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Latest from The Spokesman-Review

State regional openers

Click the link below and you'll find all the Washington boys and girls state basketball regional openers this weekend.

CdA’s Blakley leads talented area class

Here's a link below to my unedited story about area prep athletes signing letters of intent Wednesday. Pictured above is CdA's Chase Blakley (Boise State) and Austin Chadderdon (Montana).

Gonzaga Prep defeats Mead 21-9

S-R photojournalist Colin Mulvany covered the Gonzaga Prep vs. Mead game.  Check out this big picture gallery of his photos.

University defeats Rogers 44-6

S-R photojournalist Dan Pelle covered University's win against Rogers at Joe Albi stadium.  Check out this big picture gallery of his photos.

Gonzaga Prep defeats Ferris 38-35

S-R photojournalist Colin Mulvany covered the GSL showdown between Gonzaga Prep and Ferris.  Check out this big picture gallery of his photos.

North Central defeats Rogers 28-21

S-R photojournalist Dan Pelle covered Rogers' loss to North Central at Joe Albi on Friday.  Check out this big picture gallery of his photos.


Prep football galore

The much anticipated football tab appeared in the newspaper today. If you're truly a fan it's a must purchase. Just bypass that tiny mocha for a day. Anyhow, if you want to see our work online, go here. Pictured above is Central Valley coach Rick Giampietri working with some linemen.

Rypien sees himself throwing less

Wednesday was the first day Washington high school football teams could practice. We caught up with Shadle Park junior quarterback Brett Rypien (pictured above). He told us that for the Highlanders to be as successful as they want this year, he needs to throw less and they need to have an effective running game. Here's our story.

Highly successful Mead wrestler moving

Three-time Washington state wrestling champ Chandler Rogers (pictured above) is moving to Stillwater, Okla., for his senior year. Read about the move here.

Thursday Prep Page

Here's our prep-related stories in Thursday's newspaper.

Carson Murray of Rogers, pictured above, is a special student-athlete in many ways.

Wednesday Walton, standout hurdler at Post Falls, is having an outstanding season.

The Greater Spokane League does it right in honoring its scholar athletes.

Here's a our weekly track honor roll.

It's crowded at the top in Greater Spokane League boys soccer.

Thursday Prep Page

Here's the Prep Page menu

Feature: Mead thrower Courtney Hutchinson (pictured above) poised for big senior season.

Track glance: Here's a league-by-league breakdown of top returning state placers and other things.

Column: Idaho state track not what it used to be.

Prep notebook: Mead, Gonzaga Prep name volleyball coaches.

Leiss finished at CdA

It's official: Kent Leiss (pictured above) will not return as boys basketball coach at Coeur d'Alene.

The on-again, off-again saga that began in late January concluded Thursday when Leiss was told by Principal Warren Olson and athletic director Todd Gilkey in a 1-hour meeting that they were recommending that he not be rehired.


Failor Gatorade player of year

Post Falls' Dani Failor (pictured in the middle above) has been named Gatorade player of year in Idaho.

See story below.

Pairings set for Spokane, Tacoma, Yakima

The WIAA hosted the draws for the final three days of the 4A, 3A, 2A, 1A, 2B and 1B boys and girls basketball state tournaments.

Click the tab below to see the pairings. Pictured above is Arizona State University-bound Kelsey Moos of Reardan. The picture was taken prior to the state tournament last year. Reardan is looking to repeat as state champ.

Postseason hoops, wrestling

The Mead girls basketball team is hitting on all notes. Here's a feature as the Panthers continue their journey to Tacoma. Pictured above is sophomore wing Sue Winger and coach Quantae Anderson.

Post Falls wrestling standout Drake Foster is primed for a state repeat.

The Timberlake boys basketball team qualified for state for first time since school opened in 1998 and the Pullman boys qualified for state.

Here's a link to the Washington boys and girls state basketball brackets. Also, here's a link for the WIAA Selection Show on Sunday from the WIAA headquarters in Renton when the draws for the three-day 4A and 3A tournaments in Tacoma.

Most of the state berths set

Final 4A boys and girls state berths were determined yesterday for the round of 16 games Friday and Saturday at regional sites.

