Bruin Boys Basketball
The Bruin boys basketball team had a tough season, with the Bruins finishing with a 9-14 overall record, and a 3-7 record in the Far West League.
The Bruins were short-handed all season long as they were without the services of senior starting point guard Buell Gonzales III, who was sidelined after a football injury.
The Bruins lose five seniors in Pat Fulton, David Freeman, Nate Webb, Sean Colbert and Gonzales, and will return another young roster next season primarily dotted by juniors. While their senior presence will be missed, the future looks bright for the Bruins as sophomores Austin Fronckowiak and Brig Schofield both demonstrated a deadly proficiency from beyond the arc in season play.
Bruin Girls Basketball
After a strong 5-0 start, the Brookings-Harbor girls basketball team (13-11 overall, 5-5 league) struggled to find consistency and saw their season end with the play-in round of the state championship against Gladstone by a score of 54-40.
Looking ahead to next season, the Bruins lose four seniors in Jocelyn Kay, Brooke Raiter, Kylie Johnson and Siena Worthey. Fortunately, the Bruins return a strong core of juniors who saw extensive playing time this season, including Abby Farmer, who led the Bruins in scoring all season long.
After failing to place at the state championships last year, senior Alonzo Nalls II resumed where he left off and earned a fifth-place finish in the 170-pound division to cap off his high school career.
Nalls had a promising start on the first day of the championships, as he secured victories over Newport’s Jesse Wagner and Stayton’s Levi Summers. On the final day of the tournament, however, Nalls suffered a loss to James Ellis from Banks High to drop down to the semifinals of the consolation bracket, where he grappled against Tillamook’s Fabian Niemi. Nalls looked to be on his way to a decision victory, but was pinned at the 4:27 mark. In the fifth-place match, Nalls once met Newport’s Wagner, whom he took a 11-6 decision against.
Junior Bruin Tanner Wyatt also competed at the state championships in the 138-pound division, but fell short of placing. Wyatt was pinned by North Marion’s Avidan Sanchez in the first round of the main bracket, and suffered another pin against Tillamook’s Dylan Dickson in the consolation round.
Track and Field
Collectively and individually, the Brookings-Harbor track and field squad had a standout season.
For the regular season, the Bruins boys and girls teams finished in the top three a total of seven times.
The highlight of the year, however, came when senior Abbey Schreiber took home the state championship for the pole-vault in Hayward Field this year, while shattering previous school record with a new personal best of 11’9”.
The other members of the Bruin contingent at state notched respectable performances in their own right, with Bailey Stamm and Ryan Steendahl making the podium.
Stamm finished fifth in the 400-meter dash with a time of 52.58, while Steendahl cleared 5’10” on the high jump to earn seventh place. In the 4x100-relay, the team of Stamm, Igor Steendahl, Patrick Fulton, and Alonzo Nalls sprinted to 10th place with a personal best of 44.68. In the triple jump, Schreiber finished 12th with a mark of 32-05.25.
“As a coach, it was just a really good day, the kids ran well, and it was just a fun way to end the season,” said head coach Terry Axel.
The Brookings-Harbor softball team struggled on the diamond this year, as they racked up an overall record of 7-15 and 3-12 Far West League. Although the only team the Bruins managed to defeat was South Umpqua, the Bruins had a close series with Marshfield, where their first games were decided by one and two runs, respectively.
The Bruins baseball team finished the year with an overall record of 10-13 and 7-8 in the league.
The team struggled early on, but rallied off two consecutive sweeps against Marshfield and Siuslaw/Mapleton late in the season. With momentum on their side, the Bruins needed to win two games in their series against South Umpqua to enter the postseason, but were unable to take a game off the Lancers.
Senior David Freeman was named third team all-state for the infield position and as an all-star for the 2017 Oregon 4A High School Baseball All Star Series, while sophomore Jon Kleespies was given a nod for all-state outfield.
Panther Boys Basketball
This year the youthful Panthers struggled in a competitive league, notching a 4-6 Sunset Conference record under the tutelage of varsity coach Jay Trost.
Gold Beach fared somewhat better outside of league play amassing a 10-13 record overall. Toledo earned the top spot in league at 10-0.
Coaching turnovers have made continuity a challenge for the Panther hoopsters. A silver lining for next season could be a maturing squad of sophomores and juniors returns after graduating just two seniors, Devon Moore and Justin Stagner.
Gold Beach will look to juniors Alex Carpenter, Luke Gilbert, Trevor Walker, Yancy Rangel, Todd Halcumb and Zac Denney to make some inroads.
Panther Girls Basketball
Veteran Lady Panther basketball coach Chris Clark had a lot to smile about this past season. His team cruised to a perfect 10-0 record enroute to grabbing the 2A Sunset Conference crown.
The Panthers posted a 17-5 record overall before falling to Regis 43-71, who, in turn, advanced to the semi-final round of the 2A State Playoffs.
Gold Beach has a rich tradition of winning girls basketball teams and should be poised for another strong run next year, returning almost the entire team led by this year’s juniors: Kayleanna Ridens, Jordan Rucker, Brandy Allen and Paris Newdall.
The Gold Beach Panthers regained their status as renowned wrestling state champion makers when three of their grapplers competed in the upper echelon of the 2A Oregon Schools Athletic Association (OSAA) and came away with some impressive showings under a new coach, Joe Martin.
Senior Taylor Bright, upended in last year’s semi-finals, got the big win and the hardware this time around. Bright would not be denied in the 126-pound weight division, beating Blake Butler of Pine Eagle in a 3-2 decision earning him the 2A/1A Gold Medal.
Junior Jade Piper, who won the title as a freshman in the 145-pound girls division, and the semifinalist spot last year as a sophomore, was in the hunt once again, this time notching another impressive second place finish behind Ridgeview powerhouse, Bailey Dennis, in a 6-0 decision.
Panther freshman, Tandy Martin, showed promise by capturing third place in the 138-pound category after besting Seth Sidwell of Oakridge.
Track and Field
Head coach Dana Newdall had nothing but good things to say about her team’s performance this year. “Overall this has been a real good team. They look out for each other and are always looking for ways to help each other. That make my job as a coach so much easier.”
The Panthers had some stellar performances from senior Kaitlyn Armstrong who placed first in district in the 800 meters and second in the 1500 meters. Armstrong went on to take third at state in the 1500 with a time of 4:59, and sixth in the 800 showing 2:27.13 on the watch. Both times at state were personal bests.
Senior Devon Moore was inserted into the state lineup at the last minute and ran the 400 meters notching a personal best of 58.65.
Bethy Myers, a junior, “has improved all year long,” according to her coach, and touring the track in a 12:31 time for the 3,000-meter event.
Finally, junior Paris Newdall placed first at district in both the shotput and discus. At state she place fifth in the shotput with a heave of 35’-3/4”. Additionally, she took sixth in the discus with a throw of 102’-2”.
The Lady Panthers had another successful season in the 2A Special District 5 earning a third place finish out of seven teams with a 7-4 conference record and 8-12 overall.
This year Gold Beach had two capable pitchers on the mound until midway through the season when Brandy Allen was injured by a stray ball and was out for the season.
Head coach Brianna Wallace loses only one senior in veteran Savannah Carter, and prospects for the next few years are good, with a mix of juniors, sophomores and freshmen coming up.
The Panthers hardballers fell on hard times this year. Despite some wonderful renovations to the baseball field and facilities, Gold Beach only finished ahead of winless Myrtle Point with a 4-8 league record in 2A Special District 5 play.
Coach Mark Hollinger’s Panthers finished their season on a high note with a one-point win over Siletz Valley 7-6, setting the table for next year.