News for those who live, work and play in the Santiam Canyon

Santiam girls go on the road for 2A playoffs

Santiam Wolverines

The Santiam High girls basketball team goes on the road for the first round of the playoffs. The Wolverines, 14-13, are the No. 15 seed in Class 2A and will visit No. 2 Bandon, 24-2,  at 5 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 24. The winner moves on to the Class 2A quarterfinals Feb. 29 in Pendleton.

“It is a huge accomplishment for us to make it to the state playoffs,” second-year coach Hannah Thompson told The Canyon Weekly. “This is the first time since the 2018-19 season that Santiam girls basketball has been in the state playoffs, so it is pretty exciting for myself, our team, and our community.”

The Wolverines advanced by taking a pair of wins in the Tri-River Conference playoffs against Kennedy and Colton before falling to Regis in the semifinals.

Bandon went 16-0 in the Valley Coast Conference and easily handled conference foes Oakridge and East Linn Christian in the league playoffs.

“Bandon is a mature, well-coached team,” said Thompson of the Tigers, who went 0-2 at Pendleton after defeating Regis in the round of 16. Bandon is a veteran team with six seniors. Santiam has none.

“They’re a potential championship team and play very well together and pass the ball very well,” Thompson said, “but I do think there is something to be said about us competing in the Tri-River conference.  It’s the toughest conference in the state and we have faced multiple teams within the top 10 all year long and played a lot of close games with these teams. So I know we are able to compete.”

The Tri-River placed five teams in the round of 16, with Western Christian seeded No. 1, Regis 3rd, Willamina ninth and Colton 12th in addition to Santiam.

“We had a goal set early in the season to make it to this point and my guess would be that we were probably the only people actually expecting that,” Thompson said. “For the hard work to pay off and come to fruition is really special. But more than that, I think just improving every day and getting better as a team has been our main focus. When you focus on the little things and work to improve on those, the big things/accomplishments will follow.”

Scio Loggers

The Scio boys, meanwhile, fell one game short of qualifying for the Class 3A playoffs for the first time in at least 20 years. The Loggers fell, 60-52 to Taft on Feb. 17 at Sprague High.  Scio finished 12-12 overall and 5-7 in the PacWest Conference in its second year under coach Nathan McIntyre. The Loggers improved dramatically from a 4-18, 1-11 season a year ago.

“High points this year included finishing the best season we had in years,” McIntrye told The Canyon Weekly,  “and getting recognition at the league level for our players.”

Hunter Courtney was a first-team all-PacWest selection, while Parker Ziebert made the second team and Braeden McIntyre received  honorable mention.

“We beat both Santiam Christian and Amity this year,” McIntrye said, “something we had not done in years. I am so proud of what we have accomplished in my second year after everything these boys had to go through to get to this point.”

For the seniors on the team freshman year was disrupted by COVID-19 (the Loggers were 0-10 in the spring season), and in sophomore year the team went 1-7 before switching to a JV schedule.

WRESTLING: Scio finished fourth in the Class 3A Special District II meet at Sheridan. Harrisburg won the team title with 454.0 points, followed by Santiam Christian (218.5), Elmira (200) and the Loggers (180.5).

Two wrestlers placed second for Scio, Conner McCarty at 132 pounds and Brandon Vath at 165. Russell Dickerman was third at 138, with Ryder Acuff (4th at 132), Hunter Davis (4th at 144), Conner Knight (4th at 157), Colton Medeinos (5th at 165), Kyle Johnson (5th at 175) and Arley LeBard (6th at 150), Logan Zosel (6th at 157) and Talen Gibbs (6th at 190) also securing valuable team points for the Loggers.

Scio participates in the state championships Feb. 22-24 at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Portland.

CHEERLEADING: Scio, which won its division in last year’s state cheerleading competition, took fifth in the 2024 competition on Feb. 9-10 at Oregon City High. The Loggers totaled 95.50 points in the Class 4A/3A/2A/1A Game Day Co-ed competition. Baker won the state title with 111.50, followed by The Dalles (110.50), Molalla (102.50) and Westside Christian (100).

Scio team members included senior captains Lillian Androes and Marissa Donner, juniors Addison Traeger and Josey Hirschfelder and sophomores Kya McNichols and Cheyenne Smith. The team was led by head coach Jordan Carlson and assistant coach Adelina Crainet.

UMPIRES: The Oregon Athletic Officials Association and the Oregon School Activities Association are recruiting officials for the high school spring sports seasons. There is an immediate need for umpires in baseball and softball.

Becoming a high school official has several benefits including staying involved in athletics, maintaining good physical condition and earning money, according to OAOA Executive Director Jack Folliard.

“Oregon has an urgent need for officials in all sports,” Folliard said.  “Officials provide valuable service to high schools and students, make a positive impact in the community and build relationships.”

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