Sports briefs: Beamer hip-hop and Decatur dance teams win WCDistrict titles

Sports briefs

By CASEY OLSON, The Mirror

The Federal Way School District had several successful performances at the West Central District III Dance and Drill State Qualifying Meet. The competition was held at Thomas Jefferson High School March 1.

For the fifth year in a row, the Todd Beamer High School hip-hop dance team took the district title. The Titans beat out 15 other teams competing in the category.

Decatur High School also walked away from districts with a championship. The Gators won the drill category. Thomas Jefferson finished second in the dance competition and second in the hip-hop category. Federal Way High School ended up fourth in hip-hop.

The 2008 WIAA Class 4A State Championships will be held at the Yakima Sundome on March 21.

• Federal Way resident J.R. Celski won the overall championship at the American Cup IV short-track speedskating championship last weekend at the Petit Center in Milwaukee, Wisc. The 17-year-old totaled 2,820 points to beat out second-place Travis Jayner of Michigan. Celski won the 1,500-meter final.

The win at the American Cup ends a strong season for Celski. He finished fifth overall at the Junior World Championships in Italy. He was the top American finisher. The championships featured the top-69 skaters under 19 years old from all the top speedskating countries.

Celski recently took an 18-month break from competitive speed skating after suffering a back injury at the 2006 Junior World Championships and returned home to Federal Way for his junior year of high school at Todd Beamer. Celski had been living in Southern California and training with heralded coach Wilma Boomstra in Long Beach.

He has since moved back to California to continue his training in pursuit of making the U.S. Olympic Team for the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, B.C.

He qualified for the World Championships by winning five gold medals at the 2007 United States Junior Short Track Championships in Bay City, Mich. late last year.

• Decatur High School graduate Matt Ristine defeated Pat Howard of Overlake Golf and Country Club on the first sudden death hole to win the 2008 Pelzer Golf Supplies/Garth Mattson Pacific Northwest Golf Sales 2008 Washington State Assistants’ Championship at Sahalee Country Club on Feb. 21. Ristine is currently working as an assistant golf pro at Oakbrook Golf and Country Club in Lakewood.

Ristine and Howard had each shot fine 3-under par rounds of 69 to edge third-place finishers Ryan Benzel of Seattle GC (2007 champion) and Joe Puetz, of Harbour Pointe GC, by a single stroke.

• Auburn Sports and Marine is presenting a free Blackmouth clinic from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at 810 Auburn Way North in Auburn, on March 13. There will be a guest speaker and no registration is required. Door prizes and discounts for participants. For more information, call (253) 833-1440.

• The SLAM! 10 and under girls basketball team recently won the championship game at the Centre of Norpoint. The Federal Way team beat the Ladyhawks in the title game, 18-10. This is their second championship in a row.

• The Federal Way Boys and Girls Club is currently enrolling youth for its 2008 spring baseball and softball leagues. The deadline for registration is April 18. Late registration will be accepted on a space-available basis.

The leagues are programs for boys and girls in kindergarten through seventh grade. Grades 1 and 2 will be a co-ed, coach-pitch baseball league. Grades 3 and 4 and 5/6/7 will be separate baseball and softball leagues for boys and girls. Teams are formed from local elementary and middle schools, area and grade. The season runs from April 21 to June 14. Games are played in the surrounding Federal Way-area school ball fields.

The club is also offering a Kindergarten Clinic for 4 and 5 year olds, held on Saturdays from 10 to 11 a.m. The clinic runs from May 3 to June 14. The program costs $60 for 1st-7th grade and $55 for the kindergarten clinic (plus $20 club membership fee).

Registration can be done online at or in person at the club, 30815 8th Ave. S.

• Emerald Downs will host its annual Job Fair to interview applicants in all departments for the 2008 season at the Auburn racetrack. The Job Fair is scheduled for 12 to 8 p.m., March 20, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., March 22. For expediency, applicants can apply online prior to the Job Fair at The 2008 live racing season runs April 18 to Sept. 28, with weekend and holiday availability required. Part-time positions are also available.

• The Federal Way Mod Soccer Club is offering an eight-week “Spring into Soccer” session for children ages 6 to 9 years old.

