Downey to compete in Las Vegas

Quincy Downey of Omak will be one of 160 contestants competing at the KK Run for Vegas/Junior World Finals Barrel Race and Pole Bending set for Dec. 10-14 in Las Vegas at the Convention Center.

The event will be in conjunction with the National Finals Rodeo

“This is the culmination of a lot of hard work by these kids, and they have all earned the right to compete in Las Vegas,” said Kelly Kaminski, the event’s organizer and a two-time world champion barrel racer in the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association.

“Each of these kids will be competing for over $150,000 in cash and prizes.”

Each competitor will run twice, and the top 20 contestants with the fastest two-run cumulative times will advance to the championship round.

“These are all kids 17 and under, and they come from all across the country and Canada,” said Kaminski, a five-time NFR qualifier who also was a two-time reserve world champion. “This is a great opportunity for these kids.”

The KK Run for Vegas/Junior World Finals is one of the most prestigious youth western events in the country, and only the top qualifiers have earned the right to compete.

“This is a very exciting time for every child, every family that will be part of it,” Kaminski said. “As a former teacher, I’ve always wanted to be involved with kids, and this is a great way to tie rodeo and kids together in a championship format.”


Dan Hanks, a special education coordinator/school psychologist in the Methow Valley School District will compete this month at the World Championship of Dryland Sled Dog Sports in Nybro, Sweden.

“We are completing in one-dog scooter, one-dog bike and two-dog scooter,” said Hanks, who competed in two previous world championships and is on the U.S. Skijoring team. “It's a lifestyle that we live everyday working and training with our canine family/athletes.”


Senior Maddie Murray, Almira Coulee Hartline, was named Washington Interscholastic Activities Association athlete of the week for 1B.

Murray, a volleyball player, registered 15 kills, 16 digs and two blocks against Waterville/Mansfield, and 14 kills, 11 digs, and five aces versus Inchelium to help the Warriors improve to 7-1 on the season.


Omak graduate and former Washington State University and NFL football player Ken Greene will be the special speaker at an Omak Booster Club fundraiser dinner and auction for Saturday, Oct. 26, at the Omak Elks Lodge, 110 S. Ash St.

Social hour is at 5:30 p.m., a steak dinner at 6:30 p.m. and an auction after dinner.

New members are also sought for the Omak Booster Club

On the auction block will be a variety of items, including those signed by Drew Bledsoe, former Washington State University and NFL quarterback and owner/founder of Doubleback Winery in Walla Walla.

Admission will be charged to the dinner.

Membership information is available at


The Taste of Three Valleys auction, dinner and dancing to benefit the Loup Loup Ski Bowl is set for 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 19, at the Agriplex, 175 Rodeo Trail.

Music will be provided by DJ Bullfrog.

The hill is raising money to replace the 50-year-old day lodge.

Ski hill foundation organizers say they are a third of the way to $1 million to replace the lodge and expand the ski shop.

For more information on the campaign and plans for the new lodge are at


The Loup Loup Ski Bowl is looking for new members to join its ski patrol.

“We provide the training in the summer and fall for free,” says a post by the hill’s foundation. “Volunteers must be 15 years or older.”


Omak Fit 4 Life will sponsor the 18th Autumn Leaf Run, with distances of one mile and 5K (3.1 mile) is planned for 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, starting near the Okanogan High School and Middle School, 244 S. Fifth Ave.

A donation of canned goods gets you into the run.

There will be 50 free T-shirts for runners age 12 and younger on a first-come, first-served .


Jill Townsend of Okanogan, along with twins Jen and LeeAnn Wirth, are predicted to guide the Gonzaga University women’s basketball team to first place in the West Coast Conference and into the NCAA Tournament for the fifth time in six years.

The team graduated Chandler Smith of Brewster along with Zykera Rice and Laura Stockton.

“I think we have a lot of potential,” said Lisa Fortier, who is entering her sixth season as head coach after guiding the Zags to the NCAA tournament four of the last five years.

The women’s team produced its best season in school history last season at 29-5 and take a third straight conference regular-season title.

Townsend, a junior, and the Wirths are expected to hold down the front court.

The five starters each averaged at least 20 minutes last year.

The Zags open play with an exhibition game Nov. 2 against Warner Pacific.

Townsend appears ready to play after recovering from surgery following a severe leg injury in March at the WCC tournament.

Last season, Townsend sprang from the bench to average nine points, almost five rebounds and 44 percent on three-pointers.


Two-time Olympians and siblings Sadie Bjornsen and Erik Bjornsen of Winthrop are training for the upcoming World Cup ski series that starts in less than two months.

They are members of the University of Anchorage club cross country team and are both on the United States “A” cross country ski team.

