August 26, 2015 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal
With just a week left before the fall high school season begins, both Central Catholic of Portland and Summt of Bend enter as the dominant programs at their classifications.
Central Catholic won three Class 6A state titles last fall: football, boys soccer and boys cross country, and reached the volleyball finals. Summit won three Class 5A titles: girls soccer, boys and girls cross country; and boys water polo, which is a sport not affiliated with the OSAA.
Solid programs in all three sports for the Rams make them a contender for titles in the same four sports, while Summit is a clear favorite for both cross country titles as well as the remaining sports, which has many Class 5A schools pointing out the school is sixed for Class 6A play due to its enrollment. Both Summit and Bend, which played in the girls soccer final, have more than 1,300 students when the Class 5A cut-off for Class 6A is roughly 1,250 students.
At other classifications, Valley Catholic won a pair of 4A titles: girls soccer and boys cross country; Oregon Episcopal won both soccer titles at 3A, and Burns won the Class 2A football and volleyball titles, becoming the first school do win that pair of titles since the state moved to six classifications in 2007.
Among other state highlights, Hermiston won its first football title, St. Helens won its first volleyball title, and Hood River Valley won its first boys soccer title - all at Class 5A.
The most notable absence among state champions was Crook County, which had its run of state volleyball titles snapped at eight.
Summit enters the season with the longest run of championships at seven girls cross country titles. The Storm is the favorite to win this year and into the future as three of its top seven state finishers were freshman last year, and state champion Olivia Brooks won as a sophomore.
The Rams beat McKay to reach soccer finals against Jesuit
Nov. 12, 2013
For the third week in a row, Central Catholic High will be competing for a state championship on Saturday.
With a 3-0 victory over McKay of Salem Tuesday, the Rams will play for the Class 6A boys soccer state title at Hillsboro Stadium. There, they'll meet Portland-area rival Jesuit, which beat West Linn 2-0 in its semifinal.
Central Catholic won the boys cross country state title Nov. 2, and played in the volleyball state final Saturday, losing to Lakeridge to finish second.
One key point of the soccer final is that one of the teams will, at least technically, have to allow a goal. Both teams qualified for the final without allowing a goal. Central Catholic outscored its four opponents 11-0, while Jesuit - the defending champion - outscored its four opponents 18-0, including a 9-0 victory over Barlow in the first round.
Game time for the final is 3:30 p.m.
Saturday's final will feature a new champion as upstart Hood River Valley beat three-time defending champion Woodburn 3-1 in overtime Tuesday. In the final, set for 10:20 a.m. at Hillsboro Stadium, they Eagles will meet Summit of Bend, which beat Wilsonville 2-0 in its semifinal.
A pair of underdogs, Henley and Sisters, will meet in the final at 3:30 p.m. at Liberty High. Henley, seeded fifth in the 16-team playoff bracket, beat North Bend 4-0 in its semifinal, while Sisters, seeded seventh, beat Philomath 2-0.
Eighth-seeded St. Mary's of Medford will meet third-seed Oregon Episcopal after both teams won road games Tuesday. For St. Mary's, the trip will be its third to the Portland-area in eight days. OES made the lengthy drive to Riverside for a 2-1 win.
In the girls semifinals, Tualatin scored a major upset by beating Jesuit 2-0 at Jesuit. The goals Tualatin scored were the only two the Crusaders allowed all season.
In the final, the Timberwolves will face Sunset, which beat neighboring Westview 1-0 in overtime. The game is set for 6 p.m. at Hillsboro Stadium.
Top seed and defending champion Summit will face upstart Wilson in the final at Hillsboro Stadium at 1 p.m. The Storm beat crosstown rival Bend 2-1 in its semi, while Wilson, seeded 15th, beat third seed Wilsonville 3-1 in its third straight road win.
Top seed LaGrande will face third seed Scappoose in the final at Liberty High. Both teams played all three of their playoff games at home, with LaGrande beating North Bend 1-0 in its semifinal, while Scappoose beat 3-1 in its semi.
Top-seeded Oregon Episcopal will face second seed Valley Catholic in the final at Liberty High. Neither team allowed a goal in their two playoff wins.
The Rams are primed to unseat Jesuit as Class 6A state champions
Nov. 8, 2013 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal
The state's top volleyball programs are prepping for title runs beginning Friday with the quarterfinals of six state tournaments being held at three sites across the state.
None of the tournaments will have as much focus as the Class 6A event, which features top-seeded Central Catholic looking to regain its spot atop the state.
The Rams were heavy favorites to win last season, but were upset by upstart Roseburg in the semifinals, losing 15-13 in the fifth game.
Jesuit then defeated the Indians in the final, rallying from a 3-1 deficit to claim its first title in four years.
The defending champions in four of the other five tournaments return.
Here's a rundown with the finals being held Saturday night at Liberty High School for 6A/5A, Lane Community College for 4A/3A and Ridgeview High School for 2A/1A.
CLASS 6A - Central Catholic's tournament run begins with Sheldon Friday morning and is likely to run into Jesuit Friday night. The teams met in the final from 2009-11 with the Rams winning each time. Lakeridge is the surprise at No. 2 with Three Rivers League rivals Clackamas and West Linn in its half of the bracket. The Pacers have not even reached a final in their history. Roseburg returns as a threat seeded third.
CLASS 5A - Defending champion West Albany played its way to the No. 1 seed during the season and is a heavy favorite to repeat. Churchill, which took the Bulldogs to four game in the final last year, is seeded second. St. Helens, which needed a 19-17 win in the fifth game against Mountain View Saturday, is seeded third with Bend fourth.
CLASS 4A - Is there any doubt Crook County will win its eighth-straight title Saturday night? Well, the Cowgirls are seeded second in the playoffs, so there's a hint of drama. Cascade, which has never played in a final and wasn't in the quarterfinals last season, is seeded first with Hidden Valley and Banks seeded third and fourth, respectively.
CLASS 3A - It's been 31 years since Vale won a title, but the Vikings are seeded first with defending champion Santiam Christian, which has won three titles in the last four seasons, seeded second.
CLASS 2A - Defending champion Culver is back as is finalist Days Creek, which won in 2011. But, the teams would meet in the semifinals leaving a finals spot open for a team such as top-seeded Weston-McEwen, which won in 2010.
CLASS 1A - Defending champion and perennial power Powder Valley, which had reached the final the past three years, didn't qualify for the playoffs leaving top-seeded Lowell as the favorite. A title would be the program's first. Dufur is seeded second.
Thompson leads Central Catholic to repeat win; Summit dominates again
Nov. 2, 2013 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal
EUGENE - Anyone who expected close finish at the OSAA Cross Country State Meet Saturday got one in the final race of the day - when Kyle Thompson of Central Catholic and Reilly Bloomer of South Eugene hit the track at Lane Community College within meters of one another.
Bloomer put on a burst in an attempt to catch Thompson as the crowd cheered for just such a move. But, Thompson reacted with his own surge and cast Bloomer's late rally aside to win the race in 15 minutes, 22 seconds and return to the role of state champion he took on as a sophomore before finishing third last year.
"It feels really good to be state champion again," Thompson said. "That was a great race to win, the kind I like. It's fun when the crowd gets all into the race."
Saturday's races were marked by strong performances from state champion runners, who largely ran away from their fields by midrace.
CLASS 6A -Thompson's five-second win over Bloomer helped the Rams score just 33 points - the low team total of the day - for their seventh win in 11 years.
CLASS 5A -Junior Matthew Maton of Summit turned in the best performance of the day on the boys side by finishing in 14:59, which beat the field by 51 seconds. The Storm won the team title as well for the third straight year.
CLASS 4A - Senior Mitchell Butler of Siuslaw moved up from second in the 2012 race to the individual title, crossing the finish line in 15:37 and edging teammate Mack Marbas by four seconds. The top two finish didn't stop LaSalle of Milwaukie, though, from winning the school's first team title.
CLASS 3A - Senior David Ribich became only the third runner from Enterprise to win a state title with a 13-second win over Creswell senior Zach Bellew, clearing the course in 15:58. Valley Catholic won the team title for the second time in three years led by senior Cooper Roach and junior Wilder Boyden, who both finished in 16:39.
CLASS 6A - Sophomore Ella Donaghu of Grant, whose fourth-place run last year was a key to her school winning the team title, bested last year's champion, junior Sara Tsai of South Eugene, by 24 seconds, winning in 18:01. Sunset, led by senior Charlotte Corless, won the team title for the first time in three decades.
CLASS 5A - Summit sophomore Hannah Gindlesperger put on one of the top performances of the day by finishing in 17:53, which won her race by 44 seconds over freshman teammate Olivia Brooks. The Storm easily won the team title for the sixth straight year.
CLASS 4A - Senior Shaylen Crook used her school's drop from Class 5A to 4A and inspiration from just clearing the 19-minute mark to become Marhfield's first girls individual champion. Crook, the lone runner from Marshfield in the race, finished in 18:28 and won by 31 seconds over Molalla senior Emily Bever. Bever scored a win, though, in the team race, which the Indians won for the first time.
CLASS 3A - Union won the team race for the third straight year led by seniors McKenzie Powell and Katriel O'Reilly, who switched spots atop the individual standings from last year when O'Reilly won by 17 seconds. This year Powell won by 21 seconds.
A pair of first-half goals boosts the Crusaders past Central Catholic
Nov. 10, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal
The Jesuit combination of offense and defense worked to perfection again Saturday, and the Crusaders beat arch-rival Central Catholic 2-1 in the quarterfinals of the OSAA Class 6A boys soccer playoffs at Cronin Field.
Juniors Tyler Street and Christo Michaelson scored in the first half and Jesuit improved to 15-1-1 with its 10th shutout of the season.
The win was the fifth shutout in the past six games, in which the Crusaders have outscored opponents 25-1.
Central Catholic had produced six consecutive shutouts entering the game, but failed to score for only the third time this season and finished at 12-1-3.
Jesuit will head to the semifinals Tuesday looking to advance to the championship match for the 16th time, and second time in three years after winning in 2010. The Crusaders lead all boys programs with 12 titles.
Roseburg scores a historic win over Central Catholic in volleyball action
Nov. 9, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
Crook County and West Albany did exactly what they were supposed to Friday in the OSAA Volleyball state tournament they were seeded as a favorite to win. And, so did Roseburg, but in a match they weren't expected to win.
Roseburg, seeded No. in its quarter of the Class 6A bracket, beat three-time defending champion Central Catholic, seeded No. 1 in its quarter, in five games in the semifinals to advance to a championship match for the first time.
The Indians, who were seeded No. 1 last year, but lost in the quarterfinals, beat the Rams 25-17, 20-25, 25-22, 18-25, 15-13, the only match that went five game in the tournament Friday. In fact, of the six tournaments being played at three locations within the state, only four reached five games. Roseburg is one of just three three teams to reach a final having lost one or more games on the path there. Astoria won a five-game match Friday morning, the followed that with a four-game match in the evening, and will play six-time defending champion Crook County in the Class 4A final.
West Albany, also in a final for the first time, won its two matches handily Friday, giving up no more than 17 points in any of the six games it contested. Churchill reached the final with a four-game win over Pendleton and sweep of Bend. Churchill is in a final for the first time since 1974, when it won the very first tournament sanctioned by the OSAA.
Nov. 8, 2012
Central Catholic and Crook County may be as much of a lock to win a state title in volleyball as there is in any of the team sports this fall, while West Albany is trying to break through for its first title.
The Rams and Lady Cowboys are two of the highlight teams as the OSAA Volleyball State Tournaments begin Friday at three sites.
Central Catholic and the Class 6A tournament will play out at Liberty High in Hillsboro, along with the Class 5A tournament, while Crook County and Class 4A will compete along with Class 3A at Lane Community College. The Class 2A and 1A tournaments are set for the newly-built Ridgeview High in Redmond.
Among the top stories outside the two CCs is West Albany, which is among the state's top teams at any level, having lost only to Class 6A Jesuit on the way to a 26-1 record. The Lady Bulldogs have yet to play for a championship.
Summit, the defending champion at Class 5A, is seeded second in the lower half of the eight-team bracket, with Churchill as No. 1.
Sisters, a relative neighbor for Crook County, is the other top seed in the 4A tournament.
Class 3A is headed for a new champion as defending champ Burns fell in the first round. Corbett and Blanchet Catholic are the top seeds.
At Class 2A, defending champion Days Creek enters the tournament as a No. 2 seed, with Reedsport and Heppner claiming the two top seeds.
At Class 1A, defending champion Ione lost in the playoff's first round, leaving Powder Valley and Perrydale as the top contenders. Powder Valley has reached the final the past two seasons and lost in the fifth game of a best-of-five title match each time.
