By: @oregon3apredict Going into the season we figured De LA Salle, Dayton, and Santiam Christian would all have very talented squads this season. Besides the top three teams, we really had no idea who would compete and make a statement this season. Week One Creswell beats a good Horizon Christian team 65-62, after seeing that score we figured that Creswell must have a pretty solid team and a team that could be one of the top eight teams by the end of the year, but two weeks roll around and Creswell lost by 57 to Western Christian and Sutherlin by 21. It got even worse this week as they most recently lost to league foe Pleasant Hill by 4 moving them to 8-5 on the season and somehow still ranked #6 by Osaa. Going into week three we saw Dayton lose 70-56 against 2a Powerhouse Columbia Christian led by D1 Prospect Ben Gregg. Later that week Dayton lost to the #2 ranked in 4a Seaside by 38 points. After they started 3-2 we didn’t know how good Dayton was, they lost to great teams in different classifications who both will be contending for the 2a and 4a State Championships most likely but we figured they would put up a better fight during those games. Fast forward 2 weeks they played a close first Half vs Horizon Christian but beat them by 21 points. Then things got really interesting, they beat #1 ranked Santiam Christian by 12 a game we thought Sc would be favored by 20+ points. That win by Dayton changed our minds, we now thought Dayton should be ranked #1 or #2 in State and can compete with anyone. However, out of nowhere Horizon Christian beats them at the Salem Academy Tournament by 9 points, we definitely didn’t see that coming and we moved them down in our ranking to a respectable #3 in 3a behind Sc and De La Salle. We would like to talk about De La Salle, they are a team that is looking to win Back-to-Back State Championships. This team is loaded again and should be #1 or #2 by the end of the season. They are a complete team who can shoot and run you out of the building quick. They recently lost to Western Christian by 5 but rebounded with a 33 point win over Riverdale. Watch for De La Salle and Horizon Christian to battle it out for the #1 spot in the Lewis and Clark League as Horizon Christian has displayed they can play with anyone in 3a after the slow start. De La Salle will make Coos Bay and most likely reach the State Championship Game again or lose in the Semis if they are matched up with Sc or Dayton and possibly Horizon Christian if they make it that far in the Bracket. When talking to other people about Santiam Christian they figured Sc and De La Salle would be Title Contender before the season even started. Sc was cruising and just blew out teams. They almost had a slip up at the Dayton Tournament when they were down 55-21 at the 5: 45-minute mark in the Third Quarter before Josh Baugher and Patrick Otis hit 5 Threes to close out the Quarter and eventually get the 77-72 OT to win over Western Christian. Then a horrific Injury occurred when Zach Baugher slipped off the rim after a dunk and Likely ending his season. This is a big setback for Sc as now they will need to rely on other players to fill in the missing 30 points per game that Zach provided. The players who will step up for Sc is Ben Galceran, Russell Vela and Joe MaQAtish. We still see Sc getting to Coos Bay but we are not sure how well they will do without the #1 ranked 3a Player. Now in early January we are unsure of who will win the Championship, at first it was Sc then we changed our minds to De La Salle, now we have no idea who will win it all which makes it fun. Horizon Christian came to play and beat #2 ranked Dayton Pirates, props to Horizon Christian they came out to play and executed when they needed to and beat a very good Dayton team. Lastly, we want to talk about the Umatilla team, they are a team that feels a little under appreciated as of right now. They feel they should be ranked higher as they are 12-2 and #9 ranked on Osaa. We watched a little bit of that Umatilla vs Amity game and we saw some talent and quickness that should be enough to make it to the playoffs and maybe a Coos Bay trip. They did beat a good Amity team, but if that game was played later in the day we believe Amity would have won that game as they played an emotional game against De La Salle the night before. Amity almost came back, and if they had 2 more minutes they would have won. However, they didn’t have two extra minutes and Umatilla pulled it off. Look for Umatilla to finish #1 or #2 in the Eastern Oregon League, they are playing with a chip on their shoulder and could compete with the top 4-8 teams in 3a this season and deserve to be ranked in that range.
Oregon3aPredicit Poll 1. De La Salle 2. Amity 3. Dayton 4. Salem Academy 5. Santiam Christian 6.Cascade Christian 7. Creswell 8. Sutherlin 9. Nyssa 10 Yamhill-Carlton In consideration- Riverdale, OES Yoda Poll 1 Delasalle 2 Amity 3 Salem Academy 4 Dayton 5 CC 6 SC 7 Sutherlin 8 Riverdale 9 Creswell 10 Nyssa 10 YC 10 Riverside BBallDream Poll 1. De La Salle 2. Amity 3. Salem Academy 4. Dayton 5. Cascade Christian 6. Creswell 7. Santiam Christian 8. Sutherlin 9. Riverdale 10. YC 10. OES 10. Nyssa