by Scott Boyle
The Monticello High School boys cross country team, in a stunning show of team running, captured their second Class 1A State Championship in a row on October 17 at SugarHouse Park in Salt Lake City.
On a picture perfect day, Coach Jeff Hunt’s boys ran a picture perfect race, The boys were led again by top finisher Collin Hatch, a senior, who led the Buckaroo herd with a number eight finish, outsprinting a Rich Rebel to the finish line.
After that Rebel, the entire Buckaroo team crossed the finish in order, making Orange the color of the moment with senior Justin Wright tenth and only two seconds behind Hatch, junior Easton Nielson 11th, once second behind Wright, 13 seconds later Jens Brewer, a sophomore in12th,followed five seconds later by sophomore Sheldon (Shoeless) Black, 13th, and freshman Tyler Bird, 14th , one second after Black and and sophomore Kyler Larose, 15th, three TENTHS of a second after Bird.
All in all the entire Buckaroo squad finished within an unprecedented 22 seconds of each other to easily outdistance Panguitch, 45 to 87 points.
Bailey Goodwine scored another top ten finish in the Class 1A girls race, finishing in eighth place, pacing the girls to a fourth place finish. Fellow sophomore Elena Mitchell came in 15th in a fine race, followed by senior Brittany Keith in 22nd place and sophomore Ashley Hoggard in 24th. Cambria Welch rounded out the Buckaroo scoring with a 28th place finish. Also running for the Lady Bucks were Kaitlin Clark and Brittany Redd, who finished 38th and 39th. Panguitch took the girls team title.
The San Juan boys also finished in fourth place in the Class 2A race, with Cole Chamberlain in 15th, Christian Sherrow 17th, Dallin Jacobsen 20th, Chase Chamberlain 28th, Braden Meyer 42nd, Brandon Dechesne 54th, and Spencer Beck 72nd. Running as individuals for the San Juan girls were Kira Simpson and Alexia Stash, who finished 48th and 49th in the girls 2A race.
A closer look at some of the Buckaroo boys times reveals the improvement shown by the Bucks this year over last year’s win. Hatch also ended a great career for the Buck XC team with his second top ten finish after finishing 11th as a sophomore.
Four Bucks ran in the 2011 race that the Bucks won, including Hatch, who improved his time over 2011 by 17 seconds. Easton Nielson improved his 2011 time by a whopping 54 seconds. Sheldon Black improved his time by 22 seconds and Jens Brewer was 31 seconds faster. Tyler and Kyler’s times, 18:01, would have put them in scoring position on last years team by 10 seconds. This remarkable team performance by the Bucks will long be remembered by those who watched. Sentiment was that no one could ever remember seeing such a team run at state before.
Congratulations to all the runners at the close of the 2012 season.
It’s go time for the Buckaroos and the Broncos as state football playoffs begin in earnest. The Broncos take the number one seed into the tournament and face the 7-3 Emery Spartans, led by longtime coach and former Bronco star Jimmy Jones.
The two teams have met 18 times over the years with the Broncos prevailing 11 times and the Spartans seven. Their first meeting was in 1975 with the Spartans winning 41-0.
In fact, from 1981 to 1988, the Emery Spartan game was the first game of the season. The last time the Spartans and the Broncos met was in 2000, when the Broncos prevailed 34-13, the year the Broncos went 13-0 and won the state 2A championship.
Coach Lee commented on Emery and their coach, Jimmy Jones, “He is a really good coach with tons of experience and knowledge. We have never faced off head to head but I respect him greatly and know we will be in a dog fight. This is the whipped cream on the Sunday for a long hard season and the kids are ready to play in the playoffs. Anything can happen and it is up to the coaches to have our kids ready to play. We will be shooting for the best we can offer and hopefully do well enough to be playing another week. You can bet your life Emery will be ready.”
Monticello heads into the state playoffs ready to roll after a 52-6 takedown of hapless Milford.
Coach Lee Chadwick reports that for the first time this season, the Bucks will have all the people they had planned to have at each position, as several players return from injuries, except for senior Brian Robinson.
Having been battle-tested the past several weeks with many close games, the Bucks have shown no quit in them and could be the sleeper team in the playoffs. They match up against first time playoff team, Summit Academy in Monticello Friday at 5.
You might remember that game when the Academiers raced to a 14-0 halftime lead via the pass. But the Bucks held Summit to just a long field goal in the second half while scoring three touchdowns themselves. The game ended when Austin Maloy intercepted a Summit pass from the eight yard line in the end zone to stop that last threat.
Monticello opens defense of its 2011 Class 1A volleyball state championship on Friday at 11 am., against the Milford Lady Tigers. The number two ranked Bucks grabbed the number one seed in the bottom bracket after a 19-8 season record and hope to proceed through the bracket to get back to that championship game.
Rich is the number one seed and number one ranked team in 1A. If all goes according to seed, the Rebels and Bucks will meet in a rematch of last year’s state championship game. Milford comes into the tournament at 8-5 on the year.
The Lady Broncos, 13-15 on the year but hoping to improve on last year’s second place finish, grabbed the number three seed in Region 15 and start with Manti, 8-7 on the year and the number two team in Region 16.