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Battle for Mid-Columbia Conference titles coming down to final weeks

Scenes from 58th annual Pasco invite

Scenes from 58th Pasco invite track and field meet at Edgar Brown Stadium.
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Scenes from 58th Pasco invite track and field meet at Edgar Brown Stadium.

We’re getting down to the final few weeks of regular-season competition for the Mid-Columbia Conference, and many titles in various sports are still up for grabs. 

Here’s where it stands:

Baseball

The three Kennewick schools seem to have dominated the standings this spring. Last week, Kennewick opened some eyes by sweeping defending Class 3A state champion Southridge 6-2 and 7-5 on April 16.

However, the Suns bounced back on Friday with a key doubleheader sweep at Richland, beating the Bombers 12-8 and 7-1. Entering this week, Southridge sits in second at 10-2, while Kennewick is right behind at 9-3.

However, it is Kamiakin sitting atop the standings with an 11-1 mark. The Braves have taken care of their business every step of the way to lead the MCC.

That makes Tuesday’s twinbill — Kamiakin at Southridge (2 p.m., first pitch) — such a monster doubleheader. It means getting to host throughout the upcoming six-team district tournament, which begins May 4, with the Greater Spokane League.

Here are the MCC standings through April 22: 1. Kamiakin 11-1; 2. Southridge 10-2; 3. Kennewick 9-5; 4. Richland 7-5; 5. Chiawana 6-6; 6. (Tie) Hanford 5-7 and Walla Walla 5-7; 8. Pasco 2-12; 9. Hermiston 1-13. 

Pasco and Hermiston have already been eliminated from the postseason.

Notice that Richland is the top Class 4A team in the MCC, with Chiawana 1 game back. 

The Bombers were in a similar situation last year, finishing tied with Kennewick for second place at 9-5 and well back of MCC champ Southridge. That didn’t mean anything for the Bombers, who went on to win the state Class 4A championship.

The top MCC 4A seed will get to host games throughout the upcoming eight-team district tournament with the GSL, which begins May 4.

The championship game, however, will be played May 11 at Gesa Stadium in Pasco.

Boys and girls golf

The Richland boys won the second pod of the season last week, and are now tied with Hanford and Kamiakin in a three-way for the team title.

Ironically, Hanford and Kamiakin have tied in both pods — both had 320 team scores in the first pod at Canyon Lakes; both had 332 team scores in the second pod at Horn Rapids Golf Course.

Meanwhile, the race is tight on the girls side too. 

Pasco’s girls won the Horn Rapids pod last week with a 361 team score. Kamiakin has 16 points in the standings, while Pasco and Southridge are tied for second with 15, and Chiawana is right behind with 14.

It gets busy this week for both boys and girls. 

There was a pod at Veterans Memorial Golf Course in Walla Walla on Monday, and on Thursday everyone meets for pod No. 4 at Columbia Point Golf Course in Richland.

Boys soccer

Hermiston had some great performance’s last week, beating Richland 2-1 before thrashing a good Kennewick team 5-0.

That moves the Bulldogs into fourth place in the MCC standings. Here are the latest MCC standings, through games of April 22: 1. Chiawana 5-0; 2 (tie) Pasco and Kamiakin at 4-1; 4. Hermiston 4-2; 5. Walla Walla 3-3; 6. Kennewick 2-3; 7. Richland 1-4; 8. Hanford 1-5; 9. Southridge 0-5.

Big matchups this week involve Chiawana.

The Riverhawks visit Kamiakin for a 7 p.m. game at Lampson Stadium on Tuesday.

On Friday, April 26, Chiawana visits Pasco for a 7 p.m. game at Edgar Brown Stadium.

Softball

The Richland softball team is again dominant, sporting a 10-0 record to sit atop the MCC standings. 

The Bombers pretty much have the top 4A seed locked up, especially after sweeping Chiawana — the next closest 4A team in the standings to them — on Friday.

The Bombers have a 4-game lead on the Riverhawks with just six games remaining. 

Here are the standings through April 22: 1. Richland 10-0; 2. Hermiston 7-3; 3. Kennewick 6-4; 4 (tie). Chiawana and Southridge at 5-3; 6. Walla Walla 4-4; 7. Hanford 3-5; 8. Pasco 0-8; 9. Kamiakin 0-10.

