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Sports

Quake prepare for opener

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Yellowstone Quake players celebrate following a goal in Sunday's pre-season contest against Bozeman. Featuring a new head coach and 18 new players, the Quake open the 2010-2011 season on Friday, taking on Missoula in Cody. Tribune photo by Randal Horobik

Tune-up win vs. Bozeman sets stage for season

Last season, the Yellowstone Quake Junior A hockey team came one win from a date in the NORPAC championship series.

Armed with eight returning players from last year's roster and a new head coach, the team will look to take that next step when the puck drops on the 2010-2011 season this Friday.

Boys second at Lander

Despite each of their teams running minus one top runner, the Powell High School cross country teams fared well in Lander last Thursday. The Panther girls tied for first place in a hotly-contested three-way battle. Powell's boys were second behind the host school.

Fillies edge Lady Panthers in four games

It was everything you would want in a match between two old rivals when the Powell Lady Panthers invaded the Cody gym Thursday night.

Everything, that is, except the final score. In a hard fought match in which two games required extended play and the largest winning margin in any game was only three points, the Lady Panthers fell to the Cody Fillies in four games, 26-28, 22-25, 27-25,24-26.

“The girls played hard,” said Coach Cindi Smith. “It was a good match. I'm really proud of them for that effort.”

All four games followed the same pattern, with the Lady Panthers pulling out to a lead early in the match, and the Fillies coming back to pull even. The Panthers reached 24 first in game one, but couldn't hold the serve and the teams traded points to a tie at 26. Cody scored the last two points, though, with the winner coming on a hard Cody hit that Kadi Cooley dug, but the officials ruled her effort a double hit.

In game two, the Lady Panthers fought back from a deficit to come within one point at 22-23, but Cody's big front line powered in two kills to take a 2-0 match lead.

Game three was more of the same, with a Powell lead melting in the middle part of the match and the teams trading points to the end. Behind 24-23 and with their backs to the wall, the Lady Panthers got a block from Kendra Ostrom that stopped match point and tied the game at 24. The Lady Panthers stepped up to score the next two points and win game three.

Game four again went down to the wire. The Fillies led late and had a chance to end the match, but the Lady Panthers held off two match points to tie the score at 24. They couldn't hold serve, though, and Cody scored the final point when their kill attempt hit the top of the net and spun over at an angle, evading a block attempt by Liz Tilley and dropping to the floor before a diving Olivia Rogers could reach it.

The win, which ended four years of frustration for the Fillies, triggered a Cody celebration worthy of the state finals. Powell had won seven straight regular season victories matches over Cody, dating back to 2006 and had also bested the Fillies in the state semi-finals last year. Early this season, the Panthers had taken the Fillies 2-0 in tournament play on this year's opening weekend.

The loss was the Lady Panthers first in conference play in four years.

It was a disappointing loss for the Lady Panthers, but Smith said a close match such as this one can be a positive. The home-court advantage may have given the Fillies a boost, but adusting to the noisy crowd “is part of the growing experience,” for the new varsity members.

Utlimately, the match turned on a few mistakes at critical times, and Smith said that will give her team something to work on.

“Tonight they'll be ready at practice, and will look at what worked and what didn't,” Smith said. “We'll continue to grow.”

Three Lady Panthers were perfect from the service line during the match, led by Ostrom who was 31 for 31. Cooley was perfect on 11 and Rogers on 14. Ostrom served two aces, while Randi Asay and Hannah Groves each served three.

Asay led in kills with 16, followed by Rogers with 12 and Ostrom with six. Groves led defensively with 20 digs, while Rogers made 14 and Ostrom nine. Tilley, Asay and Ostrom each made one unassisted block and assisted on two.

The Lady Panthers will be back in conference play this week when Lander and Worland visit the PHS gym. On Thursday, the Powell girls will be looking to reverse their fortunes against the Lady Tigers, who defeated them in a 3-game match in Billings at the Montana-Wyoming Challenge earlier in the season. Saturday they take on the Lady Warriors, who defeated Cody at home last week and are 1-0 in the conference.

