Scarminach advances to state QFs; Cowan stays alive

Ashland High junior Jake Scarminach pinned Hillsboro sophomore Troy Jackson in 3 minutes, 39 seconds to advance to the quarterfinals of the 160-pound weight class at the Class 5A state tournament Thursday at Memorial Coliseum in Portland.

Scarminach was one of three Grizzlies to qualify for state, and is one of two who are still in the medal hunt. Ashland junior heavyweight Sam Cowan bounced back from a narrow first-round loss to win two consolation matches, and junior 189-pounder Christian Ostmo went two-and-out.

Scarminach, seeded No. 4, and Jackson were tied 0-0 after the first period and Jackson elected to be down in the second.

"That was (Jackson's) first mistake," Ashland head coach Joe Crane said. "Jake put him in an arm bar and pinned him."

The win earned the Scarminach, who placed fourth at 145 last year, an elite eight match against Thurston junior Austin Miller, who beat fifth-seeded Zach Bishop 5-1 in another first-round match.

Cowan got off to a slow start in his first-round match against Dallas junior Jarod Bookey and lost 3-1. He quickly recovered, pinning Liberty senior Zach Kelley in 54 seconds and Marshfield junior Johnny Castro in 3:21 to advance to the consolation quarterfinals.

"In his first match, I think he was a little bit shell-shocked," Crane said. "He was a little nervous and he couldn't really wrestle to his full potential. He didn't really turn it on until the third period and then it was too late.

"I think that really sparked Sam to really leave it all on the mat, and he went out in his second and third matches and looked like a completely different wrestler. He dominated."

Cowan next faces the loser of the quarterfinal match between top seed Saia Kofe of Jefferson and Andrew Vandetta of Lebanon. If Cowan pulls off another win he'll clinch no worse than an eighth-place medal.

Women's Softball

Southern Oregon went 1-1 during the opening day of the SOU Invitational Thursday at U.S. Cellular Community Park in Medford.

Southern Oregon defeated Holy Names 1-0 in the opener and then fell to Hope International 9-4 in the nightcap.

The Raiders take on Azusa Pacific at 11 a.m. today and 11th-ranked Concordia-Irvine at 1 p.m. The tournament wraps up Saturday.

In a game that featured a pair of teams that received votes in the preseason NAIA toop 25 poll, the Raiders were able to battle for the victory despite losing ace Jordyn Kurtz in the bottom of the second inning to an injury the she suffered while running the bases.

With the score still scoreless, freshman Lauren Keel entered the game in relief and blanked the Hawks for the final five innings.

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