01-13-14: Student athletes claim six fall league titles and third-place trophy
01-13-14: Student athletes claim six fall league titles and third-place trophy
Posted on 01/13/2014
ImageFrom the golf links to the tennis court, and from the cross-country trails to the volleyball court, student athletes culminated the fall sports season with six league titles, a third-place state trophy, and nearly a dozen academic team awards.


“I am delighted at the athleticism this fall season, especially among our younger athletes who will be back again to play in our district next year,” said Rick Wells, director of athletics, health, and fitness. “Given their age and their talent, there is a bright future ahead for those students and their sports teams.”


Wells provided an overview of the fall sports season during last month’s Puyallup School Board meeting and introduced four coaches who won South Puget Sound League (SPSL) South Division Coach of the Year honors.


For the second consecutive year, the Emerald Ridge High volleyball team snatched the SPSL championship after an 8-0 undefeated season. The team went on to capture third place at the state tournament.Image


Co-coach Bobby McGivern credits this year’s success to a hard-working team and coaching staff. He said the players committed to working out together even before tryouts last year, set goals to win the league title and land in the top four at state, and then fought to achieve those goals.


The Emerald Ridge High girls golf team and girls cross country teams also excelled this year, ending the season tied for first place with other teams in their respective sports.


In addition to athletic achievement, the girls cross country team earned state recognition for its success in the classroom. The Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA) awarded the Jaguars an Outstanding Academic Team Award for maintaining a combined 3.94 team grade point average (GPA).


WIAA presents a Distinguished Academic Team Award to teams that have combined GPAs of 3.0 or higher. An Outstanding Academic Team Award is presented to teams with combined GPAs of 3.5 or higher. 


ImageRogers High School also had four teams win WIAA Outstanding Academic Team Awards (girls volleyball, golf, cross country, and swimming) and five teams win Distinguished Academic Team Awards (girls soccer and boys golf, cross country, water polo, and tennis).


Victory also belonged to several Puyallup High School teams that won league or state recognition.


Girls golf tied for first place in the league, and the undefeated boys golf team and tennis team each won a league championship title.Image


Puyallup and Emerald Ridge high school swimmers also medaled as one of the top finishers at the 2013 Swim and Dive Championship November 15 and 16 at the King County Aquatics Center.


Tenth grader Mackenzie Mergel represented the Puyallup High Vikings with a third place finish in the 500-meter freestyle. Mergel also set a new school record with a time of 1:57.97 and an eighth-place finish in the 200-meter freestyle.


Emerald Ridge High junior Alana Pries took third place in state in the 100-meter freestyle and fifth place in the 50-meter freestyle.


SPSL South Division Coach of the Year honors this fall went to Emerald Ridge High volleyball co-coaches Bobby McGivern and Jill Fox-Mullen, Puyallup High boys tennis coach Brooks Hazen, and Emerald Ridge High girls cross country coach Gary Osborne.


A complete fall sports season wrap-up, including team and individual accomplishments at the local, regional, and state levels, is on the district website.


A wrap-up of the winter sports season will be featured in the April issue of Connections.



Top left photo courtesy of Jim Meyerhoff

Top right photo courtesy of Ariel Deahl
Bottom left photo courtesy of Adam Miller