June 29, 2010
Meadow McWhorter is dunked with Gatorade after the Mt. Hood Community College softball team won another NWAACC title on May 24.

Soaking up softball

Drenched in Gatorade, Meadow McWhorter is having the time of her life. The 30-year-old, who grew up playing softball in Washougal, is the proud head coach of the 2009 and 2010 Northwest Athletic Association of Community College's champion Mt. Hood Saints softball team. The 1997 Washougal High School graduate has coached at Mt. Hood for eight years. "There's so much mental toughness to our sport," McWhorter said. "If you fail 7-out-of-10 times, you're still considered a good player. If you only fail 6-out-of-10 times, you're a great player. It all depends on how you handle that adversity so you can come through in those clutch situations. "You could be 0-for-3, but that last at-bat could be the most important at-bat of the game," she added. "If you get the hit that helps us win the game, that's the only at-bat you're going to remember."

June 29, 2010
Daniel Osterhage is honored for volunteering to help special needs children play soccer.

Changing people’s lives with something as simple as soccer

Through The Outreach Program for Soccer, referred to as "TOPSoccer," physically and intellectually challenged children of any age are given the opportunity to kick a soccer ball around and score a goal. It would not be possible without volunteers like Daniel Osterhage. The 14-year-old from Camas, who runs for the track team at Skyridge Middle School, found time to help the Camas-Washougal Kickers TOPSoccer team last fall. Washington Youth Soccer awarded Osterhage for his efforts by naming him TOPSoccer Buddy of the Year. He received a plaque Monday at Cardon Field, behind Camas High School, and recorded a video message thanking the organization and the kids he got to work with. He also thanked his parents Gary and Marni, and Camas-Washougal Soccer Club TOPSoccer coordinator Tami Naffziger. "When you put your mind to it, you can help somebody else out with something as simple as soccer," Osterhage said. "For these kids, just playing soccer is a reward. When you see the kids smile when they score a goal, or pass the ball to their friends, it's rewarding. You know you're doing something good for the community."

June 22, 2010
East County Little League softball players warm up for practice at Goot Park, in Camas. Softball parents want their children to have access to the newer fields at Schmid Memorial Park.

Pickling for even ground

This is a pickle nobody wanted to be a part of. East County Little League softball parents are fighting to give their children an equal opportunity to play ball on the newest fields at George Schmid Memorial Park. League president Kim Garner says there are two adequate softball fields at Bill Hamllik Park in Washougal and Goot Park in Camas. She also stated that the baseball fields at Schmid are the first ones the league has been able to use with grass infields.

June 22, 2010
Young football players from Camas got the chance to meet their heroes during a camp at Camas High School.

Big guys help the little guys in Camas

Before this week, Christian Kemp only knew the Camas High School football players by the numbers on their jerseys. After meeting several of the Papermakers during the Big Guy/Little Guy football camp Wednesday and Thursday, at Cardon Field behind Camas High School, the 12-year-old from Camas can put faces to those numbers. He can also say he caught a football from quarterback Logan Grindy. "I'll remember getting together with my friends after school got out and playing some football," Kemp said. Kemp and Everett Kuhnel, a 10-year-old from Camas, both dream of wearing the Papermaker red and black on Friday nights. After playing for East County Pop Warner, Kemp plans to try out for the football team at Liberty Middle School. Kuhnel participates in Clark County Youth Football. The big guys helping the little guys is something that CHS head football coach Jon Eagle believes in. "You become a better player when you have to coach," he said. "No doubt about it."

June 15, 2010
Nick Palodichuk became the Greater St. Helen's League Offensive Player of the Year, Gatorade Soccer Player of the Year for the state of Washington, and PARADE magazine's All-America Boy's Soccer Player of the Year in 2010.