Kennewick played well last week, sweeping Hermiston on Tuesday and splitting with Southridge on Friday.

Tennis

The Kennewick boy a and the Richland girls sit atop their respective standings, each with 6-0 records. 

Here are the boys standings: 1. Kennewick 6-0; 2. Hanford 4-1; 3. Walla Walla 3-1; 4 (tie), Kamiakin 2-2, and Richland 3-3; 6. Hermiston 2-4; 7. Southridge 1-3; 8. Pasco 1-5; 9. Chiawana 0-4.

Walla Walla visits Hanford on Tuesday, April 23, in a key matchup.

MCC girls standings are as follows: 1. Richland 6-0; 2. Hanford 4-1; 3. Kamiakin 3-1; 4 (tie), Chiawana 2-2, and Hermiston 3-3; 6. Pasco 2-4; 7 (tie), Southridge and Walla Walla, 1-3 each; 9. Kennewick 0-6. 

Both boys and girls teams play either in Spokane or Boise for non-league tournaments on Friday and Saturday.

Pasco invite5.jpg
Kamiakin’s Parker Morgan competed in the boys 110 meter hurdles during the 58th Pasco invite track and field meet at Edgar Brown Stadium. Morgan took thrid place in the boys 110 meter hurdles. Noelle Haro-Gomez Tri-City Herald

Track and field

The big meet this week will be Thursday’s 3 p.m. MCC meet at Kamiakin, where Hermiston and Walla Walla visit. 

Kamiakin and Walla Walla are tied for first, with 4-0 records, in both boys and girls standings.

Here are the boys standings: 1 (tie), Kamiakin and Walla Walla, both 4-0; 3. Richland 3-1; 4 (tie) Chiawana, Hanford and Southridge, all 2-2; 7. Pasco 1-3; 8 (tie) Hermiston and Kennewick 0-4. 

Girls standings are as follows: 1 (tie), Kamiakin and Walla Walla, both 4-0; 3 (tie) Hanford and Richland, both 3-1; 5 (tie) Chiawana, Hermiston, Kennewick and Southridge, all 1-3; 9. Pasco 0-4.

Here are the top area performances from last week:

  • Chiawana’s 4x400 relay team of Bennie Alferness, Sisay West, Austin Bachman and Cameron Breier improved on their state-best ranking, running a 3:24.58 in their MCC meet last Wednesday against Kamiakin and Kennewick.
  • Walla Walla senior Jared McAlvey won the boys’ 300 hurdles in 38.56 seconds at the Blue Devil Legends Invite on Saturday to take the state lead in that event.
  • Prosser’s Haden Hicks cleared 6-6.25 to win the boys high jump at the Prosser Rotary Invite on Saturday. That is the third-best mark in the state.
  • Kamiakin’s Parker Morgan won the boys’ 110 high hurdles in a time of 14.72 seconds at the Kiwanis Twilight Invitational in Hermiston on Friday. He’s now ranked third in the state.
  • Hermiston’s Jazlyn Romero fired the javelin 143 feet, 8 inches, at the Bulldogs’ MCC meet against visiting Pasco and Richland last Wednesday. She’s now No. 3 in the state.
  • Wa-Hi’s Patrick Utschinski was named Male Athlete of the Meet at the Blue Devil Legends Invite on Saturday. His shot put mark of 59-6.25 is third in the state. His discus toss of 174-1 is fifth in the state.
  • Kennewick’s Johan Correa got untracked Saturday in Walla Walla, running the boys 800 meters in 1:55.60. That makes him No. 4 in the state.
  • Kamiakin’s Cameron Gutierrez ran a 50.07 seconds in the boys 400 at Hermiston on Friday, making him fourth-fastest in that event statewide.
  • Richland’s Riley Moore clocked in at 9:10.92 in the boys 3200 meters at the Prosser meet on Saturday. He’s fourth in state in that event.
  • Kamiakin’s Neal Berkey long jumped 22 feet, 4.5 inches in his MCC meet at Chiawana last Wednesday. That is the fifth-best mark in state.
  • Kamiakin’s 4x100 girls relay team of Kaili Knapp, Britney Donais, Katherine Petsch and Rachel Harper clocked a 49.40 seconds lap at Hermiston’s meet on Friday. They rank No. 5 in state.
Jeff Morrow is former sports editor for the Tri-City Herald.
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