Sports Zone

HSSZ: All weekly capsules

As postseason brackets won’t be posted until later this week and early next week, the normal High School Sports Zone capsules have been adjusted. This week’s capsules include Track and Field district previews, The Main Event, schedules/results, as well as some adjusted recaps that include hypothetical postseason scenarios for the relevant teams.

The Main Event: Thurston at Springfield Baseball, Softball doubleheader

Thurston baseball (21-3, ranked #1) heads to rival Springfield (5-15, ranked #30) as the Colts look to finish their Midwestern League season undefeated. Thurston’s already clinched its fifth-straight league title, but hasn’t had an undefeated league run in that span. On the flip side, Thurston softball (12-10, ranked #13) attempts to clinch a postseason berth with a series win at Springfield (1-17, ranked #31).

Track and Field League Championship Previews

Cottage Grove: The Lions head to North Bend on Friday and Saturday for the Sky-Em League Championships. On the boys side Cottage Grove looks to contend for the league title, led by Brennen Murphy, fastest in the league in the 200m (22.41) and second in the 400m (49.96). The boys also have Jaden Owens and Carter Bengtson, who are both top-four in the league in the 1500m and 3000m. For the girls, sophomore Allison Palluck should contend for the podium in the 800m, 1500m and 3000m.

Creswell: Creswell heads to Siuslaw on Thursday and Friday for the Special District 4 Championships. Jack Nguyen leads the boys with the fastest 110m hurdles time in the league (15.74) and second fastest 300m hurdles (42.16) time. On the girls side, Samairah Quinones is the favorite in the javelin, while Kaitlyn Machado looks for a podium finish in the shot put and discus.

Pleasant Hill: The Billies also head to Siuslaw for the SD4 meet, with a chance to compete for the podium on the girls side. Freshman Soleis Jones leads the league in the 200m (27.04) and is top-five in the 100m and 400m. Junior Dakota Hyland is the favorite in the 400m, and both Jones and Hyland are a part of the league’s fastes 4x100m time. Jackson Weller leads the boys with the league’s best long jump mark (20’ 2).

Springfield: Springfield hosts the Midwestern League Championships on Thursday and Saturday. Senior Kian Lamb could be one of the top-point getters at the meet, leading the boys league in the 200m (22.92), 400m (51.31) and 300m hurdles (42.03). Kylie Rankins will likely lead the girls thanks to being top-three in the league in the shot put (35’ 4), discus (123’ 3) and javelin (108’ 2.5).

Thurston: As Thurston heads to Springfield on Thursday and Saturday, the girls team should be the favorites to win the league championships. Senior Breanna Raven leads the way with the fastest 100m (12.55), 200m (26.06) times, as well as the best triple jump in the league (18’ 7). For the boys, keep an eye on Ammon Gallup in the long jump, Taylor Carpenter in the high jump, and Tyler Raven in both hurdle events.

Baseball Capsules

Cottage Grove: After a tough series loss to No. 3 Marist last week, the Lions had an important upset on Monday over Class 3A No. 17 Siuslaw. Cottage Grove won 5-3 thanks to Micah Spear’s 3 hits, 1 run, 1 RBI and 8 Ks. The win was so important because it boosted the Lions to No. 25 in Class 4A, giving them an outside shot at a play-in game. The Lions will know if they’ve made the play-in Tuesday night, and would have to travel to a top-10 team if they make it.

Creswell: Creswell had arguably its best week of the season, going 2-1 in a series against Elmira. The Bulldogs won Game One 6-5 thanks to Landon Palmer’s 3 hits, 1 run and 2 RBI’s. Creswell then took Game Three of the series 13-11 behind Tyler Pratt’s 4 hits, 3 runs and 2 RBIs, as well as Jayden Kubishta’s 3 hits and 2 runs. Creswell finishes its season at Pleasant Hill on Tuesday, after deadline. The Bulldogs are 5-15, and will miss the postseason no matter the result of Tuesday’s games.

Pleasant Hill: The Billies went 2-1 in a critical series against No. 13 Siuslaw, putting themselves in a prime spot to grab an automatic qualifier spot. Pleasant Hill won Game One thanks to Caden Richardson pitching all 6 innings, allowing only 5 hits and recording 10 Ks. The Billies won Game Two as well, a 9-1 victory fueled by Alejandro Ziolkowski’s 9 Ks and only 2 hits allowed. Moving forward, the Billies need to win both games against Creswell on Tuesday night to clinch an automatic qualifier in the Mountain Valley Conference. At the very least Pleasant Hill will get an at-large bid and start its postseason early next week.

Springfield: Springfield went 1-2 in a series against No. 16 Eagle Point, winning Game One 5-3 before losing the next two 13-5 and 13-12. In the Game One win Dylan Leas had 6 Ks and allowed only 1 hit, while Corban Hein had 1 hit, 1 run and 2 RBIs. Noah Roemen had 2 hits, 1 run and 1 RBI in Game Two, and 3 hits, 2 runs and 2 RBIs in Game Three.

