Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Mikayla Elfrank’

Mikayla Elfrank, destroyer of softballs. (Jordan Ford photo)

   Elfrank, powered by her snazzy socks, flies in for another bucket on the hardwood. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

You can run, but she’ll still pound the ball off your face.

It’s not how much time you have, it’s what you do with that time.

Mikayla Elfrank didn’t get the full tour as a Coupeville High School athlete, as she started off down South in Falcon territory, not joining the Wolves until midway through her sophomore year.

Now, at the tail end of her prep career, an ankle injury has stolen part of her basketball season and is denying her a chance to play a spring sport.

Doesn’t matter.

Elfrank accomplished more than enough in her limited run, reaching electrifying heights rarely touched, making her a slam-dunk pick for induction into the Coupeville Sports Hall o’ Fame.

Off the field and court, the three-sport star is a whip-smart, well-spoken young woman who I have no doubt will be a great success in life.

Spend any time speaking to Elfrank and you can’t help but come away impressed with her.

She exudes a quiet confidence mixed with a genuine warmth, and is the rare athlete, young or old, able to look at their career and assess it honestly and straight-forward.

If she has a slight weakness, it may be that she is a little too modest about her own talent.

I’ve seen you play three sports across three years, Mikayla, and I can say this — you have been one of the most entertaining athletes I have ever covered.

It’s not because she’s big on personal celebration or chest-thumping, but it’s because she possesses a big-game explosiveness rarely seen in these parts.

If Hunter Smith is the cool rider, the Wolf who hums along, day after day, game after game, always hitting the high notes, Elfrank is like a roller coaster turned into a human.

When she is on the volleyball or basketball court, or stalking the softball field, she has an uncanny ability to bounce back at a moment’s notice, turning what might be a bad game for her team around in a split second.

When Elfrank strikes, it is with a white-hot intensity.

A spike that ricochets off of a rival’s face with enough force to almost come back over the net.

A coast-to-coast breakaway in which she shreds three backpedaling defenders before slapping the ball high off the backboard for a game-busting layup.

A home run to dead center field that not only clears the fence in Sequim, but puts a dent in a carnival ride being set up in the great beyond, scattering workers who jump like a bomb has dropped on their heads.

In her time as a Wolf, Elfrank has been the queen of the big moment, giving Coupeville fans a jolt of electricity and making opposing coaches throw their hands up in frustration.

They can’t stop her, they can’t contain her, and they know it.

A lot of athletes have come and gone here in Cow Town, and a very select few stand apart for being able to genuinely channel a mix of excitement and danger in every game they play.

Elfrank, like Madeline Strasburg or Lathom Kelley before her, rises above being talented and sits in that pantheon of Wolves who make you feel like you got your money’s worth every night, win or loss.

She and her teammates had some big moments, winning Olympic League titles in volleyball and basketball, going to state as spikers and narrowly missing on the diamond. They also had some tough defeats.

Win or lose, Elfrank never backed down from a challenge, never stopped fighting until the final buzzer, and repped the Wolf uniform with class and skill.

It would have been nice to have a full four years of her in red and black, with no injuries, but what we got to witness will stand the test of time.

An extraordinary young woman, on and off the competitive field, Mikayla will live on at the top of this blog, enshrined under the Legends tab.

Cause that’s what she is, today and forever.

Through every spike, every bucket, every laser throw from the hole at short, she was building a legacy, whether she knew it or not.

Thank you, Miss Elfrank, for making every game an adventure.

Read Full Post »

   Mikayla Elfrank, Coupeville’s leading scorer, could miss 4-6 weeks after suffering an avulsion fracture. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

The Year of the Injury at Coupeville High School just keeps getting worse and worse.

Following on the heels of a football campaign in which most of the team’s top play-makers were lost to season-ending injuries, now basketball has taken a substantial hit of its own.

Wolf senior Mikayla Elfrank, the leading scorer on the girls hoops squad, went down midway through the third quarter Friday against Orcas Island.

She landed awkwardly, grabbed at her ankle and had to be eventually assisted off the floor by CHS coach David King.

A doctor’s visit confirmed Elfrank has an avulsion fracture, an injury where a tendon or ligament pulls off a piece of the bone.

Surgical intervention is generally not required, but she’ll be on crutches and most likely wearing a boot. Recovery time is usually pegged at four to six weeks.

There are five weeks left in regular-season play for the Wolves.

Currently sitting at 2-8 overall, 0-1 in Olympic League play, Coupeville has 11 games remaining on its schedule, with the final one, Senior Night against Chimacum, set for Feb. 3.

The district playoffs run Feb. 9-17.

While it’s likely she won’t be on the court for much of the stretch run as CHS makes a bid for a fourth-straight league title, Elfrank is determined to suit up again.

“I’m hoping to be back towards the end of the season,” she said. “It sucks, but I tend to heal fast.”

Elfrank, who gives the Wolves an electric presence on both ends of the floor, has tossed in a team-high 99 points in the first 10 games.

She has 227 for her career, putting her #47 all-time in Wolf girls hoops history.

