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Tribune Staff

A young mountain lion was captured west of Yellowstone Regional Airport in Cody Friday, in a cooperative operation with the Cody Police Department and the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.

At 9:53 a.m., police received a report of a mountain lion on property in the vicinity of Ina Avenue, said Vince Vanata of the Cody Police Department.


Pioneer shortstop Tyler England prepares to fire the ball across the infield to retire a Lovell batter during conference baseball action last Wednesday. Powell improved to 2-0 in conference play with a victory in the contest. Tribune photo by Randal Horobik

Team improves to 2-0 in conference

While it lacked the big-inning bang of the previous night, the Powell Pioneers American Legion baseball team wrapped up a home-and-away sweep of Lovell last Wednesday with a 10-0 shutout at home.

The win lifts Powell's record to 9-3-1 this season. The Pioneers are also 2-0 in conference play.

NWCA award comes on the eve of Poland depature

Over the course of a four-year prep career, Powell's Auston Carter accomplished almost everything and earned almost every award imaginable. So, naturally, it is time to expand the imagination.

“It definitely came as a surprise,” Carter said, after learning last week that he could add the National Wrestling Coaches Association's Wyoming Wrestler of the Year award to his list of mat accomplishments. “I wasn't expecting it at all.”

Members of regional champion volleyball team sign letters of intent

Three members of Northwest College's Region IX North champion volleyball program have signed letters of intent to continue their playing careers at various four-years institutions.

Brianna Reed becomes the second member of last year's Trapper program to sign a letter of intent with an NCAA Division I member. Reed will suit up next season for the University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff, completing a rarely-seen journey.

“Brianna started her playing career at Northwest College as a walk-on,” noted Trapper head coach Flavia Siqueira. “She walked on for me as a freshman. As a sophomore she was a team captain, and now she'll be going Division I. It really says a lot about how hard she works and how much time she has put into improving as a volleyball player.”

Arkansas-Pine Bluff suffered through a winless campaign in 2009, meaning Reed will be looked upon to contribute immediately. UAPB head coach La'Kyva Walton notes Reed will be called upon as a libero and defensive specialist for the program.

“This was a great opportunity for me to continue to play,” said Reed, who originally came to Northwest College from nearby Lander. “My visit there was really nice, and I was impressed by their new coach.”

Reed joins Irelis Ilarraza as members of the 2009 Trapper volleyball team to move on to the Division I ranks. Ilarraza will play at Florida Gulf Coast next season.

Also inking a letter of intent during the spring signing period was middle hitter Katie Gregg, who will take her game to a powerhouse NCAA Division II program next season. Gregg will join a University of West Alabama squad that posted a 30-8 record last year and which has not lost a match on its home floor in more than a season.

“They have a really good team,” said Gregg, who opted to attend UWA over an offer at a Division I school. “They contacted me after we got back from the Miami tournament this season and the coach watched me again when we were at the national tournament.”

In making the transition from Northwest College to West Alabama, Gregg will move from playing for one member of the American Volleyball Coaches Association's Thirty Under 30 award list — Northwest College's Flavia Siqueira — to another — West Alabama head coach Tabitha Turner.

“Both of these girls were seen in part because we attended the tournament in Miami this year,” said Siqueira. “That's one of the reasons we like to make that trip every other year.”

The last member of the Trappers' roster to make a decision with regard to next season is Kayla Propes, who will join Southern Wesleyan University in South Carolina. Propes, like Reed, will serve as a defensive specialist with her new club.

“It is amazing how many of us are heading that way,” Propes said of the migration of Trapper players to the southeastern United States. “It is a great opportunity.”

Propes is one of the first signings by new Southern Wesleyan head coach Jennifer Ellis. Ellis was announced as the new head volleyball coach at SWU in late March. Southern Wesleyan posted an 8-22 overall record last season. The program is an NAIA member institution.

As kids embrace the first weeks of summer vacation, nutritious school lunches and snacks likely are the furthest things from their minds. Local educators, however, already are planning for healthy snacks next year.

When local students return to their classrooms and cafeterias in August, it will be easier for them to eat their fruits and veggies.

All four elementary schools in Powell's district — Parkside, Westside, Southside and Clark — received fresh fruit and vegetable grants for the next school year.

The USDA program provides grant money for schools to make fresh fruit and vegetables available to all children outside regular meal times.

This aim to improve children's diets and overall health is a welcome initiative, especially given that childhood obesity has reached alarming levels in recent years.

