Scappoose High baseball teams still has a shot at the playoffs, too

It seems likely that the St. Helens and Scappoose High softball teams are going to make the play-in round of post season play, but it’s not looking so good for the baseball teams.

The Lady Lions of St. Helens are not in the position they’d like to be, but they appear headed to finish as the second- or third-place team in the Northwest Oregon SELF-PORTRAIT - Sports Editor John Brewington

First half losses to Sandy and Wilsonville knocked them down, and they were unable to pull off a win in a second meeting with Sandy on Tuesday this week, losing 2-1. However, the team regrouped at Wilsonville on Wednesday and pulled off a big 4-0 win. The victory doesn’t guarantee them second place in the league, but if they can win their last three games and Sandy beats Wilsonville then they should finish there.

The other good news about the win Wednesday is that they moved from ninth in the OSAA rankings to seventh.

Why is that important?

In the 5A ranks for both baseball and softball, only teams ranked in the top 24 move on to post season play. The top eight get a bye right into the state playoffs. The next 16 teams must play each other, seeded by ranking to earn the playoffs. St. Helens was ninth after the Sandy loss but moved up after beating Wilsonville. It’s possible they will be hurt by the low rankings of three of the four teams they’ll play. A game at Hood River could help them in the rankings.

In Scappoose, the Lady Indians are out of contention for the league title, and taking second is also going to be tough. However, they should have a lock on third and that will get them into the play-ins. The bottom half of the Cowapa League is just not very good.

Scappoose lost their Tuesday game against No. 1-ranked Banks, 3-0, and have five games left on their schedule. That includes doubleheaders against Seaside and Astoria. They also play a lone home game against Yamhill-Carlton on May 7. The Tribe should win at least four of those, and the YC game will be a good play-in warm up.

The 4A play-in format is a little different than the 5A. The six league champions, plus the next two highest-ranked teams make the playoffs. The next eight teams, six league No. 2 teams plus the next two highest-ranked teams host the following eight (No. 3 teams plus two) in the play-in round. The play-in winners then play at the first eight bye teams. Scappoose is ranked 15th right now so they could host a play-in game if they stay in that position. Win and they will be on the road.

The Scappoose High baseball team wasn’t in a very good position going into their final five games. They hosted Banks on Wednesday and then had games against the remaining four teams. The league is pretty even, as coach Robert Medley says but the Indians were two games out of third and ranked just 24th. It appears they need to win at least four of those games and hope for some help to make the playoffs. It will take a bit of luck, but it could be done. If they do make it, they undoubtedly will be on the road for the play-ins and at least first round of the playoffs if they win.

It’s been a tough season for the St. Helens Lions. Their chances of making the play-in round are not good, basically non-existent. Even winning all their remaining games probably wouldn’t lift them much above their 32nd ranking. All they have left is a game against Liberty and two against Milwaukie.

The Lions will have to console themselves with the knowledge they have improved over the course of the season. The team is young and will get much better over the next year or two. They will make the playoffs eventually, but they are rebuilding now.

So, the two softball teams will at least make the play-in round, and one baseball team has an outside shot of making the playoffs. That’s not bad overall.

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