Moffat County’s spring athletes shake off winter feeling
Track, soccer, golf, swimming begin; baseball to start this week
Athletes have been getting back into gear for the past couple weeks, and with any luck, the weather will hold out for those out and about as the springs sports period begins for Moffat County High School.
The track and field, girls soccer, boys swimming and girls golf teams for MCHS started their respective seasons on the road over the past weekend, while baseball is set to officially start Friday.
Track teams take honors Friday
The MCHS track and field teams placed a combined fifth overall during the Central Warriors Relay Friday in Grand Junction, with the girls tied with Gunnison for third and the boys fifth.
The girls distance medley relay team ran away with the best results of the day, a first place finish of 14 minutes, 36.91 seconds for runners Kaylee Durham, Ary Shaffer, Allie Dilldine and Emily Womble. In the 200-meter relay, Selena Hernandez, Emma Samuelson, Karmen Christopher and Josie Timmer placed second at 1:54.27.
Both boys and girls took the silver in the 400-meter relay, with the boys consisting of Shandon Hadley, Connor Scranton, Damian Jowell and Garrett Ferguson (3:45.38) and girls made up of Shaffer, Delaney Baker and Emma and Lauren Samuelson (4:33.29).
At a time of 21:32.38, a third place result was due for the boys 1600-meter relay of Connor Scranton, Brandon Beason, Riley Allen and Steven Walls, while the girls and boys sprint medley teams took fourth and fifth, respectively — Brooke Hahn, Christopher, Hernandez and Lauren Samuelson (2:39.72); and Hadley, Kaden Hafey, Jowell and Mikinzie Klimper (2:18.25).
In field event highlights, Alex Samuelson took eighth in the girls shot put at 25 feet, eight inches, Klimper 12th for the boys with a 34’ 7.5”. The two also both led their teams in the discus, Samuelson in 14th with 64’ 2” and Klimper 16th at 85’ 7”.
Shaffer was sixth in the girls long jump, hitting 15 feet, two inches, while Hafey led the boys, 10th at 16’ 4”. Klimper was seventh in the boys triple jump, 35’ 6.75”, and Timmer took ninth for the girls at 28 feet even.
Coach Lance Scranton said the event was “a good warmup” as the season starts to get serious and the team moves on to a meet in Rifle this weekend with several boys basketball players ready to transition to another sport and the girls soon to follow after their time at the 3A state playoffs.
Soccer team fights through small roster
With many of its players also still involved in the hoops postseason, the MCHS girls soccer squad had some small numbers in its kickoff game Saturday in Grand Junction, meeting Carbondale’s Colorado Rocky Mountain School. Nevertheless, the group battled hard even as the Oysters won, 8-1.
Alex Samuelson knocked in a goal from a free kick as the game flow evened out in the second half after a six-point advantage by CRMS at the opening.
Making her debut in goal was Makenna Baker, who kept at it in the position, recording 13 saves.
“She did pretty good for her first time,” said coach Harry Tripp, noting that several junior varsity-level players added to the effort.
The team will play its home opener at 4:30 p.m. Friday at MCHS, hosting Rangely.
Swimmers open season at relay event
The MCHS boys swim team placed fifth Saturday in the Southwest Conference Relay Meet at Colorado Mesa University.
Competing against schools that included Montrose, Grand Junction, Glenwood Springs and Durango, the foursome of Jesse Kurz, Wes Atkin, Glen Dilldine and Chris Kling came in sixth in the 200-yard freestyle relay, timed at two minutes, 5.29 seconds.
Bulldogs also swam in the 200-yard medley, Kling, Kurz, Daniel Rockwell and Jacob Briggs taking seventh at 2:10.31.
Moffat County will take part in a wider array of events when the team travels to the Montrose Invitational this Saturday.
Golf swings into season
MCHS girls golf sent five to the links of Palisade’s Chipeta Golf Course Monday afternoon, seeing some positive results in their first time on the fairways and greens this year.
The group has been limited in practice space thanks to winter leftovers at home, but coach Ann Marie Roberts felt the outcome of the tourney was outstanding.
Shooting in a scramble format, two Moffat County groups each shot a 76, one made of Brooke Krause and Makayla Thompson, the other Julia Christensen, Jaci McDiffett and Taylor Haddock.
Though competing against schools able to field larger teams, Roberts said the experience was a good one to get players going after a lot of indoor sessions.
“It made a huge difference,” she said.
Moffat County golf will move on to another tournament at Montrose’s Cobble Creek March 17.