There is so much going on during the high school spring sports season that it’s hard to keep track of it all sometimes.
In fact, it is only just today that I will have finally seen all three of the valley’s baseball teams. It wasn’t until Friday that I’d gotten the chance to watch Tooele play soccer. I haven’t seen all the tennis, golf or track teams yet. Throw in the fact that everything happens at the same time of day, and that there’s only one of me, and it becomes even more difficult to know what is going on.
But there have been a couple moments on the high school sports scene worth mentioning over the past few days that piqued my interest — and they’re not from the big-name sports. This time of year, baseball, softball, soccer and track kind of rule the day from a spectator standpoint. There aren’t usually a lot of fans at a tennis match, and there are even fewer watching golf. But it was on the tennis court and golf course that our local athletes were able to shine.
I got an email from Tooele tennis coach Lyle Nielson on Tuesday morning as I was getting ready to write my final stories for this edition. The Buffaloes are often overshadowed when it comes to tennis, with Grantsville having the pedigree and Stansbury usually able to send multiple players to the state tournament. But Tooele made some big-time noise this weekend in Vernal, winning Uintah’s tournament with a spotless 5-0 record. Jonah Willson, the Buffs’ second singles player, went 5-0 against his opponents from Stansbury, Carbon, Uintah, Grand and Union. The second doubles team of Carl Raddatz and Brandon Wong also went 5-0.
If this is an indication of how region play is going to go, we might be seeing a whole lot more purple at the state tournament this year.
On the course at Oquirrh Hills last Wednesday, the Grantsville girls finished second to Morgan in a Region 13 match. The fact that the Cowboys edged Judge Memorial by six strokes for second place was impressive enough on its own, with the fact that Grantsville has been a bit inconsistent this season.
But Mashayla Scriven’s second-place individual effort, which included a pair of birdies on a difficult day weather-wise, had her beaming afterward. Her coach, Rick Harrison, was also thrilled. Scriven was only one stroke behind Morgan’s Tacey Durrant for medalist honors.
Just because the “crowd” consisted of just a few parents who happened to have the afternoon off from work didn’t make it any less impressive.
So, to those of you who compete in sports that are a little under the radar, your efforts don’t go unnoticed. Keep up the good work.
Darren Vaughan is a veteran sports writer from Moab, Utah. His own under-the-radar sports career consisted of one season of junior-varsity tennis in which he won a whopping one match. Email him at email@example.com.