For years, Mead High School has been one of the most dedicated schools in the area when it comes to unified sports and, in fact, is one of the most dedicated unified sports schools in the country.
Last week, Mead received national banner recognition as a Special Olympics Unified Champion School. Basically, that means Mead High has been an active participant in unified sports and has met 10 national standards of excellence, which are specific criteria in order to earn the distinction.
Mead has actually been a unified champion school for six years now and keeping that streak alive is a point of pride for the school’s most active participants in unified sports like special education teacher and unified coach Amber Vanzant.
“I’m really proud of it,” Vanzant said. “It’s not something that could have happened without our entire school being supportive of everyone. It just shows what a great, accepting culture we have at our school. We’re really proud of our programs here at Mead, and also of how well our students treat each other.”
Mead offers three unified sports in flag football, basketball and soccer. The school will add unified bowling, which was recently approved as a CHSAA pilot sport, starting on Sept. 23.
With Mead and several other schools leading the way, the St. Vrain Valley School District has developed a reputation for participating heavily in unified sports.
“We have three sports that provide opportunity for involvement and we really keep our unified programs in-district,” SVVSD athletic director Chase McBride said. “We also include some other nearby school that don’t have a district program. The ADs do a great job and we try to get teams for every school and provide as many opportunities for kids in our district to participate.”
Erie cross country, other locals shine in Wyoming
Erie cross country has set some lofty goals for itself this fall and last week, the Tigers traveled to Wyoming to compete against some out-of-state competition.
At the Wyoming Invite, hosted by the University of Wyoming and helped put together by Lyons head coach Mark Roberts, the Erie boys placed fourth and the girls team placed eighth.
“Everything was a little rushed and we had to combine JV and varsity into one race,” Erie head coach Brandon Havard said. “The kids had a good time getting to go out of state, even if it was just to Wyoming. We had a pretty good showing so it was a good trip. We’ve set some big goals for ourselves and right now I think we’re on track and looking pretty good, especially on the boys side. We’re looking to at least finish better than we did last year at state.”
Local teams Broomfield, Centaurus and Lyons also made the trip to Cheyenne for the meet.
Centaurus junior James Overberg won the boys race with a time of 16 minutes, 26.10 seconds, and the Warriors boys took second overall as a team. Broomfield’s Sierra Parks (19:45.60), Sydney Swanker (19:58.20) and Lauren Felknor (19:58.50) claimed the top three spots in the girls race and the Eagles girls won the team title. The Centaurus girls were second.
Skyline softball off to solid start in 2019
A lot has apparently improved within the Skyline softball program since the Falcons went 0-22-1 last fall.
So far in 2019, the Skyline girls are 5-5 and have several quality wins under their belts already. Those wins include a victory over then-ranked Peak to Peak and a win over rival Frederick that snapped a string of at least 15 straight losses to the Warriors.
“We’re focusing on the process and working on getting better with every pitch and every game,” Falcons head coach Pam Arnold said. “We have a championship mindset and motto, and that’s helped us pull through some of the ups and downs. Our girls are very close and they’re all dedicated to becoming the best ball players we can.”
Skyline’s Samantha Powell is third in the state with a .788 batting average.
Niwot football volunteers with Twin Peaks Youth Sports
Not only is the Niwot football team off to a respectable 1-1 start, the Cougars have also still found the time to make in impact in the local community.
After playing in a football game on Friday night, a 17-14 loss to Greeley Central on the road, the Niwot football players got up bright and early to volunteer teaching football skills to young athletes with Twin Peaks Youth Sports.
Through two games, Mead’s Nathan Bailey is 12th in Colorado with 295 rushing yards… Niwot senior Liam Flanagan is 14th in the state with 265 rushing yards through two games… Skyline quarterback Chase Silva has 446 passing yards and six touchdowns in two games. He has thrown 192 yards and four touchdowns to junior teammate Grayden Bridwell… Silver Creek cross country’s Henry Terhaar placed with fourth in the Division I boys race at the Liberty Bell on Saturday… The Niwot boys tennis team is off to a 5-0 start in duals and remains unbeaten at four of the seven ladder spots… Erie softball’s Kat Sackett continues to terrorize opposing pitching to the tune of a state-leading nine home runs in as many games. Teammate Madysun Vaughan is second in Colorado with eight home runs.