By Jeremy McDonald
SCIO, Ore.– Facing Monroe to start the season was a good test to open the season as the Scio Logger Volleyball squad went the distance with the Dragons Tuesday afternoon. And minus a tough first set, minus being down two sets to none, Scio really made a statement in their season opening win over the Dragons in five sets Tuesday night. Defeating Monroe 14-25, 19-25, 25-18, 25-22, 15-11 for the first of two wins on Tuesday at Scio High School.
And if anything, that second set of the match really set in motion what would be a gritty, hard-fought victory when the Loggers had slowly come around starting in the second set when they clawed back from a 10-3 deficit to tie the set at 17 before carrying that moment into the third set.
“It was really big and it really showed all the hard work we put in before this game,” Kadence Soto starts. “Last year we would’ve been pretty tired by the third-fourth set, but we’ve been putting in a lot of extra work and conditioning to push past that so we won’t get as tired. So we just started building off of their mistakes and starting capitalizing and push as hard as we could.”
In that third set, the Loggers pushed by their fatigue and built themselves a nice little 20-10 lead and found a way to shut down the Dragon threat down the stretch in the set to extend the match beyond that third set. The squad led 12-9 in the fourth set against the Eugene-based squad that finished third in 2A in 2021, using a 5-0 run to force Monroe to take a timeout.
The Dragons pushed, Loggers held their ground building a 20-13 lead. Monroe rallied, eventually pulling even with Scio at 20 as the match came down to the wire of either conclusion or fifth set. The Loggers chose extension as they took set 4 25-22, holding on.
Crediting their conditioning, their mental approach and their grit in this battle, Scio continues to grind. The Loggers adjusted to the Dragons’ Bella Gamache defensively, limiting her damage to the best of their abilities as Scio jumped out to a 9-2 fifth set lead.
“(I’m) beyond proud because they did not give up, they kept their attitudes up and they kept their energy up. They never once, even when we lost the first two sets, never once were they like ‘oh we’re going to toss this out in the third’. They battled back, all the way to the end. Corrected everything, they did everything…that I’m actually shocked in our first match out,” Head Coach Lori Ramsay said. “So I’m beyond proud.”
Monroe made one last attempt at the lead, cutting the deficit to 10-6 before Scio dug deep one last time and pushed for the finish line. The crowd that was in attendance was loud for the first game out cheering with the Loggers succeeding in the process with a Goonies Never Say Die attitude to finish off their first win of the season with a bang.
“I am extremely proud. It shows, going five sets, not getting down and trying to stay high…I’m just lost for words, I’m so proud. I’m just so proud of us,” smiled Soto about the win.
Scio went on to sweep Santiam to close out the three-team dual Tuesday night in Scio. The Loggers head to Harrisburg for another twin bill with Oakland (6pm) and the host-Eagles (7:30pm) to close out the week.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald