Dual-sport sisters keep busy with athletics, studies


For those of us who remember when it seemed like there wasn’t enough time in the day, we recall the importance of time management

Time management is defined as the act of planning and exercising conscious control over the amount of time spent on specific activities, especially to increase effectiveness, efficiency and productivity.

Highlands Ranch sisters Jolie and Dani Cranford, both dual athletes playing softball and volleyball in the same season, are two examples of teenagers trying to live up to the time management definition.

Both Jolie, a sophomore who was an All-Continental League player last season, and Dani, a freshman, are starters on the respective teams. And they are managing to be 3.5 grade point average students in addition to running between practices, games and matches for both teams.

Softball coach Debra Kortbawi and volleyball coach Lou Krauss have been accommodating to the sisters.

“Lou and I put our schedules together and sat down to figure out when they are going to be sore and when they are not,’’ said Kortbawi. “They were a little sore after their volleyball game yesterday. You look at the schedule and say this one is going to be a little tougher and I need them at this game and not so much at this game. Through all this, they still maintain their grades. “

In statistics after five softball games played, Jolie was hitting .692 with one homer and nine runs batted in on 14 plate appearances, while Dani, a first baseman, had a .308 batting average with a homer. Jolie is one of the league volleyball Continental leaders in hitting percentage (.271), kills (118) and digs (107). Dani has 54 kills so far in her freshman volleyball campaign.

“I’m sore but I take care of my body,” said Jolie. “I go out and get ice baths. I’ve done a good job of keeping my priorities in order.”

But what about free time?

“Most of the time I just try to get with friends, and if I have a test the next day I try to study as much as I can,’ said Dani. “ It’s mostly just friends and family that I hang out with. It is stressful at times but it is worth it. It is an amazing opportunity. I have to thank Highlands Ranch for letting us do it.”

With two sports in the same season, which sport is more important?

“We both prefer volleyball,” said Jolie. “That’s our main sport. When there are overlaps, volleyball comes first. We also love to come out here (softball) and play. And I love to pitch.”

Runner-up finish

The Timm Golf Academy All-Stars finished second in the Sept. 14-15 PGA Junior League regional playoff at Glen Oaks Country Club.

The team of golfers ages 13 and under compiled a 2-1 record and had 25 points.

Players on the team were Clint Summers III from Fort Collins, Gavin Amella from Castle Rock, Roland Thornton of Aurora, Andre Dumonteil of Centennial, Miles Kuhl of Boulder, Matai Naqica of Centennial, Charlie John Tucker of Castle Pines, Brayden DeStefano of Colorado Springs, Seamus MacPhee of Centennial and Austin Barry of Fort Collins.

Honor roll

Each week performances of South Metro athletes and teams will be highlighted. This week’s performances were selected from games, matches and meets between Sept. 12 and Sept. 19.

Three golfers had under-par scores in the final Continental League golf tournament of the season on Sept. 17 at Spring Valley Golf Club. Bo Wardynski of Regis took medalist honors with a 4-under-par 68, Tarek Salem of Highlands Ranch fashioned a 2-under-par 70 and Ryan Occhionero of Regis had a 1-under-par 71.

Basketball standout Julian Hammond III, who is the quarterback for the Cherry Creek football team, completed 19 of 29 passes for 243 yards and five touchdowns in a 35-0 win over Mullen on Sept. 13.

Junior Rylie Kadel had 15 kills and a 65.2 kill percentage as Legend , third ranked in the CHSAANow.com 5A volleyball poll, defeated No. 5 Valor Christian 3-0 in a match held Sept. 19.

Mountain Vista scored 28 second-half points to notch a 28-21 win over Rocky Mountain on Sept. 19 to earn Garrett Looney his first win as Golden Eagles coach.

Valor Christian, third in the Class 5A football rankings, tallied 21 points in the second half to down Pine Creek, the state’s top-ranked 4A team, 24-14 on Sept. 19. Valor rushed for 313 yards in the game with Gavin Sawchuk gaining 178 yards and two touchdowns and Jack Howell adding 138 yards and one score.

Jim Benton is a sports writer for Colorado Community Media. He has been covering sports in the Denver area since 1968. He can be reached at jbenton@coloradocommunitymedia.com or at 303-566-4083.

Jim Benton


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