Category Archives: Sports

Spring Student Athlete Profiles

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Kyle Combs: Senior, varsity Baseball player
Favorite color: red
Age: 17
Kyle hopes to attend college after senior year, ”I would like to go to Green river then central, I plan on continuing baseball there by trying out for their team.”
“My best game stats were 2-3 against KW with a triple.”
“What motivates me to play baseball is my teammates that push me to work hard every day.”
Kyle describes the challenges he faces during baseball season, “You go to school for 6-7 hours a day, then practice for 3-4 hours, an finally come home to eat, but you’re tired by that time it’s late and you’re tired, but now you have homework, it is hard to get motivated again to do homework.”
Kyle explains why people should join baseball, “People should join baseball because It is a great team to be a part of, everyone is supportive.”
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Eric Riley: Freshman, varsity soccer player
Favorite color: blue
Age: 15
Eric is still considering his option for college, “Still deciding what college I want to attend, but I plan to play soccer if the school I go to offers it.”
“My best game stats are 2 goals and 2 assist.”
“What motivates me to play soccer is my love for the sport and the physical and mental benefits I receive from soccer.”
There are many challenges Eric faces during soccer season, “Sports take up a lot of time and so does school so the compete for your attention and devotion and often times when you comprise for school and sports it leads to very late nights and less sleep sometimes.”
Eric explains why people should join soccer, “People should join and play soccer because it teaches discipline respect hard work and teamwork while it is also great exercise. Soccer gets you out meeting new people traveling from place to place and learning new things.”

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Hallie Fredricks: Junior, Varsity tennis player.
Favorite color: turquoise
Age: 16
Hallie also intends to go to college after senior year, “For college, I would like to go to BYU, and play tennis If possible.”
“My best game stats are from when I won, with my partner Amber, 6-2, 6-2.”
“What motivates me to play tennis is my love of the sport and the drive to keep getting better.”
Hallie describes the challenges she faces during tennis season, “It is hard to balance school and sports because you do not have a lot of time to do everything that you need to do.”
Hallie explains why people should join tennis, “People should join tennis because it is a lot of fun and we are always having a good time.”

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Maggie Brach: Junior, Varsity fast pitch.
Favorite color: blue.
Age: 17
Maggie also plans to attend college after senior year, “I plan to attend Green River, and then move to a four year college, where I will play sports. “
“I do not know about my game stats yet.”
“My teammates and songs get me motivated to play fast pitch.”
Maggie describes the challenges she faces during fast pitch season, “It is hard to balance sports and school because you have to stay on top of your schoolwork and have to practice really hard for the sport. It takes a lot of time and effort.”
Maggie explains why people should join fast pitch “People should join fast pitch because you can make many new friends and learn things along the way.”

Oakland Raiders Anticipate Signing Retired Marshawn Lynch

by Jett Gonzales – Staff Reporter

Since the conclusion of the 2016 – 2017 NFL season, post season has been heating up. One of the biggest stories is the possibility of former Seattle Seahawks running back, Marshawn Lynch, coming out of retirement.
The rumor began circulating when the Oakland Raiders showed interest in trying to get Lynch to come out of retirement and play for them. This rumor was pushed aside as most people believed that Lynch was going to stay retired. However, this all changed when Lynch began negotiating with the team, and now the Oakland Raiders are in the process of acquiring the 31-year-old running back. Many people believed that the only way Lynch would come out of retirement would be if he could compete for another Super Bowl ring and if he could play in his hometown, Oakland, California.
The Raiders had one of their best seasons in years last season, going 12 – 4, but lost in the wild card round because of an injury that sidelined their starting quarterback, Derek Carr. Many fans believe the Raiders are just one or two players away from being title contenders, and Lynch could be that player. Last year, the Raiders shuffled through three different running backs throughout the season and Lynch would provide them with a reliable option to carry the ball multiple times a game. The only issue now is figuring out how much the Raiders are willing to pay for Lynch.
Marshawn Lynch is still “owned” by the Seattle Seahawks, and if he were to come out of retirement, he would still be under contract with them. Therefore, if the Raiders want Lynch, they are going to have to give up something to Seattle. Lynch is best known for his nickname “Beastmode” because of his tough and powerful running style. While his running style put up some impressive numbers over his 9-year career, rushing for 9,112 yards and 74 touchdowns, it has also put a lot of wear and tear on his body. Lynch only made it through half of his final season in Seattle before having to sit out due to a sports hernia. He compiled just 417 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Although the process of getting Lynch to Oakland took almost all off-season, on April 26, Lynch was traded to the Oakland Raiders for 2018 late round draft picks. Lynch signed a two-year deal with a base salary of three million. Marshawn Lynch will be heading to Oakland for the 2017 – 2018 NFL season.

Judo Team Provides Unique Experience for Students

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by Lauren Killgrove – Photo Editor

Judo is an often underappreciated and looked over sport. When students think of spring sports, judo is not often first to come to mind, but that does not dismiss the fact that our judo team is hardworking and is prepared for success.
Coach Jeff Tibeau and assistant coach Douglas Graham lead the team to a hopefully successful season. “Things are looking good. We have a few returners and our first-year students are well ahead what they traditionally have been.” Sensei Graham said. The progress that has been accomplished has been more than satisfactory as the members have improved more than what has been expected in previous seasons.
Practice is where the coaches teach the students the judo aspects and techniques. “The spirit that’s going during practice, there’s no individual part of it that’s best. The students are very positive about their practice. They’re learning, they’re enjoying themselves, and they’re progressing.” Sensei Graham said. For their routine, the students divide into groups of two and practice the techniques they are shown. To display their teachings to the group, Tibeau and Graham gather all the teammates and show them what to do. Afterwards, when the teams are in pairs, flailing bodies hit the floor after their partner succeeds in learning newly taught routines.
To many people’s misconception, judo is not a martial art, but instead an Olympic sport. Judo originates from Japan and many commands are in the Japanese language, just as many English words are used in commands in foreign countries when playing an English or American sport.
The reason that judo is used, however, is so a person can know how to defend themselves. The intention in judo is not to harm someone, but to stop someone from doing any harm to you. During matches, judo members do this by either throwing their opponent down to the ground, force your opponent onto the mat for a matter of 20 seconds, or to choke your opponent into the crook of your arm as a ‘request’ for your opponent’s submission.
For many, judo has benefitted their lives. Judo is a sport that offers self-defense techniques, social skills, as well as a new way to adapt your body to certain situation, as new member Fedi Tadele explained by saying, “it made me hurt in places I didn’t know I could hurt.” Judo is an impressive and intriguing sport, and our judo team is looking forward to using their techniques to succeed this season.

Track and Field Confident About Spring Season

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by Jett Gonzales – Staff Reporter

The Track and field team this year is looking forward to a successful season with new head coach, Scott Cleary. The team is young, motivated, has lots of talent and is looking to make an impact this year.
Being a new head coach can be a tough job, but coach Cleary is ready to lead this team. “It’s an interesting transition” Cleary said, “I’ve been head coach for cross country for several years, but track is a little bit of a different beast.” The track team is prepared to take any problems head on thanks to coach Cleary and the great assistant coaches, “All our assistant coaches are highly confident in all their events and I think that’s what makes this team work.” These assistant coaches include Jolai Persinger, Mike Shepard and Karl Maw. The track and field team is primed for a solid season because of the addition of new head coach Cleary and all the assistant coaches.
Along with a new head coach, this team has many young athletes. “This is kind of an interesting year for us because we have a lot of younger athletes in the sprints, jumps and throws groups.” Cleary said. Right now, one of the team’s goals is to “develop in a way that sets the tone for future years.” While there are many young athletes, there are still a lot of returning athletes, especially in the distance events. “The distance squad is almost half the team and we have a lot of returning runners in that group.” Another goal that this team has set is to “build on the firm foundation we already have with the number of retuning athletes that have done track for many years.”
Since track and field is a competitive sport, setting goals like the ones just mentioned are important for keeping the team focused and ready to give it their all every day. However, one thing that is always emphasized in not only track and field but all sports is health. “Our goal that’s always present is to develop fitness and healthy living habits…and to build the mental toughness.” Cleary said. Having this core goal is very beneficial to every athlete participating in this sport because of the long-term benefits they will earn through working hard and developing good habits.
The track and field team has many goals that they can carry with them throughout this season. However, the only way to reach these goals is to have the athletes achieve them, and there are some athletes that stand out amongst the rest. “I think about it in two categories,” Cleary said, “There are athletes that stand out because of their abilities…and there are athletes that understand the sport and are great leaders.” Many athletes stand out because of their abilities. “Jordan Hall is probably our fastest sprinter,” Cleary said, “Madison Marko is a very diverse sprinter…in the girls’ pole vault; we have Ariel Johnston, who does pretty well in the league.” For the athletes that understand the sport and are leaders, “we have Amy Mitchell, who’s a really strong leader…and of course our captains, Kylie Johnson and Evan Eggerud.”
Despite this team is starting the season with a new head coach and many young athletes, they are setting themselves up for success with many goals that can point them in right direction, as well as many good athletes and great coaches to lead them.

Boys Soccer Prepares for New Season

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by Morgan Marko – News Editor

Though the weather may not agree, spring sports are now in full swing. If someone could let Mother Nature know, I am sure the soccer team would appreciate it. They have already been set back due to a snow-covered field. Varsity Coach, Barry Smith said, “The snow affected us more than other schools except maybe Tahoma. While we could not see our field under the snow, most other teams were able to practice. We are definitely behind. Mentally and physically, the team is ready but I wish that we had a few more days to prepare. Finally, when we get to the league schedule and all of our players are eligible we are going to be a much tougher and more experienced team. 10 of our 18 players were not on the Varsity or any team last year. It will take a little time to come together as a team.” Smith state that one of the new players to watch would be Freshman, Carlos Moate
Regarding the team this year, every player has their strength. “We have a good mix of guys and we should be pretty fast and competitive this year,” said Returner and Senior, Tyler Padilla. If there were anything to throw them off, it would be the amount of young players that came out to play this year, “We are young, so we may not compete physically with the other teams yet, but if everyone continues to come out we have an extremely bright future in the years to come,” said Padilla. Predicting a successful season (if not this year) in the years to come. Though their young age does have its disadvantages, it also has its advantages, sophomore, Tyler Hopp says, “We are a very young team developing to an even better team.”
One of the main differences between this season and last season would be the balance between each position on the field. Smith said, “We are better balanced between our forwards, midfielders and defenders. We will have a stronger attack this year and overall I think we are better skilled.”
As the new season takes off, the boys feel a mix of emotions, Hopp confident, “I am looking forward to this coming season and feel confident in our school and hope we get a good attendance.”
Both Padilla and Hopp agreed that a greater attendance from supported could help to push them through the season and hopefully into post-season. “We need more supporters from Kentlake to attend our matches.” Said Hopp.
Their next match is on April 10 against Kentwood

Fastpitch Works Hard Despite Setbacks

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by Erin Bedry – Staff Reporter

Our fastpitch team is just kicking off their season, with one loss and . They already had to reschedule their first game that was supposed to be against Decatur due to rain. Our seemingly prolonged winter weather has not been the best for our baseball and softball teams. The forecast for March 28th is not looking good, but we are all hopeful that they will be able to compete.
Last year, Mr. Kaas led the team to 2nd in their league. With that great season, their new coach, Melissa Stanley, has a lot to live up to. The team is confident in her ability to lead and coach. Brooklyn Zanazanian, a junior, said in regards to Coach Stanley that, “she keeps us working hard every day and keeps us in shape!”
The team has high expectations for the outcome of this season. Whitney Baglien, a senior, said “I expect to get back to districts again this year and then state.” Their confidence is exhibited because of their ability to succeed in the past. Zanazanian said, “Our biggest competition is ourselves. As long as we come out prepared, physically and mentally, we’ll be unstoppable.”
The girls are working hard to back up their statements too. “The weather has not stopped our hard work and determination-we practice inside to work on our hitting or we go outside in the grass. Even if they rain out a game, we are still working hard. The weather will never slow us down!” said Zanazanian. This mindset shows the determination necessary in order to be successful for the upcoming season. We will all be hoping for a win on March 28th. Baglien said, “We just have to kick our butts in gear and kick butt!”
As Kentlake students, we should all make an effort to go out and support our fastpitch team this season.

