Eva Bowen took first place and Alice Wrede finished third in the sophomore category as the St. Helena Thunderbirds competed in their final high school mountain biking race of the season May 15 at Six Sigma Ranch and Winery near Hidden Valley Lake.
With a shortened season of just three races in a modified time trial format, the student-athletes ended on a high note.
All Thunderbirds on hand finished the race — even seniors Will Garrett and George Cutting, who had to run their bikes to the finish line after having mechanical issues.
When head coach Olaf Beckman asked the Thunderbirds why they joined the team, the most common answer was the “incredible culture that is fostered on this team — camaraderie, supportive competition and simple fun,” team director Briana Forgie said.
“I’m consistently impressed by this group of teens that support each other at all different levels, challenge themselves to be their personal best, and have a blast riding bikes,” Forgie added. “We want to foster a lifelong love of being outside, riding bikes, and perhaps being able to do something physical that they didn't think they could originally do.
“They ended the season with big smiles on their faces, so I'd call that a successful season.”
The other 32 team members included Louis Ammons, Margaux Ammons, Tucker Battistini, Tommy Baxter, Jack Beckstoffer, Emmet Bowen, Oscar Brown, Luca Bucher, Josephine Clark, Paxton Clark, Fred Cutting, Carter Dahline, Lily Desmond, Oly Dodd, Tilly Dodd, Brandon Forgie, Trevor Forgie, Charlie Garrett, Charlie Garrett, Tyler Grimes, Garr Hanson, Conlan Harrington, Lukas Jeworowski, Eden Jones, Mazzy Jones, Damon Lord, Olivia Mazzucco, Clayton Salling, Keaton Smith, Nicholas Wolf, Henrik Wrede and Javin Yorgensen.
Assisting Beckman and Briana Forgie were coaches Doug Cutting, Corey Dahline, Jon Jones, Erik Wight, Jon Jones, Krisi Raymond, Sam Baxter and Tom Garrett.
Track and Field
Saints trio competes in Dublin
St. Helena High senior Harper McClain finished second out of 91 starters in the girls 3,200 meters in 10 minutes, 45.19 seconds at the Dublin Social Distance Fiesta No. 3, a distance-running meet held Saturday at Dublin High.
Senior teammate Jade Schlatter ran in the girls 1,600 meters and placed 184th out of 272 starters in 6:12.83. McClain’s brother, sophomore Cleo McClain, ran the boys 1,600 meters and placed 201st out of 443 starters in 5:00.30.
Saints earn All-CMC honors
St. Helena fell to Middletown, 363-383, in the final match of the spring 2021 season as the Mustangs claimed the Coastal Mountain Conference South title on May 18.
Making the All-CMC First Team for the Saints were junior Rehn Bothof and freshman Jonah Anders. Earning All-CMC Honorable Mentions were seniors Mason Ells and Tucker Battistini and juniors Ethan Drumm and Miles Dunham.
St. Helena 6, Middletown 5
The Saints finished as the outright North Central League I champions with their win at Middletown in each team’s season finale on Friday.
Fifth-place Middletown (5-9 NCL I) had one more hit and three fewer errors than the Saints (17-6, 13-1 NCL I), but left three more runners on base than the champs.
Aribella Farrell pitched the first 4 innings and got the win after giving up 2 runs (1 earned) on 3 hits, 2 walks and 8 strikeouts. Carter Dahline, in her St. Helena High finale, threw the last three frames for the save, allowing 3 runs (2 earned) on 5 hits, 1 walk and 3 strikeouts.
Farrell also led the Saints at the plate, going 2 for 3 with a double, 3 RBIs, a walk, a stolen base and a run. Sofia Cupp was 2 for 2 with a walk, hit by pitch, stolen base and run, Gema Jimenez went 1 for 3 with a double, RBI and run, Mia Wagner went 1 for 4 with an RBI, and Dahline was also 1 for 4. Alexandra Hill walked and scored, Blythe Brakesman was hit by a pitch and scored twice, and Andrea Tobon and Linnea Cupp walked.
Middletown 12, St. Helena 2 (5 innings)
The Saints (9-7, 9-5 NCL I) opened their season finale Friday at Middletown with a 2-0 lead after Liam Gilson (1 for 2, walk) led off with a single and was forced out on a Miles Harvey fielder’s choice, Brent Isdahl reached on an error, and Stacy Nelson III (2 for 2) had a two-run single.
But the Mustangs retired St. Helena in 11 of its final 14 at-bats, and scored three runs in the second and fourth innings and four in the fifth to win by the 10-run mercy rule. Alejandro Guzman went 1 for 2 with a stolen base for the Saints.
St. Helena 16, Middletown 11
The Saints won 16-11 despite getting out-hit 16-11, as host Middletown left 13 runners on base and committed twice as many errors as the visitors in each team’s season finale Friday.
St. Helena (5-5) led 11-0 after scoring 8 in the top of the second inning, and starting pitcher Micah Marquez got the win after leaving the mound after three innings with the Saints ahead 12-4. Christian Meineke threw the next 3 1/3 innings and Justice Penterman got the last two outs. Marquez allowed 4 runs (2 earned) on 5 hits, 5 strikeouts and 2 walks. Meineke gave up 7 runs (5 earned) on 10 hits, 2 strikeouts and a walk. Penterman yielded a hit and walk and fanned one.
The Saints got offense from Marquez (2 for 3, 2 RBIs, 2 runs), Josh Johnson (2 for 3, RBI, hit by pitch, 3 stolen bases, 3 runs), Meineke (2 for 4, 2 doubles, RBI, hit by pitch, run), Wynton Meyer (1 for 4, double, 3 RBIs, walk, run), Jake Salling (1 for 2, double, RBI, 2 walks, hit by pitch, 2 stolen bases, 2 runs), Zantos Segura (1 for 3, 2 RBIs, run), Thomas Herdell (1 for 2, 3 walks, stolen base, 2 runs), Penterman (1 for 4, 3 RBIs, walk, stolen base, 2 runs) and Will Meyer (2 walks, stolen base, 2 runs).
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