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2016 4A Senior Softball All-Star Series

| June 6,2016

2016 4A Senior Softball All-Star Series

Many of the best Seniors at the 4A level, were gathered to represent the name across the chest for one last time before hanging up their jerseys for the last time in their prep athletic career.  

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2016-17 State-Wide College Softball Commitments

| May 26,2016

Here at OPS, we would like to begin a log of all of our college bound players in celebration of our beloved sport of Softball. We are asking your help as we celebrate our Oregon athletes, who will now take their talents onto the next level. If you know of...

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2016 4A Softball All-League Selections

| May 27,2016

We would like to celebrate our state-wide All League selections from all classifications. Congrats to all selected but let's never forget, that although the awards are individual, it takes other great teammates and coaches to make it all possible. We not only celebrate these athletes, but the game itself. If...

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Softball Menu / Archives

Capital Week 2

After a Rough Opening Week, the Schedule Stays Stiff

Two of the best teams in the state, Central and Gladstone, play games on Capital Conference turf, and an odd quirk of scheduling sees two defending league champions square off after everyone else, and on Metro League real estate to boot!

Five of the seven teams have home games this week, but the other two, Estacada and Stayton, are on the road for the second straight week. I went 5-1, while the Conference went 2-4, and 1-3 against the Cowapa Conference.


Siuslaw Vikings vs. La Salle Falcons at Jesuit High School. The late opener for both teams, two of only three 4A teams to skip opening weekend. The Falcons are faced with replacing two year starting RB Chris Nagel, the best back in the Conference last year, and a second team all-state selection. And also two year starting QB Vince Hicks, and two way lineman Eric Whalen, off a team that rolled thru the season undefeated, only to be upset by the Sutherlin Blue Bulldogs in their first playoff game.

The Vikings lost some star power too, in two way first team all-state WR/DB Drew Rainwater, two way all-stater TE/DE Joel Bechtold, and also lineman Cameron Thrall. The Vikings dropped last season’s opener in Astoria, but then rolled to the quarterfinals before suffering a narrow loss to Central. The key difference is that the Vikings do return a two year all-Far West QB in Jacob Mitchell, and a solid RB in Trevor Smith. With the tradition of Siuslaw football, getting a line together to put in front of a proven pair in the backfield won’t be a big problem.

Especially early, go with the experience in the QB/RB combination. Vikings set sail with the win.

Scappoose Indians (1-0) at Gladstone Gladiators (1-0). Both looked strong in winning their home openers, with the Indians claiming a 20-7 win over Molalla, while the Gladiators handled Yamhill-Carlton 35-18. Often, the greatest week of improvement in the season comes after the first game, and everyone has had a chance to test themselves. That could well make this the game of the week.

‘Poose proved to have offense and defense, though against a rather one dimensional Molalla attack. The questions will be whether the Indians can score enough, and stop Gladstone often enough, to keep up with the Gladiators’ scoring machine of QB Taylor Taft and RB Tyler Smith. Of concern for Gladstone will be whether their defense, which gave up a lot, given the inexperience of YC, can keep the Indians at arm’s length.

Most team’ recipe for success against ‘Poose is to keep the game close, and the score somewhat down. Gladstone, however, has the weapons to want to get into a shootout, and overcome giving up some points. Look for ‘Poose to play Gladstone tough, but go with the Gladiator offense on the turf to get enough points to outdistance the Indians.

Junction City Tigers (0-1) at Cascade Cougars (0-1). JC was shut out at home by Newport 20-0, while Cascade saw Astoria answer an early Cougar lead with 41 straight points, and cruise to a 41-12 win. The losses make this game very important to both teams, as an 0-2 start will make for a tough, uphill battle mentally, while the one that gets to 1-1 will have put August out of mind.

The difference is JC never got going, generating less than 100 yards of total offense. Meanwhile, Cascade outplayed Astoria for a half, until Jordan Poyer single handedly took the game over. Newport appears to be headed toward another solid year, and maybe sooner than expected, but they don’t have a game changer like Poyer, and the Tigers still didn’t pose a threat.

Further compounding the problems for JC was the absence of some players they are still counting on for contributions. Arriving late will mean more time before things come together. Cascade, even in the loss, got experience for a lot of new players. Also, the Cougar rush defense was solid, which is harder to fix than assignment in the secondary.

