Summit High prep roundup: Chasing records, returning with a vengence and golfing at state
Volleyball team captain Sage Kent is chasing Summit High School’s record for digs in a single season, and if she keeps racking them up at same the torrid pace, the only question is by how much she’ll break that record.
Coach Annie Hettinger described her senior libero, a back-row position that specializes in defense, as “super smart” and “willing to do anything” to get that ball up and make a play.
Hettinger said the school’s record stands at 15 digs per game, and Kent only needs to average about 11 more per game to reach that mark, far below the 20-25 digs a game she’s been putting up so far.
Kent was all over the place again as Summit faced a tough Palisade squad on Saturday and Steamboat Springs on Thursday, falling 3-0 in both matches.
Wins have been hard to come by for the Tigers this season, but it hasn’t come without a number of highlights, including the play of junior Hanna Knickrehm.
She’s one of the tallest players on the team, and Hettinger is amazed Knickrehm always seems to be in the right place at the right time to give opposing hitters fits.
“She just knows how to read those hitters so well,” Hettinger said. “That’s what helps her get those blocks and touches at the net.”
Meanwhile, outside hitter Emma McComb has been one of Summit’s biggest guns this year. She’s not all that tall for a hitter, Hettinger said, but makes up for any lack of height with pure strength.
The lefty on the team, Mia Popoff, has also been hitting and setting the ball up for her teammates phenomenally well, according to her coach, while senior Anna Mathis, also a captain, has been “a driving force of positivity, a smart player and a beautiful setter.”
Summit takes a short break before returning to action next Saturday to face Glenwood Springs at home. The Tigers play Rifle on Monday, also at home, and are at Steamboat Springs on Thursday.
Summit football returns with vengence
Coming out of the Tigers’ bye week, the Summit football team lit up Eagle Valley 25-7 in a Class 3A Western Slope Conference game in Gypsum.
Summit’s defense played well all night and limited the Devils’ offense to just a couple of big plays. “Otherwise, our defense was incredible,” coach John Shirkey said. “We got a lot of pressure on their quarter and stopped their running game … they didn’t get much.”
Meanwhile, the Tigers (3-3, 1-0) got their running game going early, and Summit struck first when 6-foot-8, 285-pound senior Nememiah Martens carried the ball across the goalline for a rushing TD.
“If we can run the ball and then throw, we’re dangerous,” Shirkey said, eluding to Summit’s second TD, the result of Tigers QB Jake Gillum finding star receiver Vale Hildebrand with 25 seconds remaining in the half.
In a worrisome moment for the Tigers and their fans, Hildebrand was knocked out of the game at the end of the half with a possible concussion. The Tigers played the second half without the standout receiver and safety, and the team relied heavily on Jason Tilley to step up in Hildebrand’s absence, both on offense and defense.
Tilley responded to the call with two key catches, one to keep a Tigers’ drive alive on third down. The other came in the end zone for Summit’s third score of the game.
“Both of those were what we call, ‘50/50 balls,’” Shirkey said, explaining that both Tilley and the defensive back guarding him had an opportunity to catch the football, but “Jason took it away.”
“Those were huge plays,” the coach continued. “And it reinforces the culture we’re trying to instill: Next man up. It doesn’t matter who it is, next guy up.”
Noah Martens scored the final TD of the game when he broke free for a long run as Summit was draining the clock in the fourth quarter.
The Tigers (3-3, 1-0) face Rifle on the road next Friday before playing Glenwood Springs on Oct. 20, for the Tigers’ homecoming game. Both are league contests.
Tigers XC near front of pack in Englewood
Summit’s cross-country teams ran Saturday at the Windjammer Invite at Englewood High School and, competing in a large field of runners, saw the Tigers post solid team finishes for both its girls and boys.
The girls team was fifth overall out of 22 teams in a field of 287 runners. The competition featured four schools the Tigers will face in the regional meet. Having bested two of them Saturday, coach Heather Quarantillo called it “encouraging.”
Noelle Resignolo again led the Tigers — finishing 8th overall with a new season-best time of 20 minutes, 8 seconds — and was Summit’s only medalist of the day. Summit’s second fastest runner, Alice Wescott, came in 27th at 21:20.
For the boys, Max Bonenberger was 16th overall at 17:30, and Jeremiah Vaille came in 20th at 17:36. They both posted their fastest times of the season despite running in the last and hottest race of the day.
“We’re just super pleased with the boys squad,” Quarantillo said. “It was probably 70-plus degrees, and they had the tougher conditions. We’re really pleased with how they fought through it.”
Rugby rolls Saturday at two separate tourneys
Summit rugby divided and conquered Saturday, with its top-tier Black squad posting three shutout victories in Evergreen and the White team winning all three of its games in Parker.
Playing in the Lumber Jackie 7s tournament at Bergen Valley School in Evergreen, Summit Black beat Glendale 38-0, crushed Evergreen 52-0 and finished off Fort Collins 45-0.
In the three games combined, Summit Black outscored its opponents 135-nil.
Meanwhile, the White team was taking care of business at the Wolverine 7s tournament at Chaparral High School in Parker. There, they beat East 42-5, Regis 29-0 and Legacy 22-19.
Summit is out-of-state next week for a two-day tournament in Salt Lake City, where the Tigers will matchup against some of the fiercest competition in the country.
Summit’s top golfer shows character at state tourney
Summit senior golfer Tyler Horii represented his school last week at the Class 4A state tournament at Black Canyon Golf Course in Montrose.
While he didn’t post his best score of the season, struggling early in the tourney and finishing with 97 strokes for 73rd place, he impressed his coach with how he rebounded from the slow start and got back on track later in the tournament.
Horii finished the season shooting an average score of 85. His best result of the year was a 77, also at Black Canyon Golf Course.
“He only got better as the season went on,” Sorensen said of Horii, who was the only Tiger to qualify for state. Sorensen said that in the biggest tournament of the year, Horii “showed some good character in getting his mind where it belonged and not giving up.”
Throughout the year, Horii and Dorje John, the only two seniors on the squad, displayed mature attitudes and established themselves as team leaders, Sorensen said, adding that he “couldn’t have expected more out of them as senior role models.”
As a team, Montrose won the state championship. Evergreen was second, and the top teams both came from the same region as Summit. Valor Christian was third.
Boys soccer reaffirms earlier result vs. Palisade
On Saturday, Summit took on Palisade in a rematch of a game Summit won easily earlier this year and cruised to victory, 10-0, for another win in Class 4A Western Slope Conference play.
The two teams met up earlier this year on Sept. 16, in Palisade in a game Summit won 9-0. In the rematch, Summit (7-4, 5-3) scored early and often, posting six of its 10 goals in the first half.
Summit takes on Glenwood Springs on the road Tuesday in a conference matchup that’s expected to test the Tigers’ hopes of achieving a playoff berth this season.
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