La Grande’s Shania Holpuch collected four ace serves during a sweep over Mac-Hi Tuesday. (PAUL HARDER/The Observer)
La Grande sweeps Pioneers to stay perfect in league play
Despite a few injuries over the last half of the season, the La Grande volleyball team continues to press forward.
“We’re dealing (with the injuries) OK,” senior setter Shania Holpuch said. “We wish they could still be out on the floor. If they were playing, we would be doing a little bit better. But we’re doing pretty good.
“It helped to have the Seaside tournament to work on some of the different rotations.”
The Tigers notched their 14th win of the season Tuesday, knocking off Mac-Hi in another sweep during the Greater Oregon League schedule 25-6, 25-12, 25-4. La Grande, which has lost eight sets this season, hasn’t lost one to a GOL opponent yet.
“I thought the girls came out with the right intensity,” Tigers head coach Melinda Becker-Bisenius said. “We are forced to mix some younger girls into the match, and they’re doing a very good job when they get in the game.”
La Grande has been without senior Lilly Page and sophomore setter Kali Avila for a few matches.
“We don’t know if they’re going to be able to come back this season,” Becker-Bisenius said. “It would be nice, but we’ll be OK.”
The Tigers cruised past a Mac-Hi team still trying to find traction this season.
The Pioneers dropped to 0-15, and have won just four sets this season. Mac-Hi’s best outing came Sept. 26, taking Burns to five sets.
La Grande didn’t give the Pioneers anything, jumping out to big leads in each set.
Mac-Hi’s only tie of the match came in the third set, 1-all, before the Tigers went on an 8-0 run.
“Becca McLean, Morgan Millican and Sadie Browning all worked into the lineup and did a very good job serving for us,” Becker-Bisenius said. “They’re all sophomores, so it’s great to get them some more playing time.”
McLean closed out the match, serving the final seven points of the game. She picked up an ace during that stretch.
“It felt great to get things taken care of tonight,” Holpuch said. “I’m very proud of my team and what we’ve been able to do so far. We just need to keep it going.”
Holpuch got her service game going with a team-high four service aces. She also added nine assists.
Cassie Brownell and Anna Grigsby led the team with nine kills each.
Kendall Kirkland finished with 16 assists and three ace serves.
Brandy Blackman had a team-high 12 digs. Hanna Cashell finished with nine digs.
Cassidy Crites collected five kills.
La Grande (14-2 overall, 4-0 GOL) will travel to Ontario for a 5 p.m. match Thursday.
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