youth

Youth Pastor Arrested on Sex Abuse Charges

Brooks OR – Today at about 10:00 a.m., detectives with the Marion County Sheriff’s Office arrested Peter Bass, age 36, of Brooks. After his arrest, Mr. Bass was taken to the Marion County Jail and he is awaiting arraignment on fifteen counts of Sodomy I and fifteen counts of Sex Abuse II.
As a result of the investigation Mr. Bass has been terminated from his position as a youth pastor at the Brooks Assembly of God. Currently the Sheriff’s Office has not identified any victims associated to Mr. Bass’s position at the church.

The Sheriff’s Office is however seeking any information regarding Mr. Bass or any information regarding additional victims. If you have information regarding this investigation please call Detective Nancy Hubbard with the Marion County Sheriff’s Office at 503-316-6635.

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OSAA: Willamette High School to Join 6A Classification

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OSAA Logo
OSAA Logo

The OSAA board voted Monday, unanimously, to approve a motion moving Oregon schools to new size classifications. For Eugene, that mostly means that Bethel’s Willamette High School and the Wolverines’ athletics will move from 5A to 6A for the 2014-15 school year.

The decision will affect athletic districts for the next four years starting next fall. It’s been debated hotly over the entire past year, as schools have been concerned with the changes that would have led to more mileage on road trips.

Headlining the changes was the elimination of hybrid leagues, such as the Portland Interscholastic League’s 5A-6A split which had seven schools in 5A and two schools — Grant and Lincoln — in 6A.

The PIL will elect to play at 6A. Some leagues will not be so lucky, as the Southwestern Conference will be nixed and replaced by the Southern Oregon Conference. Willamette will leap for 6A to join Sheldon, South Eugene and Thurston.

The moves mean Oregon’s 5A designation shrinks to 33 schools.

Postseason plans for the new Oregon order are still in flux, but the committee has three more meetings to finalize playoffs by February.

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OSAA Realignment Nearing Reality

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OSAA
OSAA

The Oregon School Activities Association (OSAA) is in the process of reconfiguring the current classification system. With the OSAA realignment, many see the new changes as detrimental. One of the biggest changes would be the completing removal of hybrid leagues and using the current 6A-1A system in place.

“We’ve always played some of those schools down south,” said Barry Bokn, athletic director at Willamette High School, to the Register Guard’s Ben Schorzman. “We’ve typically tried to do our part to try and help some of those outlier schools (get games).

“But if all of a sudden you’re having to travel every season to all of those outliers, you’re going to see your travel expenses skyrocket.”

A final decision by the OSAA will come following the committee’s final meeting on October 7th.

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High School Football: Sheldon vs South Eugene Brews with Intrigue

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Kevin Leonard looked as if he’d finished imparting his views of the game to his football players. The South Eugene defensive coordinator took one step away from the team congregating after a 14-9 win at Willamette High last week. Unfinished, he turned back to offer one more thing: “Here comes the storm!” The post-game, exclamatory forecast met with cheer from the Axemen players, coaches and the students, parents and fans who have had little to rouse their spirits when it comes to performance on the field. But this year, with a new coaching staff, has come a two-game-winning streak to initiate head coach Chris Miller’s first year back at South since leaving in 2006.

Kevin Leonard
South Eugene defensive coordinator Kevin Leonard (right) visits with coaches from Churchill in the season opener (Gary Breedlove/EDN)

Today it is time to set aside inspiration and rendezvous with the reality that the Axemen will encounter their largest challenge of the 2013 season: a road game at the home field of the defending Class 6A state champion Sheldon Irish. Now this may not be the same Sheldon group that finished 2012 with a 14-0 record, and it may be an assortment of Irish players who lost for the first time in a regular season game since 2008, but this is Sheldon, a traditional power that has challenged for the state championship in three of the last four years. It is a storm of its own, with a long-standing history.

South Eugene, on the other hand, has sustained itself on one win in the last three years (1-29, not including a forfeit victory). So the 2-0 start, the first such boon for South Eugene since 2009, has heightened the Axemen ambitions. But a tempest can change directions, and Miller is well aware of the reality. “They are far ahead of where we are,” he said. “One of the main goals this season is to go there, fight and compete. They have the athletes. We need to go over and compete. They are not necessarily loaded like the have been the last couple of years, but they have kids who know how to play the game. Like (Sheldon coach Lane Johnson) said, they have played 14 games each of the last four years. That’s a lot of experience.”

