After a season in which a .500 winning percentage was actually good enough to capture the Class 1A state championship, it was understandable that selecting an All-League squad might have taken awhile.
Dolores athletic director Jimmie Lankford announced the honored roster for the completed 2015 campaign last week.
Now-senior Tucker Ward leads Ignacio's All-San Juan Basin Leaguers able to return next spring.
Ward was named First Team All-SJBL infield for his consistency on the Bobcats' left side at shortstop. His efforts on the mound also helped earn him a share of the circuit's Player-of-the-Year distinction.
"Tucker brings his 'A' game every time," Head Coach Bert Miller said after Ward's contributions towards beating Meeker at the 2A-District 2 Tournament in Delta. "He's responded well.just a team leader by example."
Joining Ward as an All-SJBL First Team nominee from IHS was now-graduated senior catcher Iaasic Peña. Now-senior Austin McCaw was awarded Second Team All-SJBL Pitcher, and versatile Juanito Medina Second Team All-SJBL Utility Player after helping the 'Cats post a deceptive 6-13 overall record, and 3-6 in the league.
Nucla's Clint Watt was slowed by a serious arm injury and wasn't used on the mound as much as Mustang coaches Clint Wytulka and Kelly Arnold would have liked, but was still enough of an all-around factor to join Ward, DHS' Kellen Gatzke and Dove Creek's Jordan Ernst as the loop's most 'fantastic four.'
Ernst was also named as Class 1A's POY and a CHSAANow.com/ColoradoPreps.com/MaxPreps All-1A First Team choice after helping the Bulldogs cop the classification's crown with a State Tournament run made up of a 2-1 defeat of Holly, an 8-5 win over Northglenn Community Christian and an 8-5 triumph over Granada in the finale at All-City Field in Denver.
DC's Curtis Garver was named not only the SJBL's Coach-of-the-Year, but also the 1A COY for his managing of a crew which finished just 12-12 overall after going a third-place 4-5 in the dual-classification league.
(None of the San Juan Basin's 2A players-meaning those of IHS and Dolores-were named All-2A or Honorable Mention All-2A, unfortunately, whereas DC catcher Alex Ogas and INF/P Kyle Schultz were also First Team All-1A, with first baseman/designated hitter Spencer Gatlin and outfielder Derek Kibel Second Team picks.)
Regardless of First or Second Team status [Ernst earned First Team Pitcher, whereas Ogas received Second Team Catcher behind Peña], the rest of the All-SJBL Team included:
Pitchers-Tim Armintrout (Nucla), Stetson Hamilton (Dolores); catchers-Dalton Madden (DHS), Mason Riddle (NHS); infielders-Gatlin/Schultz/Colin Hobbs/Beau Hemphill (DCHS), Gatzke/Tel Hamilton/Josh McCoy/Kitty Wallace (DHS); Watt/Caden Colson/Lane Sutherland (NHS).
Outfielders-Kibel/Case Baughman (DCHS), Guy Wallace/Brandon Ward (DHS), Trenton Armintrout/Devyn Rummel (NHS); utility-Schultz (DCHS), McCoy (DHS), Graden Steffan (NHS); designated hitter-Gatlin (DCHS), Wyatt Jones (DHS).