It didn’t exactly go to plan. The breaks didn’t always go the Scotties’ way. And the weather didn’t play fair. Nevertheless, the Scotties still had a successful spring sports season and are set up to be even more successful in the seasons ahead.
The smallest Glasgow High School class since 1930 graduated on May 26, including several highly-decorated athletes, such as Bryan Larson and Alex Page, who were named Scottie Athletes of the Year recently, joining a long line of distinguished Scottie competitors.
And those are just two of a dozen or more hard to replace seniors who leave the high school sports program behind. But it seems like the individual programs are in good shape.
Track and field brought home a third-place trophy for the girls this year, getting them back on the podium stand after a one-year hiatus. The girls will lose stand-out seniors Debra Griebel and Laurel Wageman, but return a talented group of juniors who made giant strides this season.
Rachael Zeiger, Abbi Helland and Megan Dailey all qualified for the state meet, and Dailey brought home a title in the high jump and a place in the long jump. Zeiger placed in the 800. They also have several sophomores and freshmen who made big contributions this season despite their youth.
The boys were not able to place as a team at state, and lose Larson, Austin Green and Robbie Henville, all state qualifiers, to graduation. Yet, they have a deep junior and sophomore group of athletes who can push the Scotties back towards the top of the team standings.
“The boys were really young,” said Head Coach John LaBonty.
But with another year, and the “boys coming up, that should make a very strong boys’ team to go along with the girls,” he said, noting a strong class of eighth-graders coming into the high-school ranks, as well.
The strong continuity in coaching and leadership should continue for at least one more year as LaBonty noted that he will be back despite the possibility of leaving the program earlier this season.
The softball team loses two strong seniors in Page and Heather Hickok, who were a part of back-to-back-to-back state appearances from 2011-13, including a second-place finish in 2012.
However, the Scotties return a junior class of eight players, six of whom are two-year starters, and a sophomore and freshmen class rife will solid contributors.
“We return quite a few starters, and Mariah Stein and Sadie Sukut will return as leaders,” said Head Coach Mark Falcon.
It’s a seasoned bunch, but Falcon also noted that he would like to be able to schedule a tougher stretch of games during the season, including playing Class AA and A teams more often.
“I think that’s what we need to do next year is just to get a better schedule,” said Falcon. Also, “It hurt not having a JV schedule that we can rely on to keep our program building.”
He noted that there were only seven JV games this season.
However, the biggest question heading into next season is whether Falcon will be back as coach. In a phone interview on Friday, he said he wasn’t sure about his return.
Golf perhaps had the biggest disappointment this season, not being able to bring their talented boys’ team to state. They failed to qualify at the divisional meet in Malta on June 11. But the weather played a huge factor in that.
The teams had several cancelled and/or rescheduled meets in the beginning of the year, so they didn’t fully hit their stride until a couple of weeks before the divisional meet. At that point, many teams on the west side of the state had been playing for two months.
The Scotties also lose three boys from the squad. But they should return several underclassmen who can perhaps build the program towards a state qualification.
The girls did not have any seniors on the team, so they’ll try to continue the success Tamrah Pewitt and Makkell Baillargeon had this season by qualifying for state individually.