Two Prospector wrestlers earn tournament titles
Grant Union Prospector wrestlers Drew Lusco (285), a junior, and Damion Young (145), a senior, earned championship titles at the Friday-Saturday Cosgrove-Eschler Invitational Tournament at Joseph High School.
“Damion had an excellent tournament,” said Grant Union head coach Andy Lusco. “We are very proud of his effort and improvement.”
Young has a 10-5 season record, and Drew Lusco is 22-1.
Drew said he was happy to beat Travis Jonsson (11-3) of Neah-Kah-Nie, who is the opponent he defeated at last season’s state championship finals.
He said Saturday’s match went well, and he won by a 7-2 decision.
“Drew beat him handily,” coach Lusco said.
Freshman Justin Hodge, who is 14-8 on the season, earned second place at the tournament in the 152 weight class.
“Justin had a great tournament,” Lusco said. “It is pretty impressive to see a freshman in the finals.”
The coach said sophomore Ethan Moore (9-9), who earned third in the 106 weight class, is becoming “one of the best in the district.”
Lusco said sophomore Logan McCluskey (9-6) had the “best tournament of his career” with a fourth-place finish in a tough weight bracket.
“He defeated some quality opponents,” the coach said. “He came in as our No. 2 at 152 and unseeded, so a fourth-place finish is awesome.”
Sophomore Quinten Hallgarth (11-8) earned fourth in the 170 bracket.
“Quinten has really turned a corner and become a tough kid to beat,” Lusco said. “He is maturing and learning to work through hard times on the mat without getting pinned.”
Lusco said that although the girls didn’t win a match at the tournament, they wrestled well, taking several matches to three full rounds versus varsity boys.
He noted that freshmen Arionna Young (7-2) and Ashley Henry (1-3), both wrestling at 120, each won an exhibition match by a pin, and Sophie Brockway (2-4) and Trinity Hutchison (1-0) each wrestled the No. 1 seed in their brackets.
“The girls have improved rapidly,” he said. “Many coaches and fans commented on how tough they are.”
Lusco said they placed fourth as team, but they left a lot of team members, and “points,” at home.
“When we get to full strength as a team, we have a chance to be in the top two at districts,” he said.
106: Ethan Moore (9-9), third, 20 team points, 3 wins, 1 loss
120: Ashley Henry (1-5), 2 losses
Arionna Young (7-4), 2 losses
126: Sam McCracken (4-9), 2 losses
132: Casey Vaughan (3-12), 1 team point, 1 win, 2 losses
138: Sydney Brockway (0-3), 2 losses
145: Damion Young (14-5), first place, 29 team points, 4 wins, 0 losses
152: Sophie Brockway (2-6), 2 losses
152: Justin Hodge (17-9), second place, 19 team points, 3 wins, 1 loss
Logan McCluskey (13-8), fourth place, 4 wins, 2 losses
170: Trinity Hutchison (1-2), 2 losses
Quinten Hallgarth (14-10), fourth place, 16 team points, 3 wins, 1 loss
285: Drew Lusco (22-1) first place, 26 team points, 3 wins, 0 losses
Grant Union girls’ pressure defense zaps Bobcats, Outlaws
Grant Union senior sisters Kaylee and Hailie Wright combined for 41 points in Saturday night’s 60-52 conference basketball win over the Union Bobcats.
The win gives the Prospectors a 4-0 record in the Blue Mountain Conference. Grant Union ranks No. 4 among OSAA’s 2A teams with a 10-3 overall record.
The Prospectors led by three points over Union in the first quarter and were ahead 34-29 at the half.
“Once again we relied on our defense to pull us through the game,” said Grant Union head coach Kristi Moore. “They had some great shooters, so our pressure defense took away their open shot.”
The team was road weary after returning from Friday’s game in Enterprise at 3 a.m.
Moore said being tired and the break in rhythm from the holidays was the hardest part, but the team pushed through.
The Grant Union girls defeated the Enterprise Outlaws 56-44.
Playing in the Outlaws’ smaller gym, with a loud community crowd and school band, is both fun and challenging, Moore said.
“We were able to pressure them, and luckily it all worked out in our favor both nights,” she added.
Grant Union will face the Weston-McEwen TigerScots on the road in Athena Saturday. The Prospector boys play at 4 p.m followed by the girls at 5:30 p.m.
“My theory is that, if we do what we do best, we can outplay the other teams and prevail,” Moore said. “We’ll focus on refining our game plan.”
