High School Sports, Sports

HSSZ: Capsules, Week of Nov. 2


Thurston Colts: 19-5, ranked #4
■ The Colts beat No. 13 Ridgeview in the first round of the Class 5A playoffs, sweeping the Ravens 26-24, 25-11, and 25-18. Emily Buller led the way with 21 assists and 10 digs, Scout Martin had 9 kills and 18 digs, and Julia Cook finished with 6 kills, 10 digs and 6 aces.

“We started a little slow for me, didn’t really get into Thurston volleyball until the end of that first set,” said Thurston coach David Natt. “But they fought through, and we’ve been in these battles all season long, so that’s very familiar territory to them.”

The victory clinched Thurston’s spot in the quarterfinals, the first time since 2019 and the first in Natt’s career at Thurston.

“We get a banner in our gym, we won league, we’re going to the Elite Eight. We’re accomplishing our goals one match at a time,” Natt said. “We have goals in that tournament up there. We’ve already discussed what they are. And we’re going to take them one at a time and try to get to where we want to get to.”

The Colts travel to Forest Grove High School, 1401 Nichols Ln., Forest Grove, on Friday and Saturday for the state tournament. First up is No. 5 South Albany on Friday, with the winner likely facing defending champ No. 1 Crescent Valley (19-2).

Cottage Grove won its play-in match over No. 19 Baker 3-1 last Tuesday, grabbing the No. 11 seed in the postseason. Taylor Bennett led the Lions with 14 kills and 38 digs, and Jocelyn Torralba had 19 assists. In the 1st round of the postseason, Cottage Grove traveled to No. 6 Tillamook and fell 3-1, ending the Lions season. Bennett finished with 11 kills and 31 digs in the match, and Torralba had 15 assists.



Cottage Grove Lions: 11-2-1, ranked #6
Kicking off: Cottage Grove hosts No. 11 Ontario in the first round of the Class 4A playoffs on Wednesday, Nov. 1. If the Lions win, they’d likely travel to No. 3 Stayton on Saturday for the quarterfinals. Cottage Grove is unbeaten in its last 11 games – 10 wins and 1 draw – and will rely on Rogelio Soto-Cruz to continue facilitating in the midfield.

Creswell Bulldogs: 11-3, ranked #9
Kicking off: Sophomore Brady Pratt leads Creswell at No. 8 Blanchet Catholic on Wednesday in the second round of the Class 3A playoffs as both teams received first-round byes. If the Bulldogs upset Blanchet, it would most likely set up a game at No. 1 Westside Christian in the quarterfinals on Saturday.

Thurston Colts: 7-4-3, ranked #12
Kicking off: Thurston makes its first postseason appearance since 2007 on Wednesday. The Colts earned the No. 12 seed and travel to No. 5 Corvallis. Corvallis was one of five teams in Class 5A to allow fewer than 14 goals on the season, so Thurston’s attacking duo of Carlos Vega and Yurem Martinez will be challenged.



Creswell: 12-3, ranked #10
Kicking off: Senior twins Tailey and Dakota Carson lead Creswell into its first post-season since 2018. The Bulldogs travel to No. 7 Sutherlin on Tuesday night – after “The Chronicle’s” weekly deadline. An upset on Tuesday would send Creswell to No. 2 Catlin Gabel on Saturday for a quarterfinal matchup.

Pleasant Hill: 10-5-2, ranked #16
Kicking off: After exorcising their demons with a win over Riverdale in the first round, the Billies’ reward is to travel to face No. 1 Valley Catholic (13-0) in the second round. Valley Catholic has allowed only 4 goals all season; it will be up to Pleasant Hill’s top goal-scorer, Tressa Geyer, to keep the Billies close enough to pull off an upset.

Thurston: 8-4-3, ranked #6
Kicking off: Thurston went into its final regular-season game ranked No. 9, but jumped up to No. 6 when the playoff bracket was released. Thurston hosts No. 11 Silverton on Halloween as the Colts attempt to make back-to-back quarterfinals. A win on Tuesday sets up a potential quarterfinal at Midwestern League foe No. 3 North Eugene – a team Thurston lost 2-1 against this season – on Saturday.


Pleasant Hill won a league playoff game and a first-round playoff match. In the league playoff against Santiam Christian, the Billies won 2-0 behind two goals from senior Lydia Whitney, securing the team’s third straight playoff appearance. For the third straight season, the Billies faced off against Riverdale, which knocked out Pleasant Hill from the playoffs the past two seasons. Pleasant Hill got revenge, though, winning 1-0 behind a dramatic 79th-minute goal from sophomore Trinity Smead.

Springfield finished its season 1-11-2 with an 8-0 loss against No. 3 North Eugene and a 4-3 loss at Ashland. Goal-scorers against Ashland were Eva Alvarez-Guzman, Keeley Battey, and Lydia Stewart.


