This fall sports season as a whole was one of the more successful ones. Men’s soccer made it to state, volleyball made it to state for the first time in four years, men’s cross country as a team made it to state for the first time in 25 years, and girls cross country finished 3rd in district. However, the highlight of this year’s fall sport season was the women’s soccer team, which won the state championship and dominated Catlin 3-0 in the state championship game...
Women’s soccer had quite the season, coming off a state semifinal appearance last year, the team steamed rolled through the playoffs, raising the third state championship banner and first since 2005. This talented team got equal contributions from all grade levels, boasting four first team all league players (more than Catlin). These girls had fun while winning, doing team skits that brought laughs as well as bringing the team together. “We’re friends in and out of school,” one of the players noted. The players also receive tremendous leadership from their former Timbers player, Coach Thompson. As a player puts it, “He’s very serious about soccer but also sarcastic; as a former Timber’s player he takes his soccer seriously.” With lots of talent coming back, and a heady coach, don’t be surprised if these Aardvarks raise a fourth state banner next year.
This year’s men’s soccer team was a talented one, with many players receiving all league and all state honors, and cruising to a league title. While the season may have ended bittersweet losing in state, the players fought hard and some controversial calls easily could have changed the course of the game. The players were always together since the beach trip, as one player says, “Soccer is always a blast!” There was a well-balanced mix of all the grade levels, with many freshmen stepping in and playing big minutes, and a great group of seniors leading the team. The team also received great help from the sidelines. One player explained, “Playing for Coach Kerr can be hard at times, but ultimately it’s rewarding because he does a good job preparing us both mentally and physically for games.” With a top-flight coach and talented underclassmen, there is no doubt this team will be back next year.
Volleyball had one of their best seasons in recent memory, making it to state for the first time in four years. While all the volleyball players would tell you they wanted to go al the way, they played hard and completed another successful season. The team always had fun, connecting well throughout the four grade levels and had exceptional leadership from their seniors, “we had good team unity that really spread out through all the grade levels, we all really got along and that communication translated to the court. We always have fun while we’re playing,” one player said. While the main highlight was beating Portland Adventist to go to state, the team also played extremely well shorthanded against a dominant Valley Catholic team. First time head coach Jacqui Gardner led the team, a coach the players responded well to. “I like playing for Jacqui, she is really strict in practice because she has high expectations for us, which is good because she really believes we can do well and she stays calm during the games,” as player noted. Volleyball is definitely on the rise at OES.
Men’s cross country had their best season in 25 years. As a team, they qualified for state for the first time since 1986. A player observed, “It’s been awesome to watch the team grow; when I was a freshman we only had six members and now we’re headed to state.” Though many would think running for miles and miles isn’t fun, this team had a blast. The team unity was awesome, many freshmen came out and made great contributions. “It was great because everyone knew they had a critical part for the team to go to state,” a team member said. The team was developed with runners of all levels--“We have a lot of diversity in experience levels of our runners but we all got along and had a great time,” the team member added. Coach Holland led the team for the third year in a row, a coach held in very high regard by the team. The men’s cross country team has developed more than any other team in the last four years, going from a team just hoping to field enough runners for a team to a state appearance.
Women’s cross country quietly had a very successful season. Though in the beginning they were worried they wouldn’t have enough runners to have a team, by the end of the season the team finished third in districts. The team always had a great time together and team unity grew over the course of the season. Coach Virna led the cross country team, a coach that the runners really respond well to.
The sport of rowing is also catching on at OES. While many know of Ruth N’s rowing prowess, other hardcore rowers at our school include Hannah R, Brooke L, and Bryan S. Rowing is a tough sport that involves lots of hours, as these rowers spend at lest 18 hours a week training and rowing. For all the teams our OESians participated in, all of them improved and got better as the season went on. In rowing, everyone works together, the only thing that is expected is 100%; if one person slacks off the entire team struggles. Rowing is becoming a popular sport, and unlike other sports it is an individual sport as well as a team sport. Whether you’re racing by yourself or as a team, rowing brings out the best in everyone.
For the first time, OES also has a football star among us. Zach F. helped lead the Tigard Tigers to an 11-0 record until running into a red hot Jesuit team in the quarterfinals. Zach played the role of superman this season, racking up yards on the ground, through the air, rushing for touchdowns, catching touchdowns, returning kickoffs and punts, as well as playing lockdown defense at corner, even scoring on a pick 6. Through his tremendous effort, Zach was rewarded 1st team all league running back as well as 2nd team all league defensive back. Zach, along with his teammates at Tigard, earned 26 all league honors, many like Zach earning multiple honors, showing how dominant this Tigard team was this year. With a whole year to improve, who knows how good Zach and the Tigard Tigers will be next year?
In all, OES has some incredibly talented student athletes in our midst. Try to catch a game or two if you can!