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Sports for March 26, 2009

Area athletes make All-Conference teams

HUERFANO COUNTY- Several John Mall and La Veta athletes were selected to the 2009 All-Conference basketball teams.  Last week’s announcement came days after the conclusion of the state tournaments.  Walsenburg’s  Charlie Whitehead and Kristen David were chosen for the Sante Fe League all-conference teams.  Shari Duran was given an honorable mention.

    Several players from the La Veta Redskins received top honors.  Franklin Geiser and Jon Christian were named to the first team, Fishers Peak League, and Dalton Mason received an honorable mention.  Geiser was also named to the Southern Peaks League first team and as a runner-up to the All-State Team.

    The Lady Skins also received several accolades.  Emily Moll was named the league’s Most Valuable Player and Shelby Morgan  was named Player of the Year.  Also named to the Fishers Peak League team were Shea Brgoch and Sami Willhoite. Christina Koutnik received an honorable mention.

    Congratulations to these fine athletes for their outstanding accomplishments.

Track team off to fast start

RATON, NM- The John Mall Panthers started the 2009 track season in blazing style last Sat. March 21, when  they traveled to Raton, NM.  Desi Aguirre captured first place in the shot put, and several other Panthers captured ribbons in individual competition as well.  As a team, the Panthers were equally impressive, bringing home top honors.  This meet is the first of many as they are preparing for regional competition and a chance to participate at the state tournament later this spring.

    The team fielded several athletes in multiple events and most came home with placement ribbons in several events. The results of the Raton meet are as follows.


Triple Jump

Dominic Pino- 3rd

High Jump

Tanner Waverling and Jacob Wiggins tied for 6th

800 M Run

Shawn Dieckman 3rd, John Rodriquez- 6th

400 M Rely

Pino, Wiggins, Waverling and Josh Galindo- 4th

800 M Rely

Pino, Wiggins, Waverling and Galindo- 4th


Shot Put

Desi  Aguirre- 1st

Triple Jump

Alexandra Tenorio- 3rd


Desi Aguirre- 6th

High Jump

Katie Monahan -2nd

800 M Run

Myranda Trujillo- 5th

Panthers to the plate

WALSENBURG- With four games under their belts, the John Mall Panther’s baseball team is learning how to work together and do what it takes to win.  Unfortunately, they have not struck pay dirt, but their time will come.

    Only twelve players came out for the team this season, including five freshman and no seniors.  The twelve are dedicated team players and have been playing together on the summertime recreational leagues.  They seem to know each other’s moves and where they will be on the field at all times.  According to Coach Tobias DeHerrera, “They work well together and are getting the feel of playing together.”

    The Cats opened their season two weeks ago, falling to Center in the first game of a double header 6-2.  By the time the second game came around, the Cats found their grove in a close 11-10 game before play was stopped because of darkness.  The Cats looked good in every aspect of the game, but in the end fell short.  Brian Aguirre put one out of the park and the rest of the team hit the ball well.

    In the second competition of the season, the Panthers were demolished by the La Veta Redskins 25-13 before the game was called at the bottom of the fifth under the 10-run rule.  According to DeHerrera, “We just had one bad inning which was the difference.”  He was referring to a 16-run surge by the Skins in the third inning.

    Overall, DeHerrera is looking to returning players from last year’s team to take charge.  Charlie Whitehead is returning on the mound.  Stuart Pino and Brian Aguirre are also expected to lead this young team to the district playoffs.  DeHerrera also is excited about the strengths of John Birch and Zach Vigil.  Other members of the 2009 Panther ball club include Zach Harriman, Evan Crockett, Justin Eccher, Michael Maldonado, Brandon Atencio, Jeremiah Hill and Alex Weber.

Rocky Mountain National thunder

DENVER- Last weekend several members of the La Veta Wrestling Club (LVWC) participated in the Rocky Mountain Nationals wrestling tournament.  The tournament was a three-day event and wrestlers came from several western states.  The tournament is one of several national tournaments to determine the best of the best.  Grapplers included peewees through high school.

    According to Dreama Ortivez, who runs the LVWC with her husband Ron, “There were several state and national champions there.  It was a fierce competition.”  Those participating and placing in their respective brackets included these athletes: Dawson Menegatti – 2nd, Kiara Hampton – 2nd, Desirae Ortivez – 3rd and Teah Ortivez – 4th.

    Peewees have also been in competition over the past few weekends.  They are pre-junior high or age 15 and under.  It is possible to see an 11-year-old squaring off against an older grappler because these wrestlers compete in various weight classes to make their matches more fair.  Some of John Mall’s and La Veta‘s finest state qualifying wrestlers have made their way through the ranks of peewee tournaments where these young competitors learn discipline, athleticism and a competitive spirit.

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