EUGENE — The Hermiston cross country team finished its final OSAA championship race Saturday at Lane Community College in eighth place. Freshman Amanda Nygard capped off her standout debut season as the Bulldogs’ top finisher, coming in 29th place with a time of 20:13 and senior Melany Solorio was 43rd with a time of 20:31. Rounding out Hermiston’s competitors were Julianna Joyce in 56th (20:48), Sidney Tovey 71st (21:34), Sheila Solorio 72nd (21:41), Morgan Hancock 78th (22:00) and Faith Bartch in 91st (23:05).
On the boys side, Hermiston’s Isaac Sanchez ended his career as one of the top runners in school history with a 25th place finish after running a time of 16:34, and fellow Bulldog senior Emanuel Ibarra came in 74th with a time of 17:57.
Crater’s Andy Monroe won the individual title with a blazing-fast time of 15:19, helping his Crater team win the team title as well.
In the 3A/2A/1A boys championship, Heppner’s Hunter Nichols squeezed onto the podium with an eighth place finish in the race with a time of 16 minutes, 50 seconds. Nichols’ and Heppner’s district foe, the Union Bobcats, won the team championship with 42 points and a huge cushion over second-place Bandon (124). Union’s Alex Graffunder claimed the individual title with a time of 15:33 and teammate Tim Stevens was second place with a time of 15:48, the only two sub-16 minute times of the race.
Hermiston’s hot streak ends in Bend
The Hermiston Bulldogs’ final shot at an OSAA state championship came to an end as the No. 14 Bulldogs were shut out 3-0 by No. 6 Bend in the 5A quarterfinals on Saturday.
Hermiston earned its spot in the quarterfinals by upsetting No. 3 Hillsboro in overtime on Tuesday, but was not able to find the same magic to beat the Lava Bears (12-1-3 overall), a team that has not lost since Sept. 8. The Bulldogs’ season ends with a 10-4-3 overall record.
The first-round upset came in a 1-0 overtime victory.
The Spartans (11-4-1) brought high pressure, as Hermiston was expecting, but the defense and efforts of junior goalkeeper Juan Navarrete solidified the shutout.
“I’ve got to give a lot of credit to the back line,” coach Rich Harshberger said, “and Juan’s shutout, which was huge, was a key to our victory.”
Joel Mendez put the ball in goal in the 84th minute to seal the win and send the team to Bend.
Echo, Stanfield bumped from playoffs
In Falls City, the Echo Cougars’ search for its first playoff victory in Class 1A will last at least one more year, as the No. 11 Cougars were defeated on the road by the No. 6 Mountaineers 58-20 on Friday night.
It marks just the second time that Echo was held below 30 points on offense this season, dating back to a 56-20 loss to Crane on Sept. 15. Falls City (8-1) moves on to the quarterfinals to play No. 3 Camas Valley next weekend.
The Cougars end the season with a 7-3 overall record.
In Monroe, the Stanfield Tigers’ stay in the Class 2A playoffs was a short one this season as the No. 15 Tigers were ousted by the No. 2 Monroe Dragons in the first round on Friday night.
Stanfield ends its season with a 2-6 overall record.
Hermiston Youth Basketball opens registration
The registration period for the Hermiston Youth Basketball Association is now open.
Boys and girls in grades 3-6 interested in recreational basketball are eligible to register, which can be done at HermistonBasketballClub.org. The deadline for registration is Nov. 13. For more information, contact Lacey Cleveland at (406) 490-8950.