Young athletes making their marks on Lebanon sports

Search on to replace Tomlin

Lebanon is searching for a new head football coach after Ty Tomlin, who has led the Warriors for seven years, has announced he’s stepping down.
Athletic Director Kraig Hoene said Tomlin is in “great standing” and simply has decided to focus on other things.
“He did a lot of good things,” Hoene said, noting that Tomlin led the Warriors to their first-ever state football title in 2016. “He put our football program back into consistently being competitive at the state level. We truly thank him for his contributions to the community. The program’s in good shape We hae good young kids.”
The high school is “going through the processes” to find a new coach, Hoene said.
“We’ll find the best guy we can find for Lebanon.”

In other sports news…

One thing about this COVID year in sports: It may be the beginning of some big things down the road.
That’s partly because of the youth displayed on local rosters.
Lebanon has nine boys on its baseball roster who are freshmen or sophomores. East Linn’s roster looks similar: out of 17 players, 13 are freshmen or sophomores. The Eagles (8-7 overall, 6-6 in league) have one senior.
“We have a good group of young kids,” Lebanon Athletic Director Kraig Hoene said, adding, “these kids who are playing would be playing no matter who came out. They would get the spots.”
The Warriors were 8-5 overall, 6-2 in MWC play after beating McNary May 12.
“Our kids are young, but they are accepting their role as varsity guys, playing like varsity kids. Our typical shortstop-second base combination is a freshman and a sophomore. It’s a good young group.
The same in softball, in which Lebanon is 3-4 in the MWC, 6-7 overall, with the point range narrowing in some of those losses as the season has progressed, Hoene noted. Warriors have been led from the circle by sophomore pitcher Alivia Holden on a team that is entirely without seniors.
“We’ve been playing a super-competitive level of softball,” Hoene said. “We lost 21-0 early in the season to Kaiser, but we lost 5-0 last night to them. We really easily could be sitting on a plus-.500 record.”
Both the baseball and softball teams will play culminating games this coming week. Baseball will play at West Salem and softball at South Salem on Monday, May 17, then baseball will play at West Albany and softball will host Dallas on Wednesday.
In tennis, the Warriors have gotten some good wins from the doubles team of Benjamin and Brandon Witherspoon, and Mark Workman and Elijah Zderad have delivered on the singles side.
The girls team got off to a slow start following the sudden death of Coach Kelsey Harris, but Aaron Smith stepped in and the team is up to about a dozen girls, Hoene said.
In golf, the Warriors qualified as a team for the “unofficial” state tournament to be held at Pine Ridge Golf Club in Springfield next week. Also qualifying is A’Kalie Berry, sophomore transfer from Texas, who will play in the girls state tournament.
In track, both Lebanon and East Linn are aiming for the state meets, the Warriors for the May 21-22 5A Invitational to be hosted by Wilsonville.
“They’re taking the top 16 kids in each event, so it looks like we’ll have 10 or 11,” Hoene said.
Junior Blake Siebert was ranked sixth in the 5A in javelin with throw of 162-11, going into the final week of the regular season, and junior Trenton Tuomi is one of 13 high jumpers who have cleared 5-8, good for fifth in the state rankings.
Sophomore Jackson Parrish is eighth in the triple jump, with a leap of 39-7.
Lebanon’s girls 4×100 ranked ninth in state after a run of 52.46 at the Twilight Hustle at Crescent Valley on May 7 – the only multi-team meet the Warriors have participated in.
Freshman Alyse Fountain has shown some speed on the track, with a PR of 13.12 in the 100 and 27.36 in the 200.
East Linn’s Special District 2A Championship is May 15 at Regis. The state meet will be May 22 at Union.
Seniors Ethan Slayden (2:03.34) and Brandon Williams (2:07.03) are ranked 1-2 in the state 2A in the 800 and Williams is also ranked No. 2 in the 3000 (9:35.37).
Slayden is ranked in a six-way tie for second in the state in the high jump (5-10).
Sophomore Aidan Morgan is ranked in the op 10, statewide, in both hurdles races, and is also sixth in the triple jump (39-2).
The East Linn boys are ranked sixth, statewide, in both relays.
In the field, senior Grant Davidson is top ranked in the shot (43-8½) and the discus (133-5) in the 2A division.