OSAA/Prep

High School Football: Thurston Colts Chase First Win on Road

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Two games into the 2013 season and the Thurston Colts football team has two losses. But there’s too much season left and too much potential on his sideline for Thurston head coach Justin Starck to relinquish any aspirations for better results. “There’s a lot to be excited about,” Starck said. “I don’t want us to feel sorry for ourselves and feel like we’re not going to get (ourselves) out of the hole. I believe we can.”

Thurston Colts
Thurston quarterback Brendin Quinn (3) drops back to pass against West Salem. (Courtesy of Tara Reaves)

This past week has been about recuperating from a 42-41 loss to West Salem, a game in which the Colts led 41-28 with 9:52 left in the game. In the season’s first game, Thurston lost another close game, 37-34, to Aloha. A team with 27 seniors, the Colts would appear to have experience in its favor; however, just five players returned with any varsity experience. Many, even upperclassmen, are first-year players, Starck said.

Against West Salem, Starck said his team scored nearly all of its possessions until its last two. “We move the ball very consistently for the most part,” he said. “Unfortunately, we were unable to score in the last two possessions of the game. You have to be able to score when it matters most.”

Two of his team’s most important offensive players are first-time varsity players, and both are seniors: quarterback Brendin Quinn, who moved to the area last year from Washington, and wide receiver Carson Cook, who was second-team all-conference in basketball last year. Quinn is 6-foot-3 and a left-handed thrower. In the first two games, he has passed for 542 yards and completed 47 of 67 passes with four touchdowns and two interceptions. Cook, a 6-foot-3 receiver, has caught 13 passes, three for touchdowns, and a team-leading 217 yards.“(Cook) is coming on and playing as well as anyone in the state at that position,” Starck said. “His is one of the biggest surprises we have ever had.”

The ground game has fared well, too. Senior running back Roy Jackson has averaged 116 yards a game and about 8 yards a carry so far. He’s scored five of the team’s six rushing touchdowns.

Thurston Colts
Thurston High’s offense (white jerseys) has had a productive first two games in 2013. (Courtesy of Tara Reaves)

While the offense has progressed, the Colts defense has labored to hold opposing offenses. The team’s leading tackler is senior linebacker Nick Egbert (16 total, 9 solo) and another senior linebacker, Gauge Hallett, has two sacks.

“It’s communication on defense. It’s tackling and assignment breakdowns with younger players and older players with less experience,” Starck said. “Week one, it was poor tackling. Week two, we had better tackling, but poor communication. We’re an inexperienced team, and it showed at the end of the games. We didn’t hold steady last week.”

This week Thurston heads to South Medford (0-2) for a Southwest Conference game. Starck says the Panthers’s short-passing game will require his defenders to stay in front of developing plays and make sure tackles. Thurston’s offense is expected to encounter a miserly defense reluctant to permit healthy running games.

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High School Football Preview: Willamette Begins Anew with Adam Kennybrew

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When Adam Kennybrew discusses results on the football field, he uses the term by-product. Not fall-out. Not consequence. Not outgrowth. Not wins. At least not yet. For the first-year head coach at Willamette High School, the positive results he foresees for his Wolverines will represent a by-product of the cumulative efforts of his players and coaches. “Our goal each day is to be the absolute best and to operate at the most efficient level as we can individually as well as collectively,” Kennybrew said. “If we are able to do those things, I believe the by-product of that will be overall success.”

Willamette football coach Adam Kennybrew (right) watches his players run a play during practice this week. (David Saez/EDN)
Willamette football coach Adam Kennybrew (right) watches his players run a play during practice this week. (David Saez/EDN)

A former Oregon Duck fullback and special teams player, Kennybrew takes over a Willamette team that finished 2-7 overall last year and 1-6 in the 5A Midwestern League. A total of eight starting players return this season, four each on offense and defense: Samuel Aguirre (junior, running back); Taylor Brown (jr., outside linebacker); Cam Fergusson (senior, wide receiver); Darius Jackson (jr., safety); Kosey Mitchell (jr., quarterback); Nicholas Swanson (sr., offensive lineman); and Donnie York (jr., linebacker).

“The kids have been working hard,” Kennybrew said earlier this week during practice. “They come out with a good mind-set. Our first couple of days is about mental toughness. That’s our focus. We did a lot of conditioning on the front end before we started practice just so they could get used to pushing through when they get tired. They responded really well to that. We’ve had some guys step up and start to separate themselves.”

Adam Kennybrew.
Adam Kennybrew.

