Bulldogs shine at All-State Games
Palisade High School volleyball coach Wendy MacAskill is still waiting for her experience from the Colorado Coaches Association All-State Games to sink in.
MacAskill coached the Red volleyball team at last weekend’s all-state games in Greeley, which defeated the Black team 24-26, 25-18, 25-18, 21-25, 15-13 for the championship.
“It was a great experience, but it was exhausting, a very busy, packed two days,” MacAskill said. “It was a great opportunity to work with kids from around the state.”
It was MacAskill’s first trip to Greeley for the state games, and along with her assistant, Allison Baker, she coached one of four teams. Her roster included Palisade’s Morgan Reynolds, Montrose’s Courtney Geesing, Grand Valley’s Karmen Steimel and Cailtlin Brady.
MacAskill’s Red team roster also featured Cherokee Trail’s Alysa Birdsall and Crowley County’s Sesally Kuhn.
“It presented a challenge in a short amount of time to get girls who are very talented speaking the same language,” MacAskill said. “Everyone comes from different backgrounds and we had to be flexible with positions, but the girls were really receptive and being talented players, they could make the adjustment.”
MacAskill said her trip to Greeley was even more special because she was able to coach Reynolds one final time.
“Morgan is a great kid and a great person to have had in our program,” MacAskill said. “It seemed fitting to have her on my team, and the kids from the Western Slope represented well.”
Palisade also had two boys make the trip. Jeremy Hayden scored eight points for the Black basketball team, which lost 83-82 to the White team.
Palisade’s Nick Stephanus played in the football game where his South team lost to the North 18-13.
Stephanus played both offensive and defensive line for the South team.
“It was great to compete with all the best of the best,” Stephanus said. “I made a lot of cool friends and the best part was you could count on everyone at every position to do their job.”
Stephanus, who will attend Regis University next fall and plans to play rugby, said he was glad to have one last opportunity to strap on the football pads.
“It’s was fun to have one last hurrah,” Stephanus said. “The game was great and the attitude and intensity was awesome.”
Other Western Slope participants included Paonia girls basketball players Grayson Pipher, Johanna Reed and Jordyn Rienks, all of whom for their head coach, Scott Rienks.
Kris Nieto of Olathe and Caleb Wyatt of Hotchkiss represented the Western Slope in wrestling.
“It’s a really unique experience,” MacAskill said. “It’s a great opportunity for any kid that’s a senior and gets invited to participate.”