Smith-Cotton Wins WCC All-Sports Title
For the second consecutive year, the Smith-Cotton Tigers claimed the West Central Conference All-Sports title, amassing more team points than any other school in the seven-member conference in the 2016-17 school year.
S-C won conference championships this year in boys soccer, boys swimming, wrestling, baseball and boys and girls track; the girls tennis team also tied for first place in the regular season. Taking second in the WCC were S-C’s boys cross country, girls golf, girls soccer and boys golf teams.
Warrensburg won the WCC All-Sports title annually starting in 2003 until S-C rose up to claim the crown in the 2015-16 school year.
“Winning back-to-back titles is a big accomplishment for our athletic program,” said S-C Athletic Director Rob Davis. “We have always had individual programs excel from year to year, but the last two years we have established our overall competitive leadership of the conference. It is more than just winning a few conference championships here and there. All of our programs are finishing consistently higher within the conference standings than we ever have before."
Conference titles are points of emphasis for Smith-Cotton coaches.
“We start training to be conference champions on Day One of preseason workouts,” said Charlie McFail, who led the Tigers wrestling program to a first-place finish. “We always have our conference opponents in mind when we set our training and practice schedules."
Girls Tennis Head Coach Christine Ross said: “Winning conference matches was our No. 1 goal. I stressed to the girls that every conference match they won was important when it came time to seeding at the conference tournament. My challenge for them was to win the conference title this past year, and they took that challenge and succeeded."
Ross sees winning the title back-to-back as a testament to S-C athletes’ commitment and hard work.
“This is something that the students and community should be very proud of,” she said. “Every team contributed to this title."
McFail, in his first year as head coach of the Tigers football program, stresses the value of performing well in conference.
“To me it is a group of schools that has joined together and decided to send their best student-athletes to compete with each other in all areas,” McFail said. “I train and encourage our individuals to do their personal bests to help their teams win, which in turn will help the whole school win. Doing your part to help the whole school be successful is something to be proud of."
The West Central Conference is dissolving after this year; Davis is pursuing a new affiliation for S-C’s teams. But with one more year of WCC competition ahead, the Tigers and Lady Tigers have the opportunity to close out on top.
“Hopefully, we can continue this success next year and end the run of the conference with another dominating year,” Davis said.
BSWIM: Smith-Cotton's Jeremy Acosta competes in the 200 individual medley during a Tigers meet at Joseph Arbisi Memorial Pool at Sedalia Middle School. The S-C boys swim and dive team won the West Central Conference, contributing to S-C's conference all-sports title.
GTEN: No. 1 singles and doubles player Elizabeth Matz returns a volley during a doubles match against Clinton at Liberty Park. The S-C Lady Tigers tennis team finished the regular season tied for first in the West Central Conference.
TRACK: Senior Nathan White, shown competing at the Class 5, District 5 meet at Tiger Stadium, finished second in the 800 meters at the West Central Conference boys track meet and was a member of the first place 4x400 meter relay team. The S-C girls and boys teams each captured conference titles this year.
WRE: The Smith-Cotton wrestling team and Principal Wade Norton celebrate the Tigers' 2016-17 West Central Conference championship.
SMITH-COTTON 2016-17 PERFORMANCES IN WEST CENTRAL CONFERENCE
Girls Tennis – 1st (tie)
Boys Soccer - 1st
Boys Swimming - 1st
Boys Cross Country - 2nd
Girls Cross Country - 6th
Volleyball - t-4th
Softball - 3rd
Football - 4th
Girls Golf - 2nd
Boys Basketball - 4th
Girls Basketball - 6th
Wrestling - 1st
Girls Swimming - 3rd
Baseball - 1st
Boys Track - 1st
Girls Track - 1st
Girls Soccer - 2nd
Boys Golf - 2nd
Boys Tennis - 3rd