The Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal’s Year in Review, Part 2

We continue our three-part series today chronicling the year’s top sports stories in the Valley, by focusing on picks 6-10. We’ll start with 10, then move up to 6.

10. Mount Si softball makes state
Since 2006, when former pitching great Kandis Clesson graduated, it has been a tough road for the Wildcat fastpitch softball team, as they have come up short in each of those successive years in attempts to make it back to the state tournament, which they were at three out of four years with Clesson in the circle, including a state runner-up finish in 2004. This year, though, a new star emerged, and she, along with some great young talent, helped Mount Si make it back.

Shortstop Maura Murphy has been among the top players for the Wildcats these past three seasons, and her loyalty and dedication to the program is Clesson-esque. That success helped Mount Si reach state in 2011 for the first time since ’06, and they even posted a win down there as well, which was somewhat unexpected.

All of the main figures will return in 2012, except for graduated players Danielle Massengill and Carly Weidenbach, and those shoes are set to be filled by two transfers, one of them a big name: Michaela Blad, a catcher who comes from Bonney Lake and who already has a D-I college verbal commitment. As for Murphy’s college future, she signed on the dotted line this fall to attend George Washington University in Washington, D.C. next year.

9. Mount Si football makes state
Kicker Cameron Vanwinkle’s success, which you’ll find out about more later in our series, was one of many reasons why the Wildcats punched another ticket to state this season in football, their fourth straight, making this year’s senior class the only class in school history to have made four state playoffs in football in four years.

The Wildcats grabbed that berth after another strong showing against Peninsula November 5, and that berth earned them a date with O’Dea the following week at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium.

It was not a great night for Mount Si’s offense, but the Wildcats’ defense shined, holding the Irish’s explosive offense down for much of the game. But the offense’s struggles prevented Mount Si from being able to take advantage of the strong defensive efforts, and the Wildcats fell 17-3. O’Dea made it all the way to the state finals, where they fell to Bellevue.

8. Valley wrestlers do well in state Mat Classic
It was a great state Mat Classic wrestling tournament back in February for then-junior Josh Mitchell. Mitchell rolled through the 285 lb. weight division in the 3A tournament to take the crown in that class for Mount Si’s only title of the Classic, in Tacoma. Mitchell defeated Juanita’s Jeremiah Laufasa to take the title in the championship match.

Cedarcrest also had a state medalist, as Cody Paxman took third in the 152 lb. weight class in the 2A meet. Paxman pinned an opponent from Selah to grab that third-place spot.

Both Mitchell and Paxman returned for the 2011-12 season, and both are expected to lead their teams to continued success in 2012.

7. Snoqualmie Valley Little League softball all-stars finish as state runners-up
The 10 and 11-year old all stars from the Snoqualmie Valley Little League paired up with kids from the Snoqualmie Valley North Little League for the district tournament, and their run was a remarkable one this summer, as they rallied from a first-game district loss with four straight wins in loser-out games to make state, where they rolled through the field to make the finals.

In that final game, July 21, the Valley ladies came up short, falling to Gig Harbor, but the success of this group definitely should be music to the ears of Mount Si and Cedarcrest high school softball fans, as this performance suggests some good times may be around the corner thanks to some very successful players.

6. Cedarcrest, Mount Si cross country do well in state meet
The Valley’s high schools found a lot of success during November’s state cross country meet in Pasco, with Cedarcrest’s very strong boys’ and girls’ teams both finishing in the top 10 in the 2A meet, and Mount Si sophomore girls’ runner Bailey Scott doing very well in her first state 3A race.

The Red Wolves girls took fifth overall and the guys finished in a tie for seventh after battling some tough foes at the district meet to make the state race. Red Wolves’ sophomore Olivia Waterman led the strong girls’ showing, while senior Mitchell Montgomery and sophomore Logan Orndorf piloted the boys’ efforts, with Montgomery finishing in the top 10 individually.

CHS, coached by Bruce McDowell, was ranked all season long in the state cross country polls, and that is expected to continue in 2012, with Orndorf and Waterman both returning to help lead the Red Wolves teams once again.

As for Scott, she earned Mount Si’s first state cross country berth in two years and did not disappoint, finishing 41st out of 138 total competitors, a great showing for a first time there, especially since she was there by herself. Her teammate and fellow sophomore classmate Abbey Bottemiller, who, along with Scott, formed a strong 1-2 combination on the course for the Mount Si girls this fall, battled shin splints late in the season and that cost her a chance to make the state meet.

Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
This entry was posted in Football, On the Diamond, Track/XC/Running, Wrestling/Gymnastics. Bookmark the permalink.