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PREP ROUNDUP: South falls in Rogue Valley Classic championship

For the second consecutive weekend, the South Medford volleyball team found themselves playing in a tournament’s championship match.

This time around, it was an all-Panther matchup in the championship of the Rogue Valley Classic at North Medford High, but South Medford was unable to keep pace with University Prep of Redding in a 25-13, 25-17 loss.

In the semifinal round, South Medford beat host North Medford 25-14, 25-23, while Crater fell 25-23, 25-16 to University Prep.

South Medford (12-4) was able to get a bit of revenge from last weekend when it beat McNary — which topped the Panthers in the championship game of its own tournament last Saturday — in three sets during pool play.

“Last weekend, we lost in the championship to McNary and today we came out and overcame that and beat them,” said South Medford head coach Robin Akpan. “If you look at the score of the third set (against McNary), 15-3, we definitely were fired up to do that and that was a big improvement for us. It was exciting to beat North in the semifinals. We had a few injuries happen, so I’m very proud of my team for being able to withstand that adversity and come out and play hard.

“We were tired at the end of the day and we put everything out there.”

South’s Katie Clevenger finished with 27 kills, 12 digs, five aces and three blocks on the day, while Mayen Akpan had 14 kills, five blocks, two digs and an ace. Lola Horton contributed 10 kills and two blocks, Naomi Johnson added nine kills and three aces and Brooke Johnson had five kills and four aces.

Baylee Davis, who missed South’s win over Willamette on Thursday due to illness, finished with 61 assists and 11 digs.

University Prep, the No. 1-ranked team in California’s Northern Section, improved to 25-3 on the season. The Panthers have won 11 straight.

CRESWELL TOURNAMENT: At Creswell, St. Mary’s took first place in pool play but came up short in the first round of bracket play against Salem Academy in a tight affair, 25-16, 23-25, 17-15.

Kaitlyn Hansen served 10-for-11 against Salem Academy and was 33-for-35 on the day for St. Mary’s (6-4), while fellow senior Kelsey Dunn led the Crusaders with 10 kills in the first-round match and had 33 overall.

Maddie Ward added nine kills and Ada Bernard had eight kills against Salem Academy (12-1), while Hansen had 33 assists, Albie Borovansky added 13 digs and Sydney Alexander collected 10 digs.

Cross-country

THE CG BRAMBLE SCRAMBLE: At Cottage Grove, Phoenix senior Kyla Potratz finished runner-up in the 5,000-meter girls race to highlight the Pirates’ effort, posting a time of 21 minutes, 16.70 seconds to trail only Adele Beckstead of Philomath (20:37.73).

Herminia Corona finished 21st in 25:20.69 for the Phoenix girls, followed by Ava Robinson (31st, 28:12.93), Agatha Hosking (33rd, 29:14.35) and Sylvia Platt (34th, 29:14.35).

Nathen Hammond placed eighth in 19:29.57 to help the Phoenix boys place third in the five-team event.

Also scoring for the Pirates were Matthew Hammond (18th, 21:25.63), Ethan Dobbins (19th, 21:32.97), Marcelo Camargo-Berry (22nd, 22:09.72) and Nathan Corona (30th, 24:19.74).

Cottage Grove’s Jaden Owens won the boys race in 17:28.11.

BOYS TEAM SCORES: Philomath 23, Cottage Grove 37, Phoenix 80, Junction City 105, Waldport 130.

GIRLS TEAM SCORES: Philomath 21, Junction City 58, Cottage Grove 66, Phoenix 89.

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