The Blue Mountain eagle. (John Day, Or.) 1972-current, December 13, 2017, Image 11

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December 13, 2017
Contributed photo/Linda Studtmann
Ukiah/Long Creek’s Rafael Gumerato (23), a senior,
dribbles up the court, his teammate sophomore James
Kreamier (12), at left, Dec. 2 against Mitchell/Spray.
Ukiah/Long Creek boys
prepare for basketball battles
By Angel Carpenter
Blue Mountain Eagle
Eagle photos/Angel Carpenter
Taylor Parsons (65), 9, wrestles Aiden Perkins of Pendleton at Saturday’s Grant County Wrestling Invitational.
Refereeing the match is Grant Union senior Collin Harvey.
Grant County Wrestling
Club hosts youth meet
170 wrestlers
flock to mats at
Grant Union
By Angel Carpenter
Blue Mountain Eagle
Emotions ran high as
youth wrestlers from 19
teams showed intensity and
skill on the mats in John Day
Saturday at the Grant Coun-
ty Wrestling Invitational and
ORWAY (Oregon Wrestling
Association for Youth) Tour-
There were 170 wrestlers
in all competing, and the park-
ing lot was at full capacity at
Grant Union Junior/Senior
High School for the day-long
Six of the 19 teams came
from La Grande, Elgin, Bak-
er, Hermiston, Pendleton and
Wallowa County.
“It’s been a really nice
turnout,” said meet coordina-
tor Cindy Dougharity-Spen-
cer. “We’ve had great support
from the community. It’s awe-
She said junior high and
high school athletes were ref-
erees for the matches with help
from former wrestlers, parents
and grandparents.
“The kids have had the op-
portunity to wrestle in front of
friends and family,” she said.
This was the first time in
15 years or more that Grant
County has hosted a youth
wrestling tournament. Athletes
from ages 4-14 competed.
Grant County’s Taylor
Parsons, 9, had an especially
good day of wrestling, win-
ning by decision against an
athlete he’d lost to in two past
“Our kids did really well
today,” said head coach
Steve Parsons.
He highlighted Taylor
as well as Mason Benge for
their performances.
“Taylor wrestled smart
The 1A Ukiah/Long Creek
Mountain Lions junior varsi-
ty boys basketball team is 11
strong this season.
With one game behind
them, the Mountain Lions are
ready for more action.
“I like the team,” said se-
nior Rafael Gumerato, an ex-
change student from Brazil.
“We have good players, and
even the newer players are im-
proving fast and learning the
game quick.”
Gumerato is the sole senior
on the team. He and one of the
other five exchange students
on the team have experience
with the sport.
The three returning play-
ers, all sophomores, are James
Kreamier, Quinton Orr and
Ben Combs. There are also
two freshmen with experience.
Kreamier said the players
are still figuring out how to
read each other in the game,
but he’s encouraged.
“You can pass it to any of
the players, and they’re not too
scared to shoot,” he said. “I’m
really looking forward to play-
ing more games, getting more
chemistry and winning.”
The team is led by
co-coaches Amos Studtmann
and TC Conner. This is Studt-
mann’s second year coaching
and Conner’s 11th.
Ukiah/Long Creek had its
first test of the season on Dec.
2, when the team lost a 45-40
contest to Mitchell/Spray on
the road in Mitchell.
“I believe the kids know
they didn’t play to their poten-
tial,” Studtmann said. “They’re
going to play in the future with
more confidence on offense
and energy on defense. We
have several good shooters,
See BOYS, Page B3
Ukiah/Long Creek girls
hoops team aims for growth
Coach looks for
confidence and
By Angel Carpenter
Blue Mountain Eagle
Grant County’s Kaden Wright (75), 11, left, is in action at the Grant County Wrestling
Invitational at Grant Union Junior-Senior High School in John Day.
Grant County’s Arianna Young (109), 14, right, wrestles
at Saturday’s home invitational.
and listened, and Mason
Benge did a good job listen-
ing,” he said. “When they get
out there, we can tell them
how to adjust and if they are
truly listening, we as a team
can succeed.”
Benge, 10, wrestled at 88
“It’s my favorite sport,”
he said. “I’ve been doing it
since I was 5. We have good
teams and good coaches.”
Kaden Wright, 11, had a
rough day of wrestling, but
said the home meet was fun.
“Wrestling makes me
stronger, and I’ve made new
friends,” he said.
Athletes from ages 4-8
wrestled in the morning with
ages 9-14 taking on oppo-
nents in the afternoon.
Coach Parsons said the
fact their team brought 34
wrestlers to compete is a tes-
tament to their organization.
The team includes wres-
tlers from John Day, Prai-
rie City, Monument, Long
Creek, Dayville, Mt. Vernon
and Canyon City.