With Elfrank absent, juniors Lindsey Roberts (67 points), Ema Smith (41) and Sarah Wright (38) will likely shoulder more of the scoring duties.

Read Full Post »

   You have to put the ball in the bucket to win basketball games. (Maddie Vondrak photo)

The calm before the storm.

The week surrounding Christmas is notoriously slow in the world of high school basketball, and 2017 was no exception.

Coupeville played just one game, having sat out the previous eight days, and now sits six days before its next game, thanks to New Year’s Day.

While both of the Wolf squads fell to non-conference foe Orcas Island, the boys loss was highlighted by Hunter Smith going off for a game-high 25 points.

Through the first nine games of the season, the senior guard is averaging 19.3 a game, which has allowed him to continue flying up the school’s career scoring chart.

Smith currently sits #24, and, if he continues at his current pace, could have a shot at breaking into the top 10 for both single-season and career scoring performances.

On the girls side of the ball, senior Mikayla Elfrank is out in front at a whisper below 10 points a night, with everyone hoping her ankle injury Friday was just a temporary setback.

Varsity scoring totals and league standings through Dec. 31:

Girls:

Mikayla Elfrank 99
Lindsey Roberts 67
Ema Smith 41
Kalia Littlejohn 38
Sarah Wright 38
Kyla Briscoe 28
Scout Smith 24
Chelsea Prescott 10
Allison Wenzel 3
Hannah Davidson 2

Boys:

Hunter Smith 174
Ethan Spark 87
Joey Lippo 26
Hunter Downes 21
Mason Grove 15
Jered Brown 14
Kyle Rockwell 11
Dane Lucero 5
Cameron Toomey-Stout 3
Gavin Knoblich 2
Ulrik Wells 2
Jacobi Pilgrim 1

Olympic League girls basketball:

School League Overall
Chimacum 2-0 5-5
Port Townsend 1-1 3-6
COUPEVILLE 0-1 2-8
Klahowya 0-1 2-6

Olympic League boys basketball:

School League Overall
COUPEVILLE 1-0 3-6
Klahowya 1-0 4-6
Port Townsend 1-1 4-5
Chimacum 0-2 0-5

Read Full Post »

   Sarah Wright, here freaking out a rival in an earlier game, had eight points and four rebounds Friday against Orcas. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

You buy the ticket for the roller coaster, you get to experience both the highs and the lows.

Back on the court for the first time in nine days, the Coupeville High School girls basketball squad enjoyed some dizzying moments of elation, and some gut-wrenching moments of despair Friday night.

By the time things were done, the Wolves had lost both their leading scorer (for how long is unknown) and a game that was waiting to be won, falling 47-44 in overtime to visiting Orcas Island.

The non-conference loss drops CHS to 2-8, and now the Wolves will sit for another week, not returning to action until Jan. 5.

That gap might actually be a blessing in disguise, as it will give senior Mikayla Elfrank time to hopefully heal.

She had poured in nine points Friday, helping Coupeville surge to a seven-point lead early in the third quarter, when she came down awkwardly, hurting her ankle and crippling her team’s offensive output in one unlucky move.

With Elfrank on the bench, foot up and ice applied, CHS went into a tailspin for a bit.

Missing their most explosive offensive ace — she’s tossed in 32 more points than Coupeville’s #2 scorer this season — the Wolves went stagnant from the field.

Not making things any better, Orcas, whose philosophy on three-point bombs was “fire wildly and pray,” suddenly couldn’t miss, hitting treys from impossible angles.

Mixing long shots with steady work in the paint from their main post player, the Vikings used a 16-2 surge that covered a 10-minute span to blow the game up.

Jumping from a 28-21 deficit when Elfrank’s foot betrayed her, to a 37-30 lead, Orcas looked unbeatable.

But then the roller coaster took another dizzying dive, and this time it was Coupeville’s fans screaming in glee.

Playing their best team ball of the night, the Wolves closed regulation on a 14-7 run, with six different players scoring, to force a late tie and even have a chance to win right at the buzzer.

The reversal of fortune was kicked off by a play, which, in the moment, was a small thing of beauty. In the bigger picture, it was the fuse being lit.

Under pressure, Lindsey Roberts drove the lane, sucked the defense to her, then dropped off a note-perfect bounce pass onto teammate Allison Wenzel’s finger tips at the very last second.

Wenzel, a scrappy defensive demon who specializes in doing down-and-dirty work which often gets overlooked in the box score, knocked down the bucket over the outstretched arms of three Orcas players, and the game changed in a snap.

Big three-balls from Kyla Briscoe and Roberts helped, before Ema Smith stuck a dagger in the side of Orcas, calling for the ball, then coldly drilling it through the bottom of the net.

A put-back by Sarah Wright, coming off of an offensive rebound, knotted things at 42-42, before Coupeville recaptured the lead with 1:05 to play.

Briscoe stepped in front of an Orcas pass, picked the ball clean, then led a charge down the floor.

At the end of her run, she flipped the ball to Scout Smith, who slapped it home for the biggest bucket of her sophomore campaign.

