Posts Tagged ‘Track’

Out of 10 Wolf track stars to compete at the 2019 state meet, Ja’Kenya Hoskins is the only one still at CHS in 2021. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Chelsea Prescott is one of five current Wolf softball sluggers who was on the varsity squad when Coupeville last played — at the state tourney May 24, 2019.

650 days.

That’s the gap between May 25, 2019 and March 4, 2021.

The first date is the last time a Coupeville High School spring sports team competed, and the second is the day the Wolf track team is scheduled to host a season-opening meet, signaling the return from the COVID-19 shutdown.

Spring sports were the first major casualty when the pandemic shut down schools in 2020.

Instead of a swan song for Wolf stars such as Scout Smith, Emma Mathusek, and the Toomey-Stout twins, Maya and Sean, fields and ovals remained silent.

While fall and winter sports have not been played in their traditional spots this school year, the hope is that spring 2020 will be the only truly empty season.

Coupeville, and its new mates in the Northwest 2B/1B League, started practice Monday, and spring sports are scheduled to run, with pared-down schedules, from February 22 to April 3.

Fall sports will go from March 29 to May 8, with winter sports expected to cap the 2020-2021 school year from May 3 to June 12.

By the time fall 2021 rolls around, will we be back to “normal?”

No one knows for sure, and, if they tell you they do, they don’t.

But, hope is back, as, masks in place, Wolf athletes return to Coupeville’s ballfields, tennis courts, and track ovals.

Way back on the weekend of May 24-25, 2019, CHS was having a pretty dang good time, with its softball and track teams competing at the state championships.

The diamond dandies, making their third trip to the big dance in 41 years of competition, put together the second-best showing in program history.

The Wolves put up a strong fight against eventual state champ Montensano, came back to thrash highly-rated Deer Park, then fell in a donnybrook with Cle Elum, a play shy of advancing to day two of the tourney.

Nine Wolves collected a hit at state, with 13 girls seeing action.

Mathusek paced the squad with six base-knocks, including three doubles, with Sarah Wright (5), Chloe Wheeler (4), Smith (4), Veronica Crownover (3), Chelsea Prescott (3), Mollie Bailey (2), Nicole Laxton (1), and Coral Caveness (1) all collecting hits.

Izzy Wells, Audrianna Shaw, Mackenzie Davis, and Marenna Rebischke-Smith also played for the Wolves.

Five of those 13 are still eligible nearly two years later, with Prescott, Bailey, and Caveness now seniors, while Wells and Shaw are juniors.

While CHS softball was rockin’ in Richland, Wolf track stars were shining in Cheney.

Coupeville’s Danny Conlisk won state titles in the 200 and 400, just missing the trifecta when he finished second in the 100.

Smashing school records in both of his winning events, the then-senior became just the fifth Wolf to win multiple titles in the same season, joining Natasha Bamberger, Jon Chittim, Kyle King, and Tyler King.

Coupeville also claimed a 2nd in the 400 (Mallory Kortuem), a 3rd in the 100 Hurdles (Lindsey Roberts), and a 3rd in the 4 x 200 relay (Ja’Kenya Hoskins, Maya Toomey-Stout, Roberts, and Kortuem).

Roberts, after taking home three state meet medals in her senior campaign, closed her stellar prep career with eight, the most of any girl in program history.

Of the 10 Wolves who competed in Cheney in the spring of 2019, only one remains at CHS.

Ja’Kenya Hoskins was just a freshman that season, and the upcoming March 4 meet will officially kick off her junior year.

With no state tourney planned for 2021, though, she will have to wait until 2022 for a possible return to Cheney.

Coupeville’s other three spring sports teams fell short of state in 2019, but all had big moments along the way.

The Wolf girls tennis team wrapped things May 14, when then-juniors Avalon Renninger and Tia Wurzrainer were eliminated at the bi-district tourney.

The deadly duo were early favorites to nab a bid to state in 2020, but the pandemic had other ideas.

Wolf baseball closed its season May 4, a 3-2 loss at bi-districts to Overlake the final game (it turned out) for coach Chris Smith.

Coupeville had opened the season with a somewhat-deceptive 0-12 mark, as its hardball squad was a run here, a run there from being above .500.

Things finally clicked into place late in the season, when the Wolves stormed to seven straight wins, including handing arch-rival South Whidbey the loss which prevented the Falcons from earning a league title.

Two starters from the team are still around in 2021, with Daniel Olson now a senior, and Hawthorne Wolfe a junior.

The final CHS spring sports team in ’19 was boys soccer. With the move to 2B, that program now plays during the traditional fall season.

Two years ago, the Wolf booters saw their season also end May 4, after suffering a 3-1 district playoff loss to Meridian.

Coupeville hung tough against the #1 seed from the Northwest Conference, though, especially since injuries had decimated the Wolves.

Players responsible for scoring 31 of the team’s 34 goals were sidelined against Meridian, while starting goalie Dewitt Cole was also unable to play.

The lone Wolf to hit the back of the net against Meridian that day was then-freshman Xavier Murdy, and he’s one of three goal scorers from the 2019 squad who could return in 2021.

Sage Downes and Tony Garcia are also still at CHS.

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Ja’Tarya Hoskins, newest member of the Coupeville Sports Hall o’ Fame. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

The chain stays strong.

The Hoskins family has been one of the best to come through Coupeville in recent years, with each kid a standout athlete, student, and human being.

Each link in that chain — Will, Jai’Lysa, Ja’Tarya, and Ja’Kenya — can stand on their own, but they remain stronger because they link together, with family and friends.

Today I want to single one out, and that would be Ja’Tarya, now a freshman at Saint Martin’s University.

She’s off on the first step of earning a law degree, and, if COVID cooperates, she’ll be competing as a track and field athlete for the school.

If not, rest assured Ja’Tarya will find a million other ways to impress all who meet her.

During her time in Coupeville, she was at the heart of great success, most notably (at least for us here at a sports blog) for her stellar work as a multi-sport athlete.

Ja’Tarya was front and center for the Wolf cheer squad, a key member of a group which brought CHS back to the world of competitive competition.

Celebrating Senior Night with mom Benita and lil’ sis Ja’Kenya.

There had been a six-year drought since Coupeville athletes stepped on to the blue competition mats, but they found success almost instantly when they returned in 2018.

That was Ja’Tarya’s junior season at CHS, and she and her close-knit pack of teammates went from zero to 3rd place at state in what seemed like the blink of an eye.

Of course, to get there, the Wolves put in countless grueling hours of work behind the scenes. Then made it look flawless.

A year later, Ja’Tarya capped her run as a Coupeville cheerleader as the Wolves qualified for nationals in their second year back in the sport.

All of her success as a cheerleader was just a small part of her portfolio, however.

Hoskins launches a javelin into the stratosphere. (Brian Vick photo)

In the world of track and field, Ja’Tarya competed in almost every event on the list.

Her biggest moment in the spotlight came in the 4 x 100, where she teamed with Mallory KortuemMaya Toomey-Stout, and Lindsey Roberts to place 5th at state during her junior season.

The quartet hit the tape in 50.54 seconds, and they currently sit on the big board in the CHS gym as school record-holders.

Left to right are Maya Toomey-Stout, Hoskins, Mallory Kortuem, and Lindsey Roberts. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Confident, assured, friendly, intelligent, kind, and strong – they all describe Ja’Tarya, who collected a long line of fans during her time as a Wolf.

For her achievements, yes, but also for the quality of her soul.

Check back in five years, ten years, or whenever, and I fully expect Ja’Tarya will have achieved great success in whatever she attempts.

When that happens, everyone here in Coupeville will be like, “Hey, we knew her when! And we told you she was gonna kill it!”

But, before she gets too famous for us, too accomplished, we can give her a little local honor while it still might mean something.

Today we induct Ja’Tarya into the Coupeville Sports Hall o’ Fame, where she joins big sis Jai’Lysa, forever immortalized in our digital shrine for being the supernova she is, every day, in every way.

After this, if you stroll past the Legends tab at the top of the blog, that’s where you’ll find her hanging out.

Digitally, at least.

Out there in the real world, Ja’Tarya will be soaring to new successes, making new fans who will be as impressed with her as we are back here in Cow Town.

A bright, shining superstar lighting up the night sky.

Just the way it should be.

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CHS cross country coach Luke Samford, seen here with Catherine Lhamon at the state meet, has joined the school’s track and field coaching staff. (Helene Lhamon photo)

Coupeville High School has filled two of its three open coaching positions, at least unofficially.

School Athletic Director Willie Smith confirmed Thursday that he’s hired Will Thayer as the Wolf JV softball coach and Luke Samford as a CHS assistant track coach.

Both men can work with their teams when spring sports practices begin Monday, but neither hire is official until approved by the Coupeville School Board at its next meeting.

Samford now has two gigs at the school, as he is also the head coach of the Wolf cross country program.

A former NCAA D-I athlete, he coached college runners for seven years before a family move brought him to Whidbey Island.

In his first season at the helm of the harriers this fall, he helped a reborn program make great strides, with junior Catherine Lhamon qualifying for state.

Samford’s hire helps to fill a hole left by the partial departure of Lincoln Kelley, whose day job in Oak Harbor will no longer allow him to be a full-time track and field assistant.

Kelley may still help out as a volunteer, however.

Thayer, a 2002 grad of Oak Harbor High School, replaces Greg Thomas, who stepped down after last season.

He joins a Wolf staff which includes head coach Kevin McGranahan and varsity volunteer assistant Ron Wright, and will coach the JV team.

The one current open position is the Wolf JV volleyball coaching gig, after Chris Smith recently stepped down from the position.

Smith continues to hold down two other jobs at the school, as the head varsity baseball coach and assistant boys basketball coach.

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Coupeville grad Danny Conlisk lets it rip in a college track meet. (Photo courtesy Dawnelle Conlisk)

Sarah Wright cracked her first college home run Saturday in Georgia. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Four Whidbey alumni are playing baseball for Green River College this season. Left to right, James Besaw, Joey Lippo, CJ Smith, and Hunter Smith. (Charlotte Young photo)

One day, three sports, three states, a whole ton of former Wolves on the prowl.

Saturday was a busy day for Coupeville grads competing in the world of college sports, with events going down in South Dakota, Georgia, and Washington state.

How the day played out:


Sarah goes yard:

Just like the old days.

Playing in her eighth college softball game, Coupeville grad Sarah Wright belted a three-run home run to left field, the highlight on a day when the former Wolf catcher’s new team was swept in a doubleheader.

Sewanee: The University of the South fell 9-1 and 10-6 to Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia, dropping the Tigers record to 2-6.

Wright and associates get a chance for a quick reversal of fortunes, as they play another doubleheader Sunday, this one against Wesleyan College in Macon.

The former Coupeville standout crushed her round tripper in her first at-bat in Saturday’s second game.

Through the first eight games of her freshman season, Wright is hitting .261 with six hits and a team-high six RBI.

She’s also doing it on the defensive side as well, where she tops Sewanee with 25 putouts and absolutely, positively no errors whatsoever.


Danny hits the jets:

A two-time state champ for CHS, Danny Conlisk continues to tear up the track as a freshman at the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology.

Bouncing back from an illness which kept him out of action last week, the Hardrocker freshman finished 2nd in the 400 at the Stinger Open at Black Hills State University.

Conlisk won his heat and smashed his collegiate PR in the event, hitting the tape in an adjusted time of 51.58 seconds.

That shaved .80 off of his previous best.

The former Wolf is one meet away from reaching the mid point of his season(s), with the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Indoor Championships set for February 28-29 in Colorado Springs.

After that, Conlisk and his teammates take a month off from competition (but not training), returning March 27 for the start of the outdoor season.


Strong start for diamond dandies:

It’s a reunion on the next level.

CHS grads, and brothers, CJ and Hunter Smith are back for their sophomore year at Green River College in Auburn.

Joining them on the Gators baseball squad this time around are former Coupeville star Joey Lippo and former Oak Harbor standout James Besaw.

All four Whidbey alumni saw action Saturday, as Green River opened a new season by sweeping a doubleheader from Western Washington University.

The Gators took the opener 11-4, with CJ Smith coming on in relief to earn the win.

Mr. Cool jumped in to the game in the second inning, with his team trailing, and promptly threw 4.1 innings of shutout ball, whiffing three.

His younger brother was a big supporter, as Hunter rapped a single, walked three times, stole a base, and scored twice as the Gators stormed from behind to nail down the victory.

Besaw played a key role, as well, walking and ripping an RBI single.

In the second game of the day, Green River once again rallied, plating two runners in the fourth to tie the game, then sending two more home in the sixth to eke out a 4-3 victory.

Hunter Smith collected another single in the nightcap, and he teamed up with Lippo for the defensive play of the game.

Recreating their high school magic, Lippo fielded a dangerous ball in the outfield which had extra-base hit written all over it, then came up gunning.

Airmailing a wicked throw to his former Wolf teammate, he started a bang-bang play, which nailed the WWU runner when Smith zipped the relay on a bead to Green River’s third-baseman.

“The play between Joey and Hunter was awesome,” said proud papa Joe Lippo. “Had the Green River fans yelling the loudest all day!”

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Cameron Toomey-Stout, Hall o’ Famer? One of the easiest calls I’ve made. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

The high-flying Toomey-Stout returns to Earth.

Camtastic being Camtastic.

He was the most unlikely of stars. And yet the most likely.

When Cameron Toomey-Stout was a freshman, he arrived on the football field barely tipping the scales at three digits. So, good thing 87 pounds of that was all heart.

As he grew, and outworked everyone expect maybe his own siblings, Camtastic went from being a novelty to one of the best athletes to ever wear a Wolf uniform.

So it should come as no surprise as to why we are here today, as we swing open the doors to the Coupeville Sports Hall o’ Fame and welcome our newest addition.

After this, if you pop up to the Legends tab at the top of the blog, you’ll find Toomey-Stout right where he should be, rubbing elbows with the record-busters and name-takers.

On the gridiron, Toomey-Stout earned his playing time the old-fashioned way – he worked for it.

He was the point of the spear on special teams, the first man down the field and the first to light someone up, every dang time.

It wasn’t until younger brother Sean showed up, two years behind him, that Cameron finally had a teammate who could match him in hauling tail down the field on a kick or punt, and then inflicting damage on the would-be returner.

Watching the Toomey-Stout brothers race each other to the ball, two heat-seeking missiles unleashed, was one of the great pleasures of my sports-writing career.

Win or lose, in the lead or trailing by 40, the brothers made every special team play just that – special.

For Cameron, once he got on the field, he refused to come off, turning into a consistently-dangerous player on offense and defense to go with his special teams prowess.

In the backfield, he teamed with fellow Hall o’ Famer Hunter Smith to disrupt and deny the game plans of rival QB’s.

Toomey-Stout used his speed and his hops to pick off his fair share of passes while sharing space with Smith, who retired as the school’s all-time leading interception man.

Working together, they gave QB’s nowhere to throw that was safe, and always seemed on the verge of taking a pick six to the house.

As a receiver, Toomey-Stout was again the perfect complement to Smith, until injuries to both his running mate and his brother left Cameron as the last man standing during his senior season.

During the second half of the 2017 season, Coupeville QB Hunter Downes had one weapon left to deploy, and the elder Toomey-Stout fought valiantly while being double and triple-teamed.

Camtastic endured, fighting to the final play, out-leaping defenders, twisting his body into a pretzel, and pulling in pass after pass while knowing other teams had him in their cross-hairs.

If Toomey-Stout had any fears, he never, ever showed them once he pulled down his helmet and tightened his chin strap.

Throughout the history of CHS football, there are other players who, after their run was done, may have looked back and wondered what could of have been if they had worked harder, played more consistently or just been tougher.

With Cameron, when he walked off the field for the final time and hugged sister Maya, there were no lingering questions.

He truly gave everything he had, from day one to the final whistle.

And while football alone would have likely earned him his induction into the Hall o’ Fame, Toomey-Stout was a true three-sport man, one of just four from his class to play all 12 seasons as a high school athlete.

On the basketball floor, he was the glue that held things together. A hustler, a scrapper, a fight-for-the-ball-on-every play support guy who showed, late in his career, he could singe the nets when he wanted to let the ball fly.

Toomey-Stout could knock down a three-ball with a fluid shot, could zip a pass through a maze of arms and have it land right on the fingertips of a teammate, or out-muscle a rival six inches taller for control of the ball.

And through it all, through the sweat and the wear and tear, his hair remained, uncannily, the best in the biz. Which has to count for some extra credit.

When spring rolled around, Toomey-Stout, also a crack student in his small slice of down time, bounced from baseball to track and field.

On the diamond, he was a speed demon in the outfield and on the base paths, part of the first CHS baseball squad to win a league title in 25 years.

But the track, where he was joined by twin siblings Maya and Sean, offered Cameron the ideal way to flash his often-extraordinary physical skills.

Toomey-Stout closed his prep career with a burst of speed and derring-do, competing at the state track meet in three events – the triple jump, long jump and 4 x 100 relay.

He PR’d in the long jump and claimed a medal in the relay, leading off a unit which also included his brother.

But, as we mentioned at the start of this article, Cameron was always about more than just results.

It’s true, he put up some nice numbers, across all of his sports.

What we will remember him most for, though, is how he did it.

The way he pushed himself, every day, getting quicker, stronger, more efficient. The way he conducted himself, attacking with the same intensity in wins and losses.

Rival players, coaches and fans respected him as much as Wolf Nation did, the ultimate testament to the impact he made in his four years in a Coupeville uniform.

He carried the Toomey-Stout name with pride, always, but he fully earned the nickname Camtastic.

If you have a young son or daughter, a student/athlete with dreams of accomplishing great things, have them study Cameron’s career. Then have them emulate his passion, his will, his drive, his class, his style.

Model yourself after the best, to be the best.

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