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Jamestown High School snapped a string of three straight trips to the Class A state volleyball tournament last season. It's a fact that hasn't been lost on this year's group of 12 returners. The Blue Jays will be looking to start a new streak this fall, beginning at the annual East-West Invite in Bismarck. The tournament starts Friday with Jamestown facing Fargo North, Fargo Davies and Grand Forks Central at Bismarck Legacy High School.
The last time the Jamestown High School boys soccer team was on the pitch it allowed a pair of soft goals in the final two minutes. That couldn't repeat itself on Tuesday at Rotary Field if the Blue Jays wanted to make an early statement to begin West Region play. Jamestown scored its first two goals of the season, and the defense held up its end of the bargain late against the visiting Minot Magicians. The Blue Jays walked off the field with a 2-1 victory, taking three huge conference points with them.
The defensive play was up to par for the Blue Jays, but the offense never came together hosting Saturday's season-opening East-West Crossover. Jamestown played Fargo Shanley-Oak Grove to a scoreless tie and fell to Fargo South 3-0 at Rotary Field. "Our guys were really solid defensively, and the score of this second match doesn't tell the story of how these guys played," Jamestown coach Mark Sherfy said. "We're really pleased with how they shut down two different teams with two different styles of attack."
Kasey Ussatis was tired of finishing second at Jamestown Speedway. The Nome, N.D., Bomber driver had placed runner-up five times here without a win this summer. But the tables finally turned on Saturday. Ussatis started the 15-lap Bomber feature fourth and took over the top spot on lap No. 4 to claim victory. "I just held my own and didn't lose it in the last corner. That helps," said Ussatis, who has four feature wins at other tracks in 2016. "I needed a little gift for once."
Jamie Trautner was watching his competition turn circles during Saturday's heat races at Jamestown Speedway. The 41-year-old from Felton, Minnesota, admitted he didn't like his chances of winning the third night of the IMCA Sanders Modified Challenge Tour. "I'm thinking even if I win a heat race, or I get second and I'm running with these guys, I just don't believe I'm that fast with them," Trautner said. "No way, man. They're just so fast."
Sarah Azure's first competitive swing off the tee on Friday landed roughly 10 feet in front of her. It could have been all over right from the start for the Jamestown High School junior at Links of North Dakota in Williston. "You've just got to realize you've got 17 more holes left after that one," Azure said, as she had carded a triple-bogey on the par 4, hole No. 6. "So much more can happen after that. You've just got to have a short memory."
The Blue Jays tennis team opened competition with some strong exhibition play on Friday in Minot. Jamestown High School took down Bismarck Century 4-1 to start, and finished with a narrow 3-2 loss to Bismarck Legacy and a 4-1 defeat to the host Minot Magicians. "Our No. 5, No. 6 and No. 8 (players) didn't make the trip, and we had to play down to our No. 10," JHS coach Jordan Koushkouski said. "I thought we did really well considering that, and getting the win over Century was nice to start off the day."
Mark Sherfy realizes the potential he sees on the field this fall, and the Jamestown High School boys soccer coach is not alone. A highly anticipated season begins today for the Blue Jays in the annual East-West Crossover. Jamestown faces Fargo Shanley at 11 a.m. and Fargo South at 2 p.m., both at Rotary Field. Jamestown is being led onto the pitch by nine seniors who helped the team finish 6-8-3 and just a couple goals shy of the state tournament in 2015.
Plans for the 45th annual Stock Car Stampede are beginning to fall into place. Jamestown Speedway has announced this year's three-night event will begin with Central Dakota Pure Stocks and Slingshots hitting the track at 7 p.m. on Sept. 22. The Stampede, one of the longest-running and most prestigious year-end specials in the Upper Midwest, will run from Sept. 22-24. The move from two days to three this fall is aimed at properly celebrating the event, according to Jamestown Speedway owner Keith Veil.
A large pack of runners is expected here on Saturday to open the high school cross country season. Blue Jay coach Ken Gardner said Thursday a total of 36 Class A and Class B teams had already committed to attend the annual Orriginals Invite at the course at Parkhurst. The heavy attendance is due primarily to Jamestown hosting this year's state cross country meet on Oct. 22. The Parkhurst course is located approximately 5 miles north of Jamestown on U.S. Highway 281 and 1 mile west near Pipestem Reservoir. Saturday's meet begins at 11 a.m.