Saturday, May 21, 2022
May 21, 2022

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Community Notebook: Battle Ground’s Nielsen wins national senior hoops event


Jim Nielsen keeps dunking on Father Time.

The Battle Ground man has added another trophy to his long list of basketball accomplishments.

Most recently, he and four teammates took first place in 3 on 3 basketball at the National Senior Games last month in Albuquerque, N.M.

Nielsen’s team went 8-0 in the division for players age 75-79. Three of the games were close, including the championship game where the team finished with a surge to win by seven points.

“I love to play basketball,” said Nielsen, 75. “I’ve been very fortunate that I can still play.”

He teamed with two players from Michigan, one from New Jersey and another from California. One teammate, Victor Deihl, is a 6-foot-9 former pro who is regarded as one of the best Masters basketball players in the nation.

But the 6-foot-3 Nielsen played a huge role in the team’s success. After a teammate was unable to play, Nielsen ended up averaging 22 minutes of playing time in the 24-minute games.

The victory in New Mexico was a warmup of sorts for Nielsen, a 1961 Battle Ground High graduate. Later this month he’ll head to Finland for the FIMBA Maxibasketball World Championships, a 5 on 5 format.

Nielsen has competed in the World Senior Games 10 times, winning two gold medals in 2016.

Washington Timbers win playoff match

Washington Timbers FC advanced in the Northwest Premier League soccer playoffs Saturday, knocking off the No. 3 seeded Washington Premier FC 1-0 in Puyallup.

Molly Joyce, who played for Clark College and currently playing at Portland State, scored in the 65th minute.

Next up for the No. 6 seeded Timbers is top-seeded Seattle Stars FC in the semifinals. The game will be at 6:15 p.m. Sunday at French Field in Kent.

Local track athletes qualify for Jr. Olympics

Josie Settle’s runner-up finishes in the high jump and triple jump at regionals highlighted six athletes from the Flanagan Clan Track Club to qualify for the National Junior Olympics later this month.

Settle had four top-four finishes, including second place in the high jump (4 feet, 11 inches) and triple jump (34-6.5) for the girls 13-14 age group at regionals, held July 4-7 at Mount Tahoma High School. She also placed third in the pentathlon (2,787 points) and fourth in the long jump (16-3.75).

The top five placers in every event advance to nationals July 22-27 in Sacramento, Calif. Other national qualifiers from Flanagan Clan include: Roselynn Martin (girls 17-18 1,500), Lauren Kaiser (girls 17-18 2,000 steeplechase), Autumn Pietz (girls 13-14 triple jump), Ella Petersen (girls 11-12 aero-javelin, 80-meter hurdles), Abigail Heffernan (girls 11-12 3,000).

Also qualifying for the Junior Olympics, Trey Knight of Ridgefield won the boys 17-18 hammer throw by a wide margin with a mark of 249 feet.

Nick Jenkins of Ridgefield won two events in the boys 17-18 division. He claimed the triple jump in 47 feet, 9 inches and the long jump in 22 feet, 1.5 inches.

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