After a rough start to the season, Hood River Valley High School varsity volleyball picked up two league wins this week on the road against Hermiston (20-25, 26-24, 8-25, 15-12) and The Dalles (21-25, 25-17, 25-21, 25-15). The result puts the Eagles at 2-1 in league play after a loss last week against Pendleton.
The girls were out east Tuesday to play the Bulldogs in an exciting, five-set marathon that ended 3-2 HRV.
Coach Scott Walker gave this report of Tuesday’s match: “The first two sets were fairly tight, with us making some passing and hitting errors toward the end of the first and losing 20-25. The second set we actually made some really good plays near the end and came away with a 26-24 win. After playing well in the second set, we started the third out well with a service ace, and that was really the only highlight of the third set. After the ace, Hermiston ran off a string of eight in a row. We had trouble with the serving and that really affected everything else. The final score of the third was 8-25.
“With Hermiston up 2-1, and playing well in the fourth set, it really looked like the girls were done. We were down 4-10 and chipped away at the lead and tied it up at 13 and again at 22. We were down 20-22 and won it 25-22.
“We had a nice run at the beginning of the fifth set, going up 7-4 with a couple of kills from Jenni Packer and Jestena Mattson. From there Hermiston tied it up at 10 and went up 11-10 with a kill. With a Mattson kill, a Kayla Byers ace and a final kill from Tabitha Merten, we won 15-12.
“The girls really battled and never gave up ... If we can become more consistent beginning to end, we can really compete with anyone in our conference.”
In Thursday’s 21-25, 25-17, 25-21, 25-15 win at The Dalles, Alyssa Rangel had five aces, Mattson had seven kills, Merten had four blocks and Byers had 12 kills.