All North Platte sports advance to postseason

2020 fall sports recap

Senior+Aaron+Franz+and+Junior+Evan+Caudy+%28middle%29+begin+their+final+race+of+the+season+at+the+boys%E2%80%99+Class+A+state+competition+on+Oct.+23+in+Kearney.+Throughout+the+season%2C+runners+worried+that+the+season+could+be+cancelled+at+any+time.+%E2%80%9CThere+were+a+lot+of+uncertainties+this+year+with+COVID%2C+%E2%80%9C+said+coach+Jake+Hasenauer.+%E2%80%9CWe+just+didn%27t+know+what+was+gonna+happen.%27%27+Caption+credits+to+Alex+Cook.+

Alex Cook

Senior Aaron Franz and Junior Evan Caudy (middle) begin their final race of the season at the boys’ Class A state competition on Oct. 23 in Kearney. Throughout the season, runners worried that the season could be cancelled at any time. “There were a lot of uncertainties this year with COVID, “ said coach Jake Hasenauer. “We just didn’t know what was gonna happen.” Caption credits to Alex Cook.

Beckett Allen, Staff Writer

 

Girls’ Golf

 

Senior Baylee Steele follows through on her tee shot at GNAC on Oct. 2 at Lake Maloney Golf Club. (Olivia Eckel)

According to Wikipedia, the chances of an average golfer getting a hole-in-one are about one in 12,500. On the biggest stage of high school golf, sophomore Kaylee Carlson accomplished this electrifying feat. 

Carlson recounts the experience. “I used a 6-iron,” Carlson said. “My ball went up really high, and it just came down and rolled into the hole.”

For a high school golfer, something such as this is shocking no matter what your skill level is. Carlson was no exception. “I was very surprised; I dropped my club,” Carlson said. “It was one of my goals in my golf [career] to get a hole-in-one.”

 

Cross Country

 

Sophomore Jenessa Arnold in the start of the Class A girls’ State meet on Oct. 23 in Kearney. Contests had to run in less than 35 degree weather. “The hardest part was the cold,” she said. Caption credits to Alex Cook.
(Alex Cook)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Both the North Platte boys’ and girls’ cross country teams qualified for the State cross country meet at the Kearney Country Club on October 23.

Junior Evan Caudy had a great showing, finishing top five overall. “It was the fastest fourth place finish in state history,” he said. “It’s cool to have a record like that, but it’s also one of those ones where you don’t want to be on the [losing] side of it.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Boys’ Tennis

Senior Brock Little returns a forehand shot at the North Platte-McCook Dual on Oct. 8th at North Platte High School. (Priscila Mondragon)

With North Platte boys’ tennis taking a State trip to Koch Tennis Center in Omaha on Oct. 15, senior Brock Little put up an impressive first match against Gretna, winning two out of the three sets.

 

Little said he was trying to  keep his composure. “I just put the ball where it needed to go and came out with a win,” he said. “I aced him three or four times.” 

Little’s match marked the only win that North Platte had in the State tournament. “I played the kid who won state, so it was all right. I thought I played [well],” he said.

 

Junior Marcus Trotta (#1 Singles): 4-6, 0-6 (Millard West)

Senior Brock Little (#2 Singles): 2-6, 7-5, 10-7 (Gretna) 2-6, 0-6 (Omaha Westside)

Seniors Ethan Mercer and Landon Blank (#1 Doubles): 1-6, 3-6 (Bellevue East)

Seniors Callen Zurn and Cooper McIntosh (#2 Doubles): 3-6, 6-7 (Lincoln High)

 

 

Softball

Sophomore Tatum Montelongo pitches to Bellevue East during the district game on Oct. 8 at the Dowhower Softball Complex. (Elsacia Buck)

 

The North Platte softball team made an impressive run in the 2020 postseason, finishing the season as the Class A State runner-up. Junior Emily Winkler said it was exciting to go to State. “We came out strong in the second and first game,” she said. “It got us into the championship bracket.”

North Platte fell to Papillion-LaVista in the finals. “Right now, they’re ranked number one in the nation, so it was harder to [compete],” Winkler said. “We held them to only three runs in the first game, and we’re only the second team to do that.”

 

 

 

 

Volleyball

Senior Delaney Bocott prepares to serve the ball against Gering on Sept. 21 at North Platte High School. (Kaylie Leibhart)

North Platte volleyball had an exceptional year, sealing a trip to the Class A Championships at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln Nov. 4.

Junior Kenzie Polk said the team did well this year. “We became more comfortable with each other everyday in practice as the year went on,” she said. “We were determined to work hard, and we saw our dreams become a reality.” 

Going to the championship really had an impact on the team. “It was so important to us; we worked endlessly,” Polk said. “It paid off because it showed how much we could accomplish.”

 

Football

Senior Jaden Dike kicks the ball off in the fourth quarter against Lincoln High on Oct. 23 at North Platte High School. (Elsacia Buck)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Bulldog football team clinched a wild-card spot in the Class A playoffs this year where they made it to the second round.

Senior Eddie Hatch felt that the team benefitted. “I thought it really helped us mentally,” Hatch said. “Even though not every Class A school could go, we still definitely earned our way there.”

As a senior, Hatch definitely noticed some key improvements from previous years. “Last year, we had a lot of effort but not as many fundamentals,” he said. “[The improvements] shows that we’re a brotherhood and that football is a great way to build sportsmanship.”