Kennybrew says he’s excited about the number of talented juniors on this team and the simple, yet complex defensive framework his coaches have structured. “We are complex, but it is simple for our players,” he said. “Any time you can put kids in a position where they can think less and execute at a faster, higher level of confidence (it) should be a winning equation.”

Offensively, the Wolverines will run a spread offense with intentions of serving defensive teams an up-tempo game. “Our goals are really to just play at a fast tempo and display great mental toughness,” Kennybrew said. “No excuses. There is some evidence of players not having been pushed or challenged regularly. So we’re trying to get them to not settle for who they have been and really be open to who they can become..It’s been awesome to see the kids start to trust: trust in a system that is unfamiliar to them, trust in coaches who are unfamiliar to them.”

All but one coach is new to the team. Kennybrew has brought on two former Oregon Ducks to his coaching staff: former UO linebacker Dietrich Moore holds defensive coordinator and linebacker coaching duties, and former Duck receiver Marshaun Tucker coaches wide receivers. Others on the staff include Tobey Hay (defensive secondary coach); Chase Beach (wide receiver coach); Brett Thorton (wide receiver/defensive back coach); Josh Wolfram (offensive line coach); Scott Boyter (offensive line coach); Kevin Lee (offensive coach); Dainean Nelson (defensive line coach); Curtis Mitchell (defensive line coach); and Darren Hatefi (linebacker coach).

Willamette High football players run their offense during practice. (David Saez/EDN)
Willamette High football players run their offense during practice. (David Saez/EDN)

“I’ve empowered my coaches to invest in the program in such a manner that I have the title of head coach, but really this is our program,” Kennybrew said. “I had the opportunity of hiring people who I’ve admired, look up to and view to be brothers of mine to take on this journey with me. This is our program. It isn’t a my program type of deal. Because I’ve structured it as such, I don’t have that anxiety or the pressure that it’s all about me on the line. I feel we’re in a position to do some amazing things here, and if we’re putting in the work and the kids are putting in the work and learning what we are teaching, then the by-product is success.”

Willamette High School Football Schedule (games start at 7 p.m.)

  • Aug. 30 – at Corvallis
  • Sept. 6 – South Eugene
  • Sept. 13 – Springfield
  • Sept. 20 – at North Eugene
  • Sept. 26 – Marist
  • Oct. 4 – at Churchill
  • Oct. 10 – Eagle Point
  • Oct. 18 – at Ashland

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Cal Ripken 12U World Series Hopes Drive Willamette Valley Baseball Team in Regionals

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Look in the dugout of the Willamette Valley Babe Ruth League’s 12-and-under All-Star team and you’ll find steel baseball equipment racks decorated with each player’s number and the WV team logo above the letters RTA.

The three letters signify the ultimate goal for this team: a trip to the Cal Ripken 12U World Series in Aberdeen, Md. RTA refers to the team’s motto: Road To Aberdeen. Head coach Mitchell Morgan elaborated on this mission on Friday, the last practice day before the team headed out for Centralia, Wash. for the Pacific Northwest Regional Tournament.

The Willamette Valley 12-and-under All-Star player equipment rack with letters RTA, which refer to the team's goal of taking the Road to Aberdeen, Maryland for the Cal Ripken World Series. (Courtesy of Michele Bunch)
The Willamette Valley 12-and-under All-Star player equipment rack with letters RTA, which refer to the team’s goal of taking the Road to Aberdeen, Maryland for the Cal Ripken World Series. (Courtesy of Michele Bunch)

“For us, from day one it’s been the road to Aberdeen,” Morgan said. “We told them we are not here to have a neat experience with regionals. We’re there to win and to advance to the World Series. They are there to advance to Maryland. They put in the hard work all week and seem pretty determined.”

In order to reach Aberdeen, the 12U team will need to win the regional title and earn a bid to the World Series. Today, Willamette Valley 12U takes the next step on that road. The team opens pool play against Wyoming in a 9 a.m. game at the Lewis County Sports Complex Borst Park.

The tournament is made up of eight teams with four teams in two divisions, the American and National divisions. Willamette Valley joins Wyoming, Northern Washington and Black Hills, Wash., the host team. The teams in the National Division are Northern Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Southern Washington. The three teams with the best records in each division advances to Thursday’s single-elimination round. The championship game is played on Friday. The championship winner moves on to play in the World Series on Aug. 9-18.