Parsons said having the
youth group allows them to
build the program, strength-
ening the junior high and
high school teams. He said
he has received positive feed-
back from parents.
“I’ve had moms say, ‘My
child is doing better. Their
behavior is better.’”
Next up, the Grant County
team will compete in Irrigon
Saturday for the ORWAY re-
gionals, and top-placers will
advance to the finals in Red-
The 1A Ukiah/Long Creek
Mountain Lion junior varsity
girls basketball team is small
but showing strength as the
team gains experience.
Returning members on the
team of seven are juniors Glad-
ys Johnson and Tesla Crown.
“They give us some leader-
ship for our small team,” said
coach Amos Studtmann.
Studtmann, in his second
year coaching the team, is co-
coach with TC Conner, who is
in his 11th year coaching.
Johnson’s younger sister
Dortha, a freshman, has junior
high basketball experience.
“Dortha is setting an exam-
ple for all the kids with effort,
energy and dedication,” Studt-
mann said, adding their other
freshman player Jenny Kim
also brings experience.
The coach said the three
exchange students on the team,
all juniors, have no previous
basketball experience, but are
picking up the game quickly.
Gladys said she’s enjoying
getting to know her teammates
“I’m looking forward to
Contributed photo/Linda Studtmann
Ukiah/Long Creek’s Ximena
Millan, a junior, dribbles up
the court in the Dec. 2 game
against Mitchell/Spray.
playing more games and hav-
ing more fun in the games,”
she said.
Dortha said she’s been im-
pressed at how hard her team-
mates work in practice. She
said if she sees them down, she
likes to pick them up.
“I help them back up, and
they have more confidence,”
she said, adding she likes to
see them growing and showing
more confidence.
“I’m excited about the sea-
son because I think we might
be able to win the games be-
cause the girls talk to each oth-
er,” she said. “It helps that we
played volleyball together.”
All the girls on the team
except one played volleyball.
In their first basketball
See GIRLS, Page B10
Tiger girls win at
Wallowa Lions
Tourney, boys
lose two
Monument/Dayville Tiger
coach Taylor Schmadeka said
tough defense, capitalizing on
steals and having fun added
up to winning at the Dec. 8-9
Wallowa Lions Tournament.
The Tigers overpowered
the Lions 60-49 in Friday’s
girls basketball match. Kyla
Emerson led Monument/Day-
ville with 21 points.
Schmadeka said both Em-
erson and Danielle Rhoda
made key points and rebounds
when they were needed most.
Emerson and Faythe Schafer
each had nine steals.
“We played solid on both
ends of the floor and capi-
talized on our steals, turning
them into fast-break points,”
Schmadeka said.
He said his team played
well together the following
night when they faced La
Grande’s junior varsity team,
the Tigers winning 44-34.
Rhoda led the Tigers with
17 points and 13 rebounds
against La Grande.
Monument/Dayville soph-
omores Denali Twehues and
Aubrey Bowlus played good
defense, Schmadeka said,
forcing La Grande to take
difficult shots, shutting down
their scoring opportunities.
“Overall, I was very
pleased with how the girls
played again this weekend,”
Schmadeka said. “We are im-
proving more and more every
game, and the girls are also
having a fun time playing,
which translates into better
performance on the court.”
The Tiger boys, with a
young team this season, lost
two contests. They fell to Wal-
lowa 51-16 and La Grande ju-
nior varsity 69-14.
“They’re going to be con-
stantly learning and improv-
ing,” said Monument/Day-
ville head coach Jeff Schafer.
He said improvement and
learning the pace of high
school basketball is most im-
portant to him.
The team will continue
working on taking care of the
ball, rebounding and shooting
as they prepare for this week’s
games, Schafer said, adding
the team is coachable.
“They’re wonderful kids,”
he said.
The Tigers were set to
face South Wasco, the girls
team ranked No. 1 for OSAA
teams, on Tuesday past press
time. They’ll next travel to
Union Dec. 21-23 for the
Bobcats Tournament.
Grant Union
wrestlers battle at
Calhoun Classic
Grant Union junior varsity
wrestler Damion Young (138)
competed for third place on
Saturday at Nyssa’s Calhoun
“The Calhoun is a tough
meet,” said Grant Union head
coach Andy Lusco. “Our guys
wrestled hard and improved.”
The competition included
schools from Ontario, Fruit-
land, Idaho, which won the
tournament, and other Idaho
schools, including Caldwell,
Middleton, New Plymouth,
Emmett, Kuna, Nampa and
Lusco said Young, who
went 4-1, had a good day and is
wrestling well.
over last year,” Lusco said.
He highlighted five other ju-
nior varsity wrestlers.
Eli Sheedy (113), who went
3-2 on the day, is also showing
See ROUNDUP, Page B10