Indians claim fourth-straight title to highlight state meet
By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
PORTLAND - The University of Roseburg did it again.
With team members sporting visors with "University of R" on them, Roseburg High won the Class 6A wrestling state championship for the fourth straight year Saturday at Memorial Coliseum, a feat highlighted by two four-time champions.
Layne Van Anrooy capped an unbeaten season with the title at 160 pounds, and Haydn Maley won the 220-pound title to lead the Indians to a meet-record 366 points, beating the previous record by 63 points. Van Anrooy and Maley are the first teammates to win four state titles in the same four years.
Crater, which had 22 wrestlers in the meet, won at Clas 5A for its first title since 2006, ending Hermiston's four-year run of titles in the process.
Nyssa won at Class 3A with 287 points, the runner-up score to Roseburg, for its third-straight title.
Culver had four individual champions and won at 2A for its fourth-consecutive title.
Iin the closest team race in the history of the meet, Sweet Home beat Crook County 181-180.5, earning its total by getting five wrestlers into their weight finals.
Since the OSAA went to six classifications in 2007 - which turned into five wrestling divisions, Roseburg and Culver have ruled their classifications. Roseburg has won nine of the 11 finals in that time, while Culver has won 10.
Knights head back to 3A tourney with 49-46 win over Coquille
By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
PORTLAND - The De La Salle North Catholic basketball program might not have a dazzling on-campus arena, but it definitely has a home territory in the Class 3A hoop world at the Moore Street Salvation Army Gym. And, the Knights did what they needed to protect their home court Friday, and played their way back into the boys state tournament with a 49-46 victory over Coquille.
Sophomore Kadeem Nelson scored 15 points, senior Jordanos Lincoln scored 10 and senior Marquis Guntle added 10 points, including hitting all four of this free-throw attempts in the final 40 seconds to send the team back to the tournament in Coos Bay for the fifth consecutive year.
Junior Seth Waddington scored a game-high 17 points to lead the Red Devils, who lost to the Knights for the third time in four years in the tournament play-in game. Coquille has missed the tournament by one victory eight times in the past nine years, and has not been to the double-elimination tournament since 2003.
De La Salle improved to 20-5 on the season, and will play Amity in the quarterfinals Thursday at North Bend High School. Amity beat Colton 69-63 Friday to improve to 21-5.
Coquille finished at 19-7.
The Class 3A Tournament begins Wednesday with the girls quarterfinals, then picks up with the boys quarterfinals Thursday. The boys and girls championship games are set for Saturday at Marshfield High in Coos Bay.
De La Salle's quickness and physical play seemed to catch Coquille off-guard at the start of the game, and the Knights went up 9-0 before the Red Devils scored. Early in the second quarter the lead extended to 18-7, but junior guard Henry Scolari led the Coquille comeback by continually breaking the De La Salle fullcourt pressure. A series of lay-ups by senior forwards Noah Hyatt and senior Dustin Davis, and clutch jump shots from Waddington eventually turned into a 34-33 lead when Davis completed a three-point play with 2:16 left in the third quarter.
Coquille led 38-36 entering the fourth quarter, but quickly reached 10 team fouls and the Knights spent much of the fourth quarter at the free throw line. De La Salle outscored Coquille 13-8 in the final quarter, with nine of those points as free throws as the lead changed hands five times.
A pair of free throws by Scolari with 43 seconds left cut De La Salle's lead to 45-44, then after Guntle hit a pair of free throws, Hyatt scored after an offensive rebound to make the score 47-46. Guntle drew a quick foul and hit both shots with nine seconds left.
Coquille set up Waddington for a game-tying shot, but it missed and the Knights celebrated a return to the Southern Oregon Coast.
The Generals' offense doesn't quite click, but they beat Lincoln 61-50
By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
PORTLAND - A season-low total of points in the first quarter might have been just what the Grant Generals needed as they head toward the state playoffs.
After putting up just six points in the first quarter and trailing by as many as 10 points in the half, Grant rallied behind solid defense and strong passing to overcome an inspired performance by Lincoln, 61-50, in a PIL boys basketball game Tuesday at Lincoln.
Grant got 15 points from junior Kelton Samore, and 14 points each from senior Noel Bangsberg and sophomore Aaron Deloney to improve to 14-8 overall and 12-3 in league play with one game left against Benson. The Generals are ranked No. 9 by the OSAA calculations, which would put them in position to play host to possibly two games in the state playoffs next week.
"I told them that's playoff basketball, at it's best for us," Grant coach Robert Key said of his post-game team meeting. "One of the best wins on the road for us all season."
Lincoln got 15 points from junior Bryce Sloan, but got outscored 22-6 in the fourth quarter and dropped to 13-8, 10-5 with its OSAA ranking at 16. At No. 16, the Cardinals would play host to a first-round playoff game.
Grant entered the game with the idea a win would boost its resume to a ranking of No. 8, with a key factor being its strength of schedule that includes top-ranked Jefferson twice as well as No. 2 West Linn twice. All four games were among its eight losses. At No. 9, they would only play host to the first-round game and play the second round at the 8th seed unless that team lost in the first round.
The resume boost looked shaky in the first eight minutes as the Generals missed lay-ups and an array of outside shots, scoring just six points and trailing 14-6 after one quarter. The team ramped up its offense to trail just 29-24 at halftime and finally got the lead at 37-36 on an offensive rebound by the 6-foot-9 Samore with 3:16 left in the third quarter.
Lincoln finished out the quarter with an 8-2 run and led 44-39 with eight minutes left. But, the Cardinals scored only one point in the first five minutes of the quarter and strong free-throw shooting by Deloney - who made nine of this 10 free throws, boosted the Generals to the win.
Sunset's girls, Jesuit's boys keep Metro League in control
GRESHAM - In one of the closest finishes in the state's history of swimming, Sunset rallied in the final event and won the Class 6A girls title by slightly less than four seconds at Mt. Hood Community College Saturday.
The Apollos won the final event, the 400-meter freestyle relay, by 3.38 seconds to beat Jesuit 203-199 in the overall standings. With Jesuit out of entries and not in the final, Sunset needed to win the event to overtake the Crusaders, and did when freshman Tia Lindsey hit the wall, finishing in 3 minutes, 36.50 seconds to score 32 points. Lakeridge finished second in 3:40.38.
Jesuit, which featured three seniors on its final relay squad, won the 400-freestyle relay on the boys side and easily outscored Sunset, 246-113, to win the state title for the third consecutive year, a string that followed four-straight titles by Sunset.
A team from the Metro League has won the girls title for 13 consecutive years.
Individually, Centennial senior Jamie Stone won the 50 and 100 freestyle finals for the fourth consecutive year, making her one of the state's top individual at a historic level.
In other finals, Bend won the Class 5A girls title for the second time in three years, while Hillsboro won on the boys side.
At Class 4A, Sweet Home won both the boys and girls championships, defending its girls title from a year ago and winning a boys title for the first time since 2010.
Techsters dispatch Cleveland, gear up for playoff run
By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
PORTLAND - Benson's season of success kept moving forward Friday with a 74-36 victory over host Cleveland in PIL girls basketball action.
Sophomore Taylor LyDay scored 20 points, sophomore Makenzy Porter added 15 and sophomore Mahogany Menefee hit four three-point shots and finished with 12 points in the win, which helped the team get one step closer to its ultimate goal: reach the state tournament for the first time since 1996.
The Techsters, who made 11 three-pointers and improved to 18-3 on the season, 13-1 in league play, while Cleveland dropped to 12-8 overall, 9-6.
Junior Julia Downing scored 15 points to lead the Warriors, who honored their three seniors: Elena Matt, Luisa Potestio and Tynesha Parnell prior to the game.
Benson beat No. 3 Grant a week earlier, and sits atop the PIL standings tied with the Generals with two regular-season games to play. Cleveland plays at Benson Monday in its season finale, while Benson follows Tuesday with it's final game at home against Franklin.
The Class 6A state playoffs begin March 1 with the first of two play-in rounds. The state tournament is set for March 9-11 at the University of Portland.
A year after reaching the
Benson started the season with narrow losses to Jesuit and Canby, but has won 18 of its last 19 games, falling just to Grant, 64-44 on Jan. 28. Defense has been the key, coach Eric Knox said Friday, to those wins. Only Grant has been able to score more than 50 points per game against the Techsters. Benson has scored more than 50 points in all but five games - three of them losses.
The post-Payton Pritchard Lions are still solid as tournament play nears
By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
In what would be a first for boys basketball in Oregon, West Linn high is on a path to win five consecutive titles as the state playoffs near.
The Lions rode standout Payton Pritchard to Class 6A titles the past four seasons, and are ranked No. 2 according to the OSAA.
Only Jesuit has won four-straight titles in boys basketball, ironically, winning those the four years prior to West Linn's run.
Standing in West Linn's way is North Portland power Jefferson, which has won five titles in the past nine seasons. All of them, though, have been at Class 5A. This season, Jefferson is ranked No. 1 having a win over West Linn, 90-77, under its belt. The Lions have won 12-straight games since that loss, Jan. 16.
Jefferson, 20-1, lost only to Gonzaga College of Washington, D.C., during the Les Schwab Invitational in December.
State playoffs begin for 6A, 5A and 4A teams Feb. 28 with the round of 32 for 6A teams. The state tournaments are set to begin March 8 at the Chiles Center for 6A, Gill Coliseum for 5A, and in Forest Grove for 4A.
The round of 16 begins for 3A, 2A and 1A schools on Friday with defending 3A champion Dayton is ranked No. 1 heading for a home game against St. Mary's of Medford. The 3A tournament plays out March 1-3 in Coos Bay, while the 2A tournament is at the Pendleton Convention Center, and 1A is at Baker High School.
