With the movement of Bend schools to Class 6A in the fall, 2018 was a year of change in Redmond sports. The spring saw some Redmond teams competing with the larger Bend teams, while the new school year brought a chance for Redmond schools to not just compete for titles, but dominate their leagues, in some cases.

With the end of the year, it’s time to look back on some of the more memorable moments in high school sports and beyond. Here is our list of the 10 biggest Redmond sports stories of 2016.

1. New coach leads Ridgeview volleyball to state title match — The outlook was strong for the Ravens entering the season. They returned stars including Rylee Troutman, an honorable-mention all-state player as a sophomore, and brought in coach Randi Viggiano, who won a Class 2A state title in 2012 at Culver.

But what they got was a first in Class 5A, a trip to the Nov. 2-3 state tournament in Hillsboro. There, Ridgeview (23-7) defeated No. 3-seeded Crater and No. 2 Albany to reach the finals, where the No. 6 Ravens lost to No. 1 Corvallis.

This year, Troutman was named first-team all-state. With Troutman and other stars like Allicite Frost and Ally Henry expected back, it could be just the beginning.

2. Ridgeview boys soccer reaches quarterfinals — After reaching the playoffs in 2016 and a play-in appearance last season, Ridgeview had a breakthrough year in 2018. Ridgeview (11-3-2) won its first Intermountain Conference title, going undefeated with an 8-0-2 league record. The Ravens got a 4-1 Oct. 30 victory against Eagle Point in the playoff round of 16. In the quarterfinals, the Ravens held No. 1 La Salle Prep scoreless until a 63rd-minute penalty kick, eventually losing 2-0.

Senior Cade O’Neill was named Intermountain Conference player of the year and to the Oregonian’s all-state first-team. Ridgeview coach Jimmy Kim picked up league coach of the year honors.

3. Ridgeview football wins four in a row to make playoffs — After an 0-3 start, Ridgeview needed a victory in its Sept. 21 rivalry game against Redmond. The Ravens went ahead in the with 42 seconds left in the back-and-forth classic on Matthew Prusak’s two-yard touchdown catch and held on for a 42-35 victory. From there, they went on to win three more games, including a 39-34 upset over then-No.6 North Bend on Oct. 12.

Though they lost their final three games, including a 54-20 first-round playoff loss against Wilsonville, The Ravens distanced themselves from back-to-back 1-8 seasons and showed it could be a future contender with first-year coach Patrick Pileggi.

4. Video inspired by former Redmond athlete reaches millions — Travis and Erika Holmes took their son’s suicide and turned it into a chance to help millions of young people. After Hunter Holmes, a Redmond High golf and soccer player, died at 16 in December 2017, The Hunter Holmes Memorial Fund raised more than $10,000 to assist with a scholarship in Hunter’s name at a May golf tournament. The Holmeses, with longtime Redmond athletic trainer Cari Wood, then went to work on a 4 1/2-minute video called “Your Life Matters,” which shows students and teachers at Redmond High dealing with issues like bullying, eating disorders and cancer in the family. The video has reached 3.4 million people on Facebook.

5. Former Texas coach leads Redmond football — Brent Wasche came from the high school football hotbed of Texas to lead the Redmond football team. Wasche brought experience in the Marine Corps to Redmond, and started a leadership council of players. After a promising start, the Panthers ran into some injuries, including to starting quarterback Cooper Browning, and finished the season 2-7. But with a young team, Redmond will look to return to playoff contention next season.

6. Redmond alum wins conference long jump title — Former Redmond star Alani Troutman, competing as a sophomore for Western Oregon, took the long jump title at the NCAA Division II Great Northwest Athletic Conference meet in June, with a leap of 22 feet, 5 inches. As a high school senior, Troutman won a state title as part of Redmond’s 4x100 relay team and finished second in the long jump at state.

7. Ridgeview girls soccer wins IMC — Really, the biggest story of the year was Ridgeview taking advantage of the move of Bend schools to Class 6A by dominating Intermountain Conference fall team sports, but we wouldn’t want to use so many sports up in one entry. And the girls soccer team was a big part of that. With key players from a 2017 playoff team graduated and a 1-2-1 start to the 2018 campaign, it was unclear what the season would look like. But the Ravens quickly showed they were the team to beat in the new IMC, The Ravens outscore opponents 43-3 in going 10-3 in league. Senior defender Jordyn Buresh was named IMC player of the year, as well as to the Oregonian’s first-team all-state team. Junior midfielder Averi Hartford was a second-team all-state selection.

8. Redmond wrestling finishes in top 6 again — The Panthers came away from the Class 5A State Championships in Portland with another top 6 finish, after placing third in 2017 and sixth in 2016. Though they didn’t have an individual state champion for the first time since 2014 and only the fourth time since 2001, freshman Kagen Lawrence reached the final of the 106-pound weight class.

9. Former Ridgeview star leads Ravens to girls basketball playoffs, then starts as freshman in NCAA soccer tournament — Aspen Jeter capped her high school senior year by leading Ridgeview to the state basketball playoffs. A first-team all-IMC pick in basketball, she moved on to Concordia University in Portland to play soccer, a sport she won IMC most valuable player in as a Ridgeview senior.

Her success continued in college, where Jeter started 19 games for the Cavaliers and played in all 20 matches. The defender played 90 minutes in a 2-1 first-round victory against Seattle Pacific in the NCAA Division II tournament, then played 97 minutes in a 3-2 overtime loss to Western Washington in the second round.

10. Ridgeview reaches softball quarterfinals for second consecutive year — The Ravens won their fourth consecutive IMC title and reached the state quarterfinals for the second year in a row in 2018.

Ridgeview fought back from two-run deficits in the sixth and seventh innings of a first-round playoff game against La Salle Prep before Lorena Vasquez drove in Marley Sargent in the bottom of the seventh to give the Ravens a 6-5 victory. They went on to fall 8-3 in the quarterfinals against Pendleton, which will be an IMC opponent in 2019. Sophomore pitcher Allicite Frost and junior utility/designated player Natalie Hill were named second-team all-state, while freshman Sage McVay was named third-team all-state

— Reporter: 541-548-2186, gfolsom@redmondspokesman.com

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