Sheldon’s most recent experience on its home turf happens to be a 59-49 loss to the No. 1-ranked 6A team in the state, Central Catholic. Just as unusual as the loss was the Irish inclination to turn the ball over. Sheldon fumbled the ball four times and had one interception in that game and seven times in its first two games. It’s also important to note that Sheldon did score 49 points against the state’s top team and is itself the No. 2-ranked team in 6A, according to the OregonLive.com prep football poll. “The kids were really down in the dumps on Saturday when we came in and watched film, but they came in Monday and had moved on,” Johnson said. “We’ve addressed ball security in practice. We can’t turn the ball over and beat quality teams…When we play good Sheldon football, we take care of the ball and take care of the game on defense.”

According to Johnson, it’s been 16 years since South Eugene has defeated Sheldon. And during his first five years as the South Eugene coach from 2002 to 2006, Miller recalls the last couple of games between the two teams being close and ending with late scores by the Irish. “They are a battle-tested football team, and they uncharacteristically had four turnovers last week. We’ll see if we can do our part to create some turnovers and continue to not turnover the ball ourselves.”

Sheldon High School Football
Sheldon (dark jerseys) may have lost its grip against Central Catholic last week, but the Irish hope to rebound against South Eugene tonight. (Craig Strobeck/EDN)

In its first two games, the Axemen have had two critical interceptions by junior defensive back John Saylor, one early in the game to jump ahead of Churchill and another at the end of the game to close out the win at Willamette, both helped South Eugene to an undefeated record entering Southwest Conference play. “Two and 0 automatically earns respect to our guys,” Johnson said of South Eugene’s record. “But we’ve won 16 years in a row and our kids are not interested in losing that first game.”

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High School Football Preview: Sheldon Irish Reload After 6A Championship Season

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Lane Johnson eschews any talk about state football championships, a tough task for a coach who in two seasons as the head football coach at Sheldon High School has led the Irish to two-straight 6A state championship games. “We approach all the seasons the same way,” Johnson said. “We never talk about state championships until the week comes.”

Sheldon quarterbacks stretch out during practice last week. (David Saez/EDN)
Sheldon quarterbacks stretch out during practice last week. (David Saez/EDN)

When the day came a year ago, the Irish knocked off Lake Oswego 13-6 in the state championship to finish with a 14-0 record, and the year prior, the Irish fell to Lake Oswego, 47-14 and ended the season 13-1. That puts the third-year coach at 27-1 entering the 2013 season. The 2012 state champions corralled 14 all-state honors, including seven first-team all-state players. The Irish lost 12 of those players to graduation. That group included Connor Strahm, the 6A Defensive Player of the Year.

The reigning 6A coach of the year, Johnson returns 22 seniors and 25 players with varsity experience. Leading the returning offensive players is senior offensive lineman Tanner Davies, a second-team all-state selection. The other offensive starters back are senior running back Yadie Dunmore, senior wide receiver Mitchell Herbert, and senior offensive lineman Marcus McGovern. Also returning is second-team all-state kicker Nathan Starnes, who made 8-of-13 field goals and totaled 97 points.

Herbert enters the season as the top producer on offense. The receiver caught 22 passes for 409 yards and nine touchdowns. Herbert’s touchdowns were good enough for second-best on the team last year and his 54 points were third-best. Dunmore finished the 2012 season with 61 carries for 386 yards and five touchdowns.

Sheldon coach Lane Johnson and his players huddle up during practice last week. (David Saez/EDN)
Sheldon coach Lane Johnson and his players huddle up during practice last week. (David Saez/EDN)

Directing Sheldon’s spread offense will be senior quarterback Joseph Kuehn, who had opportunities to play last year once the Irish had secured their leads. Kuehn takes over the spot held last year by first-team all-state quarterback Taylor Allie. Last year, Kuehn completed 21-of-24 passes for 252 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. “He’s had a great summer,” Johnson said. “He has improved from last football season to this week…His precision throwing has improved and his command of the offense has improved. He’s never been the guy before, but he’ll get that chance this year. He’s practicing with a lot of urgency.”