Erik Bjornsen showed he’s rounding into shape by taking second at the New Balance XC Classic Races at Russian Jack Park in Anchorage last month.

Bjornsen, who competed in the annual 3K high-energy running event that included hay bale obstacles, finished second in nine minutes, 15.3 seconds.


Abrahamson Relay with rider Scott Abrahamson took first place in the 2019 Championship of Champions Indian Relay Races on Sept. 20-22 at the Walla Walla Fairgrounds.

The races were presented by the Colville Confederated Tribes.

The Timentwa team took first in the ladies relay.

An Abrahamson team finished second in the warrior race and Omak Express was second in the chief race.

In junior relay championship, Omak Express finished second.

Grizzly Mountain took first in youth relay consolation.

An Abrahamson team was sixth in the youth championship relay


The Okanogan Valley flag football league continues with games starting around 5:15 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays at the Plex in Okanogan.

The league includes 77 teams composed of boys and girls in grades first to fourth grade.

This is the fourth season for the league, which wraps up play Oct. 16.


Dick Fuller broke through to the five digit high score realm, 10,420, during pinochle Tuesday, Oct. 1, at the Eagles in Okanogan.

Fuller and Debbie Nuehring also had a 1,500 trump, reported Buck Workman.

High score: 10,420 – Dick Fuller. 8,710 – Tim Norman. 7,800 – Norma Lawson. 7,320 – tied with Pat Byrd and Buck Workman.

Partners with 300 pinochle: Dick Fuller and Ida Laurie, twice; Dick Fuller and Joe Feddersen; Dick Fuller and Debbie Nuehring; Ida Laurie and Buck Workman; Joe Feddersen and Valerie Murray; Norma Lawson and Tim Norman; Dee Tarnowski and Buck Workman; Alvin Wadkins and Norma Lawson.


The Brewster School Board approved Sept. 23 high school basketball head coaches this winter as Michael Taylor for boys and Stephanie Schertenleib for girls.

Also for boys are Eric Hersman for junior varsity, Jacob Schofstoll for C-squad, Kyle Woelber for eighth grade, Billy Bosch for seventh grade and Wade Gebbers as middle school boys’ volunteer.

Also for girls are Kristina Gebbers for junior varsity, Rafael Sanchez for C-squad, Dylan Gamble for eighth grade and Dan Vassar for seventh grade.


Fisheries managers are seeking public comments through Oct. 17 on a state proposal to reinstate a year-round fishing season on the Colville River in northeast Washington.

To review and comment on the proposal, visit the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife’s website at

Under the proposal, the Colville River, from its mouth upstream to the bridge at the town of the Valley including Meyers Falls Reservoir, would be open year-round for fishing for gamefish.

Statewide stream rules for minimum size and daily limit would apply.

This stretch previously was open year-round but was changed in 2018 to opening a Saturday before Memorial Day through Oct. 31 season to better align with stream seasons statewide.

Anglers have asked the department to reinstate a year-round fishing season on this stretch of the river, noting the river is now closed during an optimal time for trout fishing in late winter and early spring, said Bill Baker, regional biologist with the department.

“In the late spring and summer, water conditions make for challenging fishing opportunities,” Baker said. “We don’t see a conservation issue with re-opening this section of river to fishing year-round.”

The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission also will hear testimony on the proposal during its Oct. 18-19 meeting in Olympia. For the specific day and time, check the commission’s website at

The commission, which sets policy for the department, is expected to take action on the proposal at its meeting in December. If the commission approves this change, the rule will take effect in early 2020.


Most of the Columbia River closed to all recreational salmon and steelhead fishing on Sept. 26.

The closure comes at the tail end of a challenging year on the Columbia that saw low returns for many salmon and steelhead runs, said Bill Tweit, special assistant with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Fishery managers still expect to meet conservation goals laid out at the beginning of the year.

“Despite record low numbers of summer steelhead, and poor ocean conditions, we have worked hard to offer meaningful fall Chinook fisheries in the Columbia, both above and below Bonneville,” Tweit said. “Offering those opportunities while meeting conservation guidelines is always a difficult balancing act, and one that we take very seriously.”

Fishery managers from Washington and Oregon will have to reduce the Columbia River commercial harvest to account for the number of upriver bright Chinook caught during the fall season.

The closure extends from a line projected from Rocky Point on the Washington bank through Red Buoy 44 to navigation marker 2 at Tongue Point on the Oregon bank, upstream to Highway 395 in Pasco.

The Hanford Reach salmon fishery will remain open as it is not affected by the rule change.

Steelhead fishing will also close in these same areas, as the upriver steelhead run size is below forecast, and several hatchery programs within the Snake and Clearwater river basins are projected to fall short of broodstock collection goals.

Al Camp is the sports editor at The Chronicle. Email him at

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