The Tigers will make a lot of adjustments, but so will the Cougars. The battle of the big cats will go to the quicker Cougars.

Estacada Rangers (0-1) at Sweet Home Huskies (0-1). The Rangers fell at Banks 21-7, and the Huskies saw an upset slip away in Sisters, when the Outlaws scored to take the come from behind 21-18 win with 19 seconds to go. Amos Parmenter carried 27 times for the Huskies, for 145 yards and a touchdown.

Estacada was a bit of a puzzle, not starting so strong, coming off a strong end of the season. Notwighstanding that Banks might be ahead of schedule, the Rangers showed that they still have a lot of work to do. Sisters has a host of new players, but also some folks that were around for the last second scrambles against North Bend and Ontario, and that couldn’t have helped the Huskies’ cause. But coming close in football crazy Sisters also signals that Sweet Home is prepared to be competitive. Based on the first week, the advantage in the ‘green’ game goes to the Huskies.

Central Panthers (1-0) at Molalla Indians (0-1). The Panthers outscored Marist 56-42 to firmly establish themselves as the early #1 team in 4A. The Indians lost, as noted above, at Scappoose.

Molalla, understandably, will need some time to reload their line, which is first and last priority for their ground pounding style. They should still win some games, on sheer brute force. But not this one.

Central has some work to do defensively, but Marist will put numbers on you like few others. Still, giving up nearly 500 yards isn’t the best way to win the state championship, which is what the Panthers made themselves the favorite to do with their first week win.

However, the Panther offense is already in high gear. It took a quarter to get going, against the defending state champions, but junior QB Grant Hedrick threw for 385 yards, and six touchdowns. And anyone that thinks Central is just an airshow needs to notice that Casey Connor also ran for 176 yards, and the Panthers for 237 total.

Molalla, and a lot of others, may get some points on the Panthers. And the best, and possibly only, defense against the Central offense is to have the ball, so they don’t. But the explosive Panthers can outscore what their defense allows, and they can do it quickly, in case time of possession is a factor. Panthers gash the Indians bigtime.

Taft Tigers (0-1) @ North Marion Huskies (1-0). Taft’s new turf field won’t be ready for another month, so this game was moved to North Marion. The Tigers will then go to Tillamook three weeks in a row, as games against Cowapa competitors from Seaside and Banks that bracket a planned trip to play the ‘Mooks will be played on the Cheesemakers’ turf as well.

The Tigers fell at 3A Creswell 16-14, while the Huskies dug out a tougher than expected 13-6 win at home over 5A Woodburn.

Taft did connect on a pair of long pass plays for fourth quarter scores, but their comeback fell short. Take from that that the Tigers didn’t quit on a game that a down program might well have. But 3A teams don’t see many offenses that can come up with a pair of long scoring passes.

North Marion is again, as they seemingly have been for a generation, a team with some stars, and no where near enough depth and support. And therefore, prone to struggling with bigger, deeper opponents. Woodburn may have played their best game in a couple of years, but that wouldn’t have been that hard to do. That the Huskies couldn’t put the Bulldogs away suggests it could be another character building league season.

But this week, better speed on turf, and an opponent with even more depth problems, means the Huskies can improve on their opening effort, and woof it up again. Dogs bite the Tigers.

Stayton Eagles (0-1) at Seaside Seagulls (0-1). The Eagles saw Philomath get away with a 13-6 win, after pulling within one point midway thru the fourth quarter. This despite an offensive effort that produced two total Eagle first downs. However, Philomath stopped a two point conversion, and proceeded to put the game away.

Seaside didn’t quite come as close, dropping a 20-6 decision to the visiting Elmira Falcons. The Gulls did take an early 6-0 lead, but lost that in the first quarter. The deficit was only 2 points until into the fourth quarter, but a pair of Brodie Davis Elmira touchdown passes in the fourth quarter put the game and the Gulls away.

The good news is one of these teams will be a .500 team going into the third week of the year. And because it is a hard game to pick, it will be a challenge in the Pickem contest. But it’s early, and the Eagles aren’t beaten down yet. And Seaside lost senior running back Agustin Tinoco, who suffered a broken leg in the Elmira contest. For the boss, take the Eagles’ fly (offense) to fly, at least a little, for at least a week.





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