Going up: Young but determined, HRV water polo team fights through first varsity season in the MHC

CONNOR DUNN (top) blocks a Reynolds player with goalie Texx Spezia-Schwiff waiting for the shot in Tuesday’s home game.

Photo by Adam Lapierre.
CONNOR DUNN (top) blocks a Reynolds player with goalie Texx Spezia-Schwiff waiting for the shot in Tuesday’s home game.

Although a rough way to christen the Hood River Aquatic Center as its new home pool, Tuesday’s 18-4 loss is something the Hood River Valley High School water polo team is taking in stride.

The game, against a bigger, older and more experienced Reynolds squad, was the first home varsity contest in the Hood River team’s history. The club team formed last year and is in the midst of its first year at the varsity level in the Mt. Hood Conference.

“We’re at the bottom of the learning curve for varsity play, and the team is looking forward to lot of improvement over the season,” coach Dave Cameron said Thursday. “Water polo isn’t something you pick up overnight. It’s going to take some time for our program to develop.”


VHS club team player Stan Ochesky is about to score his one goal in the team’s 18- 4 loss. This is the first varsity season since the HR club team was formed last spring.

Connor Dunn had two goals and Stan Ocheskey and Trey Schilling had one each in the Reynolds game, while Texx Spezia-Schwiff and Adam Cameron had notable performances in the goal against an aggressive Reynolds offense.

Notably, due to a limited number of players, most of Hood River’s squad also played in the JV game before the varsity game, meaning they went into the varsity match already tired.

“We’re a young team — two seniors, one junior and the rest sophomores and freshmen,” Cameron said. “So we’re doing pretty good so far. We have a long way to go, but it’s a good road ahead of us and we can only go up from here.”

The JV team lost 12-5 to the 6A Reynolds, which Cameron says will be one of the top Mt. Hood Conference teams this season. Myles Cameron had two goals and Russel Grim, Will Lamer and Daniel Mears had one each. The JV team is co-ed, with girls Jocelyn Pedrotti and Emily Burns in the pool for HRV.

The team went on to play at David Douglas Thursday evening, where they finished with a 16-6 varsity loss and a 7-4 JV win. Varsity goal scorers were Grim (2), Ochesky (2), Arthur Finstad (1) and Dunn (1) and JV scorers were Jocelyn Pedrotti (1), Lamer (3), Adam Cameron (2) and Finstad (1).

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Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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