Practices started on Monday, first opportunity to see CCHS athletes in action is Saturday's football Blue and Gold Game

The fall sports season kicked off Monday with the first official day of practice.Photo Credit: LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Christian Hernandez goes up for a header during the second day of practice. The Cowboys are excited about moving to the Tri-Valley League this year.

As has been their tradition for more than 15 years, the Crook County High School cross country team started their season with a running camp high in the Cascades at Little Cultus Lake. The team spent the week on team-bonding activities as well as conditioning, which included a mini triathlon and a climb to the top of South Sister.Photo Credit: LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Laken Berlin (passing the ball) and Kayla Hamilton (background) are two of just three upper classmen on the CCHS volleyball team.

The team opens their season on Thursday, Aug. 28 with the Wilsonville Night Meet. The first and only chance to see the team at home is the Jere Breese Memorial Ranch Stampede, which will be held on Saturday, Sept. 6.

The event, which also has races open to the public, is a true cross country experience with multiple creek crossings as well as navigating a flooded field. The run is entirely on trails and includes some steep sections.

The first opportunity to see the CCHS football squad is this Saturday when they hold their annual Blue and Gold Game. The event includes a barbecue, which begins at 5:30 p.m. with the scrimmage beginning at 7 p.m.

The Cowboys open their season the following week when they travel to Cottage Grove on Friday, Aug. 29, for a 6 p.m. jamboree. The team then hosts Sweet Home the following Friday beginning at 7 p.m.Photo Credit: LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Emily Kreachbaum works on a ball handling drill during practice. Kreachbaum is one of the Cowgirls most experienced soccer players.

The Cowboy soccer team opens their season with a pair of home contests. Crook County hosts Summit High School’s JVII?squad on Tuesday, Sept. 2 at 4:30 p.m. The following Tuesday the team hosts Bend’s JV team with action beginning at 3 p.m.

The first opportunity to watch the Cowboys against varsity competition is on Thursday, Sept. 18 when they travel to La Pine to take on the Hawks in a 4 p.m. matchup.

The Cowgirl soccer team also stars their season with competition against Class 5A sub-varsity teams. Crook County hosts Summit’s JVII squad on Tuesday, Sept. 2, then hosts Bend’s JV team on Tuesday, Sept. 9. Both contests are scheduled for 4:30 p.m.Photo Credit: LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Zach Smith works on a defensive drill during a recent practice. Smith is expected to be one of the Cowboy's starters on both offense and defense.

The Cowgirls see their first action against varsity competition on Thursday, Sept. 11 when they host La Pine in a 4 p.m. contest.

Meanwhile, the defending state champion Cowgirl volleyball squad starts their season on Friday, Aug. 29 with a 10 a.m. jamboree at Summit High School.

The Cowgirls host their annual Blue and Gold Game on Wednesday, Sept. 3 at 6 p.m. then have a doubleheader against Cascade and Banks in Turner on Tuesday, Sept. 9.

The eight-time defending state champions have just three upper classmen on their roster so have their work cut out for them should they hope to win a ninth consecutive state championship.

Optimism abounds for all the CCHS teams as Crook County begins their first year in the Tri Valley League.

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