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ArlingtonArlington teams have met Liberty challenge

Arlington teams have met Liberty challenge

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In 2015, when the Yorktown Patriots switched from the National to what was considered the much more competitive Liberty District, there was concern within the high school regarding the athletic program’s future success status.

Yorktown teams had been dominant in the National District, winning scads of annual league championships. But in the new league, would the Patriots even contend for any titles, let alone be competitive or even qualify for region or state tournaments?

At first, there wasn’t much immediate success for Yorktown squads. The perennial National District football power struggled in the new league at first, finishing 2-5 and 3-4 the first two seasons in the Liberty.

At the time of the district switch, Yorktown director of student activities Mike Krulfeld had concerns, as well, but said Yorktown teams would have to get better across the board to meet the challenge in the district.


Those concerns are no longer. Yorktown teams have indeed met Krulfeld’s challenge and gone beyond, having become one of top athletic programs, not just in the Liberty District, but the 6D North Region and Class 6 state competitions, as well.

In the last 10 months, three different Yorktown teams and two individuals have won Class 6 state championships. This fall. the Yorktown girls field hockey team won district, region and state crowns, and senior Yorktown cross country runner Owen McArdle won region and state crowns. The Yorktown boys cross country team was second in the state.

During the past winter and spring campaigns, Yorktown’s girls swim and dive team won a state title and the boys lacrosse squad captured district, region and state crowns with an undefeated record.  The girls swimming team was led by multiple-event individual state champion Torrie Huske, who also swam on two winning relays.

This fall, the Yorktown football team won its second district title in three seasons, as the Patriots have now become the league’s perennial top contender. In 2017, 2018 and 2020, the Patriots finished second.

“The Liberty is now a district we feel comfortable competing in,” Yorktown football coach Bruce Hanson said.

Other Yorktown teams – baseball, boys basketball, girls gymnastics, boys cross country and wrestling – have won Liberty crowns in recent years. Yorktown girls soccer teams won two recent state championships. The Yorktown golf team was a state- qualifier this fall, with Benjamin Newfield having won a state crown and finishing second in recent consecutive seasons.

Yorktown girls and boys tennis teams are perennial district contenders, if not champions.

“Our teams have improved and our coaching has gotten better too,” Krulfeld said.

The Washington-Liberty Generals also moved from the National to Liberty district in 2015, and shared similar concerns about being able to compete. A number of W-L teams also have enjoyed significant success, as well, like girls volleyball, boys basketball, girls cross country, girls field hockey, boys soccer and girls gymnastics.

This fall, the Wakefield Warriors moved from the National, where many teams enjoyed significant success for many years, to the Liberty District. Time will tell how the Wakefield teams do in a new league, but the football squad quickly set the tone with a second-place finish in the league this fall.

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