Morgan said his team is in the position to defend Southern Oregon’s two-year reign as the regional tournament champion. He said last year the team from Roseburg won the tournament and the year before it was the Willamette Valley team that won. Of his 11 players, seven reached the 10U World Series. “Those other players who haven’t been there, they’re hungry for it,” he said. “They want it just as much as everybody else does.”

The group will take the field without outfielder Noah Francis, who broke his left wrist during practice a week ago. “he’s one of the bigger, stronger kids on the team that hit with power. He hit two home runs during the state tournament, so we’ll miss his bat in the lineup for sure.”

“He’s one of the guys…If anything, it’s great motivation. We told them that Noah can’t be on the field so we all have to pick up the slack.”

Willamette Valley 12U All-Stars huddle up on the pitcher's mound with coach Kelly Stedman during the state tournament. (Courtesy of Michele Bunch)
Willamette Valley 12U All-Stars huddle up on the pitcher’s mound with coach Kelly Stedman during the state tournament. (Courtesy of Michele Bunch)

Morgan and his coaches had to scramble to replace Francis. They’ve added Dax Bennett to the team.

The rest of the roster includes: Micah Burke (team leader with five home runs, .291 batting average);  Beau Burnett (.340 BA); D.J. Stedman (.406 BA);  Patrick Herbert (team leader with .615 BA); Calin Morgan (.349 BA); Trevor Groves (.486 BA); Samuel Lerch (team leader with 32 runs batted in, .459 BA); Stephen Parmenter (.455 BA);  Trevor Duran (team leader with 13 stolen bases, .429 BA), and Dylan Hansen (second on the team with a .533 BA). The assistant coaches on the team are Randy Groves and Kelly Stedman.

For Morgan, it’s his first regional tournament as a coach. He was a parent and fan when his son played in the tournament as a 10U team member. “It’s good,” he said. “It’s a different stress and pressure. When you have an injured kid and you’re scrambling to get the paperwork in to add a player to the roster, you’ve got to deal with a lot more than getting your kid to practice or a game.”

 

Sheldon’s McDaniel plays big in 6A quarterfinal baseball game

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He jogged around the bases with a grin on his face. Gaje McDaniel had plenty to smile about on Friday night. His teammates on the Sheldon High baseball team rushed from their dugout and greeted him with cheers, claps, pats and sheer joy. Sometimes in sport, there is magic on the field that leaves you wondering, as McDaniel himself asked afterwards, “(Did) that really happen?”

It did. With one swing of his bat in a quarterfinal game against Crater, the Sheldon catcher advanced his team to the 6A semifinals with a game-ending home run that gave Sheldon a 2-1. He was the lead-off hitter in the bottom of the seventh inning. If his team doesn’t score, the game goes into extra innings. They score, the game’s over.

Tony Tokatly (Sheldon Athletics)
Tony Tokatly
(Sheldon Athletics)

And that’s how it ended. The left-handed hitting McDaniel lined a pitch over the right-field wall, a dramatic close to a tight game. “I knew I had to get on base,” he said. “It was critical that  I did.”

It was his first walk-off home run as a player, and the first Sheldon coach Stan Manley can recall. It capped a big week for McDaniel, who hit a grand slam and another home run in the previous two playoff games. “I’ve been really successful at the plate lately to be honest,” McDaniel said.

“I just kind of said to myself, ‘Hit the ball as hard as you can. Wherever it ends up, you’re all right.”

Some context is needed, though. Successful hitting in baseball is getting one hit in three at-bats, so what McDaniel has done makes hitting .300 look ho-hum. This extraordinary week came from the Sheldon player who at 5-foot-9 is the shortest on the roster. The team’s tallest player at 6-foot-6 is pitcher and outfielder Mike Ralston, a guy that looks like he can bench-press a house.

“That (home run) was huge,” Ralston said. “I can’t put it into words. That’s always a way you want to win a game…Guys always look at him and say he’s the shortest guy on the roster, but no, he’s got more power than any of us.”

Oh, yes, and by the way, McDaniel is the eighth hitter on the Sheldon lineup. Not the normal position you’d find the team’s home run leader. “We have a lot of guys that can hit the ball very well,” he said.

On Friday, the Irish were puzzled at the plate by Crater’s tallest player, 6-foot-5 pitcher Nolan Bastendorff. The junior threw off-speed pitches and consistently located his pitches on the corners of the plate. Bastendorff was doing this to a Sheldon team that had scored 22 runs the night before and 11 runs in its first-round playoff game.

“We thought he’d be able to keep (Sheldon) off balance because he’s able to mix pitches well and (able) to throw pitches in counts that are hard to anticipate,” Crater coach Jay Campbell said. “He was able to do that for the most part. He kept us right there in the game.”