Central Catholic heads to the 6A tournament as one of four No. 1 seeds from the 32-team playoff bracket. The tournament played out as it was seeded, with only two upsets among 24 matches, both No. 3 seeds winning at a No. 2 on Saurday. Clackamas, Jesuit and Roseburg are the other No. 1 seeds.
Nov. 2, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
The annual gathering of runners from high schools across Oregon is the start to the OSAA state championship season, and Central Catholic is poised to become the dominant program, at least in Fall.
Not only to the Rams have the defending Class 6A individual champion in junior Kyle Thompson, but the team is among the favorites to win in the final event of a day that begins with the Class 3A girls final at 10 a.m.
Thompson is one of five returning champions who'll battle the 5,000-meter course at Lane Community College. St. Mary's junior Paige Rice won the Class 6A girls title, Summit senior Travis Neuman won at Class 5A boys, Klamath Union senior Alisha Luna won at 4A girls, and Creswell sophomore Olivia Powell won at Class 3A girls.
Outside of the Class 4A race, which Siuslaw is an overwhelming favorite to win, most of the team races figure to be highly competitive as they were last year when Scappoose edged Klamath Union by just one point.
Rice won the most competitive individual title, edging South Eugene's Sara Tsai by one second.
State champions Thompson and Rice win easily to qualify for state
Oct. 24, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
The defending state champions at Class 6A ran as they were expected and won the individual titles at the Mt. Hood Conference district cross country meet Wednesday at Centennial High School.
Kyle Thompson, a junior at Central Catholic, won the boys race by 25 seconds over Barlow senior Jackson Haselnus, while Paige Rice, a junior at St. Mary's Academy, won the girls race by nearly 17 seconds over senior teammate Ellen Patterson.
Rice, who won last year's state title by one second, set a personal record for a 5,000-meter course, finishing in 17 minutes, 46 seconds. St. Mary's easily won the girls meet with all seven of its team members placing in the top 10.
Central Catholic won the boys meet by placing its five scoring runners in the top 8.
Barlow finished second in the boys meet and Gresham finished second in the girls meet to each qualify for the state championships, scheduled for Nov. 3, at Lane Community College.
1. Central Catholic 26, Barlow 53, Reynolds 62, Centennial 94, David Douglas 134, Gresham, inc.
1. St. Mary's Academy 21, Gresham 77, Barlow 100, Reynolds 104, Central Catholic 106, David Douglas 111, Centennial 214.
District cross country meets open the OSAA playoff schedule
Oct. 22, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
A slew of district cross country meets wlll begin the drama of the OSAA championships event this week across Oregon.
Teams at four classifications will be whittled to two each in every district along with individual qualifiers along 5,000-meter courses.
Wednesday is the biggest day for the state when 11 district meets are scheduled to take place, including four of the Class 6A meets: the Mt. Hood Conference at Centennial High, Metro League at Tualatin Hills Parks and Rec., Central Valley at Salem's Push Park, and Three Rivers League at Clackamas Community College.
District meets will continue through Saturday.
Here is the schedule of district meets by classification.
Central Valley - Wednesday at Salem, Bush Park
Metro League - Wednesday at Tualatin Hills Rec. Center
Mt. Hood Conference -Wednesday at Centennial High
Pacific Conferenece - Thursday at Clackamas Comm. College
Southwest - Thursday at Central Point, TouVelle State Park
Three Rivers League - Wednesday at Clackamas Comm. College
PIL - Wednesday at Lents Park
Northwest Oregon - Wednesday at Gresham, Blue Lake Park
Midwestern - Wednesday at Eugene, Alton Baker Park
Mid-Willamette -Wednesday at Woodburn, Mission Bottom Park
Columbia River - Saturday at Hood River High
Intermountain - Friday at Bend High
Tri-Valley - Wednesday at Estacada, McIver State Park
Cowapa - Thursday at Warrenton, Camp Rilea
Sky-Em - Thursday at Lane Comm. College
Oregon West - Saturday at Cascade High
Far West - Thursday at North Bend, Tugman State Park
Skyline - Wednesday at Henley High
Greater Oregon - Saturday at LaGrande High
District 1 -Thursday at Beaverton, Tualatin Hills Rec. Center
District 2 - Thursday at Salem, Bush Park
District 3 - Thursday at Salem, Bush Park
District 4 - Saturday at Crow, Polyrock Ranch
District 5 - Friday at Pendleton, McKay Park
District 6 - Thursday at Rogue River, Valley of the Rogue Park