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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Looking ahead

There is nothing to compare to the playoffs associated with spring sports.

Fall and winter may hold the glamour sports like football and basketball, but those seasons don’t offer the breadth of competition you’ll see over the next couple weeks.

From districts to regionals to state, athletes in six sports will wind their way to the elusive state championships. Individual sports intertwine with team titles.

But remember, if you’re used to attending your nephew’s baseball game for free, bring your wallet. State playoffs charge for admission.

Greater Spokane League events of interest

Baseball

District 8 4A at Avista Stadium

Friday: Second-seeded Mt. Spokane (14-6), at 5 p.m., and top-seeded East Valley (17-3), at 8, will play the first-round winners for berths in the championship game.

Saturday: The 6 p.m. title game will determine the No. 1 seed to state.

Tuesday: The last two survivors will clash at 7 p.m. for the No. 2 seed to state.

3A regional at Hanford

Saturday: West Valley will take on Sunnyside at 11 a.m. for the third and final seed to state.

Softball

District 8 4A

Thursday at Franklin Park: GSL division champions Mead (18-1-1) and University (18-2) play the second-place finishers Shadle Park (16-4) and Lewis and Clark (13-7) at 7 p.m. with the winners headed to regionals. Central Valley (10-9), Gonzaga Prep (11-9), East Valley (9-11) and Mt. Spokane (11-8-1) play loser-out games starting at 5 p.m.

Friday at Whitworth: Four teams play for the final two spots in regionals starting at 3 and 5 p.m.

Saturday at Whitworth: Four survivors play for seeding at 3 and 5 p.m.

District 8 3A at West Valley

Saturday: Clarkston (7-12) and Cheney (3-17) face-off at 11 a.m. with the winner earning a regional spot. The winner also meets West Valley (8-11) at 1 p.m. for seeding.

Boys soccer

State 4A

Saturday: District 8 champion Ferris (13-4) will host Big Nine No. 2 Pasco (13-5). Lewis and Clark (16-1), the District 8 runner-up, will travel to Big Nine champ Wenatchee (13-3). Both matches are set for 1 p.m. Winners will meet in next week’s quarterfinals.

State 3A

Tuesday: Cheney will be the first- or second-seeded team from the GSL/Mid-Valley regional. The Blackhawks (15-4) host Sunnyside (15-3) at 1 p.m. Saturday for state seeding.

Looking around

Track individuals take their turn

There are always surprises and setbacks during district track competition. Sometimes it happens before the meet.

So it will be when Greater Spokane League 4A and 3A athletes begin their quest for state this afternoon and tomorrow at the District 8 championships at University High.

Strategy and injury dictate whether athletes not among the league’s top 16 in an event get their chance to compete.

The shorter races tend to create opportunity. In the boys and girls 100, 10 of the GSL’s fastest sprinters will forgo the race for others, most notably a pair of Gonzaga Prep 12.4 speedsters, Alex Butler and Corinna O’Brien.

Butler, a 57.0 400 runner, is concentrating on that race. O’Brien, fourth in state last year, will focus on the 800. And the Bullpups will chase Rogers and Becca Noble in the long relay, in which they have the state’s second- and third-fastest times.

Butler, incidentally, was second in league in three events and fourth in another this year.

Noble, who leads the state in the 200 and 400 and is second and third in the 100 and 800, will concentrate on the three shorter races and relay. U-Hi’s Amie Dahnke will forgo the 800 as well for the 1,600 and 3,200 where she has times that lead and are third in the state respectively.

In the boys meet, Mead’s Laef Barnes is entered at 800 meters instead of the 3,200 and two of the league’s faster 800 runners, Ferris’ Justin Houck and Mike Quackenbush, will concentrate on the longer two runs.

All three distance races, particularly come regionals in another week, expect to be hot.

Incredibly, this year seven different boys 400 relay teams have broken 44 seconds. Two of those, Cheney and West Valley, are in the 3A meet.

Also in the 3A meet WV’s Rashad Toussaint has the best classification long and triple jumps in state and Ryan Flint is among the top three 3A shot putters.

Kayla Mainer shares the state lead in the high jump, but the Eagles will be without multiple-state-placing senior distance runner Molly Cole, who has been sidelined her senior year by leg stress fractures.

Moved on and now moving up

Cedric Jackson, who played as a freshman at Medical Lake, recently signed a letter of intent to play basketball at St. John’s.

Jackson’s family moved to New Jersey his sophomore year and he was an immediate hit for Northern Burlington County Regional High, earning the nickname Cedric The Entertainer. He ended his high school career as NBC’s all-time leading scorer.

Looking Back

This month in 1989: Ferris freshman Mia Caviezel set a District 8 meet record in the 800 meters with a time of 2 minutes, 14.3 seconds and Mead sophomore Sarah Schwald did the same in the 1,600 meters, winning in 4:55.5.

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