Click the tab below to see matchups involving Eastern Washington teams. Great Northern League boys and girls teams are playing for state berths tonight.

Pictured above is Gonzaga Prep standout sofphomore guard Laura Sockton.

Coeur d’Alene coach won’t return

Kent Leiss, pictured above, will not return as Coeur d'Alene High's boys basketball coach this season.

Click the tab below to read my unedited story for Tuesday's newspaper.

Thursday Prep Page

Here's a link to a list of all of our Thursday prep stories.

Those dang ACL injuries

I wrote two stories for our newspaper today about the eve-growing concern with anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries. Pictured above is Reed Hopkins of Gonzaga Prep doing rehab.

Here's a link to a story about a handful of basketball players who have suffered season-ending injuries this winter. Here's a general overview about the injuries.

Greater Spokane League hoops

Here's a link to this week's Greater Spokane League boys and girls scoring leaders.

Stu Stiles of Mt. Spokane moved into a tie for first with 30- and 42-point games.

GSL basketball scoring leaders

Beginning today and running each Wednesday here and Thursday in the newspaper are the Greater Spokane League boys and girls basketball scoring leaders.

Click the tab below to see the leaders. Pictured above is the girls leader, sophomore Madison Hovren of Central Valley.

Time for prep postseason football

Call this a prep playoff primer. Or, everything else I couldn’t get into our postseason information box today. And a few other things. Pictured above is Coeur d'Alene running back/linebacker Reece Mahaffy two weeks ago against Lake City.

Click the extended tab below to read more.

And as always, feel free to comment. What are your predictions for the games this week?

Remember, I'll be tweeting scores Friday. My Twitter address is: @srpreps

Hoffman: Talented and loyal

I wrote a feature that appeared in our newspaper today about a standout Greater Spokane League football player you may not have heard of: Jake Hoffman of North Central. Hoffman (pictured above) will play football at the NCAA Division I level, Where is to be decided.

What makes his story enjoyable is his loyalty. You can read about him here.

Be sure to check out our Thursday newspaper. It will be chock full of prep stories including a feature on Gonzaga Prep's rushing attack.

Also, be sure to follow all of the S-R's prep stories including scores from football games on our Twitter account: @srpreps.

Some key prep games this week

Things are definitely getting interesting in several Eastern Washington and North Idaho football leagues.

In the Greater Spokane League, Central Valley (5-1) faces Mead (5-1) on Thursday. In key games Friday, Mt. Spokane (1-5) is at University (2-4); Shadle Park (2-4) goes against North Cenral (1-5) at Albi; and Ferris (5-1) faces Lewis and Clark (3-3).

In the Great Northern League Friday, col-leader West Valley (5-1, 3-0) goes to East Valley (5-1, 2-1) while the other co-leader, surprising Pullman (5-1, 3-0) has a bye. Cheney (3-3, 1-1) visits Deer Park (3-3, 0-2). This is a correction. I originally said the EV-WV game was at WV.

In the Northeast A League, Chewelah (5-1, 3-0) and Freeman (5-1, 3-0) face off Friday at Chewelah in what should decide the league championship.

In a game that could go far in deciding the Northeast 2B title Friday, co-leaders Reardan (4-1, 2-0) and Lind-Ritzville/Sprague (5-0, 2-0) meet in Ritzville. Reardan is coming off a big win over Colfax.

In Southeast 2B play, league-leading Tekoa-Oakesdale/Rosalia (6-0, 4-0) visits DeSales (3-1, 1-1) on Friday.

QUESTION: Your thoughts on any of these matchups?

Thursday showdown: Mead/G-Prep


Just two teams remain unbeaten in Greater Spokane League football - Mead (4-0) and Gonzaga Prep (4-0) - and they meet Thursday night at Joe Albi Stadium. Kickoff is at 6:15.

Last week, an enormous crowd of 12,568 watched Mead hold off upset-minded Mt. Spokane. Meanwhile, G-Prep was taking Shadle Park to the woodshed (57-19). Pictured above is G-Prep quarterback Zach Bonneau.

So let's start a discussion here. What are your thoughts on the big showdown. Who will win? You'll see my prediction Thursday morning in the Pick 6.

