Spring standouts: Kennedy, Silverton boast top track and field talent

April 2019 Posted in Columnists & Opinion, School, Sports

James DayThe Kennedy High girls track and field squad has finished in the top 10 at state for the past eight seasons. This year’s squad looks primed to keep the streak alive.

“We have potential state champions, great experience with seven four-year seniors and decent depth,” veteran coach Steve Ritchie told Our Town. “The girls should be strong contenders for a district title and a top 3 finish at state.”

Senior Alejandra Lopez, who won a state title in cross country in the fall, took second in both the 1,500 and 3,000 at state a year ago. Senior Hallie Sprauer was second in the high jump, third in the triple jump, eighth in the long jump and ran a leg on the fifth place 4×100 relay squad.

The girls squad also features Sophia Rodriguez in the horizontal jumps, rising javelin star Caitlyn Kleinschmit, and freshman sprinter Kylee Rodriguez.

The Trojans boys squad returns state meet scorers Luke Hall (800, 4×400 relay), Nick Suing (shot put) and Nick Riedman (4×400 relay). Ritchie also has high hopes for hurdler Carlos Saravia, whose 2018 season was cut short by a shoulder injury, distance runners Gianni Velazquez and Ruben Ramirez and sophomore 800 man Jose Salazar.

Silverton, meanwhile, has its usual 175 or so athletes out, coach Erik Cross told Our Town. The Foxes’ girls squad was 12th at state a year ago, with the boys 16th.

The Foxes’ boys and girls squads turned in a series of fine performances at the Silverton Cloudbreaker event on Thursday, March 21.

• Senior Savannah Reilly set a personal best in the long jump (16-3) and tied her PR in the high jump (5-4).

• Senior Ben Willis uncorked a discus PR of more than 20 feet (140-3) and turned in a shot put PR of 50-3.

• Junior Blake Doerfler improved 17 feet in the javelin with a throw of 180-11.

• Junior Lee Metzger won the boys long jump at 20-7.

Also looking to play key roles for the girls are sprinter Katie Sinn, 800 runner and relay member Jori Paradis, javelin thrower Riley Traeger and vaulter Emily Candee.

Other boys standouts include thrower Daniel Dyer, distance runner Haile Stutzman, 400 runners Justice McBride and Cory Garlinghouse and promising freshmen Sam Willis (discus), Orie Schaeffer (discus), Carter Gauvin (400, 800) and sprinter Jordan McCarty.

The Mid-Willamette Conference has added North Salem, which is a perennial girls powerhouse (the Vikings were 12th at state in Class 6A a year ago).

“If Thursday night was any indication of how the rest of the season will go,” Cross said, “I’m optimistic that we will be competing with the top teams in the league and hopefully from around the state.”

Hoops: The Silverton boys basketball team, which claimed its second consecutive Mid-Willamette Conference championship with a 15-1 record, swept top honors on the league’s all-star squad.

Jamie McCarty was named coach of the year, and Foxes senior post Levi Nielsen and junior guard David Gonzales, shared player of the year honors. Senior guard Jonah Downey and senior wing Josiah Roth were named to the first team, with junior wing Grant Dunn, senior guard Drake Ulven and freshman guard Jordan McCarty earning honorable mention.

The Foxes, 25-3, finished third in the Class 5A tournament, losing only to eventual champion Wilsonville.

The Foxes girls squad, which took second in the Mid-Willamette with a 14-2 mark, placed sophomore post Truitt Reilly and junior guard Ellie Schmitz on the first team, with junior post Riley Traeger earning second-team honors. Senior guard Jori Paradis and junior wing Josslyn Ames received honorable mention.

Silverton was 21-5 overall after an 0-2 showing in the state tournament that included a quarterfinal loss to eventual champion La Salle Prep.

Dance and drill: Silverton competed in the OSAA Class 5A dance/drill competition March 15 at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Portland. The Foxes took sixth in their class with 77.22 points. Pendleton won the state title with 79.98, followed by Lebanon (79.30), South Albany (78.23), West Albany (79.22) and Milwaukie (78.02).

Volleyball: The Silverton Bearcats Volleyball Club is having a terrific season. The competitive volleyball program that consists of players from the Silverton, Mount Angel, Stayton and Salem areas, currently has 69 girls in the six-team program, with players ranging in age from 9 to 18. The season runs from November to May and teams participate in one or two tournaments a month. Every team has won at least one tournament so far this season, with a 14U team claiming three tournament wins. For information about the program or a game schedule should email silvertonbearcatsvbc@gmail.com.

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