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State Solid: High school athletes excel in more ways than one

Scary good.

That’s the way, literally, to describe the cheer squad from Hood River Valley High School.

In just one example of post-season success for local high school athletes, the team took fifth place at state in Salem on Saturday.

Congratulations to coach Jennifer Schlosser and the hard-working and, indeed, brave young women who get flung many feet into the air and/or gracefully catch each other as part of the squad’s impressive routines.

The rigors of wrestling, swimming and basketball are also paying off for the teams from HRVHS and Horizon Christian School.

Congratulations to the boys and girls swimmers, who won the Columbia River Conference last weekend and advance to state at Mount Hood Community College in Gresham this weekend.

The Horizon Hawks boys basketball team begins the defense of their 2012 State Class 1A title on Friday at the Big Sky District tournament in Hermiston. The team seeks to perfect an undefeated season as it goes for two titles in a row.

Meanwhile, the HRVHS wrestling squad moves on to its district championship Friday and Saturday at Marshall High School in Portland.

In all cases, we congratulate the athletes and coaches for their accomplishments.

In addition to wins and post-season placement, there are reasons to also celebrate the athletes who did not advance. Cases in point were the girls hoops teams from Horizon and Hood River Valley, and the Eagle boys team, who finish up regular season this week with hopes to notch a couple of wins and build on what they have learned. All three teams have experienced the frustration of losing seasons, but were victors in another sense: In the second half of the season they kept striving to compete and put teamwork to best use.

So while we celebrate the athletes who advance, we also honor the continuing efforts of their schoolmates who gave it their best in the 2012-13 winter sports season.

Now, bring on spring.

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