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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Prep notebook: Mark Rypien proud Shadle has Wilson Golden Football

Mark Rypien of the Washington Redskins celebrating with both hands held high in the air in 1992. (File / Associated Press)

Mark Rypien plans to make it official as soon as his schedule allows.

Rypien’s alma mater, Shadle Park, has received a commemorative Wilson Golden Football as part of the Super Bowl High School Honor Roll initiative recognizing schools and communities that contributed to Super Bowl history.

Shadle is among more than 2,000 high school across the nation to receive one of the footballs. Last fall, Sandpoint grad and Jerry Kramer, a standout lineman for the Vince Lombardi-coached Green Bay Packers, attended a ceremony where he presented one of the footballs to his alma mater.

Rypien was the MVP when he led the Washington Redskins to victory in Super Bowl XXVI.

“It’s very rewarding,” Rypien said this week before flying to San Francisco where he will be part of festivities honoring the MVP’s of the first 49 Super Bowls.

“I was part of a group of guys who had a goal in mind and went out to fulfill that goal,” he said.

He praised his former teammates at Shadle.

“They’re as much a part of this as anybody,” Rypien said. “A lot of my fondest memories were at Shadle Park.”

Rypien also pointed out he was part of an era when student athletes didn’t specialize.

“We see so much specializing today,” he said. “We played three sports.”

Shadle athletic director Bruce Hafferkamp said the school plans to host an assembly to honor Rypien and the football will be displayed in a trophy case.

Hafferkamp said having a football signed by a former Super Bowl MVP is extra special because “there are only a few of them.”

Final seeds to be decided

The postseason is around the corner for Greater Spokane League boys and girls basketball teams.

Regular-season play concludes Thursday.

Most of the top seeds are decided among 4A and 3A boys teams, but a few key games remain.

In 4A boys, we know that Ferris and University will meet Tuesday in a loser-out game to decide the fourth seed. Ferris is at Rogers and U-Hi visits NC in league finales.

If Ferris and U-Hi finish tied, the Saxons will play host to the Titans in the loser-out game based on having more wins against 4A teams.

Gonzaga Prep, Lewis and Clark and Central Valley are the top three seeds.

In the 4A girls, the seeds are set. CV is No. 1, followed by LC, Mead, U-Hi and G-Prep, which goes to U-Hi on Tuesday in a loser-out playoff.

In 3A boys, Shadle Park has had the top seed locked up for some time. Mt. Spokane is the third seed and travels to second-seeded Rogers on Tuesday in a loser-out game. The winner earns a berth to the subregional against the Mid-Columbia Conference and goes to Shadle on Feb. 12 to decide the district title.

In 3A girls, Mt. Spokane has a one-game lead over NC for the first and second seeds. Mt. Spokane goes to CV and NC entertains U-Hi. If the teams finished tied, NC would receive the top seed because it swept Mt. Spokane.

Shadle Park is the third seed.

The 5A Region I girls tournament begins Friday.

No. 4 Coeur d’Alene is at No. 1 Lake City and No. 3 Lewiston travels to No. 2 Post Falls. Both games are at 7.

The winners meet on Tuesday in the title game with the winner advancing to state, Feb. 18-20 at Nampa.

The runner-up, to be decided later next week, can earn a state berth in a play-in game against the District III fifth-place team.

The 4A Region I and 3A District I tournaments will be held at North Idaho College beginning with a tripleheader on Monday. Sandpoint and Timberlake have secured top seeds.

Wrestling begins postseason

The District 8 4A and 3A tournaments, the District 7 2A and 1A tournaments and the B subregionals are this weekend.

The District 8 4A begins Friday at Mt. Spokane and concludes Saturday along with 3A. The top three in 4A and top four in 3A advance to regionals.

The District 7 2A is Saturday at East Valley. The top three go on to regionals.

The District 7 1A begins Friday and concludes Saturday at Medical Lake. The top six move on to regionals.

The B south subregional is at Liberty, advancing the top four to regionals while the north subregional is at Springdale with the top four advancing.

The second Idaho Wrestling Hall of Fame Classic is Saturday at Meridian High School.

The tourney matches the top wrestlers regardless of classification. Post Falls has five in the all-star meet. They are: Ridge Lovett (98 pounds), Matt McLeod (120), Jason Burchell (132), TJ Wolf (138) and Alius De La Rosa (145).

Larry Johnson of Lakeland (126) and Casey Randles of Sandpoint (182) were the others selected from the region. As many as eight in some weight classes were nominated.