School & sports news for Nov. 3

Rapp sports update

RCHS senior Brianna Settle (pictured here) made second team All-District Volleyball squad along with junior Amber Smoot; teammates Julia Estes and Kayla Robey were named first team All-District.By David Hong
RCHS senior Brianna Settle (pictured here) made second team All-District Volleyball squad along with junior Amber Smoot; teammates Julia Estes and Kayla Robey were named first team All-District.

With the exception of one remaining varsity football game this Saturday (Nov. 5) at Hundred High School in West Virginia, Rappahannock’s fall regular seasons have come to a close and playoff-eligible teams are ready for postseason play.

Varsity volleyball takes top billing this week, with the Panther squad wrapping up their regular season last Thursday (Oct. 27) with a win over George Mason. Finishing the season at 20-0, the team claimed their first trophy as Bull Run District regular season champions.

The District Championship is all the more remarkable when you remember that Rappahannock County High School is by far the smallest school in the Bull Run, a conference comprised of three 3A schools, four 2A schools and RCHS, the lone 1A school.

Conference playoffs for group 1A begin tonight (Thursday, Nov. 3) for the Panthers, as they host a Conference 43 semifinal at 6 p.m. A win tonight will put then in the championship game, also at RCHS, this Saturday (Nov. 6, 6 p.m.). Making it to the conference championship assures the Rapp squad of a berth in the regional playoffs, which begin next Monday (Nov. 7).

While Coach Courtney Atkins has been hard at work preparing her girls for the postseason, she took a little time off last weekend to attend the Bull Run District Volleyball Coaches meeting. The coach left that meeting with the first of what will likely be multiple postseason honors for her girls: Seniors Julia Estes and Kayla Robey were named to the first team All-District Volleyball squad while senior Brianna Settle and junior Amber Smoot made second team All-District.

RCHS senior Julia Estes, named the Bull Run District Volleyball Player of the Year for the second year in a row last week, also plays on a Panther varsity volleyball squad that ended the regular season with a perfect record (22-0) and their first district championship trophy. By David Hong
RCHS senior Julia Estes, named the Bull Run District Volleyball Player of the Year for the second year in a row last week, also plays on a Panther varsity volleyball squad that ended the regular season with a perfect record (22-0) and their first district championship trophy.

Julia Estes, for the second year in a row, was honored as the Bull Run District Volleyball Player of the Year.

The Fall Theater Festival was held last week at RCHS, the auditorium hosting theater troupes from RCHS as well as Essex High School, Colonial Beach High School and the other Rappahannock High School from Warsaw. When the final bow had been taken and the last light dimmed, the RCHS thespians had won the Conference 43 theater championship for the third straight year!

Performing another original production written by RCHS theater coach Russell Paulette, the Rapp drama team excelled, with Savannah Stevens taking the top actress trophy and Trusten Murrah and Mikayla Zook earning all-conference acting medals. Under the guidance of director Paulette, the troupe will hone their performance in preparation for the regional competition Nov. 19 at Essex High School in Tappahannock. Break a leg!

In cross country, varsity harriers competed in the Conference 43 championships last week, with both teams qualifying for the Region 1A East Championship held this Tuesday (Nov. 1; results too late for this article).

RCHS' Gavin Jenkins talks with cross country coach Kenny Burt after Jenkins finished first at last week's conference championships, breaking his own course record.By David Hong
RCHS’ Gavin Jenkins talks with cross country coach Kenny Burt after Jenkins finished first at last week’s conference championships, breaking his own course record.

In the conference championship at Lancaster High School, the boys’ team took first place, bringing home the conference championship trophy, the team again led by senior Gavin Jenkins — who finished first with a time of 16:40, breaking his own course record, set last year. Sophomore Sam Barnes finished third, Jordan Rector 10th, Dalton Renner 11th, Jake Demory 12th, Justin Ramey 13th and Christian Poffenbarger 17th.

In the girls’ race, Rapp runners finished third as a team, strong enough to qualify for the regional race as a group. Skylar Culbertson was leading the race by a healthy margin but cut a turn short on a course with some unclear markings and was disqualified, despite the runner-up’s assertion that Skylar would have won handily even if she had stayed on course. Skylar’s teammates finished strongly enough for a trip to regionals, with Jacklyn Humphries placing fifth (even with a slip and fall while running), MacKensie Haunold 10th, Savannah Hensley 11th, Danielle Fryant 15th, Brooke Athelli 17th and Camryn Clark 22nd.

Coach Kenny Burt has high hopes for both teams to achieve at least a Top Six finish in the regional race, which qualifies them for the state championship Nov. 11 at Great Meadows in Warrenton.

Varsity football takes their record-breaking act on the road for their final game of the season, traveling to West Virginia on Saturday. Coach Kemp Pullen has been working to keep the team focused, with everyone intent on returning home with a winning record for the season, something Rapp football is poised to accomplish for the first time in the history of the program.

Winter sports tryouts begin this Monday (Nov. 7) with JV and varsity girls and boys basketball and wrestling teams beginning preparations for the coming season. Stay current with the latest at rappahannockcountyhs.rschoolteams.com, where Athletic Director Brandon Burley has all the latest sports news and information.

See you at a game soon, maybe a playoff game, where we hope you’ll join us in cheering “Go Rapp!”

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