Thursday's matchup begins at 6:30, following freshman and JV matches at 4 and 5 p.m. Saturday's match begins at 5:30 p.m. a change from the original time. JV competition begins at 4. The freshman team will be competing in Riverton.

Trappers open rodeo season

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Northwest College bull rider Cayd Kluesner finds himself in a tough position after being thrown during competition in the 2010 Trapper Stampede. The Trapper men finished fourth and the women third in the final team standings. Tribune photo by Kevin Kinzley

Montana State sweeps first fall events

The Northwest College women placed third while the NWC men were fourth on both days of the Trapper Stampede rodeo this past weekend. The Friday and Saturday events, which were scored individually, marked the beginning of the 2010-2011 collegiate rodeo season.

Bareback rider Jordan Gill was the lone winner at Friday's session. Gill scored a 72-point ride to finish two points better than Miles' Brendon Lemmon. Clinton Griffis was fifth overall in the final standings.

Panther power beats the Buffaloes

Accuracy and power helped the Powell Lady Panthers to a volleyball win over Greybull Tuesday night.

Steady play both on the back line and at the net by Powell were too much for the 2A Lady Buffaloes, and the Lady Panthers won the match in three games, 25-17, 25-13, 25-18.

Trapper volleyball splits games

Spikers fall to No. 9 LCCC

Through the early part of the season, Northwest College head volleyball coach Flavia Siqueira has already dealt with more than her share of physical problems. While the injuries have forced her to juggle her lineup multiple times, she's confident she can handle that part of the equation.

The mental issues, however, have her baffled.

In a season filled with early contests against top 10 opposition, the Trappers proved little more than a speed bump for ninth-ranked Laramie County Community College on Tuesday night, falling in three games 25-10, 25-19, 25-13. Afterward, Siqueira wasn't shy with her critique of the team's performance.

“We played scared and immature,” she said. “It was the worst game I've seen.”

The Trappers' coach acknowledged that LCCC was a strong team. That alone, however, doesn't explain the match's final margin.

“They have some good hitters,” Siqueira said. “But it isn't something we haven't seen already this year and its not something we can't stop. That wasn't the problem. The problem was that, mentally, we weren't there. We've been doing that a lot lately.”

The loss was the Trappers' first within Region IX North play this season. Coupled with Monday's 25-16, 25-15, 24-26, 25-22 victory at Eastern Wyoming, the Trappers are now 4-9 overall this season.

Randi McInerney and Sandrina Hunsel paced the Trappers' attack at the net in that contest. The pair drew praises from Siqueira for their play in the match.

The road won't get any easier for the Trappers this weekend. The team travels to the College of Southern Idaho to participate in the school's Top 10 Tournament.

Northwest College is slated to face Salt Lake, North Idaho, Frank Phillips, Snow College and the host CSI squad at that event.

Four of those five teams appear in this week's NJCAA national rankings. The College of Southern Idaho carries the No. 3 ranking into the event. Salt Lake is two places lower at No. 5. Frank Phillips, 8-2 this seaosn, checks in at No. 13, while North Idaho is ranked No. 19. The Trappers dropped a decision to Snow College to begin their 2010 season.

PHS defense blankets Wheatland for win

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Powell's Josh Cragoe picks the ball out of the air to record one of his two interceptions and one of the Panthers' six INT's in a 23-16 victory over Wheatland on Friday night. Tribune photo by Ben Wetzel

With apologies to NFL coaching legend Vince Lombardi, perhaps the best offense is a good defense.

The fifth-ranked Powell Panthers intercepted Wheatland six times on Friday night, including a pair of rally-killing fourth-quarter interceptions, to hold off the Wheatland Bulldogs, 23-16. The Panthers, who now have amassed 10 interceptions in just two games this season, improved to 2-0 with the victory.

Tough competition helps PHS strikers grow

The Powell Lady Panthers took a step forward on the volleyball court last weekend, coming back to win the silver bracket on Saturday after losing a tie-breaker in pool play on Friday at Rawlins.

All of the state's 3A teams competed in the tournament, and most of the matches were close, according to Coach Cindi Smith.

