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Ben Mitchell

Stories by Ben

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A Wylde finish to this year’s Gorge Cup

HR’s MacRae Wylde hangs on to win windsurfing race series

The wind held steady and the wildfire smoke was held at bay to allow the final race of the annual Gore Cup windsurfing series to go off without a hitch.

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Bridge of the Gods race returns for an even bigger sophomore year

The city of Cascade Locks more than doubled in size this past Sunday as runners from all over the Gorge and the world came to compete in the Bridge of the Gods Half Marathon and 10K races.

Locals get lift at CrossFit games

Three athletes represented Hood River at the world championship CrossFit Games and recently returned from the competition not only in one piece (mostly), but with honors as well.

Sports Briefs for Aug. 12

Middle school XC practice starts soon; Middle school XC coaches wanted; Sports story correction; more

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GORGE EXPLORER: See snow-free ski runs, scenic waterfalls at HRM

Winter is probably my favorite time of year in the Columbia River Gorge. Seeing as I am an avid snowboarder and cross country skier — and just about nothing else, as far as sports go — that’s pretty to understand why. For me, taking a smooth, quiet run down a Mt. Hood Meadows hill dusted with a few inches of new is one of the best experiences in the world.

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HRV High School Athletic Hall of Fame Committee announces 2015 inductees

The 9th Annual Hood River Valley High School Athletic Hall of Fame ceremonies are coming up in a little over a month and in advance of that event, the school’s Hall of Fame Committee has released the names of this year’s inductees.

Sports Briefs for Aug. 8

King of the Hook Aug. 15; Gorge Blow Out rescheduled again; more

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Gorge Explorer: Hike to the not-so-dry Dry Creek Falls

In geography, there are some pretty misleading names out there. Happy Valley, when viewed from Portland, looks a hell of a lot more like a hill than it does a valley (and do we know how happy things are up there, really?).

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Your guide to al fresco options: mobile and stationary food trucks and carts abound around the county

Mobile and stationary food trucks and carts abound around Hood River County.

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Arrival of August brings bevy of running events to the Gorge

It’s hard to keep up with all the different trail runs, 5Ks, marathons, and fun runs that are happening in the Gorge year-round, but the month of August in particular seems to have an embarrassment of riches as far running events go.

Sports Briefs for Aug. 1

Jared Davis signs with Fort Lewis College; Erin Jones heads to Olympic qualifier event; Vote for HR women for SUP honor

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2015 Hood River News Staff Fair Moments

I’m not going to lie — cows freak me out.

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BOTG Kite Fest sails through its 15th running

Gorge residents grace the podium in multiple categories in annual freestyle kiteboarding event

Though there weren’t any new events to specifically commemorate its 15th running, this year’s Bridge of the Gods Kite Fest still had plenty of highlights.

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Mt. Hood Meadows summer events series kicks off next weekend

Runs, hikes, music, and educational events in store for resort’s second summer season

Mt. Hood Meadows Ski Resort usually asks its patrons to “pray for snow,” but for the month of August, “pray for sun,” would be probably be a better request.

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Saturday Spotlight: Matt Luchsinger lives a ruff life

Hood River is a great place for dogs and dog owners, with plenty of hiking and recreation opportunities and a wonderful dog-friendly attitude exhibited by many local businesses.

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Tardy winds can’t keep Hood River Huckfest down

Big-air kiteboarding competition has biggest year yet despite reluctant winds

The winds may have taken their sweet time getting to Rufus this weekend for the annual Hood River Huckfest competition, but for both participants and spectators, it was worth the wait.

Fried fish: heat brings more fish kills, regulations

In the wake of continued above-average high temperatures, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has instituted new fishing regulations to help mitigate the stress on salmon and other fish that has been caused by the heat and low water levels.

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Matt Luchsinger lives a ruff life at NW Balanced Dog Training

Hood River is a great place for dogs and dog owners, with plenty of hiking and recreation opportunities and a wonderful dog-friendly attitude exhibited by many local businesses.

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Kiteboarding 4 Cancer has its biggest year yet

Huge turnouts and fundraising efforts make 9th annual event a success

The dark clouds that gathered Saturday morning failed to dampen the spirits of those who gathered at the Hood River Waterfront to watch the 9th Annual Kiteboarding 4 Cancer kite derby get underway.

