By Jethro Swain
Welcome back, Aardvarks, to another school year. While some of you may just now be starting to get familiar with high school or waking up at 6:30 in the morning, many students have been working since the beginning of August for their respective sports.
Soccer, Cross Country, and Volleyball have all been putting in pre-season training since nearly a month before the bell tower ceremony, preparing themselves for their seasons that are in full-swing.
Boys cross country has gotten off to a strong start. With four meets already they’ve proved they’re contenders to win districts. Last Tuesday, the 13th, they placed second overall at the annual OES meet. They also went to Eugene last Saturday, the 17th, and had an amazing run with PR’s by Grant T. and freshmen Ashoke K. and Asa B. The team finished 7th overall competing against the best teams from across the state. “We’re hoping to do well at districts and qualify for state,” said varsity runner Noah S.
Girls cross country has gotten off to the same strong start. They, too, have had four meets where they placed second at the OES meet, and second at pre-districts. They traveled down to Lane Community College last Saturday with the boys and competed in the state-wide meet, where Sophomore Stephanie F. placed 3rd in a 5A/6A meet, essentially making her one of the top runners in all of Oregon. “Our goal is to beat Riverdale at districts and get the second spot to make it to state,” said captain Anna K., “we need to work to push each other and keep up with the top runners in order to achieve our goal.”
Girls varsity volleyball has played 13 games already in their season that started a month ago in mid-August. The JV and JV2 teams mirror the varsity team in their successes. The varsity girls had some key wins against Portland Adventist and Catlin, and in a great game last Monday, the 19th, they took the 3rd ranked team in the state, Rainier, to 5 sets. “The fans really got us excited and got in the heads of some of the Rainier players, and they were huge in getting us to play as well as we did. We always appreciate fans especially when they’re loud so come out to our games!” said captain Lexy T. “We’re starting to learn how to work together so as the season goes on and our team builds more chemistry we’ll keep getting better,” said senior Abby M. The girls next home game is next Tuesday, the 27th, against Clatskanie, everyone should come out and support!
The girls varsity soccer team is in the midst of defending their state title and well on their way to a three-peat. They had tough games against 6A opponents St. Mary’s and Grant but learned a lot from their games. “We could’ve beaten both of them (St. Mary’s and Grant) but we played really poorly in both games,” said senior centerback Catherine L. “We played really well against Scappoose. We all worked together and were able to rebound after our loss to St. Mary’s.” The girls handily beat the defending 4A state champs Scappoose 3-0 the other night, proving that when they play well they’re close to unbeatable. In their first league game they beat Riverdale 10-1. “Win league, then win state,” said Catherine on the team’s goals for the season. “If we play well and play together we should win it all.” The girls play on Monday against Clatskanie and then have a big game against Catlin next Friday at homecoming at 6:15. “We’re all excited for homecoming, it should be a really good game.”
Finally the boys varsity team is rallying and building itself back up after losing a total of 24 varsity players the past two years, and 13 varsity players from last year alone. The team is young and learning as they go. They’ve had good results like tying the currently 8th ranked team in 6A Franklin 0-0 in their first game of the season. “Our defense was really solid that game,” said senior captain Reed H. They also have wins against Philomath and Western Mennonite. “We have a huge slate of games coming up starting tomorrow (Friday the 23rd) against Riverdale. It would be extremely helpful if we got some fans out there to cheer us on,” said Reed. “Our ultimate goal is to win a state title and we’re going to have to put in a lot of work to do that.”
All of our teams need any of the help they can get from the fans, and cheers and chants from the crowd really do make a difference. If you can make any time in your day I highly encourage that you come out to support your fellow students at their home games, and you can start this Friday by coming to the boys game against Riverdale. It’s a Friday night so homework isn’t an excuse. With everyone’s help we can make this year an amazing one for OES athletics!