Close but no cigar for Panther tennis

A long trip to Casper came up a little short for the Powell High School tennis teams on Saturday.

Playing against Kelly Walsh and Natrona County high schools, the Powell boys and girls were narrowly edged out in a number of close matches. The PHS tennis squads emerged on top in just two of 20 matches.

“We just need to keep getting better,” said PHS head coach Ray Bieber.

The Lady Panthers' No. 3 doubles team of Shelby Walton and Haylee Humphries claimed a win over Kelly Walsh, while several other PHS competitors had tight matches.

“The boys, every single match was close, but we lost all five,” said Bieber.

Natrona County brought the best girls team PHS has seen all year, the coach said, and took all five girls matches.

“Natrona's probably the most improved team in the state, that I've seen,” he said.

On the guys' side, No. 2 doubles players Jacob Larson and Marshall McArthur took down their N.C. opponents for the Panthers' lone win.

Bieber said his squads need to work on getting ahead in matches, keeping balls in play, and cutting down on double faults and unforced errors.

With only eight days of practice left before the regional tournament begins, “We've got to spend every minute doing good things,” Bieber said Monday.

For the Panthers, No. 1 singles player Eric Curtis pushed both his Casper opponents to three sets, but narrowly came up short. The senior lost 2-6, 7-5, 6-4 to Kelly Walsh and 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 to Natrona County.

At No. 2 singles, senior Jacob Larson fell 6-4, 6-3 against Kelly Walsh. Against Natrona County, freshman Mark Schiermeister lost a 6-3, 6-3 decision in the slot.

PHS' No. 1 doubles team, senior Tyler Morgan and junior Todd Lewis were edged out in two sets that went to tie-breakers against Kelly Walsh — 7-6(4), 7-6(3). They fell 6-1, 6-2 to Natrona County.

For the Kelly Walsh match, Schiermeister and sophomore Marshall McArthur teamed at No. 2 doubles for a 6-3, 7-6(3) loss. Against Natrona County, however, Larson and McArthur partnered for a 6-4, 6-3 win.

No. 3 doubles players Patrick Huang, a sophomore, and Dillon Jeffs, a senior, lost 6-4, 6-3 and 7-5, 6-3 to Kelly Walsh and Natrona County, respectively.

On the girls side, No. 1 singles player senior Lisa Schiermeister fell 6-4, 6-4 to Kelly Walsh and 6-0, 6-1 to Natrona County.

At No. 2 singles, sophomore BreaAnn Hollenbeck came up short against Kelly Walsh, 6-3, 7-5, and 6-0, 6-0 against Natrona County.

Juniors Emily Kath and Lacey Eckerdt lost 6-1, 6-3 and 6-3, 6-0 to Kelly Walsh's and Natrona County's No. 1 doubles teams, respectively.

Senior Marquette McArthur and sophomore Sheridan Roling, at No. 2 doubles, fell to their counterparts at Kelly Walsh (6-4, 7-5) and Natrona County (6-4, 6-0).

Seniors Shelby Walton and Haylee Humphries beat the No. 3 doubles team at Kelly Walsh, taking a 6-3, 6-2 victory. They fell by an identical, reversed score against Natrona County.

On Tuesday, Powell will head to Cody for a 3:30 p.m. re-match with the Broncs and Fillies. On Friday, PHS will host Sheridan and will welcome Gillette to town on Saturday.

“We've got a really tough league,” said Bieber. “It just gets tougher.”

Panthers hold off Riverton

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Powell junior Olie Olson runs away from a Riverton tackler during a 13-10 non-conference victory over the Wolverines last Friday. Tribune photo by John Wetzel

Defense holds up when needed

It may have seemed on Friday night like the visiting Riverton Wolverines had the football the entire second half. They didn't, but folks could hardly be blamed for thinking otherwise.

So, too, folks may have thought Panther junior defensive back Olie Olson was everywhere in that second half. He wasn't, but he was at the right place at the right time to pick off a pair of fourth-quarter passes and help fifth-ranked Powell secure a 13-10 victory in its season-opening football game.

Page 221 of 233

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