A look back at some GHS 2018 sporting highlights
January 2, 2019
For each of the last couple of years since moving back to town, attending, and getting a little wet at the Polar Plunge, has been one of the first things I've done to start the New Year.
Despite not having a story and pictures of the Plunge in this week's paper, I was at Maryhill again on Tuesday, but holiday circumstances prevented the article from making it to the printers in time.
Because New Year's Day was on Tuesday, the day we usually send the papers out to be printed, the deadline was pushed one day ahead to Monday morning. Pictures and a short write up from the Plunge will be in next week's paper.
Here are some brief looks at some of the highlights I remember from the previous year.
While the Goldendale grapplers are about midway through their season, last year saw a young team that took some lumps throughout the season but also saw a lot of growth from a team that consisted of mostly freshmen.
Still, six Timberwolves (Ivan Cazares, Mason Conroy, Blane Waddell, Brian Waddell, Dusty Dodge, and Egan Lawyer) wrestled at the regional tournament at Sultan High School, and three advanced to the state tournament.
Then freshmen Dusty Dodge, Blane Waddell, and Mason Conroy advanced to the tournament, but Conroy wasn't able to make it into the bracket as an alternate. Dodge wrestled at 152 pounds, and had one of them more memorable tournaments in recent Goldendale wrestling history. He finished second at districts and second at regionals, losing to the same wrestler from Granger, Diego Isiordia, in both tournaments. After Dodge fell to the eventual state titlist in the semifinals, he bounced back to win his next two bouts to finish third overall, while one of his wins came over Isiordia via pin.
It was the highest finisher for a Goldendale wrestler at state for a handful of years, but so far this year, Dodge has yet to wrestle, although he might be back with the team soon for the second half of the wrestling season.
It was a down year for the Goldendale boys and girls, who both missed out on the district tournament, but the end of last season saw a talented group of seniors from both teams wrapping up their high school hoops careers.
The girls have looked a little different this season after losing three familiar faces with a combined 11 years of varsity experience. Aimee Bartkowski, Allison Gilliam, and Sierra Plum all were mainstays in the program for the last four years, but their graduations led to the emergence of a few more younger players for this season's Timberwolves.
The boys finished last season on a two-game win streak with a big victory on the road at Granger and a win on the home court over Cle Elum to finish just outside of the top four in the SCAC West and miss the district tourney.
A big group of seniors, consisting of Alex Mains, Conner Doubravsky, Jacob Bischoff, Justin Wells, and William Finn, ended their high school hoops careers on a winning note after one of the more exciting games of the year which ended with a four point Goldendale win.
The spring season for Goldendale sports brought a lot of success for the teams along with the athletes competing in individual sports, capped by the girls tennis team capturing the SCAC West league title.
With three doubles teams advancing to the state tournament (Kelli Bighorn and Talia Johnson, Kristin Bighorn and Halie Allen, and John Hanna and Alden Bothamley) it was one of the more successful tennis seasons in recent memory.
Junior golfer Luke Gerchak advanced to state for the third time and finished higher than any other Goldendale golfer since 2010 with a strong round on the second day, placing him 13th among the 80 golfers who reached the second day. He will be back for another run at state in a few months.
Track and field season also saw a lot of strong finishes for Goldendale athletes throughout the season and at the state meet in Pasco.
A couple of seniors climbed the GHS record book in their events, with Dillon Rising taking over the new top spot for the 3,200 (two-mile) run while Allison Gilliam climbed to No. 2 in school history in the 100 meter hurdles. At state, Rising took second in the 1,600 and third in the 3,200, and Gilliam finished fourth in the 100 hurdles to both close out their last year with high finishes.
Goldendale's baseball team made a late run and got into the district tournament for the first time in a couple years and made a name for themselves with their late season, late game heroics that helped push them to the postseason.
They ended the season with multiple seventh-inning rallies including a walk-off win on senior day against Cle Elum after the team had trailed 8-0 in the fifth inning. In that last regular-season game the Wolves would play at home, senior Alex Mains hit two home runs and senior Josh Ortiz hit the three-run walk off.
Running in the spring and continuing through the summer, many members from Goldendale's high school rodeo club had strong seasons and capped it with appearances at the National High (and Junior High) School Finals Rodeo.
Cassie and Curtis Kayser, Lane Siebert, Justin Slater, and Courtney Tatro all reached the high school finals in Rock Springs, Wyoming, while both Wade Endicott and Corynn Kayser competed in the National Junior High Finals Rodeo in Huron, South Dakota.
Four of the high school members advanced to the finals at the NHSFR. Cassie Kayser finished fourth among more than 200 competitors in the breakaway roping, Justin Slater took 14th in the saddle bronc, Courtney Tatro took 13th in the light rifle, and Lane Siebert finished seventh in the team roping with his partner Grady Adams.
The fall sports season saw a pair of new head coaches, with Kristin Lantau taking over as the new volleyball coach and Aaron Cochran as the new head football coach.
The spikers just missed out on the district tournament, but with three of four all-league players returning (Tori Tallman, Alyssa Weis, Taylor Rising, and Rachel Gallagher) the Wolves should be a force for the next couple of years.
Goldendale's gridders made some big improvements and are headed on the right track after Cochran's first year as coach, returning the majority of the team for next season along with five all-league players in Corbin Bland, Lucas Black, Berto Ontiveros, Blake Waddell, and Matt Blain. Last season against Cle Elum, Black set what is almost surely a Goldendale record when he ran for 350 yards.
Both Goldendale cross country teams continued the recent dominance, with both returning to the state meet while the small girls team with only five runners captured the SCAC league title. The girls should be right back there next season, with all five runners back for their senior seasons.
The girls soccer team made huge strides throughout the season and remained competitive throughout the majority of their games last season, while also picking up its first wins in the last couple of seasons. Led by senior Lene Riggers and sophomore Tiana Watson, who both earned all-league honors, the girls picked up wins over Granger and Zillah last season with a much improved team from prior years.
After a long break from the court having played their last games on Dec. 22, the Timberwolves basketball teams play for the first time this year on Friday at home against Naches before heading to La Salle on Saturday.
The wrestlers return on Saturday for an invitational in Castle Rock.