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Women in Sports Luncheon honors student-athletes

Pictured left to right, Emily Cottrell (CP), Mara Powner (CP), Victoria Kim, Loren Rylander and Laryssa Myers (CP). These Rock Canyon High School seniors were honored at the Women in Sports Luncheon January 18.

By Maddie Merritt, RCHS intern writer; courtesy photo

On January 18, the Douglas County School District (DCSD) held the annual Women in Sports Luncheon at Cherry Hills Community Church. The 2019 Women in Sports Luncheon ceremony honored seniors from Douglas County high schools, as well as eighth-graders from public feeder DCSD middle schools.

The nominees from Rock Canyon High School (RCHS) were Emily Cottrell (CP), Mara Powner (CP), Victoria Kim, Loren Rylander, and Laryssa Myers (CP). Douglas County High School had two nominees from 80108: Katie McGillicuddy and Abigail Williams. The nominees from Rocky Heights Middle School were Alexandra Cutone, Kendall DeFord, Avery Dumas, Acelyn McGowan, Taylor Schmatz, Mackenze Sheldon, and Emily Thomas.

The top two percent of women in sports in DCSD were chosen to be honored at the luncheon for not only dedication to and achievements in their sports, but also for the academic excellence they maintain while participating in their sports. These women were also recognized for their roles as active members in their community. Their ability to balance sports, academics and community service was recognized by the school district.

For these seniors, playing sports goes beyond the gym or the field. “It’s an honor to be one of five girls representing RCHS. I love the community and the variety of girls I meet every year!” Myers said. Cottrell said, “Being in a sport at RCHS has built a community for me by giving me a second family. It has also brought me closer to the school because it has allowed me to be a part of something that’s much bigger than myself.”

Lori Rommel, RCHS athletic secretary, received a distinguished guest award for her valuable contributions to DCSD athletics for the past 18 years. Sue Dakovich, assistant director of athletics, activities and alternative education for DCSD, provided a biography about Rommel, which was given at the luncheon. The following is an excerpt from that bio: “Lori believes that playing sports gives you the competitive spirit, good work ethic, and the feel-good accomplishments and beliefs that you can achieve your goals. Playing sports gives young people a positive and structured environment to learn more than just how to play their sport.”

The investment from the students, coaches, and coordinators fuels the sports programs at all the DCSD schools and these young women demonstrate leadership in their sports, school and community.

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