Tennis Team Eager to Begin Spring Season

by Emma Hartvickson – Staff Reporter

As a start to an upcoming spring, our girl’s tennis team began their first practice. They are very excited and eager to start the season. Varsity players Hallie Fredricks and Amber Smith explain what their favorite part of tennis is, “I like practicing in the snow,” Fredricks said, and a teammate she wanted to recognize as a great addition to the team is Amy Bender. Smith said, “My favorite part of tennis is seeing my teammate’s every day.” She wants to recognize Emily Kruse as another great addition to the team. According to m.yourstory.com, Andre Agassi, a retired professional tennis player talks about the experiences he has had in tennis, “In tennis you’re on an island. Of all the games men and women play, tennis is the closest to solitary confinement,” Agassi says in his autobiography, “Open”. Tennis is acknowledgeable as one of the most difficult sports, grabbing hold of both the body and the mind. The game is mental, but players also must communicate with a partner when playing doubles. Athletes not only experience the team aspect of tennis, but the personal side as well, players work to push themselves and exceed physical limitations. Coach Bonnie Lew explains why people should join tennis, “its fun, and you’re active, and a lot of students have never played tennis before, and so it’s a good starting point where they can get active. They can also try a sport they have never tried before, like Tennis, because there are no cuts.” Another professional Tennis player Rafael Nadal describes tennis in his eyes, “A match is like “self-hypnosis,” where players disguise their weaknesses from their opponents and even from themselves.” This year the varsity team has about 12 freshman and 4 returning letter winners playing varsity this year. The student athletes are already training hard. Coach Berry Fredricks, explains what he is looking forward to most this season, “I enjoy teaching new skills and watching them improve over the season. People should join tennis to learn a life skill and have an opportunity for high level competition.” Come watch these hardworking athletes at their 1st match against Hazen High school, at Kentlake, March 15.

Fastpitch Works Well Under Pressure

by Symantha Edwards – Staff Reporter

The spring sports season is coming, and the tenacious fast pitch team is coming along with it. This team does a great job of working together, and has the will to surpass many obstacles.
Leizllyn Nicolas, sophomore, labels the team as determined and strong, because they always pursue their goals and are never giving up. The fast pitch team reacts well under the pressures of the game, delivering some outstanding performances from the seasons past, like last year when they made it to districts.
One of the team’s main goals according to Nicolas is “to have a successful season and make it to playoffs and state.”
Varsity last year made it to playoffs and they hope to do so again this year, but with great aspirations comes great practice. The team pairs rigorous practice with fun training to further strengthen the bond of the team. This year as Nicolas says the team would like to rise to the occasion, facing equally strong teams, coming together to beat them.
Senior caption Ashley Hendrickson gives us insight to the challenges and struggles of fast pitch. In comparison to baseball, Hendrickson told us that fast pitch was hard because the diminished chance for perfection.
“Baseball has a much larger field, so because ours is smaller we have less room for error”.
Not all of the pressure is riding on Hendrickson however. Hendrickson revealed that the sport was much more of a team sport than an individual one, and you have to rely on your team to succeed.
Hendrickson called it “a domino effect’, when one error is made, more error occur after so the team has to work together to play their very hardest and give it their all.
With lots of incoming freshman coming in, the team is excited for the upcoming season.
The newest addition to the Kentlake family is Ms. Stanly, the new fast pitch coach. With a new coach and a new year, we can expect a lot from our girls fast pitch team.

