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Day: December 15, 2014

Lady Celts regroup after ‘robotic’ debut

McNary senior Madi Rohl looks for a route around a South Eugene defender in the game Wednesday, Dec. 3. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)
McNary senior Madi Rohl looks for a route around a South Eugene defender in the game Wednesday, Dec. 3. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

Of the Keizertimes

McNary High School girls varsity basketball team’s return to the court Wednesday, Dec. 3, ended in a 38-31 loss for the Lady Celts.

Head Coach Derrick Handley didn’t mince words when it came to assessing the situation.

“We were looking a bit robotic. We had such a focus on being in the right place every single play that we forgot to react when things didn’t go our way,” Handley said.

With a new head coach and several new faces on the team, senior Lauren Hudgins chalked it up to jitters.

“We were still feeling each other out,” she said. “Our defense was better than our offense, and we hurried the offense.”

Junior Madi Hingston shot a team-leading seven points; Kaelie Flores and Vanessa Hayes had six each; Sydney Hunter put up five; Jasmine Ernest hit a trey; and Hudgins and Kailey Doutt had two apiece.

While the Lady Celts also ended up on the losing side (63-52) in a game with Glencoe High School Thursday, Dec. 5, execution was better on both sides of the ball.

“Our effort was as good as anyone could ask for. Our defense stops drove us and let us focus on the press,” Ernest said.

Handley said the game came down to the final minutes before getting out of reach for McNary.

“They made a run in the fourth quarter and we cut it to four points with less than two minutes left. Then we got in a fouling game and they made the free throws,” he said.

Despite the loss, Handley said the growth from the first game to the second was significant.

“Our girls were a lot looser and they ran the offense really well,” he said.

Hunter had 12 points in the outing; Hingston and Hudgins had 10 each; Flores put up nine points; Madi Rohl had six; Emma Jones drained a three-pointer; and Ernest had two points.

“If we met Glencoe again, we could definitely beat them. It came down to rebounding and we should have been running our plays again even when they didn’t work out the first time,” Hudgins said.

Keeping an open mind when it comes to offensive

“Lives in Ruins: Archaeologists and the Seductive Lure of Human Rubble” by Marilyn Johnson


Lives in Ruins: Archaeologists and the Seductive Lure of Human Rubble” by Marilyn Johnson

c.2014, Harper
$25.99 / $31.99 Canada
275 pages



Your back yard was filled with treasure.

When you were a kid, you were sure of it – and while it mightn’t have been Pirate booty, there were certainly other riches there. Fossils beneath the grass, remnants from long-ago warriors, glass bottles, even coins awaited discovery.

Alas, all you ever found were chicken bones but when you read “Lives in Ruins” by Marilyn Johnson, you’ll remember how digging for them was so much fun.

Like many children, Marilyn Johnson grew up looking for fossils in her parents’ garden. The possibility of what she might find underground excited her then so, a few years ago, she decided to “collect” archaeologists and the knowledge they have.

When most people think of archaeology, they think of Indiana Jones or dinosaurs. Both are incorrect, says Johnson; Indy was a curator. Dino diggers are paleontologists, while archaeologists look for “people and the things that they leave behind…” To become the latter, you’ll need an extensive apprenticeship for which you’ll pay. Then you’ll “work hard under primitive conditions,” in an industry with notoriously low wages.

Johnson’s education would be a little different, though.

She started in the National Museum of Ireland, where human remains from the country’s peat bogs lie, awaiting study. They were “riveting,” she says, but she was surprised to learn that bog bodies do not require “a lot of excavations…”

From there, she worked on St. Eustatius, a Caribbean island where the surroundings were “toxic” and projects were plentiful, but not as eagerly excavated as they once were. She spent time with a New York archaeologist who makes Stone-Age tools in order to fully understand how they work. She learned how ancient science is teaming up with craft breweries to create beverages from residue found in thousand-year-old pots. She fell in love with “pig dragons,” saw why the “future of archaeology lies underwater,” and discovered how women fought for a spot in the trenches. She visited “the most important archaeological site in the United States” and learned how archaeology played a part, post-9/11. And she writes about how amateurs are the thorn in – and possibly the future of –archaeology today.

Is one man’s trash another man’s treasure?

Could be – and bones, too, as author Marilyn Johnson indicates, but she also shows that archaeology isn’t Indiana-Jones-romantic, either; in fact, it’s backbreaking, sometimes thankless work that many countries and businesses don’t perceive as important. Time and again, Johnson writes about projects scuttled, archaeologists discouraged, and history lost because bones and detritus were lost due to lack of money or corporate pressure.

And yet, despite that which surely will make historians gasp, there’s a certain kid-like fascination locked in this book. Johnson’s enthusiasm for her subject is infectious and she shares what she learned in the field. Her curiosity lays ours to rest, and I loved it.

Read this book, and you’ll never look at dirt quite the same. You’ll never step outside without wondering what you’re stepping on. Read it, because “Lives in Ruins” is a book you can really dig.

Terri Schlichenmeyer is based in Wisconsin.


It’ll be done for Christmas?


Of the Keizertimes

It appears the Chemawa Road reconstruction project is finally in the final stretch.

The project spanning from River Road to Keizer Rapids Park was delayed multiple times but crews have been busy for months getting things done.

One of the main parts of the project involves the new signal at Chemawa and Celtic Way, the entrance to McNary High School. The poles with the lights were put in several months ago but haven’t been activated.

Until now.

A Dec. 4 update from the Oregon Department of Transportation – the agency overseeing the project – listed the signal activation being anticipated for either Dec. 16 or 18.

Bill Lawyer, Public Works director for Keizer, said Monday evening he hadn’t heard anything more exact in terms of timing.

Lou Torres, Public Information representative for ODOT, didn’t have a set date, either.

“No concrete date has been set for the signal activation,” Torres said Tuesday. “However, our goal is to get it turned on before Christmas. The ultimate decision will be made by the City of Salem which inspects and will maintain the signal for the City of Keizer. I understand that the City of Salem ‘turns on’ signals on Tuesdays or Thursdays, so I suspect that is why you heard of those dates.

“Activation of the signal was delayed because we had to make some adjustments to the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) ramps and pedestals (that contain the buttons) and we are completing those adjustments this week,” Torres added.

According to last week’s ODOT update, the asphalt paving, sidewalks and drainage features are “substantially complete” and minor repair/replacement work is being done to finish final punch list items. Landscape planting in the water quality swales and planter areas is scheduled to start with material staging. Planting is expected to be ongoing in December.

“Once we get the signal activated before Christmas, only the landscaping will need to be done,” Torres said. “We are currently digging up trees to transplant them along Chemawa. We anticipate that landscaping will be completed in January some time. At that time, the project will be finally completed.”

While work related to traffic signal construction and material installation is done, there may be intermittent one-lane traffic.

The $3.5 million project was supposed to be done in 2012 but got delayed. It didn’t get started on time last year due to utilities not being relocated in time, which led to only part of the project being done in 2013. Work resumed in the spring and has been going solidly since.

“While the project was delayed and took longer than we had anticipated, the final product will be a great addition to the City of Keizer,” Torres said. “The project adds safety, makes the area pedestrian and bicycle friendly with ADA compliance and beautifies the area. It will be something that the City of Keizer can be proud of. Again, we apologize for the delays and inconvenience that it may have caused during construction.”