After winning the Hillsboro Varsity Volleyball Tournament last weekend, the Hood River Valley High School volleyball team put its undefeated season on the line Thursday night in the Eagles’ first home match of the season against Camas.
Despite HRV taking three out of four sets for the victory over the visiting Papermakers, Camas made it tough on the Eagles to move to 4-0 on the season.
The 4-0 start is the best HRV has had since 2016-17, when the girls opened that season 10-0 and finished 25-6 overall, including 8-1 and a first-place finish in the Columbia River Conference.
Camas opened its 2018 season with a 3-1 loss to Columbia and then bounced back on Wednesday, winning 3-1 on the road in The Dalles.
And in Thursday’s matchup, Camas carried over its play from Wednesday, asserting early dominance over HRV.
Camas jumped out to a 7-2 lead in the first set before HRV head coach Scott Walker called a timeout.
The timeout proved to be the right call as it settled down his team.
HRV came out of the timeout a much different team than when they opened the game. The girls went on a 14-8 run to take a 16-15 lead, forcing the Camas’ head coach to call a timeout.
The lead for HRV extended to 22-19 and the three-point gap would carry on for the remainder of the first set.
Emily Curtis, a senior for HRV, ended the first set with a kill, giving the Eagles a 25-22 victory.
In the second set, HRV showed no signs of set-back from the end of the first set as they took a 18-12 lead before a Camas timeout.
However, following the timeout, Camas went on a 5-0 run to cut the HRV lead to one, forcing Walker to call a timeout.
The timeout called by HRV seemed to be the turning point in the set once again.
HRV closed out the game on a 7-5 run to take a 25-22 victory in the second. Katie Kennedy, a senior for HRV, finished off the second set with a kill.
Before the third set, HRV had only lost one of 10 sets through the first four games of the season.
HRV got out to a 20-17 lead before an HRV timeout in the third.
It was expected that HRV would come out of the timeout and finish off this game, considering what the team had done following a timeout in the previous two sets.
But it was Camas’ turn this time around.
Camas went on a 5-0 run following the timeout, giving the Papermakers’ a 22-20 lead before Walker was forced to call another timeout.
HRV cut the score to a 24-23 Camas lead following the timeout, but an unfortunate block at the net that landed out-of-play for HRV would give Camas the 25-23 set victory, the Eagles’ second set loss of the season.
In the fourth set, HRV took care of business, winning by a final set score of 25-19 to move to 4-0 on the season.
HRV is one of only six remaining teams that are undefeated in 5A.
Next up on the schedule will be the beginning of HRV’s 10-game league season. The Eagles will be on the road next Thursday versus Ridgeview, the first of two league-games versus the Ravens this year.
Last season, these two schools matched up twice and Hood River dropped both games, including a 2-1 loss in the title game of the Hood River Volleyball Tournament.
Both games between these two schools last season were non-league matchups and somewhat insignificant in terms of standings, as the Oregon School Activities Association ranking committee heavily values league results in final rankings. But with HRV and Ridgeview in the 5A Intermountain Conference this year, each game between these two schools will hold more importance towards league and playoff standings at the end of the season.