Cleveland has playoff dreams
Guard-oriented again, Warriors eye success in competitive 5A
Cleveland dominated the PIL 5A fall season, winning league titles in all six sports (football, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls soccer and volleyball).
The other PIL 5A schools - Roosevelt, Jefferson, Madison and Marshall - haven't developed the depth or talent to be contenders in more than a couple of sports each.
The situation will be different in boys basketball, where perennial power Jefferson is almost a lock to lead the way, but Roosevelt, Cleveland and Madison figure to battle for the other spot in the 20-team state playoffs.
'We're going to be competitive,' Cleveland coach Tom Beatty says.
The Warriors are only 1-3 in the preseason, but that could be misleading. They've played three ranked teams, losing by eight points to Hillsboro and by three in overtime at Sherwood and beating Wilsonville last week by 22.
One of Cleveland's top two players, Will Reese, missed the Hillsboro game with a virus.
'Will and Sam Glasgow, that's our key,' Beatty says. 'Glasgow has been sick some, too. If they're both healthy and playing well, they'll keep us in games.'
Reese, a 6-2 senior, and Glasgow, a 6-3 senior, are guards. Of course, at Cleveland it seems everyone every year is a guard; the school hasn't been blessed with much height over the years.
Glasgow was second-team all-PIL last season, when the league included all 10 Portland schools and the first team was made up entirely of seniors.
'Both Sam and Will can shoot well, and they do a lot of other things for us,' says Beatty, who loves it when his teams can run and gun but wants this year's team to pick its spots.
Other starters are 5-11 junior Davari Harrison, 6-0 junior Jesse Rusher and 6-4 senior center Greg Chapin. Off the bench, 5-8 senior Akira Yamazaki is averaging nine points per game and 'has been a real surprise,' Beatty says, and 6-0 senior Nick Rosoff plays regularly, as well.
'Roosevelt is 3-1 and looks good, and Madison should be pretty tough,' says Beatty, in his 21st season.
League play starts Jan. 5 with Cleveland at home against Jeff. The Warriors, who last made the state playoffs in 2000, play host tonight to another good 5A team, Corvallis, one of several 5A clubs with a strong basketball tradition.
'We'll probably wind up playing nine ranked teams in our first 10 games,' Beatty says. 'But when we're full strength, we should be pretty solid.'
• Former basketball coach Ed Rooney will be honored Saturday along with a state championship team from St. Helens.
Rooney, recently inducted into the PIL Hall of Fame, led the Lions to the Class A-2 title in 1956, before he moved on to Grant.
The 50th anniversary of that title will be celebrated, with members of the team and Rooney reunited on the court, at the St. Helens-Mountain View (Bend) boys game at 2:45 p.m. Saturday.
Rooney's grandson, Nathan, plays for Mountain View. For information, contact Ed's son, Steve Rooney, at 1-541-388-2065.