And he did, until the last pitch, which McDaniel sent over the fence near a light pole between the 324- and 358-foot markers on outfield wall. McDaniel’s home run gave Sheldon its first lead of the game.

Crater took a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning, when Comets first baseman Anthony Martin blasted a solo home run over the left-field fence. An inning later, Sheldon pinch runner Spencer Clark scored from third base on a wild pitch that got past the Crater catcher. Clark was running for Mitch Lewis, who hit a double to start the inning. Clark advanced to third on a Crater error. Then, with the game 1-1, McDaniel took the swing that ended it.

“We’ve had several late-inning comebacks this year,” said Manley, Sheldon’s coach. “And the kids all knew that. They reminded themselves that we’ve come back from these things all year. So why not today?”

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Sports Desk: Churchill Now Moves Into top Spot

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chs_logoBehind a huge third quarter, the Churchill Lancers (18-4, 9-0) toped the Sheldon Irish (17-6, 5-1) 67-49 at home to move into the No. 1 spot in the OSAA 5A rankings.

After being tied 12-12 going into the second quarter, the Lancers took a 5-point, 35-30, lead into halftime. It all started to unravel after that. Churchill stepped up both offensively and defensively to outscore Sheldon 19-10 in the third, moving the lead to 14 and essentially sealing the win. Churchill went on to win 67-49, their second consecutive double-digit victory against tough 6A teams (South Eugene and Sheldon).

Sheldon’s Yadie Dunmore led all scorers with 17 points, the only Irish to score in double-digits. Churchill had four guys score 10 or more points. Malik Morgan chipped in 16, while brother Emanuel Morgan scored 10 and David Shedrick and Andrew Smith both scored 12 a piece. Churchill, like all season, is a well-balanced team.

Despite the loss, Sheldon still sits at No. 7 in the OSAA 6A rankings with a firm position heading into the playoffs. South Eugene (15-8, 3-4) is also in a strong spot heading into postseason play. They are currently ranked No. 13.

The Lancers previously sat at the No. 2 spot, but the win against a highly ranked team gave them enough of a boost to pass Jefferson HS of Portland. Churchill has an RPI of 616.60, while Jefferson sits at 614.60. But what really stands out when looking at Churchill is their strong strength of schedule.

No team in all of 5A basketball has a stronger strength of schedule than Churchill. Their OPW (Opponent’s Winning Percentage) is a .564, which accounts for 50% of a team’s ranking.

The OSAA RPI formula is as followsRPI = (250 × WWP) + (500 × OWP) + (250 × OOP)

The team’s winning percentage accounts for 25% of the formula. Opponent’s winning percentage is 50% of the formula. Opponent’s opponent’s winning percentage is 25% of the RPI formula. Whoever created this ranking system WAY over thought it. That formula brings Churchill’s RPI to 616.60, giving them the highest ranking in the state. You can see how they matchup to the top-5 teams by checking the image at the bottom.

Churchill's Malik Morgan (Alex Shoemaker/Eugene Daily News)
Churchill’s Malik Morgan
(Alex Shoemaker/Eugene Daily News)

Churchill’s tough schedule, which features South Eugene and Sheldon twice, is the strongest in 5A basketball. Because of their already strong winning percentage, it’s easy to see why they rank so high. Even if Churchill gets hopped for the No. 1 spot in the final week of the season, it does not make a difference. Churchill is no longer battling for home court advantage. It is already theirs.

Churchill has two remaining games in the regular season. They face Thurston (11-11, 1-7) on Tuesday night and Springfield (10-12, 3-5) on Friday. While I don’t see Churchill losing either one of these games, the fact that they’re playing two teams battling the .500 line, their RPI is going to take a bit of a dip.

But RPI is irrelevant at this point. With the position that Churchill is in, they can easily make their way through the first rounds of basketball and into the quarterfinals. From there they’ll play the remainder of the playoff games in Matthew Knight Arena, with Marist being the only local team still in contention.

Churchill, a strong team at home, will have their home court advantage throughout the playoffs. This really does seem to be the year Churchill wins state.

Weekend Preview: League Leading Battle

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The (21-13-0-1) Eugene Generals will host the first place (28-6-0-0) West Sound Warriors this Friday and Saturday at the Lane County Ice Arena at 7:35 p.m.

