Tim Martinez: Roundball Shootout returns to Clark College

Tim Martinez: High School Sports

By Tim Martinez, Columbian Assistant sports editor

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So there's a rumor that the weather this week will be pretty nice, great for the final week of league action in high school baseball.

But before we get to that, we're going to talk about an indoor event this week.

The 15th annual Les Schwab Roundball Shootout is slated for this weekend, a little bit later than normal.

The annual event featuring the best high school basketball seniors in the region normally is held in March, soon after the close of the high school season.

For the past five years, the event has been organized by the basketball coaches at Concordia University in Portland. This year, however, Clark College takes over the event, and the transition has led to a bit of a delay.

"The event is a good fit for the college," Clark athletic director Charles Guthrie said. "The Les Schwab Roundball Shootout features some of the best high school basketball stars that Southwest Washington has to offer. The event started at Clark, and we're glad to see it return. The late timing of this year's event has made it challenging to pull teams together, but the support from Les Schwab has been tremendous. Les Schwab is an invaluable community partner both for the event and Clark College. We are excited to showcase some of the best area basketball players."

While we haven't received the final rosters for Sunday's event at Clark College, one player who won't be playing is Prairie's Cori Woodward.

Woodward played in the Washington coaches association all-state game last month, then last Saturday, she played in the Northwest Shootout all-star game featuring the best from Washington and Oregon. Rules prohibit players from participating in more than two postseason all-star events.

It will be interesting to see if any other top basketball players pass on the event because of other reasons.

Many top basketball players are also standout athletes in spring sports. Past Roundball Shootouts have been held in March, which is early enough in the spring sports season that it doesn't keep players from participating.

But by Sunday, some baseball and tennis teams will be preparing for postseason events, and soccer, softball, track and golf athletes will be nearing the end of their regular seasons. That may cause some athletes to pause before committing to playing in this basketball event.

Officials of the Roundball Shootout are aware of these issues. But it's better to deal with these issues than deny the only chance for these seniors to play in an event that has become a fixture among basketball fans in Clark County for 15 years.

The Shootout will consist of a girls game at 4 p.m. and a boys game at 6:15 p.m. At halftime of each game, there will be a 3-point shooting contest. In between the two games, there will be a boys slam dunk contest.

Tickets are $5 for adults, $3 for seniors (55 and older) and $2 for students.

Other sports

BASEBALL: The 4A and 3A Greater St. Helens Leagues conclude league play this week. In the 4A, Skyview has a three-game lead over Heritage with four games to play. The two teams meet on Friday in the league finale, but Skyview may have already wrapped up the league title by then. Heritage faces Union on Tuesday as the Timberwolves try to fend off the Titans for second place. Camas and Battle Ground enter the week tied for the fourth and final spot to the district playoffs. But Monday's game between the two teams is practically a must-win situation for the Tigers, as Camas won the two previous meetings and hold the tiebreaker.

In the 3A, Mountain View is in first at 11-1 with Kelso and Columbia River trailing at 9-2. River and Kelso play games Monday and Tuesday. If one team can sweep these two games, that team will stay right on the Thunder's heels. If that team is River, it puts more pressure on Mountain View, which finishes league with games Wednesday and Friday against River.

GOLF: Two unique events are the schedule this week. On Monday, Camas, Union, Mountain View and Hockinson will participate in the Titan Cup, a Ryder Cup-style match play competition featuring four of the six top teams from the Chieftain Invitational from earlier this month. The event will be held at Tri-Mountain in Ridgefield. On Thursday, just about every golf program in the region will participate in the Prairie Invitational at The Cedars on Salmon Creek.

Tim Martinez is the assistant sports editor/prep coordinator at The Columbian. He can be contacted at 360-735-4538, tim.martinez@columbian.com or follow his Twitter handle @360TMart.