The weekend wrap and our first Athletes of the Week for the 2019-20 school year

Good Monday morning. A little rain out there and a reminder as well that Mount Si High School’s volleyball season opener – which was set to be the first-ever athletic event inside the new Mount Si gym – has been moved down to Kentlake High School in Covington, who is scheduled to be tonight’s opponent. Game time is 7:00 at Kentlake.

Weekend wrap now and the Athletes of the Week. We hit the pitch first to lead it off.

Soccer: Red Stars win
The Chicago Red Stars delivered a 3-0 home win last night over the Houston Dash keeping the Stars in the hunt for an National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) playoff spot.

North Bend’s Nikki Stanton came off the bench and played 16 minutes for Chicago with no stats. The 2008 Mount Si HS grad and her Chicago squad moved to 10-8-2 on the season, with 32 points and that’s good for third place in the league with the top four advancing to the postseason.

Chicago is at Orlando on Wednesday night to meet the Pride for a 4:00 game which will be seen on ESPNNEWS.

College action now:

Chapman women 1, Willamette 0: The Panthers moved to 4-0 on the season with the home win down in Orange, CA, over the visiting Bearcats from Oregon. Sophomore Mia Fowler, she of North Bend and a 2018 MSHS’er, logged 13 minutes of play off the bench in Chapman’s midfield during the contest, with no stats of note reported.

Pacific Lutheran men 8, Fontbonne (MO) 0: The Lutes finished up their weekend road trip to St. Louis scoring the most goals they’ve scored in a game in four years in blowing out the host St. Louis-area team. Freshman Jared Davies, he of Snoqualmie and a June Mount Si HS grad, worked 37 minutes of the game off the bench for PLU with no stats of note. He plays midfield for the Lutes.

Texas women 3, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 0: The Longhorns returned home to Austin, TX, and scored a shutout win last night over the visiting Islanders. Junior defender Natalie Weidenbach, she of North Bend and a 2016 MSHS’er, logged 13 minutes of the game off the bench for UT and had no stats of note reported.

Westminster (UT) 4, Cal State East Bay men 0: The Griffins and Pioneers played what turned into a 3 1/2 hour marathon in Salt Lake City yesterday afternoon thanks to not one, but two lightning delays, the first, just after the start of the game, lasting 30 minutes and the second, which came at halftime, a little longer than that as the Utah capital was dealing with thunderstorms. Westminster exploded in the second half with three goals to take this non-conference clash between teams from NCAA Division II’s Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (Westminster) and the California Collegiate Athletic Association (East Bay). Freshman Mateo DiDomenico, from Snoqualmie and also a June grad of MSHS, came off the bench in the 16th minute and proceeded to play the rest of the way for the Pioneers, a total of 74 minutes on defense for East Bay, with no stats of note reported.

Wyoming 4, Idaho State women 1: The Cowgirls made quick work of the winless Bengals in non-conference action in Laramie, WY. Junior Rachel Brownell, from Fall City and a 2017 MSHS’er, started on defense for ISU and worked 56 minutes of the game with no stats of note reported. Idaho State drops to 0-5-1 on the season with the loss.

Baseball: Mount Si’s Phillips kicks off fall ball
The fall baseball and softball season kicked off this past weekend, and we are providing coverage.

In a doubleheader this past Saturday at Southeast Athletic Complex in Seattle, the Bellevue-based ExploSwing Northwest 17U team opened its fall campaign against a Bellevue rival, the Eastside Baseball Academy, and a Mount Si High School player took part. Jack Phillips played in both games for XSN, who split the twinbill with Eastside. EBA won the first game while XSN rolled to a 15-0 win in the nightcap.

In the first game, Phillips went 0-2 then in the nightcap, he did the same but also had a walk and scored a run.

XploSwing will have a doubleheader this coming Saturday down in Federal Way.

With that, we want to let all of you Mount Si and Cedarcrest High School baseball and softball parents know that we are providing coverage this fall of baseball and softball. We, thanks to Gamechanger, will have coverage of selected teams this fall. However, we’re always looking for more so if you are a Red Wolve or Wildcat baseball or softball parent and want your son or daughter’s team featured in our coverage, let us know this week. Send us an email at snovalleysports@gmail.com with your child’s name, which school they attend and what grade they are this fall, and which team they are playing with. Also send us your contact information and if allowable, the coach or club director’s contact info so we can reach them for further information. Phone and email preferred on both please. We look forward to adding a little bit of this in during our fall coverage, which as you know is already quite loaded but we’re always looking to bring you as much as we can.

Athletes of the Week
Now to our athletes of the week. We’re going to start our 2019-20 high school sports athletes of the week segment, which will normally run on Mondays, with a rareity – both boys and girls from both Mount Si and Cedarcrest High Schools. Normally, we alternate this thing between boys and girls from week to week and will recognize every team from both schools during the respective sports seasons, but there were good efforts all around this past week and we’re going to recognize them all.

