Above left, Emily Herbig finishes strong at regionals, and Amanda Jensen (380) runs with a pack at the state meet. Photos courtesy of Becky Jensen

Three SHS frosh qualify for State
Surdyk wins junior high X-C race at regionals

By JEFF BRADY
Skagway sent three freshmen to the ASAA Cross Country Championships in Soldotna at the end of September.
In the girls race, Amanda Jensen was 34th in the state with a time of 22:40.5, and Emily Herbig finished 45th in 23:11.7. In the boys race, Mickey Wilson finished 62nd with a time of 19:26.6. The race was run on the Tsalteshi Trails at Skyview High School on Sept. 30.
All three Skagway runners qualified with impressive top 10 finishes at the Southeast Region meet in Juneau on Sept. 23.
Wilson finished in third place in Juneau with a time of 17:50, beating his personal record by 40 seconds. He had the 12th best time of state qualifiers and was hoping for a top 10 finish at State, but he had trouble with his footing on the slippery state course. His race was the third of the day, said coach Kent Fielding, and by then “it was pretty slippery after a week of rain.”
Fielding said Wilson was in 10th place until he hit the first hill. The rest of the race was tough-going. “He fell five times,” Fielding said. “He really needed spikes, but it was not something we pushed this year. You only need them for two races – Juneau and State – but it’s something we’ll look at for next year.”

Mickey Wilson runs ahead of a pack on the wooded Juneau course at regionals.

Fielding said the girls ran the first race and the course was okay. They finished about where he expected.
“The girls did well,” he said. “It was a learning experience. It takes a while to get that sort of race down. They’re running against a hundred kids, double the number of people than in a Southeast race... It’s harder to keep someone in sight.”
In the girls regional race, Jensen finished seventh at 21:56 and Herbig was 10th at 22:49.
Paige Hahn probably would have qualified for State, but she got sick on the course at the end of the first lap, said coach Fielding, and dropped from the top 10.
Haines runners were strong in both boys and girls regional races, taking the team titles. The Haines girls had five in the top 10, led by champ Stoli Lende at 19:55. Chandler Kemp won the boys race in 16:41. The Wrangell boys and Petersburg girls took second in the team standings. The Skagway girls finished in fifth place, and the Panther boys in seventh.
Haines will be challenged by Skagway for the girls title next year.
Skagway took three of the top four spots in a recent junior high race in Juneau.
Kaitlyn Surdyk won the race by 40 seconds over the second place runner, Jestine Ellis, and Rori Leaverton took fourth.

Drama, Debate and Forensics team set for second season
Skagway High will have an 11-person Drama, Debate and Forensics team this year.
Returning from last year’s impressive rookie team that finished third in Southeast are Erica Harris, Shelby Surdyk, Cody Burnham and Arielle Stegall.
They are joined by Trevor Van Houten, Lary Martinez, Kayla Henricksen, Liana Stegall, Ali Doland, and Shawn Landers.
Because of a short preparation time, only three students had pieces ready for last weekend’s first meet in Haines, but Fielding hopes the whole team will be ready for its next competition in Juneau Oct. 27-28.

UPDATE: Surdyk took first and Harris third in expository speaking at Haines.

Wrestling and volleyball teams tune up for season
The Skagway High wrestling and volleyball teams saw their first action last weekend. Both teams blend experience with youth and are anxious to host home meets in the next month.
The wrestling team had a productive weekend in Hoonah. Nearly every Skagway wrestler scored a win at the round-robin tourney.
Coach Josh Coughran said Skagway was led by junior Josh Cotton (152 lbs.), who won five of his eight matches. Classmate Tom Littlfield moved up a weight class from 171 lbs. to 189 lbs. and still was able to score a pin over a Mt. Edgecumbe opponent
And the younger wrestlers did well. Sophomore Tylor Forrester (112 lbs.) won the first two matches of his career, as did freshman Thomas Etue..
The only Skagway kid who did not score a win was Ryan Forrester, but he had one Hoonah kid nearly pinned as time ran out in a period, his coach said, before going on to lose the match.
“Other than that, everyone would have had a win,” Coughran said. “It was a really nice way to start the season.”
Three more wrestlers will be ready to go when the Panthers head to Wrangell on Oct. 20-21: junior Lary Martiniez , and freshmen Mickey Wilson and Jacob Cotton.
“We’re looking good,” Coughran added. “The young guys have a lot to learn but I saw a lot of promising things that we can build on for future tournaments.”
Skagway will be hosting its first tournament in five years on Nov. 3-4. Coughran said there are no
other meets in Southeast Alaska that weekend and he is expecting a big field of teams from as far away as Metlakatla. The region is strong this year, he said, and there could be as many as four state champs in Skagway that weekend.
First up, though, is a volleyball tournament here on Oct. 23-25.
Coach Becky Jensen has eight players out this year, four juniors and four freshmen. So there will be a learning curve, as the girls found out last weekend in an early exit at the Juneau JIVE tourney.
“We had just two matches,” Jensen said. “Juneau JV was a warm-up, and against Haines we did a little better.”
Returning from last year’s team that finished second in the region and went to State are juniors C.C. Hahn, Teslyn Korsmo, Ali Doland, and Sierra Moran. Freshmen joining the team are Paige Hahn, Emily Herbig, Elise Doland, and Amanda Jensen.
“We have a lot of things we need to work on,” the coach said.
The team travels to Hoonah Oct. 13-14 and then will return home to host Hoonah, Klawock, Thorne Bay, a team from Whitehorse, and possibly Kake.