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Andrew Ottoson

Stories by Andrew

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SATURDAY: Summit celebrates senior night with a 'W'

With more than two weeks left in the regular season, the Summit boys have locked up the No. 1 seed for their district tournament.

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FRIDAY: Grangeville hammers Charter

The Bulldogs - both boys and girls - romped visiting Coeur d'Alene Charter, with the GHS boys rolling 66-38 and the girls cruising 60-20.

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THURSDAY: Lapwai boys fend off Kamiah, barely

Starting with a win over Prairie in December, Lapwai boys have held the Whitepine League's top seed wire-to-wire, and nobody else in the league has been close. There is only one league team the Wildcats have yet to play: Kamiah, 2-5 in the WPL, has the first of its home-and-home with the Wildcats tonight.

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Wrestlers hit the mats at CV

Grangeville's Shaydn Wassmuth is about “halfway there” in his quest to get back in shape following his return from a football injury.

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Reform plans aim to head off tax hike

Solid waste in Idaho County:

The days for anonymously dumping any amount of any kind of solid waste at any time of day or night any day of the week aren’t yet numbered, but the Idaho County Commission recently heard testimony describing one possible end of the old way.

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TUESDAY: Bulldogs turn back Rams charge

The Grangeville boys, coming off a Central Idaho League loss to St. Maries, will pay a visit to the Rams, who are in a stretch of alternating CIL foes with league games of their own.

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MONDAY: CIL wrestlers tune up at CV

With several of the state's top-ranked wrestlers on hand -- including Grangeville's Shaydn Wassmuth and CV's Keiran Owens -- the action is sure to be well-waged when the Central Idaho League convenes tonight at Clearwater Valley High School.

SATURDAY: Grangeville visiting St. Maries

Grangeville's Central Idaho League title hopes are on the line today at St. Maries.

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FRIDAY: Prairie clocks Kamiah

Prairie put three players in double-figures, mainly by way of a second-half surge, which turned a 13-12 Kubs halftime lead into a 51-38 Pirates victory.

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THURSDAY: Lapwai rips Prairie, keeps up perfect league record

With three players scoring double-digits, the Lapwai girls thrashed Prairie 66-33.

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Wassmuth returns; Rams run strong

Shaydn Wassmuth had been out with a knee injury since the late stages of the football season, but showed strength and explosiveness in two competitions last week: he went undefeated at 220 pounds on Jan. 12 against the Central Idaho League, which essentially spans the district, but also on Jan. 16 at Wendell, where essentially all of the wrestlers in the state meet for a preview of the competition they’ll face at Pocatello.

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TUESDAY: Grangeville girls thump Kamiah

The Grangeville girls shot nearly 50 percent from the field, including a seven-for-15 showing from the arc, and defeated Kamiah 59-18.

MONDAY: Pirates blast Panthers

At Asotin, the Prairie girls will seek their fifth consecutive win, having defeated the Panthers once already this season. The previous meeting was a 60-28 Pirates win in December.

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SATURDAY: Grangeville girls edge Lumberjacks

Behind Hailey Sullivan's 20 points and Paige Lindsley's 14, the GHS girls overcame a six-point deficit and defeated St. Maries 55-53.

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FRIDAY: Tri-Valley holds off Salmon River boys

The Salmon River girls will look to hold on to the top spot in the Long Pin Conference, while the boys will look for their second league win tonight against Tri-Valley.

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THURSDAY: Bulldogs beat Orofino for second league win

Austin Parks scored 15, Patrick Schumacher scored 10 and seven other Bulldogs scored at least one hoop as Grangeville surged to a 58-44 victory over Orofino.

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Drug cases on rise, pinching justice system

Public defender report:

“Methamphetamine addition is the number one felony drug offense in this county,” according to a report delivered to the commission by Idaho County’s public defenders. Olds Law Offices, run by Scott and Vicki Olds, provided representation in enough indigent cases to fill a calendar last year. The sheer volume of drug cases – combined with changes in state policy – is leading to delays, and the delays are contributing to the problem the commission has heard about a few times in recent weeks.

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TUESDAY: Grangeville's Wassmuth shows strength in wrestling return

Wrestlers from across the Central Idaho League will converge tonight at Prairie High School.

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MONDAY: Highland feasts during third quarter famine at CVHS

The Clearwater Valley girls fended off Highland's press during the first half, and lingered within about six points until a run of cold shooting let the Huskies open up a big lead Monday night.

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SATURDAY: Prairie boys win fourth game in five days

The Prairie boys will play the first of their Whitepine League set against Troy, which will double as their fourth game in five days. Since Tuesday, the Pirates have won three contests by an average of nearly 21 points per game.

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FRIDAY: Bruner's 18 lift Prairie over CV

The cross-county matchup of Prairie and Clearwater Valley features teams in contention near the top of the Whitepine League, but also two of the area's outstanding senior basketball players.

