it’s been a good haying season, and after the cool spring, it’s nice to have a “normal” summer, but it is indeed hot.