The Class 1A tournament heads for its round of 16 play Friday after eight opening-round games Tuesday that sent winners to match-ups for the eight league champions.
PORTLAND – McMinnville officially joined the ranks of the state's elite cheerleading programs Saturday by winning it's first state title in the annual OSAA championship at Memorial Coliseum.
The Grizzlies upset four-time defending champion Thurston to win the Coed Large division, setting off a massive celebration amongst the teams athletes and coaches.
In the all-day competition, Newberg won it's fifth consecutive title, edging David Douglas for the Coed Small title, while Westview returned to the ranks of title winners in the 6A division after a five-year layoff.
South Albany defended its title at 5A, Gladstone won at 4A after finishing second last year and Delphian of Sheridan defended its title in the 3A division.
McMinnville's program has been on the cusp of a title for years, finishing second in 2009, '13 and last year. But, the win this year was somewhat out of the blue as the team had finished second in competitions five times in January to three different teams: Centennial, Lebanon and Thurston. Saturday, the Grizzlies performed near flawlessly, and edged the Colts 181.40 to 178.20 in overall judging. Lebanon finished third, and Centennial placed fifth behind Hidden Valley.
The title was the first in an OSAA sport or activity since the girls swim team won in 2004.
Westview won five title in six years through 2012, but crosstown rival Aloha won three of the next four years at 6A. Saturday, Westview edged Aloha 190.50-180.90.
Newberg won the past four years in the 6A Small division, but moved to the Coed Small division this year after adding a male teammate, who girls on the team had been urging to join for three years, they said. Moving to that division put the Tigers up against David Douglas, which won the division last year, and had won at 6A Large in 2015.
Although David Douglas had a strong performance, scoring 200.70, Newberg hit the day's top score at 210.90. South Albany had the second highest score at 204.40, winning by 21 points over The Dalles.
South Albany had the day's top score for its overall routine, edging David Douglas in that category 59-58.
Gladstone's win at 4A reversed last year's top finishers as the Gladiators beat defending champion Sweet Home by just 0.20 points: 175.80-175.60. Henley placed third at 172.20.
Delphian's performance, scoring 170.30, would have put it in the top five in the next highest divisions despite having only one senior on its roster.
CAPTAINS: Eva Drazkowski, Jr., Maxine Anderson, Jr.
Crusaders dominate the state tournament for another title
Nov. 7, 2015
HILLSBORO - They were almost perfect - the Jesuit Crusaders.
Powered by 6-foot-3 middle blocker Jasmine Gross, Jesuit won the OSAA Class 6A Volleyball tournament Saturday night at Liberty High School, beating crosstown rival Central Catholic 22-25, 25-23, 25-15, 25-22 to finish the season 32-0.
The unbeaten record was nearly perfect, too, as the team lost just two games all season, including the first game of the final to the Rams.
Gross and outside hitter Nicole Peterson were named to the all-tournament first team.
In other finals, Summit of Bend beat LaSalle of Milwaukie in three games for the 5A title at Liberty High as well.
In Forest Grove, top-seeded Banks beat Sisters in three games for the 4A title, while Vale outlasted Creswell in five games for the 3A title, earning the win 15-11 in the fifth game.
And at Redmond's Ridgeview High, top-seeded Burns swept through Culver in three games for the 2A title, and Country Christian beat Hosanna Christian in three games for the 1A title.
Grant senior preps for state title defense, Wilson eyes a surprise
Oct. 21, 2015 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal
PORTLAND - Grant senior Ella Donaghu got the kind of run she hoped for as preparation for the state cross country meet - even if she didn't get the race she wanted.
Donaghu, the defending Class 6A state champion, ran to victory by more than a minute at the PIL District championships, helping her team win as well at Fernhill Park in Northeast Portland. Her time of 17 minutes, 42.6 seconds established an unofficial meet record.
Lincoln freshman Kyla Becker finished second in 18:59.4. The Cardinals finished second as a team.
In the boys final, Wilson sophomore Alex Slenning took charge at the mid-point and ran to victory, helping the Trojans upset favored Lincoln in the team race as well.
Slenning won at 15:42.5, with junior teammate Caleb Seely finishing second in 15:54.4.
Lincoln, led by senior Avi Meyer (15:57.3) in third, placed all five of its scoring runners in the top 10, and all seven of its runners in the top 16, but Wilson's second-half surge earned the team win as it placed its five scoring runners in the top 15. Lincoln held five of the top 6 spots at 2,500 meters before fading.
Both Wilson and Lincoln are headed to the state meet with visions of winning, which would give the district its first boys team champion since 1983.
The OSAA championships are set for Lane Community College in Eugene, Oct. 31. Central Catholic has won the past three boys titles and eight of the last 12. South Eugene is the defending girls champion.