Sports Zone

HSSZ Capsules: Week of Feb. 29


No. 10 Central (15-9) at No. 5 SPRINGFIELD MILLERS (17-8)
Tipping off: The Millers begin their title defense this week as the Class 5A playoffs start Saturday. The Millers host No. 10 Central, though the game time on Saturday is still TBD. Springfield needs stars ​​Danaeja Romero-Ah Sam and Diamond Wright to play well if it wants to make the top eight.


COTTAGE GROVE GIRLS: 15-12, ranked #18
Tipping off: After an upset win at No. 15 Scappoose in the play-in game, second-year coach Pete LeMay and the Lions have earned a postseason berth one season after winning only four games. The Lions earned the 16th and final postseason seed, meaning they must travel to No. 1 Astoria – a team that’s riding a 19-game win streak into the postseason. 

CRESWELL GIRLS: 20-7, ranked #10
Tipping off: Creswell heads to Coos Bay for the Class 3A state tournament, and a quarterfinal matchup with No. 2 Sutherlin. An upset win on Thursday for Dakota Carson and the Bulldogs would mean a semifinal game on Friday, but the Bulldogs would still make their way to the consolation bracket with a loss.

THURSTON BOYS: 16-7, ranked #12
Tipping off: The Class 5A boys basketball playoffs begin Friday, and the Colts will play in their first playoff game since March 9, 2019 after earning the second seed out of the Midwestern League. Junior inside player Nate Stiffler and the Colts travel to No. 5 West Albany for their first round game on Friday.


See girls basketball recaps at the end of the Creswell/Pleasant Hill girls basketball story

■ The Pleasant Hill Billies boys basketball team, ranked in the top five for much of 2024, had their season end with a 66-61 loss at Neah-Kah-Nie in the round of 16. While Neah-Kah-Nie was the eighth seed and Pleasant Hill was the nine seed, the Billies were ranked No. 4 compared to Neah-Kah-Nie’s No. 12, meaning the Billies were favorites heading into the game. Back-to-back conference player of the year Gavin Inglish and the Billies end the season with back-to-back losses after losing only three other games.

Cottage Grove’s season ended with a 76-54 loss at No. 13 Newport in a Class 4A play-in game. The loss marks three consecutive seasons ending with a play-in loss for coach Seth Hutchison and the Lions.

Creswell took down No. 19 Yamhill-Carlton in the first round of the playoffs before falling at No. 3 De La Salle North Catholic. Carson Williamson had 18 points in the 68-52 first-round win, while Tyler Whitson had a triple-double, tallying 16 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists. In the 61-36 season-ending loss to DLSNC, Whitson finished with 11 points, 8 rebounds, and 5 assists.

Springfield saw its season come to a close with two league losses at Thurston and Eagle Point. In a 73-50 loss at Thurston, junior Vinnie Trinka led the way with 17 points and Jayden Robinson chipped in 11. The Millers finished the season 5-18 in TC Combs’ first year at the helm.

Thurston took down Springfield 73-50 before handling No. 8 Crater 57-49 to secure second-place in the Midwestern League. Nate Stiffler had 23 points and 7 rebounds against Springfield, while Noah Blair led the way against Crater with 21 points and 8 rebounds. Walker Bonar scored 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting against Crater.


Billies boys place four, earn 7th-place finish
■ The Pleasant Hill Billies wrestled in the Class 3A state competition Thursday and Friday, finishing 7th overall as a team and placing four boys on the podium. Gavin Haratyk (120 pounds) and Vedder Anderson (144) both finished third in their weight classes to lead the way, while Bryson Boyles (113) finished 5th and Boone Marquess (150) was 6th.

Lions place three boys; injured Palluck out
■ The Cottage Grove Lions boys competed in Class 4A and finished 16th overall – with three wrestlers earning podium finishes. Freshman Jeffery Conklin (120 pounds) had the highest finish – 5th place, while junior Carter Bengtson (138) and senior Nathan Abrams (285) both took home 6th place. On the girls side, junior Allison Palluck, a state champ last year at 115 pounds, missed the tournament due to a knee injury. She was 21-4 this season before the injury.

Harrisburg boys take state title
■ The Harrisburg boys wrestling team had the widest margin of victory of any team last weekend, taking the Class 3A title with 285 points – 130 ahead of second-place Burns. Harrisburg placed 15 wrestlers on the podium en route to the team’s first 3A state title. Harrisburg junior Luke Cheek pinned his way to the 120-pound title – his third individual state title.



Tuesday, Feb. 20
■ (14) Creswell 68, (19) Yamhill-Carlton 52
■ Thurston 73, Springfield 50
Friday, Feb. 23
■ Newport 76, Cottage Grove 54 (play-in)
■ (3) De La Salle North Catholic 61, (14) Creswell 36
■ (8) Neah-Kah-Nie 66, (9) Pleasant Hill 61
■ Eagle Point 68, Springfield 54
■ Thurston 57, Crater 49

Tuesday, Feb. 20
■ North Bend 53, Cottage Grove 38
■ Springfield 85, Thurston 22
Friday, Feb. 23
■ Springfield 80, Eagle Point 41
■ Crater 69, Thurston 31
Saturday, Feb. 24
■ Cottage Grove 54, Scappoose 42 (play-in)
■ (7) Creswell 61, (10) Coquille 41
■ (11) Nyssa 33, (6) Pleasant Hill 22


Friday, March 1
■ (12) Thurston at (5) West Albany, 7 p.m.

Thursday, Feb. 29
■ (7) Creswell vs. (2) Sutherlin (Marshfield HS), 8:15 p.m.
Saturday, March 2
■ (16) Cottage Grove at (1) Astoria, 4:30 p.m.
■ (10) Central at (7) Springfield, TBD



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