Greater Spokane League poll

It's been so long since I've regularly posted here at Sportslink that I had some difficulty posting the first poll question of the 2012-2013 school year. But blogmeister Ryan Pitts came to my rescue.

So which GSL football team do you think will capture the conference title? Vote here.


Prep football aplenty

Our 2012 prep football preview tab will be published Thursday. Every league in our readership area will be represented for a second straight year. (Pictured above is Mead running back Davian Barlow.)

Prep football starts with a flourish this week. Thursday, Shadle Park and Rogers face off in a key 3A Greater Spokane League matchup at Joe Albi Stadium. Kickoff is at 6:15.

Then on Friday, North Central and Mt. Spokane face off along with Gonzaga Prep and Lewis and Clark in a doubleheader at Albi. In an outside game, Mead visits University.

Action continues Saturday. The annual WIAA kickoff quadruple header is at Eastern Washington University's Roos Field.

In the first game, Tekoa-Oakesdale/Rosalia faces Reardan at 10 a.m.; in the second game, Coville takes on Freeman at 1; in the third game, Cheney meets East Valley of Yakima at 4; and in the nightcap at 7, Central Valley and Ferris square off.

I will be posting some notes and a GSL poll on Wednesday.

QUESTION: Your thoughts on the upcoming season?

I'll be doing my Pick 6 weekly prep football picks, beginning Thursday. I'll also be participating with KHQ/SWX sports anchor Michelle Dapper and VarsityCdA.com owner/editor Ryan Collingwood each week predicting North Idaho games. Here's a link to our picks for this week.

A tour of the Greater Spokane League

Wow, it's been next to forever since I posted something here. It must mean it's time to launch another school year.

Wednesday was the first day of high school football practice in Washington so I decided to challenge myself. I went to all 10 Greater Spokane League practices. Here's a link to my story. Pictured above is Mead coach Sean Carty.

I'll be back in the coming days. Meanwhile, I'm buried trying to get stories, schedules and glances finished for our Football Tab, which will be published Aug. 30.

QUESTION: What do you see happening among area football teams this fall?

Dream matchup



The Coeur d’Alene football team’s 2012 schedule already was going to be the toughest in school history.

Now it’s been amped up another notch.

The 2011 Idaho and Washington big-school state champions will face off when the Skyline Spartans of Sammamish take on the Coeur d’Alene Vikings as part of a quadrupleheader at the Kibbie Dome on Sept. 15. Kickoff is scheduled for 8 p.m.

Skyline originally was scheduled to play host to Manatee of Bradenton, Fla., in a matchup between two of the nation’s top quarterbacks. But the game was scrapped when the marketing company that helped arrange the game couldn’t afford to fly Manatee to Washington.

CdA athletic director Todd Gilkey received an email from Skyline’s administration Wednesday confirming it planned to play CdA pending final approval from its school board.

Skyline is led by senior-to-be, 6-foot-5 Max Browne, who has given an oral commitment to the University of Southern California. Browne is rated the nation’s No. 2 recruit.

“I don’t know if it’s congratulations or condolences,” CdA coach Shawn Amos said of landing the game against Skyline. “We’re really excited about it. It’s a great opportunity for our kids to play another high-profile team.”

Skyline is grateful to find a game for Week 3.

“It couldn't have worked out better in that regard,” Skyline coach Mat Taylor said. “We were on the verge of not being able to find a game. And then, to have a showcase game at the Kibbie Dome that Coeur d'Alene didn't have an opponent for Week 3, it worked out well.”

Amos and some members of the 2011 back-to-back state champs are pictured above receiving an award at the SWABs banquet in February in Spokane as the male team of the year in the Inland Northwest.




Prep page, a day late

I was at the hospital Thursday having a minor procedure done (it comes with turning 50 years old), so I wasn't able to post links to our Prep Page stories.

Here you go:

My column was about Joe Albi Stadium and the need to look at the future. A study is underway to look at options to either retrofit Albi or build a stadium elsewhere among several options. What do you think should be done with the venerable stadium?

Jim Allen had this feature on arguably the best boys soccer team in the area (clue: it's not in the GSL).

The lead item in my track notebook is about ultra talented pole vaulter Anandae Clark of Lakeside (Nine Mile).