Sifting through The Enterprise sports pages from the past year generates an abundance of highlights.
Local athletes made headlines in a variety of sports — wrestling, swimming, basketball and soccer to name a few.
Here is a brief recap of some of the most memorable personalities and teams that made 2003 special:
Lynnwood senior Cogdill wins Class 3A state wrestling title
From the moment he took fifth place at last year’s Mat Classic, Lynnwood’s Reese Cogdill dedicated himself to the goal of winning a state title.
During the 2002-03 regular season, Cogdill rarely was challenged and he finished the year undefeated. Cogdill then kept his unbeaten streak alive by recording pins in both his district and regional championship matches.
Cogdill continued to dominate the opposition at the state wrestling championships, posting three straight pins to advance to the finals.
But in the first few moments of his championship match against North Thurston’s Chris Keeney, Cogdill knew he was up against one of the toughest opponents of his prep wrestling career.
But Cogdill soon gained the advantage with a takedown in the first period and took a 2-0 lead. Though Keeney came back to tie the score later in the period, Cogdill scored another takedown to gain a 4-2 advantage. As the match continued, Cogdill wore down his opponent and stretched his lead to 6-3, 8-3 and 11-4.
Then six minutes after the match started, the official blew his whistle and Cogdill lay on the mat, contemplating what he had just accomplished.
Cogdill had scored a 13-6 decision to win the Class 3A 215-pound championship at Mat Classic XV Feb. 22 at the Tacoma Dome.
“I didn’t quite know what it would feel like getting up off the mat after hearing the final seconds counting down,” Cogdill said. “This is it. I’ve won. It’s a great feeling.
“I was going out there as hard as I could and made sure I got it. It was definitely a tough match. It was one of the hardest matches I’ve ever wrestled.”
Maverick swim team wraps up successful state meet
Just about everything went right for Meadowdale’s boys swim team at the Class 3A state swimming and diving championships.
School records fell, personal bests were established and the Mavericks cracked the top 10 in the team standings in the Feb. 21-22 competition at King County Aquatic Center.
Meadowdale sophomore Jonathan Keane advanced to the 200-yard freestyle finals and ended up taking fifth place with a time of 1:45.23, setting a school record in the process and almost dropping a second from his preliminary time.
He also took first place in the 100 freestyle consolation finals to finish ninth overall. Keane’s time of 47.82 was just .16 off the school mark.
“I would have finished fifth if I had swam in the championship (heat), so I was really happy with that and breaking 48,” Keane said.
Keane also helped the Mavericks’ 200 freestyle relay team move on to the finals, where it placed fifth overall with 1:31.43, another school record. Keane, Nick Boyce, Derek Shiu and Jason Merrifield dropped nearly a second from their preliminary time.
Meadowdale girls take fifth place at Class 3A tourney
Meadowdale’s two remaining links to its 2000 championship team wrapped up their high school careers in style at the Class 3A state girls basketball tournament.
After a heartbreaking 58-56 overtime loss to Black Hills in the quarterfinals ended the Mavericks’ hopes of a second title, Meadowdale rebounded to win a pair of games in the consolation bracket and take fourth place March 8 at the Tacoma Dome.
Top-ranked Meadowdale looked to its two seniors — Tara Jacob and Jacci Baker — and the rest of its upperclassmen for leadership after the Wolves snapped the Mavericks’ unbeaten streak at 24 games.
Jacob and Baker, the only members of this year’s squad that played on the 2000 title team, provided some much needed guidance in an emotional locker room after the tough loss.
“(It) was hard for us but they really picked us up,” said junior forward Quinn Brewe, adding that she and her teammates were determined to make sure that Jacob and Baker’s season did not end with a loss.
So the next day, Brewe scored a game-high 29 points and had 10 rebounds to lead Meadowdale to a 61-49 victory over Skyline in a loser-out game.
The Mavericks, donning the same uniforms they wore in the 2000 finals, then upended Bellevue 45-35 in the fourth/seventh place game.
Mavs make history, move on to boys state semifinals
If people thought Meadowdale was simply going to be content to play a couple of games at the Class 3A boys basketball state tournament and then go home, they were mistaken.
Meadowdale followed a 64-48 victory over Yelm in the opening round with a stunning 66-64 quarterfinal triumph over Renton.
