South Jeffco saw its fair share of athletic accomplishments during 2013, including playoff appearances for Chatfield’s boys soccer, baseball and hockey, and girls soccer teams, and a near top-10 state finish for Dakota Ridge cross country runner Carson Hume. And those were some of the stories that didn’t make the list. The Columbine Courier looks back at 10 stories that highlighted the year of 2013.
A REBEL WITH A CAUSE
It took an overtime period to avenge his only defeat of the 2012-13 wrestling season, but Columbine’s Brian Mayberry did it. The 220-pound grappler topped Overland’s Amer Tipura for the 5A state wrestling championship on Feb. 23 at the Pepsi Center in Denver. Just a week earlier, the shoe was on the other foot as Tipura handed Mayberry his only loss of the season 3-2 in overtime in the regional finals. Mayberry finished the year 29-1 to become the 10th individual state champion in school history.
MAKING QUITE THE SPLASH
To say that Averly Hobbs dove into action head-first would be quite accurate. She is a diver after all. But the Chatfield sophomore had quite the season for the Lady Chargers during 2012-13. A high school All-American, Hobbs won the 5A Jeffco League title on Feb. 2 at the Carmody Rec Center in Lakewood. One week later, she placed second only to Loveland’s Michal Bower at the state championships in Fort Collins with a season-best score of 454.65 points.
MCDONDLE LEAPS TO A TITLE
Earlier in the season, Bernard McDondle nearly set a Columbine school record in the long jump at the Cherry Creek Invitational. His leap of 22 feet, 9½ inches was just a half-inch short of the record. On May 16, he settled for something else a little more prestigious — a 5A state title. McDondle’s second leap of the day of 22-7 turned out to be just enough to hold off Highlands Ranch’s Connor Turnage by 4 inches at Lakewood’s Jefferson County Stadium.
EAGLES SOARING HIGH AGAIN
Last year, it was Ralston Valley; this time, it was Mountain Vista. No matter who the closest competitor was, the Dakota Ridge Eagles were up for the task. Saving their best for last — literally — the Eagles produced a 2-minute, 30-second routine worthy of a second straight 4A/5A state co-ed cheer championship on Dec. 6 at the Denver Coliseum. Jon Baran’s
squad, the last team to perform, held a 4.3-point lead over Mountain Vista after the preliminaries.
REBELS LEAD GRIDIRON SUCCESS
The Columbine Rebels may have won the 5A Super 6 Conference title, thanks in part to a regular-season ending Chatfield victory over Lakewood, but 2013 saw football success galore in South Jeffco. The Rebels went 10-2 and reached the 5A state quarterfinals, Chatfield was 8-3 and made it to the second round of the 5A playoffs, Dakota Ridge was 8-4 and advanced to the 4A state quarterfinals, and Front Range Christian was 5-5 and qualified for the 1A state playoffs.
HOW SWEET IT IS
Steve Schimpeler’s Chatfield Chargers boys basketball team won 21 straight games en route to a 23-2 season, which included an unblemished 16-0 run through the 5A Jeffco League. Led by four players in double figures — Brenden Mann (12.2 points per game), Michael Hampson (11.7), Alec Wray (10.9) and Andrew St. Germain (10.1) — Chatfield reached the Sweet 16 round of the 5A state tournament before unceremoniously having its season ended by Legend 51-49 on March 6.
FRESHMAN MERCHANT MAKES A SOLID DEBUT
Sydney Merchant doesn’t have much to say. Instead, the Dakota Ridge freshman did her talking on the golf course. The Lady Eagles phenom, a week after a second-place finish at regionals, placed third at the two-day 5A state tournament on May 21 in Grand Junction with an 11-over-par 155. The Jeffco League MVP was joined in the top 10 by teammate Gillian Vance. Columbine’s Jaylee Tait won a regional title with a 2-over 74 at Raccoon Creek Golf Course.
NEW COACH NO PROBLEM FOR DAKOTA RIDGE
The 2013 season may have been Marv Van Lingen’s first as head coach of the Dakota Ridge softball program, but it wasn’t his first year coaching. That was obvious by the way the Lady Eagles played, not to mention the talent Dakota Ridge had on the field. With Dani Valerio, Baillie Brooks and Cassidy Creekmore pacing the offense and Rachelle Foos manning the mound, the Lady Eagles went 19-4, tied Ralston Valley for the best record in the 5A Jeffco League and reached the state quarterfinals.
CHARGERS SERVE UP TENNIS SUCCESS
The Chatfield Chargers’ boys tennis team enjoyed immense success in 2013. No. 1 singles player John Koza led the way, winning a fourth straight 5A Jeffco League title en route to conference MVP honors. Chatfield won the league team title for the first time since 2010 with a 7-0 win over Lakewood on Sept. 26. Chatfield earned first-team all-conference honors in six of seven slots. Koza and the No. 1 doubles team of John Simpson and Sam Meyer placed third at state. Chatfield, as a team, took fifth place.
COLUMBINE, CHATFIELD LACROSSE TAKE SIMILAR PATHS
Columbine’s boys and Chatfield’s girls lacrosse programs had nearly identical seasons in 2013. The Columbine boys, coached by Matt Plitnick, went 11-6 and were undefeated in the 5A Front Range League. The Rebels won seven of nine games before a season-ending loss to Arapahoe in the state quarterfinals. Chatfield’s girls, coached by Adam Everett, went 12-4 and were unbeaten in the Jeffco League. They also won seven of nine before a loss to Arapahoe in the second round of the state playoffs.