Kennedy girls dominate: Take 24 -1 record, top ranking into playoffs

February 2018 Posted in School, Sports

James DayThe Kennedy High girls basketball is riding a 19-game winning streak into the playoffs. The 24-1 Trojans finished a perfect 12-0 in the Tri-River Conference and are ranked No. 1 in Class 2A,
with their lone loss against Class 3A power Dayton.

Kennedy co-coach Peter Hall told Our Town that the run has been fueled by a combination of work in the paint, work on defense and work on outside shooting.

“We have been very dominant on points in the paint, rebounding and controlling our possessions by limiting turnovers,” he said. “Our defense is tenacious. We go 100 percent and try to play clean and fast, challenging teams at every pass.”

And an offseason campaign to upgrade their 3-point shooting has paid dividends as well.

“We asked the girls to put in the work and develop the mindset to look for these shots,” Hall said, with the outcome an offense that is much more diverse and averaging more than 55 points per game.

The Trojans are allowing just 30 points per game and have not had a game decided by less than 10 points since a 47-40 win Jan. 5 against Central Linn.

Four players average in double figures – Kalyssa Kleinschmit, Sophia Carley, Hannah Arritola and Kaylin Cantu. Carley, a 6-foot sophomore, also is averaging 13 rebounds and three blocks per game, while Arritola and Kleinschmit are averaging eight and seven rebounds per game, respectively.

The team has a veteran corps with seven players also on the roster when the Trojans won the 2016 Class 2A title, Kleinschmit, Cantu, Arritola, Kaylee Brown, Molly Jaeger, Abby Frey and Clarissa Traeger.

Hall offered special praise for Jaeger, who made the difficult move from post to point guard.

The Tri-River playoffs start this week, with the Class 2A tournament set for March 1-3 in Pendleton. “We look forward to the challenge ahead for the playoffs,” Hall said.

The Silverton boys, meanwhile, also are top-ranked with an 18-1 record in Class 5A. The Foxes are 10-0 in the Mid-Willamette Conference, with a key game coming up Friday, Feb. 16 at 9-1 South Albany, which is ranked seventh. Silverton has not lost since Dec. 21 against Mater Dei of San Diego County in the semifinals of the Capitol City Classic at Willamette University in Salem.

The Foxes girls squad is 8-2 in the Mid-Willamette after a 37-36 loss
Feb. 8 against Lebanon. Silverton, which is ranked fifth in 5A, gets a second shot at No. 1 Central when the Panthers visit the Foxes Feb. 20. Central, currently 10-0, won a 43-41 thriller on a shot at the buzzer in the first matchup Jan. 26.

Swimming: The Silverton squads broke six school records and took second in the boys and girls team competitions at the Mid-Willamette district meet Feb. 9-10 at Osborn Aquatic Center in Corvallis.

Kyle Reiser was the lone district champion for the Foxes, who piled up points with their depth. Reiser won the 100 breaststroke in 1:03.26 and also participated on two relay squads that broke school marks.

Crescent Valley won the girls meet with 526.5 points, with the Foxes second with 388.5. Silverton scored 351 in the boys meet, 65 behind champion Corvallis. Silverton moves on to the Class 5A state meet, with competition starting at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 16 and concluding with finals at 6:45 p.m. on Saturday.

“It was a great meet for the Foxes,” said coach Lucky Rogers, who noted that senior Jason Orr played a role in four school records.

Orr took second in the 50 free in 22.63 and the 100 backstroke in 54.52 to set individual school marks, while also participating in two relays that also set records.

Orr, Reiser, David Reeves and Blake Doerfler swam 1:42.45 to take second in the 200 medley relay, with the same foursome turning in a 1:33.67 second-place effort in the 200 free relay.

Girls relay squads also set a pair of school marks. The all-sophomore unit of Samantha Zurcher, Marie Tolmachoff, Maggie Kelley and Maddie Broyhill swam 1:57.59 to take second in the 200 medley relay, while Kelley, senior Breanna Castell, Broyhill and Tolmachoff turned in a 1:43.90 to take third in the 200 free relay.

Wrestling: Silverton sophomore Kaden Kuenzi captured the Mid-Willamette district title at 120 pounds to help lead the host Foxes to a sixth-place finish in the meet, held Feb. 9 and 10.

Kuenzi, who won a Class 5A title last season at 106 pounds, outscored Ryan Bibler of Dallas 20-12 in the final to improve his record to 44-3.

The Foxes will be sending three other wrestlers to the state championships at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum Feb. 16 – 17. Finishing second were Isaac Whitehead (126), Robert Guenther (132) and Hayden Roth (195). Also contributing for the Foxes were Owen Magill (5th at 160), Josten Richardson (6th at 170) and Ben Willis (6th at 285).

Silverton scored 189.5 points. Perennial power Dallas won the meet with 461.

“I’m very happy with the way that the, especially considering 95 percentof our wrestling roster is made up of freshman and sophomores four of whom made it to the finals,” coach Keegan Davis told Our Town. Davis also praised the community support that came with hosting the meet.

“Silverton has a rich wrestling history and when you have districts in your hometown the community really comes out. I think every coach was envious of the amount of parental support we have, from yelling in the stands to stocking the best hospitality room in the state. The families of Silverton really gave a lesson in small town hospitality.”

The new program at Kennedy will be sending two wrestlers to the Class 2A-1A meet, Matthew Marrow at 106 and Carlos Saravia at 120. Marrow and Saravia will be the first Trojans to wrestle at state since 2000.

“Both kids wrestled very tough and smart at the (district) tournament,” coach Dewey Enos told Our Town. Kennedy entered five athletes in the Feb. 2-3 Special District 1 meet at Monroe. The Trojans scored 45 points and finished eighth.

“Hopefully this will boost some of the community’s kids to come out and wrestle,” Enos said. “Qualifying two kids for state as a first-year program is huge.”

Also competing for Kennedy were Quentin Castro (fifth at 220), Jose Salazar (sixth at 126) and Christian Pineda (sixth at 285).

Softball: Silverton Youth Softball is developing some real momentum. After starting three years ago with just 30 players coordinator Dave Ullan told Our Town that he might wind up this year’s signup period with 60. Some teams play under the Little League structure, others play mainly tournaments under the USA Softball umbrella. Ullan also plans to field a middle school team this season. The program covers players aged 7-14, with signups continuing until the end of February. The season will get underway around spring break. Visit for information on how to participate.

Wurstfest runs: More than 350 runners and walkers participated in last Saturday’s Wurstfest runs in Mount Angel. Jonathan Sisley of Silverton won the 10K by more than three minutes in 36:21.7. The top female finisher, Erica Johnson of Sandy, took seventh overall in 43:22.4. Zach Kuenzi of Silverton was the 5K champion in 20:30.3. Fourth-place runner Melanie Ferry of Wilsonville was the first woman to finish in 22:26.0.

Follow me on @jameshday.

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.