Junior guard Taylor Marsh’s 15-foot jump shot with 3.4 seconds in the game sent the Mavericks into the semifinals against top-ranked Rainier Beach, one of the most highly touted teams in recent history.
Meadowdale stayed with the Vikings for most of the first half before Rainier Beach — which went on to capture its second straight Class 3A state title — pulled away in the second half for a 50-34 triumph.
The loss sent the Mavericks into the third/sixth place game against Mercer Island.
Meadowdale (19-8 overall) battled hard in the first half against the perennial state powerhouse before fading in a 55-32 loss March 8 at the Tacoma Dome.
Hawk boys team bows out with pair of losses at state
Mountlake Terrace simply did not have anything left in the tank.
After an emotionally and physically draining first-round overtime loss to Prairie, the Hawks were unable to get on track against Walla Walla and ended up falling 55-35 in a loser-out Class 4A boys basketball state playoff game March 13 at the Tacoma Dome.
For the second straight game, Mountlake Terrace struggled offensively, scoring a meager five points in a difficult first quarter.
“We tried to push any button we could today and we just couldn’t get a response,” said Mountlake Terrace coach Nalin Sood. “It wasn’t that the kids weren’t trying. It wasn’t that they weren’t focused. They weren’t getting anything from within. It was just because last night took so much out of them.”
Mountlake Terrace had a chance to win the first-round game but a last-second shot rolled off the rim and the game went into overtime. Prairie seized the momentum and outscored the Hawks 10-6 in overtime to advance to the quarterfinals with a 62-55 victory.
E-W eliminated in first round of soccer playoffs
It wasn’t supposed to end this early. Not again.
Not after sprinting through the regular season undefeated for the first time in school history.
Not after beating perennial state power Snohomish to a pulp to defend its Northwest District championship.
But just when it seemed like the Edmonds-Woodway boys soccer team could do no wrong, the Warriors hit an unforeseen snag in the opening round of the Class 4A state playoffs for the second year in a row.
Fifth-seeded Gig Harbor shocked the top-seeded Warriors 1-0 May 20 at Edmonds Stadium, snapping Edmonds-Woodway’s 10-game winning streak.
The Warriors had the better looks at the goal, but Gig Harbor brought Edmonds-Woodway’s memorable season to a premature finish with one swift kick in the second half.
“It’s like somebody said, ‘No. Not tonight,’” Warriors coach Tony Gilman said.
Roma wins high jump title at Class 4A championships
For Edmonds-Woodway high jumper Tiana Roma, the key to success was a left knee injury.
Roma ignored the constant pain of a tendon in her knee on the first day of the state track meet to become a champion, outdueling Everett’s Sharon Bjella in the Class 4A competition.
Roma surpassed her previous best by 2 inches to stun even herself, clearing 5 feet, 6 inches May 30 at Pasco’s Edgar Brown Stadium.
“I thought I’d be one of the top jumpers, but I didn’t think I’d win it,” said Roma, a junior who missed the 2002 state meet because of the pesky knee after a fourth-place finish (5 feet, 4 inches) in 2001. “I haven’t even come close to 5-5 in a while.”
Bjella, a senior, equaled her career-best at 5-6 but needed one more attempt than Roma. Bjella finished second for the third straight year.
Roma hit the bar with her foot on the winning attempt, looking up to see it slip halfway to the dropoff point before settling. The pain in her knee forced Roma to slow a bit on her approach before planting on the sore knee that has plagued her for several years.
“Lately, my steps are off,” said Roma, critiquing her state-championship form. “My last five (steps) I start to slow down. I’m relying completely on my own power to go up rather than getting some extra power through my run-up.”
Meadowdale boys finish third at state
A day after losing in the Class 3A state semifinals, the Meadowdale boys soccer team faced its biggest challenge of the season.
Could the Mavericks rebound from one of their most difficult losses of the season?
Meadowdale coach Darrell Hamilton described the game as a test of character. The Mavericks easily passed the test.
Solly Gold and Yaw Agyei each scored a goal and goalkeeper Eric Marty recorded his 13th shutout of the season to lead Meadowdale to a 2-0 victory over North Thurston in the third/fourth place game May 31 at Doc Harris Stadium in Camas.
“They responded very well,” Hamilton said of his players. “They worked very hard in that game. Emotionally, it’s a hard game to play in.”
