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The Observer paper 04/27/16

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One step from state

Allie Slater (5), Haley VanLeuven (6) and the rest of the Imbler volleyball team tied for second in the Wapiti League this season. The Panthers begin districts Saturday against Grant Union at Eastern Oregon University.
A trio of local volleyball teams will make the short trek to Eastern Oregon University in La Grande Saturday, as Imbler, Union and Elgin get set to play in the Wapiti League district tournament, which will determine the league’s three representatives in the Class 2A state playoffs.

Alone in first place

La Grande running back Ray Jimenez, right, carries the ball against Baker Friday in Greater Oregon League action in Baker City. Jimenez rushed for 120 yards and two touchdowns in La Grande’s 50-27 win.
 A 13-0 deficit three minutes into the game, four turnovers and 130 yards in penalties couldn’t keep the La Grande football team from securing a huge win Friday night in Baker City.

Allen, Wallowa run roughshod over Powder Valley

Wallowa’s Chandler Burns, who rushed for 81 yards and a touchdown, hurdles past a Powder Valley defender during the Cougars’ 70-14 triumph in Old Oregon League action in Wallowa.
It was a memorable week for Wallowa’s Noah Allen.

Champions once again

The La Grande volleyball team celebrates after scoring the final point of the match Thursday in the Tigers’ three-set sweep of Ontario. La Grande clinched the Greater Oregon League title with the victory, the fifth year in a row the Tigers have won the league. (Ronald Bond, The Observer)
The La Grande volleyball team reigns supreme in the Greater Oregon League once again.

Joseph’s Mr. Versatility has been vital for Eagles

Joseph’s Cayden DeLury looks to pass during the Eagles’ game against Powder Valley. DeLury is the Eagles’ feature running back, but has the versatility to fill whatever role Joseph needs. (Observer file photo)
When a team is limited on the number of players at hand, having those who can step into any role is a huge asset.

Panthers pull away

Friday’s showdown with Union/Cove appeared to be mirroring Imbler’s previous two losses in head coach Dustan Adams’ eyes.

Tigers continue hot start, now 5-0

La Grande head coach Sam Brown is running out of words to describe the play of his team.

Firing on all cylinders

Josh Ebel attacks the defense of The Dalles during the first half of Thursday’s matchup.
Just two days earlier, 
La Grande had trouble finishing at the net in a 2-2 tie with Umatilla.

Patience pays off

La Grande celebrates a second-half goal during a Greater Oregon League showdown with McLoughlin on Saturday. The Tigers earned a 2-1 win.
After a scoreless first half with many close opportunities, La Grande girls soccer head coach Sam Brown said he told his team to keep doing what they were doing and what the Tigers always do — possess the ball and pressure the opposing defense.

Prep football roundup

Prep football roundup

Union/Cove, Imbler among weekend winners 


Pendleton outlasts Tigers

The La Grande and Pendleton football teams played a down-to-the-wire nail biter that wasn’t decided even when the clock ran out, as a defensive penalty by Pendleton gave the Tigers one final shot at the win.

Reaction to the ruling

The Oregon School Activities Association has added a mandate for the state’s high school football programs to enroll in USA Football’s Heads Up Football program. The program will require coaches and schools to complete various trainings, including concussion assessment. Schools are recommended to enroll this fall and will be required to for the 2016 football season. (Observer file photo)
Several local football coaches and athletic directors have shown approval of the new Oregon School Activities Association mandate for schools to enroll in USA Football’s Heads Up Football program.

Overseas reflections

Imbler’s Marshal Whitaker, shown in a game last season, was granted an opportunity to participate in the United Kingdom Basketball Tour earlier this summer. (Observer file photo)
Imbler basketball player Marshal Whitaker summed up nicely a core value of the NBC camps, an organization that provides an assortment of youth sport camps.

Leaving the position, not the sport

Lin Casciato, left, and Kali Avila discuss strategy during a La Grande softball game in April. Casciato has stepped down from the Tigers’ head coaching position. (Observer file photo)
In many ways, the crack of the bat, the ball kicking up chalk as it hits the foul line and the umpire calling an out are as much a part of Lin Casciato as the blood that pumps through his veins.

Mobile bleachers in LHS gym will be closed this fall

La Grande High School volleyball fans will have fewer seating options this fall — but still will have plenty of places to comfortably watch matches.

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