Prospector boys show competitive side with 2 wins
Teamwork made the difference for the Grant Union Prospector boys basketball team as they won back-to-back conference games, defeating the Outlaws 48-43 on Friday in Enterprise and the Union Bobcats 59-47 Saturday in John Day.
Prospector head coach Kelsy Wright said his boys are “starting to put it together, working as a team.”
On Saturday night, Grant Union was ahead 31-27 at the half, then outshot Union 18-12 in the fourth.
Wright said junior Tristan Morris and senior Jacob Vaughan both hit big shots and had some good defensive plays.
“Devon Stokes (a sophomore) had phenomenal defense the whole game on their best player,” the coach said. “Tanner Elliott (a senior) is always hustling on the floor and always getting rebounds and put-backs, the way that we need him to work — he’s been like that the last three to four games.”
Wright said in their game against Enterprise, his team came “ready to play.”
“It’s always good to get a road win, especially in league,” he said.
Dayville/Monument girls blast road opponents
The Dayville/Monument Tiger girls basketball team blew away their competition with a 47-15 win Friday over the Long Creek/Ukiah Mountain Lions in Long Creek and a 39-14 win Saturday over the Harper Hornets.
Tiger junior starter Aubrey Bowlus was injured early in Friday’s game.
“We will be looking for a younger player to step up on defense going against some tough league opponents this week,” said Tiger head coach Taylor Schmadeka.
Kyla Emerson led Dayville/Monument with 16 points on Friday, followed by Faythe Schafer with 12. Denali Twehues added 10, and Courtney Nichols added 9.
On Saturday, Twehues led the Tigers with a season-high 15 points. Schafer contributed 8 points, and Emerson and Nichols added 7 each. Haylee Collins had 2 points.
“Both days the girls played very good defense and did a great job on the offensive and defensive rebounds,” Schmadeka said. “We took open shots and didn’t try to force any shots.”
“For this week, we are going to continue our strong defense and focus on getting rebounds,” he added.
Dayville/Monument (9-2 overall, 1-0 league) was scheduled to host High Desert League opponents the Burnt River Bulls (1-6, 0-2) in Dayville Tuesday, past press time.
The Tigers host the Crane Mustangs (10-2, 2-0) at 6 p.m. Friday in Dayville and the Prairie City Panthers (2-8, 2-0) at 2 p.m. Saturday in Monument.
Long Creek/Ukiah has two road games this week, facing Burnt River in Unity at 5 p.m., followed by the boys, Friday and the Crane Mustangs on Saturday at 2 p.m.
Long Creek/Ukiah boys top Dayville/Monument in close contest
The Long Creek/Ukiah Mountain Lions defeated Dayville/Monument in a 64-60 nail-biter Friday in Long Creek.
The teams knotted up the score several times, including 28-28 at the half.
“We tied again at 40, then we managed to pull away a little bit at the very end of the game,” said Long Creek/Ukiah coach Amos Studtmann who co-coaches with TC Conner.
He said the Tigers started to close the gap with free throws and layups, but “we held onto our lead and were able to finish strong.”
Mountain Lion James Kreamier shot the ball well, and teammates Ben Combs and Thomas Kreamier helped on rebounding with Thomas contributing to the win with several blocks, Studtmann said.
“When our team worked together, passed the ball, communicated on defense, the game would swing in our favor,” Studtmann said. “When they tried to score alone or forgot to talk, we’d turn the ball over, and the other team would score.”
Dayville/Monument head coach Jeff Schafer said his team didn’t play to their full potential that night.
“We started well, but slowly slipped back into some of our bad habits,” Schafer said. “I’m looking forward to playing them again. I feel we will be stronger and better prepared.”
Donovan Schafer led the Tigers with 22 points, and Drew Wilburn had 13.
The Tigers have a 4-7 overall record and are 0-1 in league, and the Mountain Lions are 2-7 and 1-2.
Dayville/Monument followed up Saturday with a 47-37 win over Harper on the road.
Coach Schafer said he was pleased with the teamwork he saw in their game against Harper, which he said has a solid team this season.
“I was pleased to see our boys rally back after a tough loss,” he said.
Against the Hornets, Donovan Schafer led the Tigers with 18 points, followed by Wilburn with 10.
“Mark Thomas played great defense both games,” the coach said. “Cade Milton and Drew Wilburn were strong at rebounding on Saturday.”