Junior Tyanna Norton, No. 15, and senior Demia Hardin block the ball. (The Enterprise/Yadira Lopez)
VALE – The Vikings finished the volleyball season as league champions with a perfect record. Vale’s 10-0 mark means the team will have a run at the state title.
The Vikings are also hosting the second day of the district tournament Saturday, Oct. 26.
They will face off against the team that wins a match-up with Burns at 1 p.m. that afternoon.
Tickets are $6 for adults and $4 for students. No passes will be accepted.
The district tournament kicked off Tuesday, with Nyssa, No. 4 in the Eastern Oregon league, traveling to Irrigon with results too late for presstime.
Vale coach Shannon Steele said communication has been key to the Vikings’ success this season.
“We have continued to work to get better every week and focus on what makes us stronger. We have been diligent about being as close to perfect as possible in serving, serve receive and our defense,” said Steele. “We work hard to follow the rules of volleyball and work to have strong fundamentals and eye work.”
The Vikings have won both league and district four years in a row from 2014 to 2017.
“It’s been a great year for our kids. It’s a good opportunity for them,” said Vale’s athletic director, Tom Snook.
Steele said going into the tournament the Vikings would remain focused on each team. Injuries at this point in the season are the biggest concern for the program, Steele said.
To finish the regular season, the Vikings swept Riverside Friday, Oct. 18, with a 25-13, 25-5, 25-11 victory. The following day was a sweep of Umatilla: 25-11, 25-10, 25-7, and a win over Irrigon right after.
The team served at 94% against Riverside. Several players served at 100% including, Lexi Cleaver, Tyanna Norton, Alissa Fulwyler, Jaymeson Jensen, Ali Aldred, Emersyn Johnson and Riley Kesey.
Lexi and Sierra Cleaver both had three aces against Riverside. Demia Hardin had eight kills, while Isabelle Phillips and Lexi Cleaver had four each.
Against Umatilla the Vikings served at 98%. Several players showed off 100% serving: Amber Tolman, Demia Hardin, Emersyn Johnson, Jaymeson Jensen, Kailey McGourty, Lexi and Sierra Cleaver and Tyanna Norton.
Alissa Fulwyler had six aces and Jensen had three. Hardin also had eight kills. Norton, five. Lexi Cleaver, six.
Against Irrigon, Vale served at 96%, with Hardin, Johnson and both Cleavers serving at 100%. Jensen had seven aces, Johsnon, 4; Fulwyler, three.
Norton and Hardin had six kills each, Sierra Cleaver five and Lexi four. Jensen had 27 assists.
News tip? Yadira Lopez of the Malheur Enterprise: 541-473-3377 or [email protected].
SUBSCRIBE TO HELP PRODUCE VITAL REPORTING — For $5 a month, you get breaking news alerts, emailed newsletters and around-the-clock access to our stories. We depend on subscribers to pay for in-depth, accurate news produced by a professional and highly trained staff. Help us grow and get better with your subscription. Sign up HERE.