west albany bulldogs

West Albany scores big in 5A finale

The Bulldogs stiffle Sherwood's explosive offense and win 21-20 in overtime
Nov. 30, 2013 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal

HILLSBORO - After diving across the goal line for the tying score in the Class 5A final Saturday night, West Albany senior Jake LaCoste decided not to watch the extra point attempt - the kick that would propel him and fellow seniors into school lore.

"I didn't want to look," he said afterward, "so I just listened."

Senior Matt Wiest sent the kick through the uprights and the second-seeded Bulldogs beat top seed and defending champion Sherwood, 21-20, on a glorious fall evening.

LaCoste ran for 105 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries, and the team defense held Sherwood to its season-low in points on the way to the school's third title in seven years. For the seniors, though, it brought the program back to where it was prior to 2010, when the Bulldogs missed the state playoffs entirely.

Sherwood, which beat West Albany 48-0 in Week 2, lost in the final for the second time in three seasons - having lost to Mountain View of Bend 14-13 in 2011. The previous year, the Bowmen beat Marist 26-23 in overtime in the final. Sherwood beat Marist 46-20 in the final last season.

Both West Albany and Sherood finished 12-1, with the loss to the other school. Both programs will move to Class 6A next year.

Sherwood senior Keegan Lawrence ran for 162 yards and two touchdowns, and also caught a touchdown pass. But he lost a fumble inside the Bulldogs' 10 in the closing moments of the game, which then went to overtime tied at 14-all.

Sherwood scored first in overtime on a 15-yard run by Lawrence, but the extra-point attempt didn't get across the offensive line, which allowed West Albany to jump at the opportunity to end the game with a touchdown and extra point.




West Albany serves notice with repeat

The Bulldogs beat Willamette a year before moving up to Class 6A
Nov. 9, 2013 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal

HILLSBORO - West Albany's dream of winning its first state title from a year ago turned into the start of a streak with a defense of its Class 5A title Saturday night.

The top-seeded Bulldogs beat upstart Willamette, 25-21, 25-11, 25-15, at Liberty High School behind a dominating performance from its seniors and junior hitter Payton Rund.

Rund pounded out 16 kills with just one error, and senior setter Haley Wells had 31 assists for West Albany, which gave up 21 or more points in just two games of its four-match playoff run. Senior Alyvia Sams added 10 kills and senior Marandah had six kills and no errors.

Willamette got 16 kills from senior Alycia Wodke, who had 50 of her team's 86 total attacks during the match. The sixth-seeded Wolverines, who upset No. 2 seed Churchill in the semifinals Friday night, struggled with errors in the match, losing that stat to the Bulldogs 17-5.

West Albany will take its two-year title run into Class 6A when the OSAA reclassification takes affect in September. With Rund as a team leader, the Bulldogs will be among the state contenders - the team having played evenly with Class 6A No. 1 seeded Central Catholic during the season.



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