Palodichuk completes masterpiece

When he returned to play soccer with his friends at Camas High School, Nick Palodichuk never thought he would win so many accolades. The junior racked up 26 goals and 11 assists, while helping propel the Papermakers to third place in the 3A state soccer tournament. He was named the Greater St. Helen's League Offensive Player of the Year and Gatorade Soccer Player of the Year for the state of Washington. He delivered the assist on the goal scored by Connor Valenter that helped Camas defeat number-three nationally ranked Shorecrest 1-0 in the state quarterfinals. "Connor and I had a good connection going all season," Palodichuk said. "Getting that goal against one of the best teams in the nation is one of those unbelievable moments I'll never forget." After being named PARADE magazine's 2010 All-America High School Boy's Soccer Player of the Year, Palodichuk's homecoming is complete. The 17-year-old was on the cover of Sunday's issue in The Columbian, next to U.S. World Cup soccer player Landon Donovan and high school girl's Player of the Year Morgan Brian, from Saint Simons Island, Ga. "It's the biggest award I could possibly get," Palodichuk said. "I couldn't imagine winning this without coach [Roland] Minder, and all of the great people I played with at Camas. This is why I came back. I got everything I wanted except for a state championship."

June 15, 2010
Taylor Williams collected a single, two doubles, a triple, a grand slam, drove in six runs and scored four runs at the Washington all-state baseball series Saturday and Sunday, at Parker Field in Yakima.

Williams reigns at senior classic

After graduating from Camas High School Friday, Taylor Williams had a weekend to remember at the Washington all-state baseball series in Yakima. In his first at-bat Saturday, Williams hit a grand slam. By the end of the second game on Sunday, he had completed the cycle with a single, two doubles, a triple, a grand slam, six RBI and four runs scored. Also playing solid out on the field at second base, Williams was named Defensive Player of the Series. "I wanted to represent Camas in a great way," he said. "To be able to win an MVP award is more than I could have ever asked for." Except for maybe more sleep, beforehand. "My mom picked me up from my graduation party at around 2 a.m.," Williams said. "I think I got about an hour of sleep, before we drove to Yakima because I had to be there at 8:30. The first game was at 10." The opportunity to play ball with the best in the state rejuvenated Williams. He reached base five times in the first game, and drove in six runs. He scored the run in the seventh inning that gave Team Adams a 7-6 lead, but Team Baker scored six runs in the top of the eighth to put the game out of reach.

June 15, 2010

Business is booming for Martin in Washougal

Soccer is business for Harrison Martin, and business is booming. For the past 30 years, the 53-year-old Washougal father of three has owned a soccer shop in Portland, Ore., called "The Corner Kick." He has also coached high school and youth soccer teams in Gresham, Milwaukie, Oregon City, Vancouver and Battle Ground. "I've played soccer my whole life," Martin said. "Coaching wise, I enjoy being able to teach players. My biggest joy is not only forming a team, but also identifying a player's strengths and weaknesses, and helping them to get better." With this in mind, Martin is excited about becoming the new head varsity girls soccer coach at Washougal High School. He is thrilled with the opportunity to work with upcoming stars in the game, such as Ellie Boon, who scored dozens of goals for the Panthers during her freshman year. He is also looking forward to finding several more players with potential once training starts at the end of summer.

June 15, 2010

Busby brings a love for volleyball to Washougal

With her roots firmly planted in Camas and Washougal, Mandy Busby is ready to blossom. After six years as an assistant volleyball coach at Evergreen High School in Vancouver, the 26-year-old accepted her first head varsity volleyball coaching position at Washougal High School. Busby also taught seventh-, fourth- and fifth-grade classes for the past three years at Gause Elementary School, in Washougal, before being offered her first continuing contract to teach fourth grade at Grass Valley Elementary School, in Camas. "I am extremely excited to see what the next year brings," Busby said. "My husband and I just bought a house in Camas. We're going to be around this area for a while." Busby played volleyball for Evergreen High School, before graduating in 2002. She earned an associate's degree from Mt. Hood Community College in 2004, and a bachelor's from Concordia University in 2005. In August 2009, she received her master's in Education from the Washington State University Vancouver campus.

June 12, 2010

New Camas Athletic Hall of Fame inductees announced

On Saturday, Sept. 18, starting at 6:30 p.m., members of the 2010 Camas Athletic Hall of Fame will be inducted at Camas High School. Tickets to the event are available for $25. Checks made payable to the "Camas Athletic Booster Club" should be mailed to P.O. Box 710, Camas, WA 98607. The 2010 inductees are Marv Bergman, Michael DeVaney, John Henriksen, Troy Minder, Shelly Sanford Ross, Dennis Straub, Dana Thomas Brandt, The 1957 football team and Coach Dutch Schultz.