Sheldon returns four defensive starters from last year: Herbert, sr., free safety; Kellen Strahm (junior, defensive back); Levi Rotherham (senior, strong safety); and Liam Talty (senior, defensive end). Tatly is the leading tackler returning with 96 total tackles, 11 of which were solo. Along with seven starters who graduated last year, the Irish did lose defensive lineman Wyatt Spear to a wrestling injury this summer.

The Irish start the season against Southridge, a team Sheldon defeated twice last year. “We have a bunch of kids who have paid their dues and are ready to go,” Johnson said. “(Southridge) has almost everybody back, so we’ll have our hands full…(Last week) we had our sights set on getting better. (This week) we have our sights on Southridge. That’s the way we’ve always done things. We focus on the week.”

So any talk about the state championship and becoming the first team to repeat as 6A champions since Jesuit in 2006 will have to wait.

Sheldon Assistant Coaches: Marty Johnson (offensive line); Les Phillipo (offensive and defensive lines); Dennis Jernberg (wide receivers and safeties); Scott Wright (wide receivers, secondary and special teams).

Sheldon High School 2013 Football Schedule (All games start at 7 p.m.)

  • Aug. 30 – at Southridge
  • Sept. 6 – Central Catholic
  • Sept. 13 – South Eugene
  • Sept. 20 – at North Medford
  • Sept. 27 – South Medford
  • Oct. 4 – at Crater
  • Oct. 11 – Roseburg
  • Oct. 18 – Thurston
  • Oct. 25 – at Grants Pass

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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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High School Football Preview: Chris Miller’s Task at South Eugene

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Certainly he wants them to win games. It’s foremost in the minds of all Oregon high school football coaches who opened the first week of two-a-day practices this Monday. But as Chris Miller embarks on his second time as the head football coach at South Eugene High School, the former NFL and Oregon quarterback recognizes several factors need to be established at a school that’s won one game in three years before anyone can concern themselves with victories. Miller describes his two simple goals for his players: “One is to learn how to compete…They haven’t been pushed. The bar hasn’t been set really high. We’re setting that bar high. And, two, is to earn respect. These kids were laughed at. These kids were made fun of. When people look at their schedule, they think, ‘Oh, here’s South. Here’s an easy one. We’ll kill them.’ So I want these kids to earn respect so when they walk around these hallways or around town and someone sees them wearing a South Eugene football shirt, people think, ‘Oh, South Eugene. Those guys are playing tough over there.'”

South Eugene's new head football coach is Chris Miller, the former Oregon Duck coached the Axemen from 2002 to 2006. (David Saez/EDN)
South Eugene’s new head football coach is Chris Miller, the former Oregon Duck coached the Axemen from 2002 to 2006. (David Saez/EDN)

Miller coached the South Eugene Axemen for three years, from 2002-2006. After a rough1-8 first season, his teams finished 30-13 and made the playoffs in four of the five years. The respect for Axemen football has collapsed over the last three years. In 2012, South Eugene lost all 10 games, with only two close scores, a 48-42 loss to Willamette and a 28-21 defeat by Thurston. The team’s last win on the field came in 2010 (although they won a game by forfeit in 2011).

Entering his 11th year as a coach, Miller returns to South Eugene after working three years as the quarterback coach for the Arizona Cardinals. His team returns 10 returning starters. On offense, five starting players return from last year: Michael Bennett (junior, offensive lineman), Liam Duncan (jr., quarterback), Thayne Kollmorgen (sr., wide receiver), Quinton Richardson (senior, offensive lineman), and Conner Still (sr., tight end). Defensively, five starters are back: CJ Hodgson (sr., safety), Michael Selvan (sr., safety), Bennett (defensive line), Still (defensive line and linebacker),  and Richardson (defensive line).

Chris Miller
Chris Miller

“We’re going to run everything on offense,” Miller said. “We’re going to run whatever fits. One thing about me is I’ve seen about every play run imaginable known to man because in the NFL you can access every single play (digitally). So there’s no secrets. I have a got a big grab bag of plays we can draw from, and I’m going to run what fits our personnel and our kids. Some people are locked into schemes. There are numerous schemes that fit our personnel, and that’s yet to be determined.”

