In her third year as the leader for the North Douglas volleyball program, Emily Reed and her team clinched a league title the evening before they hosted fifth-ranked Creswell on senior night.
“This is actually my first league title. The past two years we came in second to Days Creek,” said Coach Emily Reed. “And it feels fantastic.”
Creswell had just come off an emotional five-set victory against rival Pleasant Hill and was ready to clash against a tough North Douglas squad.
The Warriors entered the night ranked third in 1A with their only loss coming against a 2A school and they were hoping to pull a big upset last Tuesday.
Creswell would come out with the victory over North Douglas in three very competitive sets.
North Douglas would bring high energy in the first set as the Warriors jumped out to an early 9-5 lead with three aces coming from senior Cydni Dill.
The crowd was loud and the fans were very vocal for their hometown Warriors, but Creswell would not get rattled as they fought back, cutting the North Douglas lead down to one at 13-12.
Coach Reed would call a timeout to get momentum back on their side as another senior Halli Vaughn had a huge hit to get the Warrior lead back up to two at 18-16.
Creswell would take the lead late in the set, but Brooke McHaffie and Cydni Dill would give the Warriors new life when they lead the team on a run to tie the game at 24 apiece. But after a hit out of bounds by North Douglas and an ace from Creswell’s Emme Whitson, the Bulldogs took the first set 26-24.
The second set emulated the first as neither team could really separate from one another until Creswell sophomore Kyla Ellis had two big blocks at the net to make the Creswell lead 18-16. The Bulldogs tacked on three more points as their lead grew to 21-16.
Coach Reed called a timeout for the Warriors and was able to reset her team as they responded out of the break going on a 3-0 run to cut the Bulldogs lead to two, 21-19.
Creswell captured momentum again as they had a set victory in their clutches 24-21 but Vaughn tried to spark a North Douglas comeback as the Warriors cut into the Creswell lead again making the score 24-23. A huge block by the Creswell defense would end the North Douglas second set comeback hopes as Creswell took the set 25-23 giving them a 2-0 set lead.
In the third set, the pattern continued as neither team could get a lead larger than three points. Dill would serve an ace giving North Douglas a 17-14 lead in the third set.
Ellis would make more impact plays for Creswell as she slammed an overpass by the Warriors cutting the lead to one at 17-16. The set would continue to seesaw back and forth all the way into the 20s.
Creswell would take a two-point lead after a hit from Emme Whitson and an ace gave them a 24-22 lead and forced the Warrior side to take a timeout.
The Warriors would hit the ball into the net giving Creswell the set victory 25-22 and winning the game 3-0.
“We played well, we just did not play well when we needed to put the game away,” said Coach Reed “We made a lot of mistakes. In the end, we had every opportunity to win all three of those sets and just made mistakes. So, give credit to them. They’re a very scrappy team, they hit well. But I felt like that was a game that we lost ourselves.”
Both Creswell and North Douglas have one more game each on Thursday Oct. 21. The Warriors host another strong opponent in Reedsport for a tune up game before their conference tournament the following weekend. While the Bulldogs finish out their conference slate by traveling to La Pine.
Brooke McHaffie 9 kills
Halli Vaughn 12 kills
Cydni Dill 4 kills, 4 aces
Support the Cottage Grove Sentinel’s journalism
Every day at the Cottage Grove Sentinel, we aim to answer your most important questions and provide you, and our readers, with information that has the power to inform and save lives. Our mission has never been more vital than it is in this moment: to empower you through understanding. The Cottage Grove Sentinel’s work is reaching more people than ever, but journalism takes resources. Your financial contribution will enable our staff to continue to offer quality and volume that this moment requires.
Subscribe today to the Cottage Grove Sentinel.