Nearly 20 percent of American children ages 6-11 are obese, according to the 2007-08 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. By comparison, between 1976 and 1980, the obesity rate among 6- to 11-year-olds was just 6.5 percent.

Children who struggle with weight issues are more likely to struggle with health problems, such as diabetes and high blood pressure. It's also difficult for obese children to shed weight as they reach adolescence and adulthood.

By providing fresh fruit and vegetables for students during the school day, children will have healthy alternatives to sugary, unhealthy snacks — and, hopefully, develop an appreciation for apples, oranges, carrots and the like at a young age.

With the USDA grant money in place, it will be up to kids — as well as their parents and educators — to make sure they actually eat the fresh fruit and vegetables provided next school year.

Cleo A. Stevens, born to Clifford and Irene Regals in 1939, died in her sleep on May 31, 2010.

(June 12, 1949 - June 1, 2010)

Allan Lee Reed, 61, a resident of Simi Valley for the past 30 years and other California cities since 1973, died June 1, 2010, after a long illness.

(Oct. 3, 1913 - Dec. 5, 2009)

Clista I. Henrichs died on Dec. 5, 2009, in Orlando, Fla.

Nine visitors to Yellowstone National Park were injured — and one hospitalized — when they were struck by lightning at about 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, said a news release from the National Park Service.

All were on the boardwalk or walkways around the Old Faithful Geyser when a small thunderstorm cell produced a single lightning bolt.

The Sports Guy is currently sitting in a terminal at Denver International Airport. I thought about trying to hitch a ride with Auston Carter and see if there was room on the flight to Poland, but had some doubts as to whether or not my chiseled physique would pass for a wrestler.

Instead, I'm thumb-twiddling and flipping through sports publications to kill a two-hour layover. It appears that all is not well in Big 12 land. In fact, it resembles the deck of the Titanic.

As many of you who pay attention to national sports broadcasts might be aware, the Big 10 opened a can of worms by stating earlier this year that it would like to invite as many as five other schools to join its party. Apparently feeling left out, the PAC-10 is evidently willing to kick things into nuclear escalation mode by offering spots to six of the Big 12 members.
More telling, nobody seems to be in a rush to deny that little rumor.

So, imagine if you will, a landscape where the Big 12 is suddenly the Big Four and Kansas, Kansas State, Baylor and Iowa State are attempting to ascertain the license number of the truck that just hit them. Wyoming better start taking notice.

Don't think for a second the Big 10 and PAC-10 could expand without repercussion. The Southeast and ACC would quickly plunder Big East leftovers and possibly a Conference USA school or two.

Let's face it. The Mountain West Conference is already starved for attention and kicking at the door of the BCS to be let in.

If you think that door is hard to get open right now, just imagine how things will be when two-thirds of Division I football schools and virtually all of the “power players” are consolidated into four super-conferences, each complete with their own multi-million dollar television network.

Notre Dame might be able to tred water in such an environment. Wyoming cannot. And don't even try convincing me that The Mountain deserves mention in the same breath as the Big Ten Network.

Wyoming and the rest of the Mountain West can hardly afford to wait around and see where the dust settles after the initial wave of conference expansions. Acting is far better than reacting in this case.

If Boise State and Nevada aren't already on the Mountain West speed dial, now's the time to start pushing digits and making an offer. Send a call out to Fresno State and San Jose State as well — there are a lot of television sets in California, and the Mountain West's largest downfall at present is its lack of media share compared to BCS leagues.

For that same reason, if Baylor really is left out in the cold, the MWC might want to give the Bears a look. A second Texas presence would keep TCU from feeling lonely and also could help add more market share. As a league, I'm not sure where you go from there, but I'd be making those phone calls long before the folks over in the Western Athletic Confernece ponder making a grab for Colorado State, TCU, BYU, Utah, UNLV and San Diego State.

Beyond shuffling chairs on the conference deck, though, Wyoming needs to have a worst-case scenario plan. What is the school prepared to do in a landscape where four superconferences rule the NCAA landscape?

By all indications, it isn't a question of “if” massive conference realignment is coming to the NCAA's upper ranks. It is only a question of “when” and “how.”

Even though Wyoming and the Mountain West Conference aren't standing on the front lines in this change discussion, any actual changes will inevitably sweep through every league and every program in college football's bowl subdivision. The best thing Wyoming and the MWC can do right now is be proactive and start laying a plan so that we have options when the official membership offers start to fly.

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