Lady Tigers go to 5-0 in GOL with sweep

By Casey Kellas, The Observer October 10, 2012 01:50 pm

La Grande’s Breanna Partney digs the ball during the Lady Tigers’ Game 2 victory Tuesday night against McLoughlin. LHS won the match 3-0. CASEY KELLAS - The Observer
La Grande’s Breanna Partney digs the ball during the Lady Tigers’ Game 2 victory Tuesday night against McLoughlin. LHS won the match 3-0. CASEY KELLAS - The Observer

Another night, another sweep and another Greater Oregon League victory for the La Grande High School volleyball team Tuesday.

The Lady Tigers made quick work of McLoughlin, sweeping the visiting Pioneers 25-8, 25-9 and 25-12. LHS is now 11-2 overall and 5-0 in the GOL.

“It was good,” coach Melinda Becker said.  

“Everyone came in and played well. Lexus (Miller-Molen), Hannah (Cashell) and Brandi (Blackman) all played good off the bench. Kendall (Kirkland) did a nice job on the front row. It was good team work tonight.”

After trading points early in Game 1, La Grande was able to separate itself behind the serving of Kirkland. Eight straight points with the junior at the service line made it 12-4 before LHS stretched it to 14-5.

The Lady Tigers then scored 11 of the final 13 points to take the opening set.

Game 2 had a near identical start, with the Pioneers hanging around at the outset only to fall behind 12-4 after eight straight points by LHS.

Breanna Partney and Cashell both went on streaks at the service line after that and La Grande was on top two games to none.

“We knew Mac-Hi was going to be scrappy on defense. We had a two-point rule on serve-receive and wanted to make them earn it. It was nice for us to achieve thatgoal,” Becker said.

La Grande grabbed a quick 11-2 lead in Game 3 and never allowed the Pioneers to string together points to get back in it. LHS stretched it to 20-9 at one point. With the score sitting at 24-12, an unforced error by McLoughlin ended the match and gave the Lady Tigers their fifth straight league sweep this year.

Denise Comfort finished with nine kills and was nine for 10 serving with two aces. Madison Elliott had 22 assists, four kills, was 100 percent serving and had four aces.

Cashell added six kills and two serving aces, Lauren Mills finished with five kills and Kirkland had 17 assists and was 100 percent serving.

Blackman had 16 digs off the bench and was 98 percent serving. Becker also credited Cassidy Crites with a smart game off the bench.

“These girls love to play, they love to perform. Games are easy for them,” Becker said.

La Grande will take their perfect GOL mark to rival Baker Thursday for a 7 p.m. match. Baker is 9-5 overall this year and 4-1 in the GOL. 

The Bulldogs defeated Ontario 3-0 (25-13, 25-16, 25-17)Tuesday night.