Riding a six-game winning streak, five of which have been commanding shut-outs, the Hood River Valley High School varsity softball team is now the state’s top ranked 5A team, ahead of Liberty, Sandy, Pendleton and Willamette in the top five.
The 10-2 Eagles host Sandy Thursday in their final non-league game of the season and follow with a Saturday doubleheader against Pendleton, also at home. With three of the state’s top teams going head to head, both of the upcoming matchups promise excitement at the ballpark and will be a good test to see if the Eagles are worthy of the state’s top ranking.
In their most recent action, the Eagles traveled to Bend over the weekend to take on the No. 8-ranked Lava Bears. HRV’s defensive weapon, pitcher Kayla Byers, pitched two complete games and tallied 21 strikeouts in the 4-0 and 7-0 shutout wins.
Offensively, Erika Enriquez led in hitting in both games, tallying three hits in each. The Eagles had seven hits in the first game of the series and an impressive 13 in the second game, when the team came out fighting with three-run first and second innings.
The team’s two losses this season both came at the North Medford Spring Break Invitational. The first was a 10-8 loss against Marist and a nail-biter 1-0 loss against 6A No. 1-ranked South Salem.