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THURSDAY: Grangeville girls top Genesee

Visiting Genesee came to town with as many wins (eight) as Grangeville had games played, and left with the same number. With 21 points from Hailey Sullivan, the home team pulled out a 45-28 win despite a rough shooting night.

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Jail turning away convicts for lack of space; county officials talking options

The Idaho County jail is full – not every day, but so frequently that some local scofflaws aren’t serving the sentences judges are handing down. And so, on Tuesday, Jan. 5, Idaho County Sheriff Doug Giddings sketched out what it would cost to contract for four beds in another county – Lewis or Clearwater – so that those convicted of lesser crimes can serve their sentences.

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Grangeville tops Kamiah despite Pethtel's big night

Kamiah standout Chris Pethtel tallied 29 points and helped the Kubs slash a 19-point Grangeville lead to seven with about a minute remaining, but GHS held on to win Tuesday night's game 59-52.

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Rams rack season sweep of Summit

Clearwater Valley's Kamm Mangun shot the lights out and the Rams topped Summit for the second time this season.

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Year In Review

Since March, Idaho County teams have celebrated championships in boys basketball (Prairie’s bench pictured above at that culmination), girls track, volleyball and football. Here’s a look back.

County commission weighs writing new trade legislation

Lochsa Land Exchange:

At the heart of the trade is divided ownership of the Upper Lochsa River drainage, with Western Pacific Timber (WPT) owning every other square mile, alternating with the Forest Service. At the fringe are two swaths of Forest Service front country land south of Grangeville and southeast of Harpster — and Idaho County will be asking WPT whether the company is open to considering other fringe land.

USFS announces plans to regulate suction dredging

Approve as many as 35 operations per year

The Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests on Dec. 18 announced a plan to regulate suction dredging operations and to approve as many as 35 suction dredging operations per year, of which 20 would be allowed in creeks east and northeast of Pierce.

First Clear Creek project timber sale slated for summer 2016

The Clearwater Basin Collaborative’s years-in-the-making Clear Creek Integrated Restoration Project hit another milestone this week. Having survived review last summer, the project has been decided and is headed for implementation – meaning up to 85.2 million board feet of timber is expected to come out of the 44,000-acre project area in coming years, starting next summer.

CFI to reopen log yard as ferocious fire season prompts salvage surge

IDL sells 13 salvage sales so far: totaling 83.5 million board feet

Though last year’s fires hit local forests hard, a quick response from land managers appears poised to spark a short-lived timber boom. Starting Jan. 4, the Clearwater Forest Industries facility in Kooskia will once again have an operational log yard, where CFI will be buying until salvage efforts slow.

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Grangeville holds off Genesee

Friday night's battle of the Bulldogs -- Grangeville vs. Genesee -- had all the makings of a blowout, until a fourth quarter dry spell loosened Grangeville's grip on the game. Despite a few nervous moments at the end, the hosts held off the visitors, 50-45, on the strength of Layton Harris' 12 points.

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Pfefferkorn lifts CV past Kubs’ press

Clearwater Valley's Trey Pfefferkorn handled Kamiah's heavy pressure well enough to be the difference in the boys game Friday night at the Upriver Rampage — a 59-54 Rams win over the host Kubs.

Parks named CIL’s best

When the Central Idaho League coaches named the best players in their league Tuesday, Dec. 15, Bulldogs standout Austin Parks got major kudos: he’s the CIL’s 2015 player of the year and its offensive MVP.

USFS post-fire project up for public comment

Road repairs, maintenance face Dec. 28 deadline

A new Forest Service project is sure to raise some eyebrows. While the types of repairs and maintenance described in project documents are usually done with little fanfare, on Dec. 2, the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests announced plans for post-fire repair work through the channels the agency normally uses for projects that are large – or that could prove controversial.

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Rampage raises $7.8K

The girls led off the Upriver Rampage — an event put on annually by the Idaho County Sheriff’s Office as a fund-raiser for local food banks, which raised $7,771 this year — and with a 64-38 victory over their neighbors out of Kooskia, the KHS girls snapped a long losing streak last Friday night, Dec. 11.

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Risch tackling Lochsa issue; comments due Dec. 11

‘a Rubik’s Cube of a problem’

Two years ago, three members of Congress signed off on a letter asking the Forest Service to put its Upper Lochsa Land Exchange plans on hold, marking the end of the years-long administrative process by which the federal agency was working to consummate a deal to consolidate public ownership of northeastern Idaho County.

Lochsa exchange: no need to rush solution to compromise local interests


Checkerboard ownership within the upper Lochsa needs to be addressed to the land management benefits of both private and public ownership. Until this is resolved, this problem will remain with us despite wishes to disregard or dismiss it as a “dead issue.”

