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Day: January 20, 2014

Boys take two of three

 

Celt Tregg Peterson lays up a shot in McNary's game with Liberty High School Friday, Jan. 10 (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)
Celt Tregg Peterson lays up a shot in McNary’s game with Liberty High School Friday, Jan. 10 (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

By ERIC A. HOWALD
Of the Keizertimes

As Central Valley Conference play kicked off Tuesday, Jan. 14, the McNary High School boys varsity basketball team found itself one of three teams in the league with 8-5 preseason records.

“South Salem (High School) is probably at the top of the heap, but for the first time in three years, I think we can honestly say that we can walk into a gym and expect to beat anybody,” said Ryan Kirch, McNary head coach. “The flip side is that the other teams can walk in and beat us.”

The Saxons currently have the best record 10-3 and a sixth place OSAA 6A ranking to go along with it. McKay High School tops the second place teams with a slightly higher RPI rating than the Celtics and North Salem rounds out the top four.

The Celts face two of those teams, South and North, this week.

“We need to keep practicing hard, I feel like we have a chance against South,” said Celt sophomore Trent Van Cleave. “As soon as we have a bit of a streak there isn’t going to be anyone to stop us.”

The Celts won two of their last three games heading into league play last week.

On Tuesday, Jan. 7, McNary took a 64-55 loss to West Albany High School in a game where the final score wasn’t the whole story.

After a slow start, the Celts made a 7-0 run in the final minutes of the first half to close the gap 31-28 before heading to the locker room.

“We run into situations where another team will take the lead at the beginning and then we have to get that back. If we just come out playing well at the start, things would go easier,” said Devon Dunagan, a McNary junior.

By the end of the third frame, McNary held a 48-42 lead, but the wheels came off in the last minutes of the game.

“They switched their defense a little bit and we didn’t adjust,” Kirch said. “We made some forced mistakes and we must have fouled six or seven possessions down at the other end.”

Dunagan led the team with 14 points, Johnathan Doutt and Tregg Peterson put in 12, Connor Goff had eight, Van Cleave had six, Braden Taylor had two and Hayden Gosling hit one from the free throw line.

While the loss was disappointing, the Keizer team didn’t stay down long.

“We’ve done a pretty good job of rebounding from the losses we’ve had,” Van Cleave said.

The following day, McNary rode an early lead to a 59-38 win over the Lebanon High School on the road.

On the heels of that win, the boys extended the streak to two with a 58-51 win over Liberty High School Friday, Jan. 10. Despite another slow start that gave Liberty a 16-12 lead in the first quarter, the Celts outscored the Falcons 19-8 in the second quarter to take a lead they never relinquished.

Doutt shot out the lights with 25 points (including three treys) on the night, Peterson had 12, Taylor had 10, Gosling put in seven, and Connor Goff and Dunagan had two points each.

“We responded well to the loss to West Albany, which is no small thing. The biggest challenge is keeping the forward momentum. I like where we’re headed now with CVC competition,” Kirch said.

Despite more preseason success than the team has experienced in years, Dunagan said the team couldn’t afford to take its foot off the gas.

“No days off, take every practice seriously and know our opponents and what they’ll try to do to us so we are as prepared as possible,” he said.

Various funding options looked at for The Big Toy

KEIZERTIMES/File photo
KEIZERTIMES/File photo

By CRAIG MURPHY
Of the Keizertimes

From big state grants to Keizer Rotary support to wine tasting events, all options are being pursued to help fund The Big Toy at Keizer Rapids Park.

As mentioned last week in the Keizertimes, the new official name for the large play structure project being built at Keizer Rapids Park come September was selected by the Community Build Task Force.

While a name has been selected for the project, funding is far from settled.

“Things are going to start gearing up fast,” said Marlene Quinn, chair of the task force. “The fundraising and public relations committees will be the most active ones right now.”

Jeanne Bond-Esser said the Keizer Parks Foundation is turning its second annual Pinot in the Parks event on March 14 into a fundraiser to support the project. Quinn noted there will be about 400 tickets at $25 each.

“All of the money raised will go to this project,” Quinn said. “Last year we got $5,000 for a small event. We hope to double it this year.”

Bond-Esser said the Keizer Parks Foundation will be applying for several grants, with applications for two smaller grants due next month.

The big grant is a Local Government Grant from the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department for approximately $100,000. That application is due in April and has been targeted for the past year as the main one to focus on.

“With the big one, we wouldn’t know until about July if we get it,” Bond-Esser said.

Another way to raise funds has been the selling of fence pickets to go around The Big Toy. The pickets cost $35 each and have attracted plenty of attention since being shown to the public during the Design Day event in November.

“We have $2,300 collected already from that,” Bond-Esser said.

Richard Walsh noted some of the grant applications are due soon.

“These are tight deadlines,” Walsh told Bond-Esser. “Are we going to be able to do this? Is there something we can do to help?”

Bond-Esser noted one item in particular would be useful.

“If there was a budget, that would help,” she said.

Quinn said there is a list of materials to be used for the project. The items would need to be priced locally to help determine the project budget.

Clint Holland is working with Keizer Rotary to see what support the group can give to the project, both in terms of helping with materials and also during construction, set for Sept. 17 to 21.

“I’m asking Rotary if they would make this one of their days to help,” Holland said. “We have a lot of talented people. I have guys we could put on each deal and get the job done right. It’s one thing to build it, another to maintain it. I want to see if Rotary would be a main sponsor of annual maintenance.”

Holland is optimistic $150,000 or more could be raised for the project.

“There are a lot of people I haven’t talked to yet,” he noted. “This will be the biggest toy kids have seen, and parents too.”

Bill Lawyer, Public Works director for Keizer, estimated material costs would be about $300,000 for the structure, not counting an additional $50,000 for parking lot materials.

The fundraising committee for the project next meets on Jan. 28.