Horizon sizing up the competition

Height isn’t everything in basketball, but when your team has it, you can often do anything.

With five six-footers on an eight-man roster, the Horizon Christian Hawks are blessed with size — something that should carry the team to victory against many pint-sized opponents.

Beginning their second season with an independent schedule, the Horizon players and coach Ron Haynes hope to build some momentum so the team can earn OSAA status next season.

“These guys have really worked hard to improve their games since last year,” Haynes said. “For some of these guys, last year was their first in any organized sport.

“Some players went to summer camps to improve, while other played pick-up on the playground. So far, I like what I see,” he said.

Horizon’s season has already gotten underway, with three games in the past week and another one tonight against North Clackamas at Hood River Middle School.

Despite losing the first two to Cascade Locks Nov. 27 and Riverdale on Wednesday, the Hawks bounced back in a big way Thursday night and took the South Wasco JV’s to the rack by a score of 56-26.

Horizon is led by 6’3” junior shooting guard Sheldon Diers and 6’1” sophomore center Kenny Kincaid. Diers has scored in double figures in each of the first three games, while Kincaid has been a force underneath the basket, leading the team in rebounding in every game thus far, including 16 against Riverdale.

Another inside presence for the Hawks is 6’2” sophomore forward Torsen Rich-Wimmer, who plays with the heart of a lion and is extremely active on both ends of the floor. He has good hops, can block shots and has a soft touch inside the lane.

Another high-intensity player for the Hawks is starting point guard John Winters. Winters, a 5’10” junior, provides leadership on and off the floor, and is the hardest working player on the court.

Rounding out the starting five for the Hawks is 5’10” sophomore guard/forward Nate Zolp, who plays an opportunistic style on both offense and defense. He also has a sweet outside jump shot, which was on target Wednesday versus Riverdale when he led the team with 18 points, including 13 in the second half.

Coming off the bench for the Hawks are junior forward John Larson, junior center Keith Michaels, and freshman point guard Brian Stenberg.

Despite some inexperience, Winters has a lot of confidence in his backup.

“Stenberg is quick on both ends of the floor,” he said. “He’s learning to play at the high school level very quickly. He has the potential to become a great player and leader on this team.”

Michaels is new to the team this year, while Larson is entering his second season. Both players will see extensive playing time and will help the Hawks dominate the post as the season progresses.

The Hawks played North Clackamas Dec. 8 and face Arlington Dec. 12 at home. The team then goes on the road for five consecutive games.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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