For coach Jen Baklenko and the Hood River Valley volleyball team, the bright side to last weekend’s Central Oregon road-trip was that the Eagles won two more games than they did the entire 2002 season in the Intermountain Conference.
The not-so-bright side was that HRV took only two of nine games against Redmond, Crook County and Summit, and dropped to 0-5 in the IMC. Match scores were 12-25, 8-25, 25-11, 7-25 vs. Redmond; 17-25, 16-25, 11-25 vs. Crook County; and 15-25, 19-25, 25-22, 13-25 vs. Summit.
“Starting this week, we’re going to be focusing on our level of effort,” Baklenko said. “We have raised our level of play since the start of the season, but now it’s time to raise it up another notch.”
After losing the majority of the weekend’s games by decisive margins, Baklenko is going to stress a new “all-out work ethic” from now on. She also said that if the players don’t respond, they may find themselves on the bench.
“Win or lose, I want to see an all-out effort from everyone on this team,” she said. “We really need to raise our level of intensity, and what we do from here on out is in our hands.”
Baklenko said that she didn’t see the kind of effort she expected during the team’s three matches last weekend, and attributed some of it to road weariness.
But she also knows that every team must travel, and neither Baklenko nor her team is going to use that as an excuse.
“The travel took a toll on us, and we weren’t as focused as we should have been,” she said. “It’s a ball control thing, and the teams we’ve been facing are just better at it right now.”
HRV hosted Hermiston Tuesday, but results were not available.