Photo by Erik Smith/

Central Valley High School kicker Austin Rehkow follows the line of a 67-yard-field goal he drilled Oct. 18 as time expired to send a game against Shadle Park into overtime. The Bears eventually won, and the state-record kick gained Rehkow national attention.

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Athletic Rehkow family enjoying magical year
10/24/2012 11:11:15 AM

By Mike Vlahovich
Splash Contributor

Just when you thought things could get no better in the Rehkow household, they did with one mighty swing of a foot.

Last March in Tacoma, Central Valley's girls and boys basketball teams reached the State 4A finals. Freddie Rehkow coached the girls; his son, Austin, was a standout for the boys. It's an experience that seldom happens to one family.

Last Thursday, however, Austin Rehkow's 67-yard field goal with time running out and the Bears trailing Shadle Park not only forced overtime and an eventual CV overtime win, but also made him a national sensation.

Place kicking can be fickle, as a Sports Illustrated article about last year's bowl games pointed out. You are only as good as your last success.

Normally reliable kickers miss what for them are chip shots in a loss and are vilified. Kick one for a win and you are lionized.


That's how it is living in a fishbowl.

Austin Rehkow's 67-yard shot heard round the country was a doozey.

Whatever happens from here, it's a moment the family will always cherish.

And basketball is right around the corner.

Sanders bouys Bears
A year ago, Skye Sanders was Central Valley's highest finisher at the State 4A girls cross country meet in Pasco. Then she underwent knee ligament surgery and coach Dennis McGuire wasn't sure if she'd be able to return.

"Getting Skye back seven months after ACL surgery, I didn't expect it at all," McGuire said.

Although staying relatively fit during rehabilitation, Sanders hadn't been able to fully run with the team until mid-September.

"She was doing the bikes and physical training, but getting the lungs into running shape is tough," McGuire said.

Sanders ran 11th in a late-September Greater Spokane League race at CV, but placed 12th in the Richland Invitational. In last Wednesday's final league meet, Sanders finished fourth for the Bears and eighth overall, two minutes faster than the GSL race three weeks earlier.

The Bears, ranked seventh in state, beat Lewis and Clark for the GSL title and this weekend are in Richland for state qualifying.

CV boys are also chasing a return state trip after tying for second in league. They are ranked second in state.

"We finished 4-5 in the GSL last year, and we went 8-1 this year," coach Kieran Mahoney said. "I always tell the guys you earn every victory, you just don't go through the drive-through and order one up. (It has been) an awesome season."

District playoffs for two
Central Valley volleyball and soccer teams began postseason play this week, both with an eye toward state. Both teams played Mead, the Bears seeded No.1 in 4A soccer and with a victory in either of two matches heads to regionals beginning Tuesday.

CV failed in its attempt to win the league, dropping a 2-0 decision to unbeaten Mt. Spokane.

Volleyball is seeded second behind the state's top-ranked team, but likewise has two chances at winning a regional berth.

The Bears finished tied for fourth at 6-3 with Shadle Park, one of three 3A schools with equal or better records.

Nemesis thwarts CV softball
It's usually been a University-Central Valley slowpitch softball tournament final, and as usual the Titans won the championship, 6-2 over the Bears. CV beat U-Hi for the GSL title once. U-Hi has won the rest.