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La Grande Observer Daily Paper 08/18/14

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PAIR OF SUPER 24's: Powder Valley quarterback Todd Baxter will try to lead the Badgers back to Hillsboro as playoffs start Friday. (The Observer/PIERRE LaBOSSIERE).
PAIR OF SUPER 24's: Powder Valley quarterback Todd Baxter will try to lead the Badgers back to Hillsboro as playoffs start Friday. (The Observer/PIERRE LaBOSSIERE).

It might still be Indian summer, but the leaves are changing color, and football postseason is already here.

Postseason begins Friday for 1A football.

Friday will also see a couple of monumental volleyball match-ups, including an especially big match in the Union High School gym.

Powder Valley and Cove are both hosting 1A football playoff games Friday afternoon. Both games begin at 2 p.m.

The 7-0 Badgers, ranked No. 1 in the state all season, will host Mitchell/Dayville/Monu-ment, while 5-1 Cove will host 4-3 Wallowa, also at 2 p.m.

Powder Valley is averaging 59 points a game, and is led by quarterback Todd Baxter, who is one touchdown away from 100 passing TDs, and only 660 yards away from 10,000 total yards of offense for his high school career. With a long playoff run, he ought to crack that 10,000-yard plateau.

Cove (No. 6) and Wallowa (No. 10) had a wild shootout Sept. 26, with the Leopards prevailing 62-46.

However, Wallowa did have more weapons in that game. One of the Cougars' best players, Randy Spaur, was knocked out for the year after that game with a badly broken leg. Wallowa still has lots of offense from running back Jake Redfield and quarterback Patrick Green.

Tailback Cody Savage does a lot of the damage for Cove. He is averaging well more than 100 yards a game rushing. Cove's only loss this year was to Powder Valley.

At about 6 p.m. Friday, there will be a battle for the Wapiti League volleyball championship in Union.

The Bobcats, who have successfully reloaded after graduating four starters off last year's state championship squad, are undefeated in league (5-0). They will go up against Grant Union, also 5-0 in Wapiti play.

The Wapiti League championship and the state championship both came down to these two teams last year, so expect some solid volleyball action.

Powder Valley is also playing for at least a share of the Old Oregon League title Friday night. The Badgers are traveling to Prairie City. Both teams are 7-2 in league, and whoever wins get a share of the title.

Wallowa is also 7-2, and can also claim a share of the title if the Cougars win Friday. The day and time of the Cougars' final OOL match in Cove has been changed.

Wallowa was scheduled to play Cove Saturday, but will now play the Leopards at 4:30 p.m. Friday.

La Grande volleyball probably has to win out to finish second in the Greater Oregon League. The No. 2-ranked Tigers will host Riverside at 6 p.m. today.

The La Grande football team also returns home and looks to get back on the winning track against GOL-leading Vale at 7 p.m. Friday.

— Pierre LaBossire

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