Bring on the Spring … sports

It is the first full week of spring sports for area high schools

Break time is over.

The only dead week in sports — and even that is not a full week — during the academic year is history.

This is the first full week of spring sports competition, and Monday had contests scheduled in five of the six spring sports. Baseball and softball teams enjoyed a day of sunshine. So, too, did some golfers and tennis players. And soccer got a windy, and perhaps chilly, evening.

No rain, though. At least for a day.

 

Camas’ Jake Fuller (4) and Ridgefield’s Carlos Cruz (11) battle for position as they battle for the ball Monday at Ridgefield High School. Camas won the non-league match 3-1. Photo by Mike Schultz
Camas’ Jake Fuller (4) and Ridgefield’s Carlos Cruz (11) battle for position as they battle for the ball Monday at Ridgefield High School. Camas won the non-league match 3-1. Photo by Mike Schultz

 

 

Camas’ Tanner Thorson (in red) and Ridgefield’s Sebastian Interian catch some air in their non-league soccer match Monday night. Photo by Mike Schultz
Camas’ Tanner Thorson (in red) and Ridgefield’s Sebastian Interian catch some air in their non-league soccer match Monday night. Photo by Mike Schultz

Later this week, track and field athletes will get their seasons started, as well.

 

With football season going into December, by the time it ends, winter sports are already being contested.

With spring, though, there is about five days of nothing but practice from the final game in Washington high school basketball until the start of spring competitions. There were a few spring sporting events Friday and Saturday this past weekend, but starting now, it is a sprint to finish the athletic school year.

All spring sports end in the same week, too. The state golf championships will be May 22 and 23. All other sports will hold their championships by the end of that week, May 24-26.

Monday, the Camas Papermakers got started on their tennis courts, with the girls team hosting Kelso.

“It was a little rough, but it feels better now after the first match,” said Samantha Merrill, a senior from Camas who won in straight sets. “As a team, we will now have more confidence going into our next match. It’s exciting.”

There are tennis eight courts at Camas High School. All are in use, while other players wait their turn. Camas has more than 80 players in its girls tennis program. Photo by Paul Valencia
There are tennis eight courts at Camas High School. All are in use, while other players wait their turn. Camas has more than 80 players in its girls tennis program. Photo by Paul Valencia

 

Samantha Merrill of Camas serves up a winner during her opening match of the season. Photo by Paul Valencia
Samantha Merrill of Camas serves up a winner during her opening match of the season. Photo by Paul Valencia

She said the Papermakers are hoping for league and district championships later this spring.  And they are hoping the weather is a lot better than last spring.

So far, so good on that account. Monday was sunny. The forecast for Tuesday is rain, but the rest of the week looks good for these outdoor sports.

Not that it was perfect Monday. It was very windy in Camas. Still, Merrill said, she would rather play in wind than not play because of rain.

At Camas Meadows Golf Club, Union hosted Prairie. The pre-round notes centered around the fact that there has not been a lot of rain lately so a good shot down the fairway should earn a decent roll. Golfers were advised to keep on an eye on any ball headed toward the rough, though. Golf balls in the early spring of the Northwest have a tendency to disappear in soggy ground.

Union golfer Katie Brockley (left) and Prairie’s Delainey Patterson are happy to be starting another season of girls golf. Monday featured a lot of wind, but it was a mostly sunny day. Photo by Paul Valencia
Union golfer Katie Brockley (left) and Prairie’s Delainey Patterson are happy to be starting another season of girls golf. Monday featured a lot of wind, but it was a mostly sunny day. Photo by Paul Valencia
Prairie golfer Delainey Patterson lines up her first shot of the the day Monday at Camas Meadows. Patterson is the defending Class 3A district champion in girls golf. Photo by Paul Valencia
Prairie golfer Delainey Patterson lines up her first shot of the the day Monday at Camas Meadows. Patterson is the defending Class 3A district champion in girls golf. Photo by Paul Valencia

Still, so far, a whole lot better than last year at this time.

No rainouts in baseball or softball yet, either. Although that might change Tuesday.

 

Hall of fame baseball coach Don Freeman is back coaching the Prairie Falcons. Here he is giving a word of advice to one of his players, Trey Herbert, Monday in a game against Battle Ground. Photo by Mike Schultz
Hall of fame baseball coach Don Freeman is back coaching the Prairie Falcons. Here he is giving a word of advice to one of his players, Trey Herbert, Monday in a game against Battle Ground. Photo by Mike Schultz

 

 

Woodland’s Kat Paloutzian slides in safely in front of Prairie’s Carley Wentworth during their non-league game Monday. Woodland beat Prairie 4-0. Photo by Mike Schultz
Woodland’s Kat Paloutzian slides in safely in front of Prairie’s Carley Wentworth during their non-league game Monday. Woodland beat Prairie 4-0. Photo by Mike Schultz

 

 

Woodland pitcher Olivia Grey struck out 13 and threw a no-hitter in her debut with the Beavers as Woodland beat Prairie 4-0 Monday. Photo by Mike Schultz
Woodland pitcher Olivia Grey struck out 13 and threw a no-hitter in her debut with the Beavers as Woodland beat Prairie 4-0 Monday. Photo by Mike Schultz

By the way, Woodland softball pitcher Olivia Grey had a great Monday, striking out 13 in a no-hitter against Prairie.

 

In boys soccer, well, soccer players love to brag that they will play through almost anything. Of course, they will take a dry day, but rain does not bother them.

As we head into spring sports, here is a look back at the squads that made it to state in the team sports last year:

  • Baseball: King’s Way Christian (1A state champions); Skyview (4A third place); Battle Ground (4A first round); Mountain View (3A first round); Columbia River (2A quarterfinals).
  • Softball: Camas (4A fourth place); Battle Ground (4A quarterfinals); Ridgefield (2A first round); La Center (2A second place).
  • Boys soccer: Camas (4A quarterfinals); Prairie (3A first round); Columbia River (2A first round); Ridgefield (2A first round).
  • Moving forward, ClarkCountyToday.com expects to produce at least one feature per sport throughout the season as well as notes regarding the top performances.

Welcome to spring sports.

We'd love to hear your comments!

About The Author

Paul Valencia joins ClarkCountyToday.com after more than two decades of newspaper experience. He became the face of high school sports coverage in Clark County during his 17 years at The Columbian. Before moving to Vancouver, Paul worked at Oregon daily newspapers in Pendleton, Roseburg, and Salem. A graduate of David Douglas High School in Portland, Paul enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving three years as a soldier/journalist. He and his wife Jenny recently celebrated their 20th anniversary. They have a son who has a passion for karate and Minecraft. Paul’s hobbies include: Watching the Raiders play football, reading about the Raiders playing football, and waiting to watch and read about the Raiders playing football.

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