Wacky Oregon West: Four football teams within a game of each other

November, 2017 Posted in Columnists & Opinion, Sports & Recreation

James DayFor the second consecutive year the Oregon West Conference football race has been a doozy.

Last season Stayton, Cascade and North Marion tied for the league title with 3-1 marks, and the No. 15 seed Cougars caught fire in the Class 4A playoffs, advancing to the semifinals.

This season it was even more complicated. North Marion and Cascade both ended 4-1, with Stayton and Newport at 3-2, one game behind. And all four teams made the playoffs.

Cascade entered the final Friday of the league season controlling its own fate, but the Cougars ran into a defensive buzzsaw against North Marion at Federico Field in Turner. The Huskies scored a pair of safeties in the 10-0 victory that earned them a first-round bye.

Meanwhile, over at Stayton, Eagles sophomore quarterback Ben Rash rallied the squad with a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns, but the Cubs held on to win 30-20, leaving both teams at 3-2.

Cascade hosted North Bend, Stayton visited South Umpqua and Newport traveled to Phoenix in last weekend’s play-in round after Our Town’s presstime. North Marion, meanwhile, received a bye.

The North Marion game was the final Oregon West football contest for Cascade, which is moving into the Class 5A Mid-Willamette Conference next season. The Cougars will be the smallest school in the 10-member league that also includes Silverton, North Salem, Dallas, Lebanon, Corvallis, Crescent Valley, West Albany, South Albany and Central.

Cascade officials testified against the change, which Cougars Athletic Director Heidi Hermansen said likely will remain in place for at least two years.

The Oregon West, meanwhile, will add Sisters, Sweet Home and Woodburn while losing Cascade to Class 5A, Yamhill-Carlton to Class 3A and North Marion to the Class 4A Tri-Valley Conference.

Santiam, meanwhile, scored big wins against Regis (59-18) and Kennedy (30-16) to move into second place in the Tri-River. The Wolverines’ lone loss heading into the league’s final week was against No. 1 St. Paul.

Soccer: The No. 2 Stayton boys ran the table in the Oregon West and have a first-round bye in the Class 4A playoffs. The Stayton girls, meanwhile, visited Sutherlin and Cascade hosted Ontario in the play-in round. Both matches took place after Our Town’s presstime.

Volleyball: Cascade finished 7-3 in the Oregon West, three matches behind Philomath, and hosted Siuslaw in a play-in game. The Cougars advanced to the round of 16 the past two years after finishing sixth at state in 2014 and runners-up in 2013.

Cross country: Stayton took the top three boys runners into the Oregon West district meet. Casey Pugh (16:24.1), Matthew Frazeur (16:27.7) and Ben Kirby (16:51.9) are leading the way for the Eagles, who hoped to repeat as district champions. Jose Gibson of Cascade was ranked sixth (17:20.3), with Stayton’s Hailey Notman (2nd, 19:30.8) and Cascade’s Savanna Waters (4th, 20:28.3) in the hunt for the girls.

Wyatt Heuberger of Regis, meanwhile, is ranked No. 3 in Special District 3 with a time of 17:30.3.

Watch the Our Town Facebook page for special reports on the cross country district meets as well as the Nov. 4 state meet.

NFL update: Wide receiver Tyrell Williams, the former Cascade athlete, is tied for third on the Los Angeles Chargers with 21 receptions. The 6-4, 205-pound third-year player who played college ball at Western Oregon, caught a 75-yard touchdown pass Oct. 1 against Philadelphia and has 298 receiving yards, averaging 14.2 yards per catch. The Chargers have won three in a row after an 0-4 start.

Toys for Joy,
Gift of Christmas
registration opens

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