The Mavericks (18-4-1 overall) lost 2-0 to Camas in a semifinal game that Hamilton and his players thought they should have won. Meadowdale had more than double the shots on goal than Camas, but simply wasn’t able to put any through.
EdCC baseball team wins second title
Edmonds Community College’s baseball team made history at the NWAACC tournament.
The Tritons captured their second straight conference championship with a 5-3 victory over Lower Columbia in 12 innings May 26 at Tri-Cities Stadium in Pasco.
Earlier in the tournament, Edmonds broke an NWAACC record for most wins in a season with a 4-3 10-inning triumph over Columbia Basin. Edmonds closed out what was a storybook season with an overall record of 43-7. The previous conference record for wins was 40.
“I’m really happy for the kids,” Edmonds coach Don Marbut said. “I’m just really happy to be a part of it. These boys made history … the second (championship) was a lot harder than the first one.”
The Tritons finished first in the final coaches poll of the season and were the consensus favorite to win the NWAACC title.
“We were chasing history,” Marbut said of his players. “There was a lot of pressure on them. They were the team to beat. They showed up and they embraced it … they were there to win and we happened to come out on top.”
Edmonds boxer fails in bid to win title
His beet-red right ear still ringing and his swollen right eye shrouded by a sleek pair of post-fight sunglasses, Martin O’Malley wracked his brain for answers.
All the Edmonds boxer found was remorse.
“It hasn’t even sunk in yet,” O’Malley said following his lackluster unanimous decision loss to Luis Villalta in the main event of a seven-bout card July 19 at the Emerald Queen Casino.
What was billed as a sure-fire stepping stone to big-name fights and big-time paydays for O’Malley quickly deteriorated into a frustratingly flat outing for the previously once-beaten 135-pounder.
Villalta had O’Malley backpedaling from the opening bell, inflicting enough damage to win almost every round on all three scorecards and assume ownership of the vacant North American Boxing Association lightweight belt.
Each of the ringside judges scored the 10-round title fight 97-91 in Villalta’s favor.
Royals take eighth at volleyball tourney
The Lynnwood volleyball team achieved its goal at the Class 3A state volleyball championships.
Heading into its third state appearance in the last four years, Lynnwood wanted to be among the top eight teams at the end of the tournament.
With its hard-fought, five-game victory over Mark Morris in the consolation semifinals, Lynnwood advanced to the fifth/eighth place match, where the Royals were swept by top-ranked Blanchet Nov. 15 at the Everett Events Center.
The eighth-place finish was the highest placement for a Lynnwood team at state that anyone associated with the current program can ever recall.
Meadowdale knocked out of soccer playoffs
It turned out Meadowdale’s prize for narrowly surviving a tense shootout with Columbia River to open the Class 3A girls soccer state playoffs was another round of penalty kicks.
But this time, it was the Mavericks who came up one shot short as Mercer Island escaped with a 1-0 shootout victory Nov. 14 at Edmonds Stadium and clinched a spot in the state semifinals.
“Even in overtime I really thought we’d finish it off,” Mavericks coach Sean Griffin said. “We just couldn’t put it together. We left some people open for shots.”
With both teams poking in kick after kick, it took nine rounds to settle the shootout — two more than Meadowdale’s state opener with Columbia River four days earlier.
After missing on back-to-back attempts with Mercer Island ahead 1-0 in the shootout, the Mavericks and Islanders combined for 14 consecutive makes.
Swimmers finish out high school careers
For Edmonds-Woodway senior Sarah Spillman and Meadowdale senior Katie Atkinson, the state swimming and diving championships were a swan song to their high school careers.
For Meadowdale freshman Lisa Keane, the meet was the beginning of what should be a top-notch high school experience.
All three individuals left their mark at King County Aquatic Center, advancing to the consolation finals in five events during the Nov. 15 finals.
Spillman blew away the field in the Class 4A 500-yard freestyle consolation finals, winning the race by more than six seconds to finish ninth overall. Her time of 5:09.95 would have earned her seventh place in the championship heat. Spillman dropped more than five seconds from her prelim time.
In the 200 freestyle, Spillman took second in the consolation finals to place 10th overall.
Atkinson wrapped up her high school career with a come-from-behind victory in the Class 3A 100 backstroke consolation final to finish ninth overall.
Keane finished 12th in the 200 individual medley (2:17.11) and 13th in the 100 butterfly (1:01.50).