The first full week of high school sports is in the books. Here's a recap of some of the action and what to look forward to this week.

Blackfoot RB Austin Ramirez already making noise

Blackfoot’s junior tailback made quite the opening statement in the Broncos’ 26-25 loss to Thunder Ridge last week. Consider the numbers: 27 carries for 120 yards, plus three runs of 10-plus yards in the second half alone.

He didn’t score, but Ramirez used long runs to put his team in better field position, where quarterback Jaxon Grimmett slung touchdown passes to receivers Deegan Hale and Ja’Vonte King. When he received handoffs out of shotgun sets, Ramirez looked like a bullet shot out of a gun, racking up several yards before defenders could start to angle his way.

“Austin did a good job. The offensive line really, really did a good job in the second half, opening some holes,” Blackfoot coach Jerrod Ackley said. “He's hard to bring down with one person. Two or three people have to bring him down. He's just a gritty kid. I mean, he's a state wrestling runner-up. He's just a tough kid. He's as tough as they come.”

This week, Blackfoot gets another 5A test, a road date with Idaho Falls.

-Greg Woods/Post Register

Peg Peterson volleyball tournament set to start on Friday

Here’s a way to know volleyball season is officially underway: the annual Peg Peterson tournament is set to kick off this weekend.

The location will be Highland, as is tradition, and several District 6 teams will be competing: Rigby, Skyline, South Fremont, Blackfoot and Sugar-Salem, which is trying to capture its third straight 3A state title and strengthen its grip on the classification. The Trojans are also off to a 4-1 start, which adds some intrigue to the weekend as well.

The tournament starts Friday and wraps up Saturday.

-Greg Woods/Post Register

Rigby soccer off to fast start to the season

If you haven’t taken notice of Rigby’s boys soccer team yet, now is the time to start.

The Trojans, who missed last season’s 5A state tournament with a 1-2 showing at the 5A District 5-6 tournament, look sharp already. Head coach Bart Mower is getting contributions from an array of players, including son Kylan Mower, who scored twice in Rigby’s win over Skyline last week.

As of Wednesday, Rigby stood atop the conference standings with a 3-0-1 record. The Trojans took on Highland Wednesday night. Then, they get a week off before hosting Thunder Ridge on Sept. 8.

-Greg Woods/Post Register

Early volleyball rankings

This week's coaches' state volleyball poll has Bonneville No. 1 in 4A and Sugar-Salem topping the 3A ranks.

South Fremont landed in the No. 2 spot behind the Diggers in 3A after not being ranked a week ago.

West Jefferson and Ririe are tied for fifth in 2A and Mackay moved up in 1AD2 to a second-place tie with Tri-Valley.

-Allan Steele/Post Register

Former I.F. swimmer headed to Texas A&M

Former Idaho Falls swimmer Andrea Perttula, coming off an appearance in the Olympic Trials, entered the transfer portal and has signed with Texas A&M to swim for her two remaining years.

-Allan Steele/Post Register

Richins takes over as Sugar-Salem AD

After 10 years at the helm of Sugar-Salem athletics, Jay Miller has stepped down as athletic director. Tyler Richins will take over athletic director responsibilities and will continue to coach the football team.

Miller will continue his responsibilities as vice principal at Sugar-Salem High School and principal at Valley View Alternative School. Additionally, Miller will head an effort to improve Sugar-Salem School District’s online resources.

In Miller’s time as Sugar’s AD, Sugar-Salem School District 322 has won 44 state titles. The Diggers had won 33 titles in the previous 115 previous years.

Miller said the coaches and others whom he’s worked with were key to the district’s success.

“First and foremost, we hired the right people and coaches to lead these young people and help them see what their capabilities were,” Miller said. “Then my job was to simply go to those coaches and say, ‘What do you need? What do you need and how can we support what your vision is,’ and they took off.”

Richins has worked as one of those coaches for the last six years and his teams have won the last three 3A football state championships.

He recently completed his administrator certification opening the door to an administrative promotion.

“It’s just a natural progression for him now that he has his administrative degree to get involved with AD responsibilities this year and possibly other administrative responsibilities following,” Miller said.

Koster Kennard/Standard Journal

Madison swimming going solo

Madison elected to move its swimming program from a combined program with Hillcrest to its own swim team for the 2021 season.

The district recently hired Millie Ellsworth as the new head coach of the boys and girls swim teams. The interest for Madison High School to get its own swim team came from a push from students and parents.

“There’s lots of swimmers that have (swum) before and traveled all the way to Idaho Falls to be on the Voltage Aquatics swim team, but this is the first year that they get to do it in Rexburg and people are really excited about that,” Ellsworth said.

For the last several years, Madison students who wanted to swim had to travel to Ammon to combine with Hillcrest.

This season the Bobcats will compete against Pocatello, Rigby, Bonneville, Idaho Falls, Hillcrest and Thunder Ridge — and other teams if they make it to the state meet.

The Bobcats have 36 swimmers this year and will practice at the Brigham Young University-Idaho pool in the John W. Hart building located on BYU-Idaho’s campus in Rexburg.

-Benjamin Enggas/For the Standard Journal

Runners converge on Soda Springs

Soda Springs will host one of the biggest cross country meets of the young season on Saturday.

State champions Salmon, Skyline, and Idaho Falls will be competing, along with Blackfoot, Firth, North Fremont, Shelley, Hillcrest, Madison, South Fremont, Teton, Thunder Ridge and West Jefferson.

-Allan Steele/Post Register

 

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