The final minute of regulation was a wild mix of inspired defense, a couple badly-botched calls by a less-than-stellar reffing crew and a speck or two of what could have been.

Orcas tied the game off of an offensive rebound with 37 ticks on the clock, but missed on a free throw which could have given them the lead.

Coupeville responded by almost, but not quite, putting a stamp on the game and sprinting away with a win.

Ema Smith got herself in position to draw a charge with just 10 seconds left, but a ref on the wrong side of the play refused to give her the call.

The fact he blushed in shame after making the call seemed to point towards a sudden realization he had chosen the wrong job. One can hope…

Having fouled out, Ema Smith, being the ever-feisty spark-plug she is, led the screaming from the bench, after piling her hair high in a “rally cap,” but the refs stiffed the Wolves again.

Wright launched an airmail pass to a sprinting Roberts, who pulled the ball down from the heavens and was promptly hammered into the parking lot by an Orcas defender … for the 44th time in the game.

To the surprise of no one who had seen the ref’s seeing-eye dog leave the gym two minutes before (perhaps seeking a late special on hot dogs at the concession stand?), no foul was called.

Instead of shooting free throws with a chance to take the lead, the Wolves got the ball on the end line. While they got a last-second shot partially off, the ball was lost in a sea of hands and never came close to the rim as time expired.

After playing so valiantly in the game’s final minutes, evoking memories of previous come-from behind wins led by former CHS greats like Breeanna Messner and Makana Stone, both home for the holidays, the Wolves couldn’t get the miracle they deserved in overtime.

Briscoe had a sensational block on a girl a good six inches taller than her, but nothing, and I mean nothing, would drop on the offensive end for Coupeville in the extra four minutes.

Orcas couldn’t get much more going, but a put-back off a rebound and a paltry free throw were enough to seal the victory for the Vikings.

The game opened as a tightly-played battle, ending in an 8-8 tie after the first quarter.

Then that darn roller coaster effect set in, as Coupeville opened the second with a run, Orcas responded with its own run, then the Wolves closed the half on a 9-2 tear.

Elfrank was a woman on fire, tossing in seven points and threading the ball to Wright for three buckets in the paint, each set-up pass prettier than the one before it.

Coupeville capped the half with Ema Smith knocking down a gorgeous three-ball from the top.

Perfectly rotating through the air, then softly splashing down as she backpedaled, it was the kind of thing they replay on the scoreboard 23 times … if CHS had a video scoreboard.

While the Wolves record isn’t what it has been in the past, the majority of the losses have been by a handful of points. A team in transition is learning under fire.

CHS coach David King preached cutting down turnovers during his halftime talk, and it paid off, with the Wolves slicing their miscues in half after the break.

Also, for a squad which has struggled at times to find adequate scoring, Friday’s 44 points were the second-most Coupeville has tallied this season.

The Wolves spread those points out, with Roberts and Elfrank each tossing in nine.

Wright knocked down eight, Ema Smith singed the nets for seven and Scout Smith tickled the twines for six.

Briscoe (3) and Wenzel (2) rounded out the scoring, while young guns Chelsea Prescott and Avalon Renninger saw key floor time.

Roberts paced the Wolves on the boards, snaring 15 caroms, while Briscoe added five rebounds and six assists.

Read Full Post »

   Allison Wenzel netted her first point this season in a win over Concrete. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Not much action, but it was all positive.

Coupeville only played a single foe on the basketball court this week, but both the Wolf girls and boys came away with solid non-conference wins over Concrete.

As winter break kicks off, a lack of games was a trend all across the Olympic League, as Port Townsend, Klahowya and Chimacum join CHS in biding their time.

Once we get past the start of the new year, things will ramp up in intensity, and the heart of the conference schedule will come to the forefront.

Until then, a look at the stat sheet shows four Wolves, senior Allison Wenzel and three newbies, netting their first points of the season against Concrete.

For sophomores Gavin Knoblich, Hannah Davidson and Ulrik Wells, those buckets also marked their first-ever varsity points.

Varsity scoring stats and league standings through Dec. 24:

Girls:

Mikayla Elfrank 90
Lindsey Roberts 58
Kalia Littlejohn 38
Ema Smith 34
Sarah Wright 30
Kyla Briscoe 25
Scout Smith 18
Chelsea Prescott 10
Hannah Davidson 2
Allison Wenzel 1

Boys:

Hunter Smith 149
Ethan Spark 71
Joey Lippo 26
Hunter Downes 17
Mason Grove 12
Kyle Rockwell 11
Jered Brown 9
Dane Lucero 5
Cameron Toomey-Stout 3
Gavin Knoblich 2
Ulrik Wells 2
Jacobi Pilgrim 1

Olympic League girls basketball:

School League Overall
Chimacum 2-0 4-3
Port Townsend 1-1 3-4
COUPEVILLE 0-1 2-7
Klahowya 0-1 2-6

Olympic League boys basketball:

School League Overall
COUPEVILLE 1-0 3-5
Klahowya 1-0 2-6
Port Townsend 1-1 3-3
Chimacum 0-2 0-5

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »