Cardinals fall sports gearing up for a resurgence
Looking to build off of a strong season last fall, the Grand Valley Cardinals are back and ready for action on the court for girls volleyball this fall, led by head coach Dave Walck, who steered the Cardinals to a 14-11 (6-1 2A Western Slope League) record in 2015.
Last season, the Cardinals rolled through much of the 3A WSL before running into the league-champion Coal Ridge Titans. Grand Valley finished second overall in the league during the regular season and the league tournament before winning their opening-round state playoff matchup against St. Mary’s.
Unfortunately for Grand Valley, the Cardinals fell in the second round of the playoffs to Faith Christian, ending a terrific season.
Now, the Cardinals are back for 2016 looking to get over the hump and advance to the next level.
Gone is senior captain Allie Dovey, but this year the Cardinals will be much more experienced, with seniors Kylyn Rigsby, Bailey Rowe, Kali Jablonski, Lohgan McClung and Taylor Mills returning for one more year on the court. Two Rifle transfers — Tara Ruggles and Bryce Ettles — will add to the experience for the Cardinals’ senior class, although both have to sit out the first 11 matches of the season due to transfer rules.
Joining a loaded senior class is junior Katrina Knudson, who will contribute once again this season for Grand Valley, which hopes to win the 3A WSL this season with a veteran team under Walck.
“Experience is definitely our area of strength coming into the year,” Walck said. “We have some solid leadership in our senior class, which has invested a lot of time and energy over the years leading up to this final year. We’re just trying to develop our skill set, play some solid defense and come up with some new offensive looks to control the court this year.”
Head Coach: Dave Walck
Last season: 14-11, 6-1 3A Western Slope League, lost in regional tournament to Faith Christian
Key Returners: Kylyn Rigsby, Sr.; Bailey Rowe, Sr.; Kali Jablonski, Sr.; Lohgan McClung, Sr.; Taylor Mills, Sr.; Katrina Knudson, Jr.
Grand Valley boys soccer had a very trying season last fall for the Cardinals under head coach Chris Walker.
The Cardinals, who fielded a team full of upperclassmen, really struggled to get on track early in the season before coming together down the stretch to pick up their two wins of the year over Rifle, 6-0 and 3-2.
Now, heading into the 2016 season the Cardinals will see the return of seniors Matt Cornelius, Christian Vicencio, Johnny Downing, Lionel Pena and Alex Shuckers. With another batch of experienced leaders, Grand Valley hopes to add more wins to the standings this fall.
Head Coach: Chris Walker
Last season: 2-12, 2-7 3A Western Slope League
Key Returners: Matt Cornelius, Sr.; Christian Vicencio, Sr.; Johnny Downing, Sr; Lionel Pena, Sr.; Alex Shuckers, Sr.
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The Colorado Dugout Club Baseball Hall of Fame honored Gordon Cooper for his amazing achievement as Rifle High School baseball skipper