Saturday night’s game will be the final Scout Night With The Generals, where all Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts and Brownies are encouraged to attend the game in uniform. All Scouts in uniform will receive admission for $3, a specialty Generals Scout patch, and meet the team for autographs and ice skating after the game.

20130212The Generals are 3-3 when playing the Warriors this season. In the games the Generals have won, they have had unyielding defense and goaltending. However, in the three games the Generals have lost, the Warriors have exploited all of the Generals’ weaknesses; scoring a minimum of seven and a maximum of 13 goals.

The Generals have looked to their top scorers to put points on the scoreboard in the past. However, it was the more unlikely candidates in Connor Hoernlein and Stephen Soloway that have recorded two of the three game-wining goals. With the addition of seven new players last week, the Generals have the most depth they have had all season, and will be looking for contributions from each line.

In the two games they have played since being acquired by Eugene, Christian Merritt, seven points (five goals, two assists), and Joshua Arnold, six points (one goal, five assists), have begun to exceed expectations.

The Generals will need every player to contribute this weekend if they wish to walk away with two wins. In the past six contests between these teams, the Generals have been out scored 38-16 and out shot 246-200.

West Sound is home to two of the three leading scorers in the Northern Pacific Hockey League. Kia Wilkins has 111 points (44 goals, 67 assists), and Josh Twietmeyer has 72 points (31 goals, 41 assists) this season.

Wilkins and Twietmeyer represent a massive scoring threat to the Generals, and it will be of the upmost importance for the Generals’ defense and goaltending to keep them off of the scoreboard.

The Generals may look to Joe Herda and Gabriel Mier y Teran to protect the net this weekend, but it will likely be a game-time decision. In his one start in net, Herda allowed one goal, produced a .947 save percentage and earned a win. This season, Mier y Teran has 11 wins, has a 4.56 goals-against average and a .880 save percentage.

The Generals will play the Warriors once more this season, on March 1st.

Matchup of Season: No. 2 Lancers vs No. 8 Irish

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Two teams have been dominating Eugene prep basketball this season. On Friday night, these two powerhouses will collide in the game of the season regionally.

The (16-4, 9-0) Churchill Lancers sit in the No. 2 ranking in the entire state of Oregon, behind only Jefferson (Portland), and have four remaining games before the start of the 5A OSAA state playoffs. The (17-5, 6-1) Sheldon Irish will come into the game ranked No. 8 in the 6A standings. These two will face off Friday in a battle for revenge and bragging rights.

Sheldon pulled out a narrow 56-51 over Churchill on January 15th at home, but now the game is headed over to the Lancers’ Dome. Churchill has one of the most intimidating student sections in the region, and you can be they’ll be out for vengeance.

So, here is how the teams breakdown and why each team could win:

 

chs_logoWhy Churchill Wins:

 

The Lancers opened the season an impressive 7-0, but dropped two of their next three games in the Mesa Challenge (Mesa, AZ tournament) to teams with a combined record of 41-10. Yeah, those were really good teams. But Churchill as a team has continued to grow since the losses, going 8-2 with both of their loses coming by three and five points to South Eugene and Sheldon respectively.

Since the back-to-back loses, the team has won by an average of 24.2 PPG. Only one of their last six wins has been by fewer than 14 points.

Churchill is at their hottest point, which is exactly where they want to be heading into postseason competition. The Lancers will want to continue the stride with a payback win over the rival Irish. With the home crowd behind them, they’ll role.

 

14250_fullWhy Sheldon Wins:

 

The Irish are the most athletically gifted team in the Eugene/Springfield area. Like the Lancers, Sheldon is on its hottest streak of the season and winners of their last 13 games. Excluding a 4-game losing streak early on in the season (three of them to out-of-league teams in the Les Schwab Invitational) the team has an astound 17-1 record.

Head coach Ron Lampe typically has to deal with slow starts to the season, as half of his players make the transition from football season to basketball.

The Irish have proven that they know how to take down the Lancers, not something many can say, and are primed to do it again on an even bigger stage. With the poise and senior leadership behind multi-sport star Connor Strahm, the home-court advantage won’t be a factor. Sheldon has the experience.

 

Game Prediction:

 
Churchill 57
Sheldon 53
 

I swear this has nothing to do with the fact that I’m a Churchill alumni! This team is on a mission and seems ready to win its first state championship since 2001. Brothers Malik and Emanuel Morgan make for one of the strongest tandem of guards in the state. Along with 6’6″ Keidren Johnson, Churchill has a lethal inside-outside game. I see the Lancers getting payback for the January showdown exactly a month before.