The transition to a new coach includes new coaches. Miller has brought with him a crew of former players and coaches to his locker room. New to the team are former Oregon Duck and NFL running back Dino Philyaw (assistant head coach in charge of running backs); former Churchill defensive coordinator and Portland State football and basketball player Kevin Leonard (assistant head coach/defensive coordinator); former South Eugene High and Southern Oregon University player Alex Morrison (offensive line coach and assistant defensive line coach); and former South Eugene High receiver and cornerback Logan Beal (wide receiver and defensive back coach/strength and conditioning. Miller retained three coaches from last year’s team: Sean Emrick (assistant coach – quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers); Don Oakerson (defensive line coach); and Karsten Tindal (assistant coach – offensive and defensive lines).

The coaches are working with about 75 players this year, compared to the 52 to 54 who turned out last year. Miller characterizes his team as green to football and the culture he’s attempting to foster. “The culture around here has been trying hard and being close is OK,” he said. “…Football’s a game you just can’t go through the motions. Guys have to love it. That’s the number one thing we’re trying to instill in these kids. This is a special game. This is a game about life lessons. It’s a game about family, having your brother’s back. These guys haven’t been taught. They don’t know that. Not everyone’s going to love the game at the same level. But, still, how you play football and how you compete translates directly to the classroom here at South, translates directly to life, when you go to college. When you get out of college, 50 percent of college graduates can’t find a job. You better go out there and be special and find a way to compete so you can find work.”

South Eugene Axemen running backs prepare for the 2013 season. (David Saez/EDN)
South Eugene Axemen running backs prepare for the 2013 season. (David Saez/EDN)

There will be much work to be done. His initial focus with his players has been the fundamentals. The coaches have stressed basics, things like knowing where to line up, knowing that, as a receiver or tight end, you go when the ball moves and not on the snap count. Miller said he and his staff have assumed the players knew nothing and have been teaching everything. “They’re eager, they’re anxious,” Miller said. “They want to learn…They’re working hard. We have some bullets in the gun. We have some weapons. We’re not going to be shooting blanks.

As a team in the 6A Southwest Conference, the Axemen will have their share of challenges, including defending 6A state champion Sheldon. Miller is a 1983 graduate of Sheldon and was drafted in the first round by the Atlanta Falcons in 1987. He played 10 years in the NFL with the Falcons, St. Louis Rams and Denver Broncos before being named to the 2004 Class of the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame. This year, though, he begins a second attempt at reviving South Eugene football. And while competing and earning respect are the main targets for this group, winning isn’t too far behind. “Win our first game. That’s our third goal,” Miller said. “(South Eugene’s) won one game in three years, so if we win one, were off to a good start.”

South Eugene Football Schedule (games start at 7 p.m.):

  • Aug. 30 – Churchill
  • Sept. 6 – at Willamette
  • Sept. 13 – at Sheldon
  • Sept. 20 – South Medford
  • Sept. 27 – at Roseburg
  • Oct. 4 – Grants Pass
  • Oct. 11 – at North Medford
  • Oct. 18 – Crater
  • Oct. 25 – at Thrust

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Richard Milne Hired as Junction City High School Football Head Coach

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Junction City High School Football
Junction City High School Football

After 25 years of Mark Henderson coaching Junction City High School football, Henderson’s former student and 1994 Junction City grad Richard Milne will take over as the head football coach.

Milne played basketball and football with the Junction City Tigers and won OSAA state titles in both sports. Henderson went 176-85 with Junction City in his time coaching football.

Milne was an assistant coach to Henderson for a few years after graduating and also assisted the boy’s basketball team, before coaching football and boy’s basketball at Creswell the past seven years. But he says returning to Junction City was always in the back of his mind.

“I would always check in with (Henderson) and the joke at the time was ‘When are you going to retire?’ because I was still interested in coming back to Junction City,” Milne told the Register-Guard.

He said the Tigers will shift from a spread offense to a double-wing, looking to run the ball a little more.

“The last six years at Creswell we ran the double-wing and made the playoffs two times. It worked well and it suits the kids we have.”

Milne’s defensive coordinator will be Aaron Thornton, who coached Knappa High School to a 2A title in 2008 — also running the double-wing.

Milne says he’s still checking in with Henderson at times, preparing to replace the longstanding coach who won two state titles in Junction City.

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