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Hot temperatures stressing Pacific Northwest fish

Fish and wildlife agencies encourage anglers to focus on warm-water fish

Cooler weather finally returned to the Gorge this past weekend, ending a two-week period where the mercury refused to dip below 90 degrees and on more than one occasion, soared into the triple digits.

Three CrossFit Hood River athletes qualify for the CrossFit Games

Hood River residents Christine Wells, Karen McCadam, and Regan Huckaby qualify for world-level competition held later this month

For the second year in a row, CrossFit Hood River Athletes are heading to the annual CrossFit Games in southern California to compete against some of the sport’s best athletes on the planet.

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Fourth of July celebrations kicked off with the 40th Annual Kollas Cranmer Run early Saturday morning that saw 213 runners and 107 walkers make the 7.4-mile trek from downtown Odell to Jackson Park in Hood River.

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GORGE EXPLORER: Chinidere Mountain offers unmatched views

Like many people who live here, or visit here, I love hiking in the Gorge.

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Junior golf growing at Indian Creek

Golf course’s program is getting more kids to participate in the sport

After starting its inaugural season last year, Indian Creek’s PGA (Professional Golfers’ Association of America) Junior League Golf program is now really getting into the swing of things.

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Looking back: 40 years of the Kollas-Cranmer run

Memorial run continues to grow while staying true to its roots

July 4, 1975: In the midst of the phenomenon known as the “running boom” that became that decade’s athletic focus, and several weeks after the passing of Oregon cross-country/track and field legend Steve Prefontaine, a few dozen individuals gathered for a footrace from Odell to Hood River.

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World-class paddling event coming to the Gorge

Outrigger canoes and surfskis highlight Gorge Downwind Paddling Festival July 19-25

The Columbia River Gorge is home to a multitude of wind and water sports, as well as a number of festivals and races to go with them and come July, the Gorge will add another such festival to its already busy summer roster.

Looking back: A great year for HRVHS athletics

It’s been a banner year for Hood River Valley High School athletics: the Eagles have won state titles, produced individual state champions, received numerous coaching awards, and most importantly, have some pretty intelligent, hard-working athletes to boot.

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HRV Eagles are Cascade Cup champions

HRV outlasts LaSalle Catholic College Preparatory, 11-10, in brutal cup matchup in Hillsboro on Saturday

The HRV boys lacrosse have been crowned the Cascade Cup kings, defeating LaSalle Catholic College Preparatory, 11-10 at Hillsboro Stadium on Saturday, winning the first cup in HRV history.

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HRV baseball blanks Liberty to win 5A state title

Eagles hold opponents scoreless in playoffs; defeats Liberty 2-0

Not Dallas. Not Putnam. Not Pendleton. And finally, not even No. 1 Liberty.

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HRV defeats Pendleton, 1-0, in extra-innings thriller; faces No. 1 Liberty in title game Saturday

Eagles off to the finals

For the second time in as many years, the Hood River Valley Eagles baseball team is heading to the OSAA 5A State Championship game, ousting the Pendleton Buckaroos in a gutsy, 1-0 semi-finals game that bore witness to more than a few nail-biting moments during its eight innings.

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Strong second half puts HRV over Canby in Cascade Cup semis

Eagles defeat Cougars, 19-10; will play LaSalle Saturday in Cascade Cup final

The HRV boys lacrosse team is heading to its first-ever Cascade Cup finals, thanks to a high-octane third and fourth quarters that more than made up for the team’s sluggish start against the Canby Cougars Wednesday evening in Hood River.

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Boys lax outlasts Grant, advancing to Cascade Cup semifinals with Canby

The HRV boys lacrosse team received its first true test Friday on its quest to win the school’s first-ever Cascade Cup, erasing a two-goal deficit and holding in check a furious late rally by HRV’s opponent, the Grant Generals, whom the Eagles defeated, 12-8.

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HRV gets second post-season shutout in a row

Eagles beat the Putnam Kingsmen, 4-0 to set up semifinal showdown with CRC rival Pendleton

The HRV Eagles defense once again put on a masterful performance Friday evening in Hood River, defeating the Putnam Kingsmen, 4-0, to get their second consecutive shutout of the post-season — the only team in the 5A playoff bracket to shut out an opponent at all, let alone twice.

