Races are coming into focus for Battle Mountain Huskies, Eagle Valley Devils | VailDaily.com

Races are coming into focus for Battle Mountain Huskies, Eagle Valley Devils

OK, so I was told I should stick to preps after writing a column on protesting the anthem in the NFL.

Fine. I am here to serve.

I love this time of year with the baseball playoffs (on the newsroom TV as I type), college and pro football (always on during the appropriate days) and our local high school teams coming to the pivotal moments of their seasons.

Sports-a-palooza.

Here's what to watch as we come down the homestretch.

Cross-country

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Yep, we're so pumped about the District 1 Meet over at the Frisco Nordic Center, we're going on Thursday, Oct. 19. Heck, regionals haven't been in this part of the world since 2006, when Battle Mountain hosted at the Willow Creek Par-3. Why not?

Some fun facts about the local running scene:

• Go onto milesplit.com and one sees the top-five times in the state run by the ladies this year, regardless of classification. No. 4 is Eagle Valley's Joslin Blair (17 minutes, 53.58 seconds). No. 5 is Battle Mountain's Elizabeth Constien (17:56.86). No. 6? The Huskies' Naomi Harding (17:57.37).

Battle Mountain's traditional scoring five — Alex Raichart (26th), Lizzy Harding (32nd) and Grace Johnson (37th) are all in the top 50. Hear me now. Believe me later, though, watch the "Battle Mountain taper." It's probably not going to happen before regionals — more likely before state — but those times, as good as they seem now, will get better. I've seen this TV show before.

And, yes, No. 50 in the state is Eagle Valley's Avery Doan.

• Reduce it down to "merely" 4A, and the ladies top 50 becomes quite local. Blair is No. 1, followed by three Huskies in the top 10 — Constien (No. 2), Naomi Harding (No. 3) and Alex Raichart (No. 9). Battle Mountain's five is in the top 16. Madame Doan is No. 20.

• In the milesplit.com voted rankings, the Huskies ladies are No. 1 in 4A — they've held that spot down all season. They're also No. 3 in the Southwest Region, which includes Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona and Nevada.

• One of our favorite things about milesplit.com is the virtual-meet function. I put in all 11 teams in Region 1 with female runners completing their average times of the season and, not surprisingly Battle Mountain wins. Eagle Valley is fourth, which is key because four teams go to the dance out of Region 1.

On the boys' side it gets more intriguing. The Devils win and the Huskies finish fourth, just one point ahead of Evergreen. This is just a simulation … please remain calm. (Not that virtual meets on milesplit have ever been used as motivation … ever.)

Football

• Battle Mountain football nearly gave me a heart attack last week. One has to pick and choose with two teams at home. I picked Eagle Valley vs. Summit over Battle Mountain vs. Rifle. And then Battle Mountain is beating Rifle for a while, while I'm down in Gypsum.

As I wrote in the game story, moral victories are not the pursuit of the Huskies, but things are looking up in Edwards. My challenge to you gents is not to be satisfied. I know what you're thinking.

That is, "We can beat Eagle Valley and Summit, go 4-6, and have a great season."

No. No. No.

Go beat Glenwood. Go beat Palisade. Why the heck not? Battle Mountain football should not rest on its laurels. (And I can't believe I typed that sentence.)

• Yes, tough times for Eagle Valley football. For the record, I certainly would have gone for the personal foul on the Jesse Moser hit. In truth, it doesn't matter. This is life, fellas. Bud stuff happens. How do you deal with it? Let's see what you've got, Eagle Valley.

This isn't just about sports. This is learning about life.

• I hope Vail Christian fans don't need directions to Clear Creek. Just saying. Now do you watch the game from the bleachers or do you just drive up and down Interstate 70? (Sorry, I think the Golddigers' field is so cool every time I go by.)

Volleyball

• No one said it was going to be easy, and now every Slope game counts after Glenwood Springs beat Eagle Valley on Tuesday, Oct. 10. Palisade's in town on Thursday, Oct, 12. (Yes, that would be tonight, but I'm still dealing with the Vail Daily's new style on dates.)

Come one, come all. This is a big one. It's also Senior Night.

• As of this writing, Glenwood Springs is No. 12 in the rating-percentage index, while the Devils are No. 23, Palisade 24th and Battle Mountain 26th. This is what we call the chaos of everyone playing each other twice in conference. (Grr.)

Soccer

• The path to the 4A Slope crown goes through the Huskies, starting with Glenwood Springs on Thursday.

It's also Senior Night for Battle Mountain. Last year, the Huskies had 15 seniors. This year should be a shorter ceremony, of course.

Actually, no. The team has 16 seniors in 2017.

Run the table, fellas.

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, cfreud@vaildaily.com and @cfreud.

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