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New AD saw good team community spirit in fall sports

Nov 14, 2012 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports Editor

Riverton High School activities director Jeremy Hill said he learned in his first season on the job that the community and student body have a lot of pride in the activities at the school.

Hill was named the activities director at RHS in August, replacing Keith Bauder.

"The turnout in games told us that people are excited about what is happening here," Hill said.

The Wolverines played before good-sized football crowds all season long at Wolverine Field, packing the house for games vs. Buffalo, Rawlins and Lander Valley High School.

"I was very pleased with how we performed in the fall and what our kids where able to do," Hill said. "The success of our season made our crowds be bigger. It's one of those things that made Wolverine Field like home."

Football success

The Wolverines claimed a No. 1 seed for the playoffs after going through the Class 3-A East conference with a perfect 5-0 record.

RHS had home field advantage in the playoffs, but Cody upset the Wolverines 24-17 in the opening round of the playoffs at Wolverine Field. RHS finished the season at 6-3.

"It was a tough loss," Hill said. "Cody came in with nothing to lose. They were able to try some things that we weren't expecting to see."

Cody was eliminated from the playoffs a week later by Star Valley,

"I can't say enough about our coaching staff and our boys in the way that they handled themselves," Hill said.

"It's always disappointing to lose a game like that. We felt that we should have been playing in Laramie last weekend. When it gets to the playoffs, it comes down to one game."

Golfers play well

The first big story out of the fall sports season came in September when RHS senior Aaron Nirider placed third at the Class 4-A state golf tournament.

"Aaron ended right there at neck-and-neck playing for a state championship," Hill said.

Nirider put himself into state title contention with a 74 on the first day at the Three Crowns Golf Course in Casper. Nirider opened the second day shooting a 33 on the front nine.

The RHS senior had the lead after making the turn to start No. 10. Nirider ended the round with a 73 for a 147 to finish one stroke out of first.

In the team standings, the Wolverines came away third in Class 4-A. RHS shot a 326 team score on the first day and a 335 on the second day for a 661.

Kelly Walsh won the title (620) and Cheyenne East placed second (652).

"We are building our girls program," Hill said.

"We have a couple of underclassmen girls that are coming back.

Our freshman girl, Kendra Miller, is going to be a real standout golfer for us as time goes on."

Winter sports begin

RHS opened winter sports practice on Monday with girls and boys basketball and wrestling. Boys swimming starts Monday, Nov. 26.

The Wolverines are hosting the Riverton Invitational basketball tournament Nov. 29-Dec. 1 at Wolverine Gym.

Teams in the tournament are Lander Valley High School, Worland, Douglas, Lovell and Lyman.

The Wolverines play Worland Thursday, Nov. 29, in a girls-boys doubleheader at Wolverine Gym. The girls start the doubleheader at 6 p.m.

RHS plays at 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30, in a doubleheader with Lander on the second day of the regular season at Wolverine Gym.

"We anticipate that will be a good weekend for us," Hill said.

The Wolverines play Lyman at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, in a girls and boys doubleheader.

RHS ends the tournament in another doubleheader vs. Douglas at 3 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.

The junior varsity division of the tournament will be held at Bob Carey Memorial Fieldhouse at Lander Valley High School.

"Next year, we will be going back to the Cheyenne tournament," Hill said.

"We are looking into how we can get into competition with those harder schools. If we have to compete with them at the end of the season, then we need to compete with them at the start of the season."

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