After a long season, with most teams starting practice in the summer, Rock Canyon High School (RCHS) fall sports are coming to an end.
Juliett Abbott, Bailey Kracke, and Sofia Anderson supported Bella Albers while cheering on the varsity football team in their game against Cherokee Trail August 30. Photo courtesy of Amanda Brauchler.
Cheer spent their fall performing at football games and assemblies; they officially started their competition season in November. Three RCHS teams attended the Universal Cheerleaders Association (UCA) Mile High Championship regionals held in Denver on November 9 and 10. The junior varsity (JV) black team placed fifth, the JV gold team placed second and the varsity team was named regional champions. The competition was the first in the season for the cheer team, hoping to qualify again for the UCA national competition in February 2020. JV gold also captured the Colorado Spirit Coaches Association (CSCA) JV All Girl State Championship title.
“Everyone on the team is like my sister,” Castle Pines resident Aspen McDonnell, a JV black team cheerleader said. “I love the sport; I love everything about it.” McDonnell cheers with her younger sister, Meredith, who is a freshman on JV black team.
Six girls from the cheer team earned the honor of being named on the CSCA Colorado Spirit Team. Only 22 students statewide earned this achievement for cheer. The achievement is determined by the cheerleader’s skill, academic excellence, and contributions to their team. Abby Fletcher, Emily Everds, Kara Lenke, Katie Hebert, Kaylee Kabza and Reilly Treadwell earned this title.
Varsity quarterback, Anthony Dellano prepared to pass the ball during a game against Cherokee Trail High School August 30. Photo courtesy of Amanda Brauchler.
The varsity football team ended their season 1-9 and were ranked 78 out of 83 in the state. The team had 16 seniors this year. “I enjoy the sport because I believe football makes me a better athlete, which is why I put time and effort into it,” varsity defensive back Andrew Brent said.
JV finished their season 7-2. The freshman team went undefeated overall 10-0 in their league. “What we did as a team this year is something very few high schools will ever do, scoring an average of six touchdowns per game and only giving up eight touchdowns throughout the whole season. I’m looking forward to dominating these next four years as a football team,” said starting outside linebacker Nathan Feinsod.
The freshman football team celebrated their undefeated season. Photo courtesy of Cooper Chase.
Freshman starting defensive end Cooper Chase said, “How we work together so well is by trusting that our teammates have our backs. Both defense and offense trust each other during every play. We will grow with each other through the upcoming years and just keep getting better. Our goal is to be holding the golden football when we are seniors.”
With their sites on winning the high school championship their senior year, these freshmen “have no fear, take pride in their hard work and have some heart” as starting middle linebacker Ryland Mill said.
While poms spent this fall performing at games and assemblies with cheer, they also had their first competition November 10. At Universal Dance Association Mile High Championship regionals, all three teams (varsity, JV, and freshman) placed first in their individual divisions. The varsity jazz team won grand champions. The teams collectively brought home five division titles. This year’s jazz dance was unique. Instead of hiring a professional choreographer, the team and varsity captains Mia Jackson and Madeline Ashbeck planned the entire routine.
“It can be terrifying to go out and compete, but when you have those girls around you, it’s so special,” varsity poms member Bella Wheeler said. “Poms is exactly like a family; at the end of the day, there is so much love and joy in what we do.”
Poms also had six team members named to the CSCA spirit team. Mia Jackson, Lauren Dressler, Madeline Ashbeck, Macy Fallin, Aaliyah Kikumoto and Hailey McDowell each earned one of the 27 spots on the dance spirit team.
Varsity volleyball’s league record is 6-4; they are ranked 43 out of 48 in the state. They narrowly missed their chance to go to state after losing the qualifying match against Valor Christian High School November 9. JV ended their season with a 7-3 record, going 2-1 in the league.
“My favorite part of the volleyball season is always getting to bond and combine forces to become a true team,” JV/swing varsity player Kayla Mash said. “Volleyball is like my family, not only because you spend so much time with them that they feel like sisters, but you bond and become so close it’s just natural to consider them family.”
Cross country’s season ended after the boys team placed third in the Class 5A state championship in Colorado Springs on October 26. Cross country’s season ended after the boys team placed third at the Division 5A State Championship in Colorado Springs on October 26. The boys team, comprised of Castle Pines residents Wes Beckham and Caleb Jaramillo along with Derek Fearon, Bobby Scott, Carson Timmons, Carter Brand, Drew Peters, and Andrew Moenster also won their regional title, which qualified them for state. This was the first time the boys have ever won the regional championship. At the regional competition, the girls team placed fifth.
Both Fearon and Beckham were named All-Continental League first team honors, and Hope James received an honorable mention from the league. “I chose this sport because the people that run cross country are the nicest people you’ll ever meet and I get to be a part of this amazing team each and every day,” Jaramillo said.
RCHS has a joint field hockey team with Mountain Vista High School (MVHS) and a coach from MVHS. The varsity team finished their season 11-5 overall. “It is like my family because all of us didn’t know each other [at first] so [field hockey] made it really easy to connect,” C-team field hockey player and 80108 resident Sydney Quam said.
Kyra Smith, Lauren Hornick, Abby Kohl and Ashlita Lodha posed while competing at Overland High School October 2. Photo courtesy of RCHS yearbook photographer Amanda Gin.
RCHS sent two students to the gymnastics state competition in Thornton on November 8. Ashlita Lodha competed in bars, where she tied for 46th place (out of 75) with a score of 8.350. Skyla Naclerio competed in vault, where she earned a score of 8.300.
“The proudest team moment, for me, was when two of my teammates made it to state,” varsity gymnast Abby Kohl said. “My favorite part of the season was the team dinner because we all got to know each other better early on in the season.”
The varsity boys tennis team finished 8-3, after placing second out of six at their regional playoffs October 10. The JV team sent Justin Edell and Castle Pines resident Jack Moser to state, where they won third place. “I chose tennis because I felt a natural talent for it and I enjoy playing the sport,” Moser said.
After four innings, the varsity girls softball team huddled as they approached a win against Highlands Ranch High School at Metro State University in Denver on September 24. The team scored six runs at the bottom of the third. Photo courtesy of yearbook photographer Izzy Chavez.
The varsity girls softball team finished their season 24-2 overall with a dominant league record of 10-0-0. The team is first in the Continental League, third in state, and 27th in the nation. After winning their league title 16-1 against Regis Jesuit High School October 7, the girls qualified for state. They faced Ralston Valley High School October 25 and lost 3-6, eliminating them from the rest of the competition.
Katie Dack was named First Team 5A All-State and Erin Keen was named Second Team 5 A All-State. Anna Reimers received an Honorable Mention All-State. “My favorite was when we beat Columbine, who actually won state,” Reimers said.
Four RCHS golfers, Logan Douglass, Finn Olson, Beck Duncan and Nick Fallin went to the state championship October 7 and 8. Fallin was also named an Honorable Mention All-State Team and earned the title of Western Regional Individual Winner. The team won their 5A regional championship title September 25.
The boys varsity soccer team ended their season 10-4-3 and their league 6-2-2. This was the second year that the team advanced to the Sweet 16. However, they lost their playoff game 1-0 to Rampart High School November 1, ending their season. They are ranked 24 in the state. A game that stood out was when, “we played Cherry Creek because we played well and ended with a tie to what is now the second best team in the state,” varsity player Jack Hibbett said. “It proved to us that we can truly play against any team in the state and give them a run for their money.”