PREP ROUNDUP: Tornado sweeps past Challengers
Returning to its home gymnasium to play in front of a crowd for the first time in more than a year, North Medford handled visiting Cascade Christian in straight sets, 25-20, 25-16, 25-18, in nonleague volleyball Thursday.
“They were a young scrappy team and they played hard,” North Medford head coach Josh Elbert said of Class 3A Cascade Christian. “We were able to stay focused and take care of business.”
North Medford seniors Jackie Aukusitino and Audrey Yechout led the attack with 13 and nine kills, respectively. Senior Makayla Miller had a team-high seven aces and also led the 6A Black Tornado (3-1) with 20 digs. Senior setter Pa’oa Payne-Kaeo tallied 24 assists.
For Cascade Christian (2-2), sophomore Maddi Carter led with eight kills and chipped in two aces. Sophomore Maddie Todd and junior Ellie Harrington each added five kills.
Cascade Christian head coach Rob Kleker said the match was a great opportunity for his young squad to play a bigger school and their neighbors in Medford.
“It’s always kind of cool to be the small school getting to play the big guy,” Kleker said. “I was proud of the way our kids fought. (We) didn’t back down from them.”
SOUTH EUGENE 3, SOUTH MEDFORD 1: South Eugene rallied to win the Southwest Conference match, 21-25, 25-21, 25-20, 25-20, in four close sets.
South Medford junior Katie Clevenger had a team-high 22 kills to go with eight digs and two aces. Senior Emily Fliegel added 14 kills, senior Lexi Deschweinitz had 25 assists and three aces while senior Grace Morales chipped in five kills and one block.
The Panthers (1-4, 0-1 SWC) stormed to a win in the first set but a few surges by South Eugene in the final three sets proved to be the difference.
ASHLAND 3, EAGLE POINT 0: At Eagle Point, Ashland senior Amelia Evans had a big night with nine kills and 10 stuff blocks to lead the Grizzlies to a Midwestern League sweep, 25-17, 25-18, 25-15.
Senior Sascha Wells had 12 digs and sophomore Flannery Lundgren added four digs and three kills for the Grizzlies (2-1 MWL).
Abby Trautman had six kills and 17 digs and Lily Bixler added four kills for Eagle Point (0-4 MWL), while Makynlee Schauffler chipped in with seven assists. The Eagles also had strong service games from Paige Green and Sydney Boren.
NORTH BEND 3, CRATER 0: At North Bend, Kendra Bittle powered home 11 kills and Madison Kocina added nine kills but North Bend proved too much in its 25-9, 25-21, 25-23 Midwestern League win.
Kate Stidham had a strong overall game for the Comets (1-3 MWL) with three blocks and 24 assists, while Joslynn Pope had nine digs and Abigail Winslow paced Crater’s passing attack on serve-receive.
HENLEY 3, ST. MARY’S 2: St. Mary’s came up short in a good back-and-forth battle, with a couple hitting errors in the final set proving costly as visiting Class 4A Henley won 20-25, 25-22, 25-15, 23-25, 15-11.
Junior Kelsey Dunn led St. Mary’s (3-3) with 16 kills and 14 blocks, sophomore Emma Johnston added 12 kills and 11 digs and senior Kylie Kinsella chipped in with 19 digs.
Senior Lainey Stranberg was 22 for 25 from the service line with four aces and eight kills for the Crusaders, while sophomore Noelle Thickett added five aces while serving 19 for 23. Thickett also had 25 assists and 13 digs.
HIDDEN VALLEY 5, ST. MARY’S 0: At Murphy, Hidden Valley scored its first goal in the seventh minute and led 3-0 by halftime.
St. Mary’s (0-2), which had two shots on goal in the game, played better for much of the second half before allowing the final two Mustangs goals in the 68th and 70th minutes.
ASHLAND 1, ROSEBURG 1: At Roseburg, Ashland senior Emmeline Clark scored the team’s lone goal as the Grizzlies opened the season with a draw.
Clark scored unassisted in the 46th minute for Ashland (0-0-1) after taking possession away from a Roseburg defender, dribbling into the box and putting it through the net.
Roseburg scored the equalizing goal in the 66th minute.
Clark and junior Ini Hammond each registered two shots on goal, while senior goalkeeper Zadi Burke was credited with two saves.
HIDDEN VALLEY 6, ST. MARY’S 0: At Murphy, Hidden Valley scored three goals in each half to overwhelm St. Mary’s in nonleague play.
Elise Fernandes had a couple scoring opportunities turned away for the Crusaders (0-3).
St. Mary’s goalkeeper Katelynn Balsiger was under siege and came up with several nice saves to hold down the score.
A couple Hidden Valley goals toward the back post were tipped by Balsiger but just not enough to gain clearance.