CEDARCREST BOYS: Football of course, and we’re going to make this a team award this week and recognize the entire Red Wolve team and their head coach, John Fiala. These boys have put an awful lot of work in this summer getting adjusted to the expectations of their new coach, and that work paid huge dividends last Friday night as they rolled to a 49-0 win over Sammamish at home in Fiala’s debut as coach for CHS. This is going to be a long program-building process for the first-year head man, but the early returns certainly look promising. The task this week, though, will be a lot tougher, as they head down to meet the perennial 2A state powers Liberty Patriots on their turf at Liberty High School in Renton. Last time CHS was in this place was last November, and they got eliminated from the playoffs losing big to Liberty. So a challenge awaits, that’s for sure. But they have some good things to build off of so we’ll see what happens.

CEDARCREST GIRLS: Cross country here and the ladies – along with their boys’ counterparts – traveled to Maple Valley this past Saturday for the season-opening Tahoma Invite. Leading the Red Wolve girls through the back woods and the water at Lake Wilderness Park (yes, they had to wade through the lake as part of the course) were Sonja Blycker, Ginger Van Valkenburg and Katelyn Wells. These three were the top CHS placers in the relay event and helped Cedarcrest acheive a top-ten team finish for their top team – which included both Wells and Blycker – for the 10th time in the past 12 years they’ve run this thing. Blycker clocked 13 minutes, 37 seconds in her segment of the course, followed by both Van Valkenburg and Wells, who finished their portions in almost 15 minutes each. The Red Wolves open Wesco competition on Wednesday.

MOUNT SI BOYS: Football here and a team award as well, as we’ll recognize the entire Wildcat team and head coach Charlie Kinnune. These boys have had to put up with some major disruptions this summer to their off-season conditioning program thanks to the construction at the high school which left them without a weight room (they set up a temporary facility at Snoqualmie Middle School) on campus, but no matter, guys continued to work, guys continued to prep and that hard work paid off in a nice way this past Friday with a road win over Wenatchee on the east side of the mountains. Yes, there’s a few things to work on, but all in all, a nice start to the season and now that school has started and they have a weight room and other facilities at school, their normal routines are back and they can get ready for this coming week’s game, against Kentwood at home in the home opener Friday.

MOUNT SI GIRLS: Soccer here and we recognize freshman Sydney Dunn this week. Dunn scored her first ever high school goal this past Saturday night in a lightning-shortened 1-1 draw for the Wildcats in their season opener with Curtis. Dunn’s goal came after the Vikings opened the scoring with an early goal, and it couldn’t have come at a better time as shortly after the goal was scored, lightning was seen near the field at Mount Si High School forcing a delay and the ultimate early end to the contest. And what’s more, the goal was all about Dunn and her teammate, Anna Simmons, who got an assist on the goal, paying attention and taking advantage of a defensive miscue by the Vikings to get things done. When players are paying attention and are able to make things happen, good things result. So Sydney, we recognize you for your efforts this week. Mount Si hosts Bothell tomorrow night in the league opener.

HONORABLE MENTION: And we’re even going to do an honorable mention this week and take it to the college gridiron. We mentioned this a little bit in our football writeup yesterday, but we can’t go without recognizing Mount Si High School football alum Jonathan “JoJo” Hillel in the segment today. Hillel, as many of you know, plays football for Central Washington University and was a solid player for them during his first three seasons as a Central ‘Cat following his graduation from MSHS in 2015. He, however, did not play last year, because he was battling some challenges in the classroom.

Thanks, though, to a lot of hard work – and a lot of help from many, including his father Jean, who is an assistant coach with Mount Si’s football team – “JoJo” successfully overcame those challenges and made a return to the field this past Saturday night that you simply can’t dream about. He tossed for one touchdown then caught a second, both on receiver sweep plays where a quarterback tosses the ball to a receiver who then throws it downfield to a fellow wideout with the idea that the second receiver will then score a touchdown on the play.

Hillel’s opportunity was a bit limited, yes – he ended up only with the one pass for 60 yards and two catches for 39 – but two touchdowns that helped NCAA Division II Central stay in it until the end with NCAA Division I Idaho, who ended up winning the game 41-31. Granted, the coach this year – Chris Fisk – is not the same coach Hillel had in his earlier stint with Central – that coach left to become part of Eastern Washington University’s staff this past offseason – so it’s possible Hillel’s opportunities as a fifth-year senior this fall could be limited.

That said, what he showed this past Saturday might cause Fisk and his staff to perhaps think about using Hillel more this week, when the Central ‘Cats host Ferris State in Ellensburg. Good stuff and we salute you JoJo.

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.
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