The weekly sessions will be held on Sunday afternoons at local fields. Each of the first five weeks will entail round-robin games and skill sessions led by Rob Walker and the coaching staff in age appropriate groupings. The last three weeks of the session will be formal games led by a coach with referees making the calls.

Walker is the Federal Way United Director of Coaching. He holds an “A” coaching license, is a national licensing instructor and has been a goalkeeper coach for both the men’s and women’s Olympic soccer teams.

This will be an academy-style environment for the players. Numerous touches on the ball during the sessions will keep the players engaged and improve their skills at the same time. Each week will focus on a different area of player development in an age-appropriate manner. The weekly round-robin games will incorporate the skill focus for the week.

It is not necessary to have prior experience or to register as a team. Teams will be formed from the group of participants at the end of the first five weeks and those groups will play together in the final three weeks of the session.

The first day for “Spring into Soccer” is April 6. Sessions will be held on April 6, 13, 20, 27, May 4, 18, June 8 and 15. The cost for the eight-week “Spring into Soccer” session is $55, if you have played in Federal Way Mod soccer previously ($66 if you are new to the club, due to an insurance fee).

The fee includes a free T-shirt for all participants. Registration deadline is March 14. Registration forms can be obtained on the club Web site, (look at the home page under “Mod News” for details).

Families can also obtain forms at a registration session from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Federal Way Regional Library (1st Avenue) on March 9. Families can obtain registration forms at that time, as well as drop-off completed registration materials. Board members will be available to answer questions.

For additional information, call (253) 529-3972.

• Federal Way Public Schools is establishing an Athletic Hall of Fame to honor past employees who have made a major impact on the district’s athletic programs. Nominees to the Hall of Fame will be evaluated based on the following criteria — has served the district for a minimum of 10 years, has been retired for at least five years or deceased and has made a significant impact on the district’s or a school’s athletic program.

The Hall of Fame inductees will be honored at a regular-season football game in the fall of 2008. Each Hall of Fame member will receive a certificate and have his or her name inscribed on a special banner placed at Federal Way Memorial Field.

A renovated Memorial Stadium will serve as the backdrop for the ceremony and Hall of Fame football game. The stadium’s turf and track are due to be renovated this summer with the use of state match funds the district received as a result of the passage of the bond measure.

In addition, the new electronic scoreboard purchased as a result of a donation by Federal Way’s Del Taco will be installed and operational. The district will dedicate the stadium’s new turf, track, and scoreboard during the Hall of Fame ceremony.

Send nominees to Greg Flynn, 1300 S. 308th St., Federal Way, Wash. 98003. Nominations can also be faxed to (253) 945-5577 or emailed to

The deadline for nominations to be received is April 1. A 15-member committee of present and former district coaches and administrators will select the first class of inductees.

• Federal Way Girls Fastpitch Association is forming teams for the upcoming softball league. No experience is necessary. For more information, visit or call (253) 520-6514.

• USSSA softball is looking for umpires for King County and the south end. Umpires are paid monthly and set their own schedules. For more information, contact Paul at (425) 870-1043 or Dale at (425) 481-2005.

• The Mosquito Squad Fastpitch Club is looking for players for its 12 and under team. Girls with 1995 birthdates who are looking to play competitive fastpitch softball are welcome to tryout.

For more information, contact Mark Lewis at (206) 818-4130, or email or visit

• The Sudden Impact Girls Fastpitch teams are looking for players ages 8 to 12 (age as of Jan. 1, 2008). The teams feature ASA Junior Olympic Affiliation, pitching and catching instructors for private lessons by the University of Washington, Pacific Lutheran University and Kennedy High School players/coaches, Practices at Decatur High School and lots of local play, including hosting the Sudden Impact Invitational Tournament at Celebration Park. The older girls on the 12-under team play various weekend tournaments, mostly in the Seattle-Tacoma area. The younger girls on the 10U team develop their skills in recreational league play. No previous fastpitch experience required. Indoor practices begin this month.

For more information about Federal Way Girls Softball or to join a practice, call (206) 310-6226 or email You can also visit

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