State Championship Previews

Cottage Grove boys and girls race in the Class 4A state championships after both won the Sky-Em League championships last week. Added bonus for the Lions is that the state race is held at Lane Community College, where the Sky-Em League race was last week. Carter Bengtson is the state favorite on the boys side, while Maddison France leads the girls attempt to earn a state trophy for the first time in program history.

Springfield made state as a team in both the girls and boys competitions. Owen Fuller leads the boys team with the 19th-best time in Class 5A this year, and Carrie Babcock has the 25th-best girls time.

League Championship Recaps

Cottage Grove boys and girls won the Sky-Em League championship last Thursday. The boys finished with 31 points, 15 lower than 2nd-place Marist. Carter Bengtson led the way, winning league with a time of 15:41.40, nearly a minute faster than the 2nd-place finisher. On the girls side, the Lions beat Junction City by 4 points to earn the program’s first league title thanks to a 2nd-place finish from Maddison France (20:05.80), and a 3rd-place finish from Ella Cardwell (20:13.00).

Creswell and Pleasant Hill raced at the Special District 4 championships last Thursday. The Billies boys finished 4th behind freshman Devon Jones, who was 10th overall. The Pleasant Hill girls also finished 4th, led by junior Ellie Epperson in 14th. Creswell’s top finishers were Carson Williamson in 13th on the boys side and Kaylee Gardner in 23rd for the girls.

Springfield and Thurston competed at the Midwestern League championships last Wednesday. Springfield boys finished 2nd as seniors Owen Fuller (15:55.14) and Conner Lamb (15:58.33) finished 6th and 8th, respectively. Springfield girls finished 3rd thanks to a 6th-place finish from senior Carrie Babcock (19:21.07). Genevieve Woodward was Thurston’s top finisher on the girls side in 19th place, and sophomore Carson Buergey was 12th on the boys side.



Friday, Oct. 27

■ Hidden Valley 57, Cottage Grove 41
■ Creswell 43, La Pine 7
■ Siuslaw 51, Pleasant Hill 7
■ Springfield 42, Eagle Point 14
■ Thurston 48, Churchill 28

Tuesday, Oct. 24
■ Cottage Grove 3, Baker 1 (25-14, 25-27, 25-20, 25-17)
Saturday, Oct. 28
■ (6) Tillamook 3, (11) Cottage Grove 1 (25-20, 24-26, 25-14, 25-13)
■ (7) Creswell 3, (10) Dayton 0 (25-13, 25-14, 25-23)
■ (2) Pleasant Hill 3, (18) Lakeview 0 (25-15, 25-11, 25-14)
■ (4) Thurston 3, (13) Ridgeview 0 (26-24, 25-11, 25-18)

Tuesday, Oct. 24

■ Thurston 5, Churchill 1
Wednesday, Oct. 25
■ Springfield 1, North Eugene 0
Saturday, Oct. 28
■ Ashland 5, Springfield 0
■ Thurston 0, Crater 0

Tuesday, Oct. 24

■ Pleasant Hill 2, Santiam Christian 0
■ North Eugene 8, Springfield 0
■ Thurston 7, Churchill 0
Saturday, Oct. 28
■ (16) Pleasant Hill 1, (17) Riverdale 0
■ Ashland 4, Springfield 3
■ Thurston 3, Crater 1


Friday, Nov. 3
■ (9) Dallas vs. (8) Thurston, at Willamette HS, 7 p.m.
■ (13) Lebanon at (4) Springfield,
7:30 p.m.

Friday, Nov. 3
■ (4) Thurston vs. (5) South Albany, quarterfinals at Forest Grove High School, 8 a.m.
■ (2) Pleasant Hill vs. (7) Creswell, quarterfinals at Springfield High School, 10 a.m.

Wednesday, Nov. 1
■ (11) Ontario at (6) Cottage Grove, 6 p.m.
■ (9) Creswell at (8) Blanchet Catholic, 6 p.m.
■ (12) Thurston at (5) Corvallis, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 4
■ State soccer quarterfinals
Tuesday, Nov. 7
■ State soccer semifinals

Tuesday, Oct. 31

■ (16) Pleasant Hill at (1) Valley Catholic, 5 p.m.
■ (10) Creswell at (7) Sutherlin, 6 p.m.
■ (11) Silverton at (6) Thurston, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 4
■ State soccer quarterfinals
Tuesday, Nov. 7
■ State soccer semifinals

Saturday, Nov. 4 (all at Lane CC)
■ Cottage Grove at Class 4A State Championships, 11:45 a.m.
■ Springfield at Class 5A State Championships, 1:45 p.m.



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