Clark County Special Olympians bring home gold medals

Softball teams, golfers among those to qualify for state tournament

By Paul Danzer, Columbian Soccer, hockey and Community Sports Reporter



Four teams and one individual-skills participant from Clark County Special Olympics won gold medals during the Special Olympics Southwest Washington softball tournament on June 30 in Olympia.

Eight teams from Clark County were among the 42 softball teams that participated in traditional, unified, T-ball, and individuals skills tournaments at LBA Park.

Also on July 31, two golfers representing Clark County Special Olympics earned gold medals at Meadow Golf Course in Tacoma.

Teams and athletes who won gold medals in July will compete at the state tournament Aug. 20-21 in Everett.

In softball, the gold medal winning teams were the Reds in the Masters 1 Division, the Mariners (Masters 5), the Braves (Masters 6) and the Pirates (Masters 7).

In softball individual skills, Adam Calkin won a gold medal. The golf gold-medal winners were Jason Tevlin and Michael Torres.

Here are the members of the gold-medal winning softball teams:

The Reds players were Michael Cook, Nathan Ellis, Bracken Harden, Santos Lopez, Larry Matthews, Sam Mclntyre, Cory Robak, Robert Schmitz, Ivan Soltero, Sean Starr, Andrew Stekhuizen and Michael Vanoni. The head coach was Bryan Cook.

The Mariners players were Alex Ables, Dirk Alf, Adam Barr, Kevynn Bogart, Derek Dalke, Dennis Dole, Jr., Jason Downey, Ron Gebbie, Becky Johnson, Nathaniel Little, Marissa McCollum, Chris Rector, Deanna Sanders and Eric Stage. The head coach was Jason Scott.

The Braves players were Aichele Sharisse, Danny Baragary, Tom Brunner, Tim Cook, Kevin Davis, Matt Folkerts, Jason Baumgartner, Jeremy Huck, Cheron Skelton, Everett Smith, Samantha Spencer, John Veals, Ally Warner, Joshua Webber, Jackie Winters and Bryanna Zychowicz. The head coach was Rick Cook.

The Pirates players were Dianna Bartusek, Jeremy Beer, Jeremy Descloux, Zacharius Descloux, Kristi Klingenmier, Philip Klover, Peter Li, Kendra Liebe, Ashley Medlock, Jennifer Moscou, Natalie Raylance, Isaac Shelter and Cedric Yates. The head coach was Andrea Medlock.

Two Clark County T-ball softball teams won silver medals.

The Cubs took second place in the Masters A T-ball tournament. Their players were Chelsea Baxter, Jacob Blunt, William Cuff, Kenda Eaton, Craig Francis, Alyssa Kwak, Christian Lawson, Mariya Lawson, Lauren Milam, Michael Suire and Alex Trimble. The head coach was Elizabeth Francis.

The Cardinals were second in the Masters B T-ball tournament. Their players were Jenna Anderson, James Byers, Tina Colantuono, Krista Downey, Glenda Huhtala, Dusty Lang, Greg Martino, Tina Murphy, Charles Rymer and Kat Sanders. The head coach was Teresa Haliski.

The Clark County Royals placed fourth in the Masters 6 softball tournament. Their players were Rachel Akins, Matt Baker, Nicole Banks, Jonathan Boyles, Jon Chidestor, Karen Carrico, Joseph Dawson, Shawn Hassig, Matt Jenkins, Thomas Kukkola, Doug McPherson, Jeff Smith and Jason Sorenson. Their coach was Brandi Zychowicz.

The Clark County Rockies had five athletes in the individual-skills softball competition. In addition to Calkin’s gold medal, Dalton Chisum, Holly Cook and Mallory Hamilton earned bronze medals. David Balas earned a fourth-place ribbon. The individual skills head coach was Sylvia Downey.

This was the first time Clark County Special Olympics sent a golf team to competition. In addition to the two gold medalists, Jeff Hogland won a silver medal, James Carter won a bronze medal, Michael Abe earned a fourth-place ribbon, and Jeremy Haliski a fifth-place ribbon. The head coach for the Clark County Chippers golf team was Mike Cordeiro.

Special Olympics Washington provides training and competition in a variety of sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. For information about Clark County Special Olympics, contact, Rick Cook at

Don't Do Stupid Stuff Mugs