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Savages sweep Huskies in doubleheader

The Salmon River boys overcame a rough start with a fantastic finish, beating host Highland 43-40 Saturday night. The girls trailed by as many as six points during the third quarter, but rallied to a 54-37 victory when the Huskies couldn't break the Savages' full-court press.

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Prairie boys open season with 'Shootout' win; Sullivan carries GHS girls

Food banks fund-raiser nets $10,500

Early in Friday night's Idaho County Shootout, the Grangeville boys surged as Dillon Alder turned several Bulldogs misses into second-chance points. But Prairie played "really well defensively both halves," PHS coach Teel Bruner said of his team's eventual 47-41 victory. "I was really pleased coming back from down nine at halftime."

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COLUMN: The big difference one break makes

When asked what play he’ll remember most about this season, 2A football “coach of the year” Jeff Adams pointed to the fumble recovery Austin Parks made after Parker Walters whacked Aberdeen’s quarterback in the end zone for a safety.

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Bulldogs claim Edwards' first 'W' in season opener

Grangeville smoked Colton on the strength of double-digit outings by Austin Parks (19 points), Dylan Canaday (16) and Luke Stokes (10) -- and the 73-63 victory on the season's opening night doubled as coach Kelcey Edwards' first varsity win.

Pirates' win streak ends in Pocatello

For a few brief seconds, from the webcasters’ vantage, Prairie appeared to have struck first last Saturday, Nov. 21, at the 1AD1 state championship game. But from the officials’ vantage, Valley’s defensive line had somehow kept PHS standout Jake Bruner out of the end zone.

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Bulldogs finish strong

Grangeville once again leaves no doubt about where to find the best 2A football team

Last time the Bulldogs won a football championship, the title game proved a bit of an anticlimax. That championship established Grangeville’s place among the best teams in the classification — a status GHS has maintained with stout playoff performances in the years since. Only the certainty that comes with taking a title had escaped the Bulldogs. After whipping Aberdeen 42-12 last Saturday, Nov. 21, none of the 25 teams in the 2A classification can escape it: the Bulldogs are the best.

Pirates repeat travel plan, hope to repeat championship

Make it a double

The Pirates made it there and back again, and they’re getting ready to go there again. That turn of phrase could apply equally to two treks. One would be the yearlong trip from the 2014 state championship to this year’s title game, during which the athletes involved also won a 1AD1 basketball title. The other would be last week’s the multi-day journey from the Camas Prairie to Malta — which neighbors the Utah state line southeast of Burley — where the Pirates knocked out Raft River 44-30 last Saturday afternoon, Nov. 14.

Solid waste site sought, County Dumpsters are overloaded

Disposing of solid waste has long been one of the county’s biggest expenses, and one of its biggest headaches. For half a year, Idaho County Commissioner Mark Frei has been working on sorting out the problem, and he’s closing in on a way to reform how Grangeville-area residents get rid of recyclables, garbage, junk and debris.

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Offense carries GHS to 2A title game

Last time Grangeville played for the state title, the 200-yard rusher was the name of the Bulldogs’ ground game, and the GHS passing attack played off the rhythm of Justin Robie’s bruising runs.

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Savages find a way all the way back

A fumble return moments into the 1AD2 semifinal showdown between Lighthouse Christian and Salmon River put SRHS behind the eight-ball — but not quite literally. The Savages stuffed the conversion attempt, regrouped, and struck back — all the way back to the championship round, which they had last reached in 2013.

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Pirates hold off Oakley’s best shot

Prairie made a few mistakes against one of the 1AD1 level’s tougher squads out of southern Idaho, but before Oakley scored three return touchdowns last Friday afternoon, Nov. 6, PHS had a lead locked in on the way to a 42-22 quarterfinal victory.

Lochsa Land Exchange meeting slated Nov. 24 at GEMS

Gov. Butch Otter is set to attend a meeting about the Upper Lochsa Land Exchange later this month in Grangeville, Sen. Jim Risch's office noted among details released today. Details as to time and place weren't final when the senator announced the meeting last month, but today Risch's office confirmed it will be held at 6 p.m. Nov. 24 at the GEMS gym. The meeting will include remarks by Risch, Otter, Idaho County Commissioners, and representatives from the U.S. Forest Service, Western Pacific Timber, the Nez Perce Tribe and others. Panels will include retired Forest Service chief Dale Bosworth, "Stop the Swap" organizer Ray Anderson, representatives of the Idaho Recreation Council and Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, and retired Palouse Ranger District ranger Blake Ballard. The agenda allows 60 minutes for comments from citizens, who will be afforded the chance to talk for two minutes apiece. Risch will accept written comments through Dec. 11.

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PHS girls net second v-ball title in a row

Best by test

The hustles and heavy hits — the signature plays Prairie’s players delivered throughout the season — continued throughout the playoffs, resulting in a second consecutive 1AD1 state title for a group Pirates fans won’t soon forget.