March Madness Season Leaves Fans Preparing Their Brackets

by Jett Gonzales – Staff Reporter

There is one month that is much different from the rest. Every year this month plays with every college basketballs’ fans emotions, it brings last second shots, blowouts and unbelievable upsets. Prepare your brackets because March madness has arrived.
At the end of every college basketball season, 68 division I college basketball teams compete in a single elimination tournament to determine the national champion of the men’s NCAA division I basketball. The tournament is scheduled to start on March 14th and end on April 4th in the University of Phoenix stadium in Glendale, Arizona. The top team in each of the 32 conferences get an automatic bid into the tournament and the NCAA selection committee will select the other 36 teams. The teams will then play until there are only 16 teams left, hence the name “sweet 16” then from there it gets lowered to the “elite 8” and then the “final 4” and then the national championship.
This tournament is one of the most exciting sports events in the U.S. because of how involved the fans can get. Some people do not even watch college basketball until the tournament starts, because it is much more exciting than the regular basketball season. But, the biggest thing that gets fans extremely attached to the tournament is the brackets. The brackets are what keep fans coming back every year, because obviously, everyone wants their team to win, but when you’re making your bracket, you’re trying to get it perfect, there’s no skill involved, you’re making the best guess and gambling on whether they win or not. The odds of getting a perfect bracket is 1 in 9.2 quintillion. Just to compare, the odds of hitting the mega millions jackpot is only 1 in 258 million. 2 years ago, Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway and Dan Gilbert’s Quicken Loans were offering up one billion dollars if you got a perfect bracket. This is what makes this tournament so intriguing. When they seed the 68 teams, the number 1 ranked team is obviously the best, but rankings do not matter. Any team can lose on any given day. Every year there are crazy upsets and that is what keeps fans watching, because it is always exciting when a smaller college that not many people have heard of, beats a big name D1 school.
The NCAA basketball tournament has come. So, prepare your brackets and choose your teams wisely because getting a perfect bracket is close to impossible. But in the end, fans just want to get what they get every year, and that’s mind blowing upsets, glorious comebacks and heartbreaking endings.

Girls Baskteball Season Improves to the Dome

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by Cooper Lewis – Staff Reporter

For the second season in a row, the girls’ basketball team is heading to the Dome.
In order to get to the state competition again, on Feb 14, the girls had to beat Tahoma. They won 59-37 with senior Kiley Johnson scoring 14 points and senior Gabby Bruno scoring 12.
The game before they lost to Kentridge 53-36.
The first playoff was against Puyallup, at home, because they were the second seed. After a slow start, they beat Puyallup 57-26. Emma Jackson 17 points off the bench.
At 20-4, the team has experienced many successes so far this year. Often time coaches have 2-3 players they use throughout the entire game, but Hilburn plays all nine-varsity girls, keeping everyone fresh. The team is deep with ability.
“If this is what he [Coach Hilburn] wants me to do, and what the team needs me to do, then I’ll be happy to do it.” Basketball captain, senior Jada Leonard said.
It seems as if all the basketball team girls this season have lived by Leonard’s motto. Currently, they are ranked 9 by the Tacoma Tribune in the NPSL 4A Cascade League behind Kentridge High School.
Leonard said, “It’s just a result of all our hard work over the years that we put together to get in this position…it feels really good. We have an amazing coach (GC Hilburn) and he lead us to state last year when it was his first year coaching us. And this year he’s kind of putting it on our shoulders. [He wants us] to be selfless and like reach our potential and do everything that we can to make it a team effort.”
Sydney Petersen said, “Hilburn is really good at knowing where to put people. He’s a smart coach. He takes advantage of mismatches.”
This year, 12 teams go to state. Teams are ranked according to their RPI (rating percentage index) instead of seating. Because the Falcons’ RPI puts them at #2, their first regional game is against Todd Beamer High School. Regardless of what happens against Beamer, the girls will compete against Bellarmine Prep High School after that. If they win against Bellarmine Prep, they receive a bye, which would be beneficial because the next game is loser out and the bye would automatically get them further.
Leonard plays for her teammates, “I definitely just like the love of the team, I’ve been playing with Sidney and Kylee since my freshman year on varsity and honestly, if they weren’t playing I’m not sure if I would be.”
Gabby Bruno is proud to be on one of the best teams in the state. “It feels amazing, coming in new to the team, and being so successful is a great feeling. All of these girls are amazing players and work hard to continue to play on college teams.”
Senior Sydney Petersen has sat the season out because of an injury; however, she has still taken an active role in the team. Petersen said, “I’m more of a cheerleader and coach this year. I help the team stay positive. After the games, Hilburn asks me what I saw during the game, and what I think worked. He looks for different perspectives. I’ve learned a lot about the game; I have a new perspective on it.”
After Bellarmine, every game will have to be earned.