New Gwood coaches gifted with tons of talent
This fall Glenwood athletics will see two new head coaches take over proud programs, as Justin Baum and Kehau Rust take over boys and girls cross country and girl’s volleyball, respectively, in place of Mike Schneiter and Dennis Sunderland.
Both new head coaches have ties to Glenwood, as Baum served as a middle school assistant last season, while Rust is a 2010 graduate from Glenwood, so there is some familiarity with the varsity programs at Glenwood.
However, Baum and Rust are taking over two programs that have gone in different directions as of late, as girl’s volleyball has struggled in the 4A Western Slope League, while boy’s and girl’s cross country has been on a steady roll the last few years under the direction of Schneiter.
Fortunately for both coaches, there is plenty of returning talent to work with as runners like Henry Barth and Erica Diemoz highlight returners for cross country, while seniors Mary Fuller, Kassidi Johnson and Tye Wedhorn highlight key returners for volleyball.
“I’m pretty excited to get the chance to take over this program,” Baum said. “Both teams have very strong runners, and Mike did a fantastic job building this program into what it is right now. This is a really good situation to step into for me, considering the level of talent, the organization within the program and the junior and senior leadership.”
While Glenwood sees two new head coaches take over fall sports, boy’s soccer head coach Wayne Smith returns for a fourth year as the Demons look to build off of a very strong season last fall, in which the Demons finished fifth in the 4A Western Slope League.
With the amount of talent on hand at Glenwood this fall, it could be a productive season in all three sports for the red and white.
Head Coach: Wayne Smith, fourth year
Last Season: 7-8 (5-7 4A WSL)
Key Returners: Leo Mireles, Jr., MF; Clayton Horning, Sr., Strk; Mikey Willis, Sr., Strk; Colton Taylor, Sr., MF
Players to Watch: Alan Videla, So., MF; Kevin Palomares, Jr., Strk; Sebastian Torres, Jr., Strk; Carlos Guardado, So., GK; Cameron DeGraff, Jr., MF/D
Season Outlook: With quite a bit of talent returning this fall for the Demons, Smith and his staff are looking for this group of athletes to be more competitive in games. “We’ve had a lot of buy-in from the players this year, and we ramped up our summer program, so we’re excited to get going and see how our hard work pays off,” Smith said. Due to the talent on hand, Glenwood should be able to compete for a spot in the top three of the 4A Western Slope League, but the league will once again be very tough with 4A runner-up Battle Mountain residing in the league, as well as Steamboat Springs and Summit.
Head Coach: Justin Baum, first year
Last Season: Boys qualified for state meet (finished 20th overall as a team); girls just missed state meet
Key Returners: Henry Barth, Erica Diemoz, Emily Worline, Gavin Harden, Ian Richardson, Sedona Kellog, Claudia Hirons, Elle Murphy, Mathew Thrun
Athletes to Watch: Sophia Vigil, Will Berkheimer, Dalton Deter
Season Outlook: Fresh off of a state appearance last fall, the Glenwood boys are back and look stronger than ever, thanks to the return of standout Henry Barth and fellow top athletes Gavin Harden and Ian Richardson. With so much talent and depth returning for the Demons, first-year head coach Justin Baum is stepping into a solid situation in his first year as the new Glenwood head coach. On the girl’s side of things, Erica Diemoz and Emily Worline bring back a wealth of success, while Sedona Kellogg, Claudia Hirons and Elle Murphy all had strong seasons last year and should be able to improve their times this fall under Baum. A deep talent pool awaits the Demons this fall, but with their own wealth of talent, Glenwood should be able to send both teams to the state meet this fall in Baum’s first year.
Head Coach: Kehau Rust, first year
Last Season: 9-16 (4-8 4A WSL), lost in first round of 4A Region 8 playoffs
Key Returners: Saylor Warren, Sr.; Tye Wedhorn, Sr.; Kassidi Johnson, Sr.; Maddie Bolitho, Sr.; Mary Fuller, Sr.; Cheyenne McLelland, Sr.
Players to Watch: Emily Nelson, So.; Ashley Emery, Jr.
Season Outlook: On their third head coach in three years, the Demons’ volleyball program is looking for some stability under first-year head coach Kehau Rust, a 2010 graduate of Glenwood Springs, who went on to play college volleyball at three different schools before serving as an assistant coach at Princeton University and Colorado Mesa University.
Now at Glenwood, Rust is looking to build the program from the ground up, despite having a large number of returning seniors back in the mix for her first season. Wins and losses won’t matter much this fall for a rebuilding program, but there’s plenty of leadership in the room, so if the Demons can keep the team dynamic positive, they could really surprise some teams this fall.
“There’s a lot of leadership here,” Rust said. “It’s not just seniors, either. There’s a handful of juniors and sophomores, as well, who show up early, help set up for open gym and welcome the incoming freshmen, so it’s really good to see those players come in and establish the culture that they want around the team.”
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Amid hundreds of cleat-footed little leaguers casually gathered along the first baseline, the glare of parents’ sunglasses deflecting the early morning sun, coach Troy Phillips began a trip down memory lane.