Grizzlies start fast, blow away Lebanon

LEBANON — Danial White hit Shashi Penn with a 42-yard touchdown pass on the first play from scrimmage as the Ashland High football team jumped out to leads of 24-0 after one quarter and 38-0 at the half en route to a 51-14 nonconference win over Lebanon on Friday.

Ryne Robitz accounted for 145 yards, 99 rushing, and White completed 6 of 9 passes for 125 yards and two touchdowns as the Grizzlies improved to 2-0 heading into next week's Midwestern League opener against defending league champion Marist.

"Our kids played hard, we got a lot of confidence after last week's win over KU and we were hitting our targets," Ashland head coach Charlie Hall said. "We've certainly talked about taking it one game at a time and I think we did improve in some areas, but it's a whole new ball game when Marist comes to town."

It's only been two official games — three counting the Pacific Rim Bowl — but this year's Grizzlies look like they may be up to the Spartans' challenge.

After Lebanon took a 15-yard penalty for arriving late for the coin toss then a five-yard penalty for taking too long to kick off, Penn returned the opening kick 22 yards to set up his receiving touchdown.

Ashland flamed out on its next drive and had to settle for Matt Hedges' 23-yard field goal, but that was one of the few small victories for the Warriors, who watched the Grizzlies score touchdowns on six of their next seven drives to build a 51-0 lead.

The scoring rush included a 10-yard dash by Robitz, a six-yard pass to Sebastian Warren, and an 84-yard punt return by Penn that fell just short of the end zone.

Ashland wound up with 318 yards of total offense while holding Lebanon to 264, most coming after Ashland subbed in its junior varsity team for the fourth quarter. The Grizzlies' defense also came to play, recovering three fumbles and recording two sacks.

"Everybody just kind of did their job," Hall said.

Also for Ashland, Mason Montgomery rushed for 36 yards on offense and had seven tackles on defense, Hedges came up with a 24-yard reception to go with his field goal and Collin McGuire, Seth Cowan and Joe Hearn each had a sack.

Now, the Grizzlies will find out how they stack up against one of the best teams in the state.

"I just hope that these seniors can really play with the confidence that they've developed over the summer," Hall said. "We have an (opponent) that clearly has a great reputation and a good football team, and now we have to show up and compete."

Women's Volleyball

At Salem, picking on the Corban Warriors is nothing new to most of the Southern Oregon University volleyball team, and Paulla Pinheiro took to the task quite naturally in her first crack at it Friday night.

Pinheiro continued her ascent to standout status with a match-high 13 kills and the Raiders got the best of the Warriors for the 20th straight meeting with a 25-15, 25-18, 25-20 win in both teams' Cascade Conference opener at the C.E. Jeffers Center.

SOU (4-4 overall) got a double-digit kill total out of Pinheiro for the third straight match while running its winning streak to four. The junior outside hitter attacked at a .407 clip.

Senior middle Liz Madden also kept up her solid play with nine kills while getting in on four blocks. Mona Goudarzian added five kills and Sam Boehnke had four to go with three blocks. Lindsay Verboort totaled a match-high 22 assists as she and Lauren McGowne combined for 41.

The Raiders trailed only briefly in the second set before grabbing 11 of 14 points to take a 20-14 lead. Brookelyn Cole served up a pair of aces while helping the Raiders take a 6-0 lead in the third set, and the Warriors came back to get within 20-18 before conceding four of SOU's last five points on unforced errors.

SOU senior libero Renee Yomtob garnered 15 digs and Cole had 10. The Raiders' solid passing led to a fourth straight efficient attacking effort (.295).

Olivia Shropshire had 13 kills to pace Corban (2-7 overall), which was limited to a .158 team attacking average.

The Raiders will look for their 14th straight win in the all-time series against Northwest Christian on Saturday in Eugene. The Beacons were 5-2 entering their CCC opener Friday against Oregon Tech.

Daily Tidings sports editor Joe Zavala can be reached at 541-776-4469 or

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