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State track and field: Barajas repeats as discus champ, Mattson wins 100 and 200; HRV fourth overall

Going into last week’s OSAA 5A Track and Field State Championships in Eugene, HRV thrower Sebastian Barajas and HRV sprinter Jestena Mattson were the athletes to beat, defending titles in the discus and in the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes, respectively.

Sports Briefs for May 23

Girls lax players receive all-league honors; Softball racks up all-league awards; ICMGA tourney results; HRMGA tourney results; Gorge Roller Girls host bout May 30; Oregon Beach Wrestling Champs May 30 in HR; WDFW expands fishing area on WS River

Scottie Ziegner to represent HRV boys tennis at state championships

Eagles place third of seven teams at district tournament in Bend; girls season comes to an end at districts

Capping off the team’s first-ever Columbia River Conference title earlier this month, the HRV boys tennis team had a good showing during last week’s 5A Special District No. 1 Championships in Bend, which saw the Eagles take third overall and No. 1 singles standout Scottie Ziegner finishing high enough to represent the team at the state championships.

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HRV softball fights to the final inning against TD, faces St. Helens in play-in

As far as making the playoffs were concerned, neither team had anything to play for during Friday’s HRV and The Dalles game, but that didn’t stop the two teams from putting on a show for the packed bleachers at the Westside Elementary softball fields.

Sports Briefs for May 20

Boys lax to face Rex Putnam in Cascade Cup; HRV golf wraps up season; Hood 2 River Relay; Gorge Area Middle School Soccer League

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HRV baseball’s sweet season gets the cherry on top with a win over TD

With the CRC title firmly in HRV’s hands, the Eagles were only playing for pride in Friday’s game against The Dalles, who unlike HRV, had a lot to lose — namely the final play-in spot in the Columbia River Conference.

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District races, HRV track

HRV track and field got off to a good start at the District Championships on Wednesday, and was scheduled to wrap up the meet Friday afternoon with the finals in the running events.

Sports Briefs for May 16

Swim team wins sprinter meet; Babe Ruth opening day is Saturday; Local youth wrestlers take home titles at U.S. Open Wrestling Championships; Horizon golf ends season at districts

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HRV girls lax playoff run comes to a close with rough loss to Lake Oswego

Coach Andrew McElderry and HRV Eagles girls lacrosse team knew they had their work cut out for them, having to defeat the No. 2 team in the state, Lake Oswego, if they wanted to advance past the second round of the playoffs on Wednesday.

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With loss to Central Catholic, HRV boys lacrosse dangles on the playoff precipice

Other teams’ final games determine whether the Eagles are in or out

The HRV boys lacrosse team didn’t do itself any favors Thursday night in the team’s quest to secure one of the final spots in the Oregon High School Lacrosse Association playoff bracket, losing to Central Catholic, 14-3, in the final game of the regular season.

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HRV softball grabs last play-in spot with win over Hermiston

Eagles battle and come out on top in close contest with the Bulldogs on Tuesday

With both teams fighting for their playoff lives, Tuesday’s game between the Hermiston Bulldogs and the HRV Eagles saw a scrappy contest between the two squads that featured five lead changes and more than a few frayed nerves.

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Eagle girls lax fights through a downpour and makes it rain goals during decisive first-round playoff win

HRV 14, Marist 2

For a program that has only made the playoffs twice in its history, on Monday night, the HRV girls lacrosse team sure acted like it had been there before.

Sports Briefs for May 13

Horizon track aims for district title; Softball gets swept by Pendleton; Baseball camp fundraiser this Saturday

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HRV baseball wins first conference title in 22 years

They’ve been gunning for it all season and on Friday, they finally got it.

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Hood River Valley Boys tennis claims first-ever CRC title

With win over Hermiston, HRV stays perfect in the Columbia River Conference

The HRV boys tennis team has been having a stellar season this spring, but now, it’s an historic one.

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HRV baseball, softball teams put up 12 runs each in wins over The Dalles

The bleachers may have been packed during Tuesday’s game versus the Hood River Valley Eagles and The Dalles Riverhawks, but by the second inning, it was only the HRV fans that had anything to cheer about.

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Hood River girls lax heading to playoffs for second time in team history

No. 15 HRV will face No. 18 Marist in Hood River on Monday, game time not available as of press time

The HRV girls lacrosse team has had an up-and-down season, but at the end of the season, they ended on the up side.