A feel-good win in Hermiston

For the first time in a long time, Hood River Valley High School volleyball picked up a win on the Bulldogs’ turf. The Eagles, now 1-1 in the Columbia River Conference, traveled to Hermiston Tuesday and came away with the first road win against the team in the seven years Scott Walker has been with the Eagles.

The Bulldogs didn’t give the win away easily, however. The match started 25-21, 25-25 in favor of the Hood River before Hermiston answered back, taking two games of their own (25-22, 25-20) to tie the match. The fifth set — played to 15 — saw the Eagles behind 6-10 before making a 9 points to 3 run that gave them the win.

“We were losing 6-10 and outscored them 5-1 to tie it at 11 on a huge kill by Tabitha Merten,” Walker said of the last few minutes. “Hermiston put up two more points, so we called timeout again, at 11-13. After the timeout they missed a serve and Jestena Mattson and Kaili Duffy put up a huge block to tie it up at 13. Mattson finished off the game with two kills for the win.

“Our saving grace for the match was Amanda McCafferty, who had a career night with 35 assists, and everyone else hitting the ball really well. Kaili Duffy played amazing with 19 kills and Meighan Frazier added 13 kills to the team total of 39. It was great to finally win a close one in Hermiston.”

The win comes after a decent team showing last weekend at the Madison tournament. The girls opened with wins over Madison and McKay before losing two games against Forest Grove.

The team hosts The Dalles-Wahtonka Tuesday at 6:30 p.m., followed by a road game in Pendleton on Thursday.

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