Thurston: Thurston moved to 15-0 in the Midwestern League with a series win against No. 15 Crater, clinching the MWL crown for the fifth-straight year in the process. Pitching was again the key for the Colts. Grady Saunders had 7 Ks and allowed only 2 hits in Game One’s 2-0 win, Connor Molony threw a no-hitter in the 13-0 Game Two victory, and Collin Hernandez had 9 Ks and 1 hit allowed in 4 innings in Game Three’s 4-0 win.

Softball Capsules

Cottage Grove: The Lions closed out the regular season with an 0-3 week, losing to Junction City 12-7 and falling in a doubleheader at No. 14 Marist Cathoilc 18-3 and 20-4. Emily Pacheco had 9 Ks against JC, while Addison Hitt had 2 hits, 2 runs and 1 RBI. In Game One against Marist, Pacheco had a three-run home run, and in Game Two, Pacheco had 2 hits, 2 runs and 1 RBI. Looking ahead for the Lions, they end their regular season at 8-13 and ranked No. 20. This means Cottage Grove will travel for a play-in game on Saturday, although the time and opponent are unknown as of deadline. Either way the Lions will need Pacheco’s arm to carry the load if they hope to advance to the postseason.

Creswell: Creswell had a tough series against No. 14 Elmira, losing the three games 15-7, 11-1 and 10-8. Hope Ukolov had 6 Ks in Game One and Ashelyn Sharkey chipped in 2 hits and 3 runs. In Game Three, the closest contest of the series, Creswell made a good comeback attempt that fell just short, scoring 6 runs in the final two innings. Sharkey had 2 hits, 2 runs and 1 RBI, while Lexie Smith finished with 2 hits and 3 RBIs. Although Creswell (14-8, ranked No. 16) has essentially clinched an at-large bid for the playoffs, the Bulldogs can jump into the top-three in the Mountain Valley Conference with two wins against Pleasant Hill on Tuesday, after deadline, grabbing an automatic qualifying spot and a higher seed.

Pleasant Hill: The Billies took control of their own destiny in the Mountain Valley Conference title race with a dominant series against Siuslaw, winning the three games 14-2, 16-4 and 12-0. In Game One last Tuesday, Shyanne Fenley had 2 hits, 3 runs and 2 RBIs, while Bella Black pitched all 5 innings and recorded 11 Ks. Karley Bloxham, with 7 Ks, and Kiley Campos, with 3 hits, 3 runs and 3 RBIs, led the way in Game Two, and Campos went 3-for-4 with 4 RBIs in Game Three. The most important matchup of the week is Pleasant Hill’s doulbheader against No. 16 Creswell on Tuesday. Pleasant Hill has a postseason berth locked up, but two wins would clinch the MVC crown for the Billies, and potentially give them a top-five seed heading into the playoffs.

Springfield: The Millers had a series against No. 18 Eagle Point, losing all three games 11-1, 17-0 and 23-0. Kayla Morris had two hits in Game One and Jacey Smith scored the team’s only run of the week.

Thurston: Thurston faced off against No. 7 Crater in a series last week, going 0-3. Crater remains undefeated in the Midwestern League. Game Three was the most competitive of the series, a 6-4 loss. Emily Spain had a 2-run home run in the 4th inning, while Sadie Decker had a solo homer in the 6th.



Tuesday, May 9

Junction City 10, Cottage Grove 2

Creswell 6, Elmira 5

Pleasant Hill 11, Siuslaw 1

Springfield 5, Eagle Point 3

Thurston 2, Crater 0

Friday, May 12

Marist 14, Cottage Grove 0

Marist 24, Cottage Grove 6

Elmira 8, Creswell 2

Creswell 13, Elmira 11

Pleasant Hill 9, Siuslaw 1

Siuslaw 13, Pleasant Hill 4

Thurston 13, Crater 0

Thurston 4, Crater 0

Saturday, May 13

Eagle Point 13, Springfield 5

Eagle Point 13, Springfield 12

Monday, May 15

Cottage Grove 5, Siuslaw 3


Tuesday, May 2

Junction City 12, Cottage Grove 7

Elmira 15, Creswell 7

Pleasant Hill 14, Siuslaw 2

Eagle Point 11, Springfield 1

Crater 11, Thurston 1

Friday, May 12

Marist 18, Cottage Grove 3

Marist 20, Cottage Grove 4

Elmira 11, Creswell 1

Elmira 10, Creswell 8

Pleasant Hill 16, Siuslaw 4

Pleasant Hill 12, Siuslaw 0

Crater 10, Thurston 3

Crater 6, Thurston 4

Saturday, May 13

Eagle Point 17, Springfield 0

Eagle Point 23, Springfield 0



Friday, May 19

Thurston at Springfield, DH, 4 p.m. and 6 p.m.


Friday, May 19

Thurston at Springfield, 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.


Thursday, May 18

Creswell, Pleasant Hill at SD4 Championships – Siuslaw HS, 11:30 a.m.

Springfield, Thurston at Midwestern League Championships – SHS, 3 p.m.

Friday, May 19

Cottage Grove at Sky-Em Championships – North Bend HS, 11 a.m.

Creswell, Pleasant Hill at SD4 Championships – Siuslaw HS, 11 a.m.

Saturday, May 20

Springfield, Thurston at Midwestern League Championships – SHS, 10:30 a.m.

Cottage Grove at Sky-Em Championships – North Bend HS, 11 a.m.



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