Comment below on who you see winning this Friday showdown. Make sure to like our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter @EDN_Sports for more breaking news.

Eugene Generals Weekend Recap

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Tab titleTab title

GeneralsGAME ONE

 

The Eugene Generals (15-11-0-1) snap their five-game losing streak in tonight’s 7-6 overtime win against the Tri-Cities Outlaws (13-14-2-0). The Generals found themselves battling from behind several times tonight, but by the time the final whistle was blown Eugene was the dominant team.

Tri-Cities scored the first two goal of the game, putting the Generals in a two goal deficit. Cody Anderson and Devan Beck were the Outlaws’ goal scorers. Generals’ forward Kenneth Grabeldinger scored the first goal of the night for Eugene off of a shot that was mishandled by the Outlaws goaltender at 17:01 of the first period.

The Generals fought hard and took the lead in the second period. After deeking through traffic, Matthew Walton tied the game for the Generals on a shot that was placed on the far side of the Tri-Cities goalie. The Outlaws took the lead for the second time tonight when Brett Myer scored an unassisted goal at 9:54 of the second period.

In the back-half of the second period, Hunter Hartman scored two goals to tie the game, and then give the Generals a 4-3 lead going into the third period. The Generals wasted little time to find the back of the net in the third period. Krisjanis Reinfelds took a shot from the blue line that deflected off of the goalie’s leg pad and into the net at 0:57 of the third period.

The Outlaws scored three consecutive goals to give Tri-Cities a 6-5 lead midway through the third period. Aaron Questad, Alexander Higley, and Mikey Doubrava were the Outlaws’ goal scorers. Grabeldinger scored his second goal of the night on a power play at 14:35 to tie the game 6-6, and gave the Generals a chance to win the game in overtime.

Generals’ veteran forward Justin Huelsman scored the game winner on a shot taken from the high slot 2:16 into overtime.

 

 

GeneralsGAME TWO

 

After winning 9-3, the Eugene Generals (16-11-0-1) have swept the Tri-Cities Outlaws (13-15-2-0) this weekend. The Generals top scores have found a way to put the puck in the back of the net, and the team is back to winning.

The Generals dominated the first period; putting three points on the scoreboard in the first twenty minutes of play. In the first period, Eugene received goals from Stephen Soloway, Krisjanis Reinfelds and Zak Johnson.

It took the Outlaws more than 28 minutes to put a point on the scoreboard. Tri-Cities’ leading scorer Brett Myer scored the Outlaws first goal of the night at 8:03 of the second period. In the back-half of the second period, the Generals extended their lead, by scoring two more goals. Johnson scored the Generals fourth goal off of a slap shot taken from center ice. Austin Sullens’ goal at 16:06 of the second period put the Generals up 5-1 with plenty of time left in the game.

Hunter Hartman recorded his fourth point of the night when he lit the lamp at 9:12 of the third period. The goal was scored from a shot that was deflected by the Outlaws’ goalie and dumped back in by Hartman.

The Outlaws scored back-to-back goals in the second-half of the third period. Mikey Doubrava and Devan Beck were the goal scorers for Tri-Cities. The Generals scored three insurance goals in the last five minutes of the game to guarantee a Eugene win. The Generals received goals from Johnson, Sullens and Connor Bambico. Generals forward Caleb Margeson described Sullens’ goal by stating, “(Sullens) deeked the bender, and sniped the tender.”

The Generals have won each of their games they have played this weekend. The team will play the Vancouver Vipers on the road tomorrow evening.

GAME ONE

                       
                         
TRI CITIES G A PTS S PIM   EUGENE G A PTS S PIM
Whipple, Lucas 0 1 1 0 2 Ruchas, Kyle 0 0 0 0 2
Williams, James 0 0 0 0 0 Huelsman, Justin 1 0 1 0 0
Swanson, Zack 0 1 1 0 0 Reinfelds, Krisjanis 1 0 1 0 0
Van Winkle, Preston 0 1 1 0 0 Duncan, Wyatt 0 0 0 0 0
Bettinson, Bo 0 0 0 0 0 Sullens, Austin 0 0 0 0 2
Higley, Alexander 1 1 2 0 0 Bambico, Connor 0 1 1 0 0
Tuttle, Jordan 0 0 0 0 2 Soloway, Stephen 0 0 0 0 2
Doubrava, Mikey 1 0 1 0 0 Hoernlein, Connor 0 1 1 0 0
Reavy, Josh 0 0 0 0 0 Grabeldinger, Kenneth 2 0 2 0 2
Questad, Aaron 1 0 1 0 0 Alforque, Michael 0 0 0 0 0
Myer, Brett 1 0 1 0 2 Walton, Matthew 1 1 2 0 0
Beck, Devan 1 0 1 0 2 Margeson, Caleb 0 1 1 0 0
Questad, Travis 0 0 0 0 0 Hartman, Hunter 2 0 2 0 0
Anderson, Cody 1 0 1 0 0 Avery, Brett 0 0 0 0 0
Ollero, Riley 0 1 1 0 4 Mier y Teran, Gabriel 0 0 0 0 0
Kaiser, Casey 0 0 0 0 0 TEAM 7 4 11 0 8
Pearson, Tyler 0 0 0 0 0
TEAM 6 5 11 0 12              
                         

