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2017: The year in sports

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By Alissa Noe

Holmes takes home No. 1 singles title for Chatfield
Following a storied junior season with the Chatfield Chargers tennis team, Christian Holmes capped it off by winning state at the 5A state singles position by defeating Fairview’s Tom Melville in three sets. It was the first time a Jeffco player had won the title in the largest classification (5A) since 1996 and the fifth ever since state tennis began in 1927. Starting out the match, Holmes was a bit off his game as Melville managed to take him down 6-4 in the first set. After going down 3-2 in the second set, something inside Holmes ignited, and he went on to win the next eight games to not only take the second set but gain a considerable lead on Melville in the final set. He won that one, 6-1.

D’Evelyn girls soccer wins 4A state crown
For the first time in school history, following an illustrious season in which the team went 16-3-1, the D’Evelyn girls soccer program earned a spot in the history books with a 1-0 victory over Evergreen in the 4A state title game. Five minutes into play, thanks to an unusual error from the Cougars, Laryssa Hamblen found room for a breakaway. After taking the shot, the ball ricocheted off the Evergreen goalie’s hands and into the back of the net. For the rest of the game, a strong defense and even stronger goalie play from Kiera Hess kept the Cougars at bay until the clock ran out.

Rebels fight way to state semifinals
The Columbine football team fought all the way to the end in the most thrilling way possible in its loss to Eaglecrest in the 5A state playoff semifinal game. Throughout much of the first half, it appeared as though the Rebels didn’t stand a chance at all, going down 17-0 near the start of the second quarter. After that, however, they clawed their way back into relevance. With 36.9 seconds left in regulation, Rebel quarterback Logan DeArment connected for a 27-yard field goal to tie up the game at 17 to force overtime. After tying the game up again in the first overtime, it all fell apart in the second overtime when, after getting the ball first and scoring a touchdown and extra point, Eaglecrest went for two and ended the Rebels’ run to state, 32-31.

Vancil, Eagles make noise at state
After an incredible season for the Dakota Ridge cross country team, the Eagles qualified both the boys and the girls teams to run at state, and junior Austin Vancil was just a few seconds shy of taking home an individual title. In a pool of 161 runners, he finished third with a time of 15:46.10 in perhaps the most competitive race of the day, as 77 runners in all clocked in below 17 minutes. Just as he crossed the finish line, a large group of boys came barreling around the corner of the Norris-Penrose Center. As a team, the Dakota Ridge boys finished fifth of 20 squads and the girls came in at 14th. On the girls’ side, Michelle Renner led the charge with a 24th-place finish and recorded a time of 19:08.50.

D’Evelyn volleyball makes program history
Throughout the 2017 season, the D’Evelyn High School girls volleyball team members played their hearts out and didn’t hold back. Following a strong regular season in which the Jaguars went 19-4, the girls dominated the competition in the regional tournament that they hosted and defeated the Classical Academy and Fort Morgan easily. In doing so, they earned themselves a bid to the state tournament, under the tutelage of head coach Amber Cook, at the Denver Coliseum for the first time in school history. At state, however, their luck turned. In a round-robin style tournament opener, the Jaguars got handled by Holy Family and lost 3-0 before falling 3-2 in a particularly competitive match against Ponderosa.