The Salem Sports and Breakfast Club honored West Salem’s Brady Bliven (Boys Track and Field), North Salem’s DeMari Thompson (Track and Field), Blanchet’s Drew Bartels (Baseball), West Salem’s Mya Ward (Softball), Sprague’s Tirzah Tarbox (Girls Tennis) and South Salem’s Sadie Paterson (Girls Tennis) for the Week of May 12.
Here’s the Press Release:
Salem Sports and Breakfast Club (since 1954)
Les Schwab (since 2013) Athletes of the Week
May 12, 2023
The Salem Sports and Breakfast Club Les Schwab Athlete of the Week, from West Salem Track and Field, is Brady Bliven.
Brady is a senior for the Titans. A couple of weekends ago Brady ran a leg on the Distance Medley Relay which got 5th at the Oregon Relays. He also just broke the Titan school record in the 800 by a full second, a record which was held by Ahmed Muhammed. Brady ranks 1st in the conference in the 400, 800, 1500 and 3000 and anchors West’s 4 x 400 team which is also ranked 1st in conference. His 800 time of 1:52.72 is the 2nd fastest time in 6A and the 4×4 team is ranked 6th in 6A.
Brady was also an AOTW last year for track and field and was the 2022 Senior Athlete of the Year for Boys Cross Country.
Brady will be attending Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee next year where he will continue his running career.
The Salem Sports and Breakfast Club Les Schwab Athlete of the Week, from North Salem Track and Field, is DeMari Thompson.
DeMari is a junior for the Viks. On Friday, DeMari won the Elite 100 race at the prestigious Nike/Jesuit Twilight Invitational track meet. DeMari’s time of 10.59 shattered the North Salem school record and makes him the current state leader for every classification in Oregon! Later in the evening DeMari anchored the Viking 4 x 100 relay team to another school record with a time of 42.30, which is the fastest time in 6A in 2023! Last year DeMari won the state championship in the 5A 200 and the 100 with OSAA meet record times, and he hasn’t missed a step at the 6A level in 2023!
DeMari was also an AOTW last year for track and field.
The Salem Sports and Breakfast Club Les Schwab Athlete of the Week, from Blanchet Baseball, is Drew Bartels.
Drew, a sophomore, is a pitcher for the Cavaliers who are 18-0 in league and 23-1 overall. At the end of April, Drew pitched a complete game versus the league’s #2 team, Regis. He surrendered just 4 hits and no walks while striking out 17 as the Cavaliers beat the Rams 11-1. For the season Drew is 7-0 with a 2.25 ERA, 48 strikeouts, and an opponent batting average of .215. Offensively, Drew currently has a .403 batting average, a .543 on-base percentage, and 26 stolen bases.
Drew was also an AOTW last year for baseball.
The Salem Sports and Breakfast Club Les Schwab Athlete of the Week, from West Salem Softball, is Mya Ward.
Mya, a sophomore, plays shortstop for the 5-5 Titans. In a three-game run against McNary, North, and South, Mya hit .714 – going 5 for 7 with a double and a stolen base. On the season she’s hitting .444 with 5 doubles, a triple, and 2 home runs. She has 16 runs scored and 18 RBIs. Mya has played 111 innings at short and has 29 put outs and 39 assists, all against 0 errors.
The Salem Sports and Breakfast Club Les Schwab Athlete of the Week, from Sprague Tennis, is Tirzah Tarbox.
Tirzah is a junior for the Olys who has qualified for next week’s OSAA state tournament after finishing as the Central Valley Conference singles champion. A team captain, Tirzah finished 15-5 on the season.
Tirzah’s was also an Athlete of the Week for both her 9th grade and sophomore years.
The Salem Sports and Breakfast Club Les Schwab Athlete of the Week, from South Salem Tennis, is Sadie Paterson.
Sadie is a junior for the Saxons who also plays basketball. Sadie played 9 matches at singles and 4 at doubles, never losing a set or a match during the season. Sadie played #1 singles four times and #1 doubles twice. In those six matches she gave up only 11 games in 12 SETS played. Sadie finished 3rd at Districts and will receive first team honors and a return to the State tournament. Coach Nancy Cox says, “Sadie brings smarts, and a level of mental toughness, that I have rarely seen, to whichever court she is playing on. Her natural ability on the tennis court to track the ball and hit shots at a skill level that is far beyond the amount of time she has spent practicing or receiving instruction are frankly, dumbfounding. Sadie turns defense to offense with ease and a calm demeanor. She is a spitfire with an enormous amount of energy that always seems to be on high.
Sadie was also an AOTW as a 9th grader for tennis.