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Sun Valley Community School Girls Raise Their Championship Banner
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The Cutthroat champions stand below their banner.
   
Thursday, November 10, 2022
 

STORY AND PHOTOS BY KAREN BOSSICK

They already had four banners hanging on the walls of the Sun Valley Community School gym.

Two banners proclaimed the girl’s soccer team No. 2 in state; two others proclaimed them third in state.

On Tuesday, with students, teachers and proud parents and grandparents looking on, soccer team members raised a banner proclaiming their team the 3A Girls State Soccer Champs.

 
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Team Co-Captain Amanda Dunn was the first to autograph the banner.
 

“Awesome!” said Sun Valley Community School alum and theater teacher Kevin Wade. “I’ve been associated with this school 34 years and I was surprised to learn the girls had never won a state championship in soccer. They’re a great team.”

The girl’s soccer team blanked Fruitland –the team that had beaten them for the championship the year before—two weeks ago at the championships in Twin Falls. They put the Grizzlies away 3-0.

Head of School Ben Pettit told onlookers that the championship had been long in the making.

When girl’s soccer made its debut at the school in 1996, there were not enough girls to form a team so the girls played with Richard Whitelaw’s boy’s teams the first few years.

 
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Head Coach Kelly Feldman touted her team’s academic success, as well as its on-the-field success.
 

Kelly Feldman took over as head coach 22 years ago and, since, the girls have played in numerous  tournaments, knocking on the door of the championship in the past two years when they brought home the second in state banners.

“There’s not much I can say to top a state championship,” Feldman said. “So, I will add to the list of accomplishments:

  • Academic state champions for the fourth year in a row.
  • District champions for the 14th time.
  • And to top it off, we beat Wood River 4-3!”

The banner took its place among a gym full of banners that included golf, tennis, track and basketball banners, as well banners reflecting the achievements of individual students who won national championships or Olympic medals in alpine and Nordic skiing.

 
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Elliot and Ben Jacobs ring a cow bell and clap their hands as onlookers applaud the girls soccer team.
 

Three banners reflect the 2018, 2019 and 2020 3A State Soccer Championships the school’s boys won.

Feldman noted that only eight out of 18 teams qualify for the state championship tournament.

“We’re always the smallest,” she said.

Thirty-four girls showed up for the team this year and worked hard every day, she added.

 
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Amanda Dunn’s grandparents Paul and Sandra Willingham attended all but one game this season. “They all played so well but I think as goalie Amanda had even more pressure since she was the goalie,” said Sandra.
 

“We created a legacy that will not be forgotten,” she added.

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