Sports Zone

SSZ Briefs: Week of August 3

Challengers fall in state title game

The Emerald Challengers, an American Legion baseball team made up of Springfield- and Eugene-area players, fell in the state championships last week in Swede Johnson Stadium at North Eugene High School. The Challengers were the top seed, earning their 50th win of the season during the weekend tournament.

Ultimately, the Challengers fell in the finals to the Portland Barbers. The bracket was double-elimination, and because Challengers reached the finals through the upper-bracket, they had two chances to win the state title.

The Barbers grabbed Game One on Wednesday afternoon 7-6 in a back-andforth affair. The Barbers had a 2-run home run in the 7th inning to secure the victory. In Game Two on Wednesday evening, Portland kept their Game One momentum going, winning 10-6 to secure the championship.

The Challengers end their season 50-8, in part thanks to the play of Thurston athletes Eli Crist, Adam Elliott, Collin Hernandez, Easton Mcdonald, and Kyle Miller.

Adam Elliott, a rising Thurston senior, gets a hit in the championship game loss to Portland.

Drifters host season finale this weekend

While the Springfield Drifters aren’t mathematically eliminated yet, they are six games back of the Portland Pickles for the final playoff spot with only six games remaining, meaning they’ll need a perfect finish to make the postseason.

The Drifters had solid performances last week, going 3-3 with two wins over the Pickles. The Drifters and Pickles also finished the longest game of the West Coast League season.

On June 18, the Drifters went to Portland and took an 8-0 lead. The Pickles tied the game 9-9, and in the bottom of the 12th inning, the lights at the stadium shut off in the middle of a Drifters pitch.

Last week the game finally resumed, with the Pickles grabbing a walk-off 10-9 win.

Billies alums win 3-on-3 tournament

The Pleasant Hill Billies sent multiple teams to compete in the Hoopla 3on3 tournament in Salem last weekend. The Oregon Hoopla is an annual 3on3 basketball tournament hosted by Toyota and Dutch Bros.

Two Pleasant Hill alumni won one of the mens brackets on Sunday. Travis Melvin and Kevin Broderick Kartye helped their team to victory.

Broderick-Kartye helped the Billies win a state championship in 1999 and was 1st team all-state that year as well. Melvin earned 1st team all-state in ’98.


Recurring daily
■ Mountain Bike Ride On The Alpine
Trail. $38 per person. Hosted by the
Cascades Outdoor Center in Westfir.
■ Oakridge Triple Summit
Challenge. This race gives you the
opportunity to run three different mountain trails that combine
for a total of 40 miles of trail. Race
up Buckhead Mountain, Dead
Mountain and Larison Rock. Dog
friendly. Recurring daily through
Aug. 6.
Thu.-Sun., Aug. 3-6
■ 2023 Santana 20 Nationals at Fern
Ridge Reservoir, Veneta. Sailboat
Nationals hosted by Eugene Yacht
Saturday, Aug. 5
■ Let’s Roll! Skate Party, 6-8 p.m.
at Bob Keefer Center. Skate in style
with music, games, and fun for all
ages. Bring roller skates, in-line
skates, rollerblades, or rent skates
for $3 when you register. Admission
is in-district $7 or out-of-district
$10. Register at

Monday, Aug. 14
■ Fall sports first practice date.
Sat.-Sun., Aug. 19 -20
■ CANAM Challenge, Dexter
Reservoir. See the best Canadian
and American drag boat racers of
the Pacific Northwest compete to be
the fastest boat on the water.
Thursday, Aug. 24
■ First contest date for volleyball,
soccer, and cross country.
Thursday, Aug. 31
■ First contest date for football.
Friday, Sept. 1
(First football contests)
All games at 7 p.m.
■ Cottage Grove @ Pleasant Hill
■ Creswell vs. Taft
■ Springfield @ Ridgeview
■ Thurston @ Wilsonville



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