After a relatively uneventful start to the season, the St. Paul volleyball team has been on a tear the last two week.
It started with a run to the team title at Kennedy's Oktoberfest tournament Sept. 15 and continued with comfortable 3-0 wins over Falls City and C.S. Lewis Academy in league play last week.
The Bucks weren't done there, though, and went on to win their own tournament Saturday before sweeping a three-way match Monday versus Livingstone and former 2A rival Central Linn.
St. Paul is now 13-0 overall and ranked No. 2 in the state.
"They're definitely rising to every occasion," coach Lesli Hiller said. "It was like that this weekend at the tournament, last weekend at the Kennedy tournament. Whatever level of play the other team brings, they're at or above it. They've been doing a really good job of playing our game consistently and not settling back or being comfortable at all."
St. Paul (5-0 Casco League) actually played Central Linn twice in two days, sweeping the Cobras 2-0 in the semifinals of the tournament before dispatching Culver 25-14, 25-22 in the finals.
The Bucks have especially enjoyed playing the Cobras the last several years and are trying to challenge themselves as much as possible after dropping to 1A this fall. Monday's game delivered on that front, as they won an exciting match 25-21, 25-20, 19-25, 25-19.
Middle blocker Erin Counts had monster days at the net, too, collecting 13 kills, 11 blocks and five aces.
Boys water polo
Newberg 15, Tualatin 0 –Zach Jordan had three goals and four assists. Eleven different players scored for Newberg Sept. 19.
Newberg 15, W. Albany 2 – Grant Stilp paced the offense, notching four goals and assisting on another Monday night.
Girls water polo
Newberg 13, Tualatin 2 –Eight different Tigers scored in the win Sept. 19. Stella Byles notched four goals and two assists.
Newberg 15, W. Albany 4 –MacKenzie Russell tallied five goals Monday to help the Tigers remain undefeated.
Newberg 4, Cleveland 3 – The Tigers got goals from Jesus Lopez, Geronimo Lopez-Garcia, Cristian Morales and Isaac Williamson at home Sept. 18. Newberg finished with 10 men after receiving a red card, but held on for its first win of the season.
Southridge 2, Newberg 0 –The Tigers were held scoreless for the fourth time this season in a road loss Sept. 20.
Newberg 1, Lakeridge 0 –Max Testa scored to give Newberg (2-5-1) its first road win of the season Monday night in Lake Oswego.
City Christian 7, C.S. Lewis Academy 2 – Micah Grobey and Aurelio Aquila scored in the home loss Sept. 20.
Life Chritian 7, C.S. Lewis Academy 1 – Aquila scored for the Watchmen (1-3-2, 1-2-2 Special District 7), who were without Grobey Monday night in Aloha and saw the Lions score six goals in the second half.
Champs Invite – The St. Paul boys were third (121) in the boys race, just ahead of Veritas (124) Friday in Lebanon. Vanguard junior Cam McChesney was second overall in 17:06.4 and Broden Lear was third in a new PR time of 18:01.8 to lead the Bucks. Rachel Vela was seventh in the girls race in 24:13.1 to lead St. Paul to second place in the girls event (50). Chloe Wassei was ninth in 24:34 and Breanna Schmidt 10th in 24:36.3 to lead the Veritas.
Centennial 5, Newberg 2 – Ashley Morse headed home a pass by Yana Goodman in the first half, which saw the teams level at 1-1. Morse then set up Ava White's second half goal, but a few defensive breakdowns cost the Tigers down the stretch Sept. 18.
Tualatin 3, Newberg 0 – Goalie Ashley Rickert was stellar in keeping the game scoreless through 60 minutes Sept. 18. "She made some big saved in the first half that kept the game close," coach Tony Trejo said. "She gave us a chance to compete."
St. Paul (4-0, 3-0 Special District 1 North) won its home contest versus Crow by forfeit after injuries left the Cougars with too few players after six minutes of play.