GAME TWO

                       
                         
TRI CITIES G A PTS S PIM   EUGENE G A PTS S PIM
Whipple, Lucas 0 0 0 0 17 Ruchas, Kyle 0 0 0 0 4
Williams, James 0 0 0 0 0 Huelsman, Justin 0 1 1 0 0
Swanson, Zack 0 0 0 0 0 Reinfelds, Krisjanis 1 0 1 0 0
Van Winkle, Preston 0 0 0 0 0 Duncan, Wyatt 0 1 1 0 0
Bettinson, Bo 0 0 0 0 0 Sullens, Austin 2 0 2 0 11
Higley, Alexander 0 0 0 0 0 Bambico, Connor 1 1 2 0 2
Shuck, Jason 0 0 0 0 5 Soloway, Stephen 1 1 2 0 0
Tuttle, Jordan 0 0 0 0 0 Hoernlein, Connor 0 1 1 0 2
Doubrava, Mikey 1 0 1 0 2 Johnson, Zak 3 1 4 0 0
Reavy, Josh 0 0 0 0 2 Grabeldinger, Kenneth 0 0 0 0 0
Questad, Aaron 0 0 0 0 12 Alforque, Michael 0 0 0 0 0
Myer, Brett 1 0 1 0 0 Walton, Matthew 0 1 1 0 0
Beck, Devan 1 1 2 0 0 Margeson, Caleb 0 0 0 0 5
Questad, Travis 0 0 0 0 0 Hartman, Hunter 1 3 4 0 2
Anderson, Cody 0 0 0 0 2 Avery, Brett 0 0 0 0 0
Ollero, Riley 0 1 1 0 4 Mier y Teran, Gabriel 0 0 0 0 0
Kaiser, Casey 0 0 0 0 0 TEAM 9 10 19 0 26
Pearson, Tyler 0 0 0 0 0
TEAM 3 2 5 0 44

Prep Basketball Holiday Weekend Preview

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chs_logoChurchill Lancers (7-0, 2-0)

 

The Churchill Lancers have been the crown jewel of OSAA 5A basketball through the early season. They’ve run a perfect 7-0 campaign winning by an average margin of 35.8 PPG. Five of the team’s seven wins have come by a margin of 30 points or more, including a 92-30 win over Crescent Valley to kickoff the season.

The Lancers are currently in the Mesa Challenge Basketball Tournament in Mesa, AZ. They have games on December 26th-29th against teams from Arizona and California before returning to Eugene to face North Eugene High School on January 2nd.

 

23272_fullMarist Spartans (3-2, 2-0)

 

The Spartans, led by head coach Bart Pollard, have bounced back nicely after dropping their first two games to Crescent Valley and West Salem. Marist has won three straight games against Marshfield, North Eugene and Cottage Grove to move to 3-2 on the season.

Marist is currently in the Wilsonville Invitational Tournament which will take place this weekend. They need to quickly string some wins together to climb the 5A rankings.

 

1cad_365cNorth Eugene Highlanders (0-6, 0-1)

 

The Highlanders have not had the start to the season they were hoping for. North Eugene has struggled on the road (0-3) and at home (0-3) and have lost by an average of 15.2 PPG.

The Highlanders will take part in the Les Schwab South Coast Holiday Invitational where they hope to grab a win in one of their three neutral site games. North Eugene has to show some life soon before the season is completely lost. One win could spark a change.

 

14250_fullSheldon Irish (4-4, 1-1)

 

Sheldon basketball is not the juggernaut that the state champion football team is. Not to take anything away from the boys on the hardwood, many of them are members of the football team, because those are big shoes to fill.

The Irish are playing in the Les Schwab Invitational but have so far been blown out in both contests by Jesuit and Southridge respectively. Sheldon is in a slump; losers of three straight and needing a bounce back win. They play Clackamas tomorrow.

 

SpringfieldSpringfield Millers (4-4)

 

The Millers sit at .500 on the young season with huge swing games ahead of them. After Springfield completes the Barlow Trail Tournament this weekend, they start opening up with league play.

At 26th in the 5A rankings, and games against Thurston, Marshfield, Willamette and North Eugene kickstarting 2013, we’ll find out whether the Millers will sink or float.

 

picSouth Eugene Axemen (4-3, 0-2)

 

South Eugene athletics has fallen on rough times. Football has been abysmal for years and basketball has struggled as well. The Axemen sit one game above .500 and will play in the Abby’s Holiday Classic this weekend. South has one win via forfeit, putting them over that hump.

Two of their loses have come by three points or less, making their games much more enjoyable to watch than their struggles of last season. With some winnable games ahead before jumping into league play, now is it the time to make it or break it. We’ll see what this team is made of soon.

 

ThurstonThurston Colts (3-3, 1-2)

 

After opening the season with a 70-56 loss to West Salem, the Thurston Colts bounced back with three straight wins. Following that winning streak? Thurston has lost two in a row to middle of the road teams in Sheldon and Lincoln.

The Colts have three games in the Wilsonville Invitational Tournament – same tournament that Marist is in – to make a turnaround. The Colts will start league play on January 2nd at Springfield, which will begin a three-game road series against Willamette and North Eugene as well.

 

or-orwhs5-letter-150Willamette Wolverines (4-2, 0-1)

 

Rounding out our local coverage is the Willamette Wolverines at a record of 4-2 (0-1) and a 12th place rank (out of 39) in the OSAA 5A rankings. The Wolverines have been the strongest local team outside of Churchill thus far.

Willamette will play in the West Salem Holiday Hoop Fest starting off with a game against David Douglas and finish with two more games. They will be tested when the return to action in 2013 with games against Sheldon, Thurston and Springfield in early January.

 

 

Comment below on how you see this weekend’s action turning out. Make sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter @EDN_Sports

Eugene Generals – Weekend Preview

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Photo: Eugene Generals
Photo: Eugene Generals

The Eugene Generals (11-6-1) will be on the road for a weekend series (Friday and Saturday) against the West Sound Warriors (18-3-0) in the Generals’ first pair of games to start the second half of the regular season. Generals’ players will return to Eugene from winter break December 26th to prepare for the series with the first place Warriors.

Last time these two teams played, the Generals were blown out 13-1. However, that same weekend the teams split the series 1-1. In the Generals’ win, several suspensions were dished out to the Warriors, and as the game neared its end questionable shots were fired at the Generals bench. Both teams will be returning to the ice fresh and ready to score goals, deliver hits and get back to winning games.

The last time the Generals played the Warriors, the team relied on Zak Johnson; five points (three goals, two assists), Hunter Hartman; three point (one goal, two assists), Cody Andersen; two points (one goal, one assist), and Connor Bambico; two points (one goal, one assist) to score points.

In their previous matchup with the Generals, West Sound relied on Tosh Twietmeyer; seven points (four goals, three assists), Domenic Kolbeins; seven points (one goal, six assists), Kai Wilkins; six points (four goals, two assists), Joe Glithero; six points (one goal, five assists); and Josh Colleaux; four points (two goals, two assists) to lead the team in scoring in the two games.

The Generals have the most potent power play unit in the league, with a 34.6 percent success rate. However, in the two meetings between these two teams the Generals have taken their power play to the next level, converting 45.5 percent of the power play opportunities. An area that the Generals struggled with in their last meeting with the Warriors was goaltending. The Generals averaged 7.5 goals against, and protected the net 82.8 percent of the time shots were fired.

One reason for this is, is because the Warriors essentially outscored the Generals 2:1 on the weekend. The Warriors, with the second most lethal power play unit, converted 40 percent of their power play opportunities.

If the Generals can win both games this weekend, the point differential between the two teams will decrease to nine points. If the Tri-Cities Outlaws have a successful weekend, one or two losses by the Generals could drop Eugene to fourth place.

When the Generals return to Eugene to take on the Vancouver Vipers on New Year’s Eve, fans will be in for the Generals New Years Bash; a special event that will last until 12:30 a.m. After the game, there will be ice skating with the Generals, merchandise giveaways, and many other surprises. More information on the event will follow this week.

Highlights – West Sound 11-23 from Eugene Generals on Vimeo.

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