The Huskies volleyball team continued to roll last week when they picked up two more non-league wins to push their win streak to four games. The first win came at Toppenish Tuesday, Sept. 24, by a score of 3-2. Othello hosted Ephrata the following Thursday and held on for five sets to win 3-2. Head coach Shawn Shahan said the team's recent success hasn't been seen in Othello for a while now and the girls love it. "It's a big confidence boost for the girls," she said. "It's been a long time since they've won four games, let alone four in a row. I think that's going to be big since we're going in (to league matches) with our heads held high." The wins were hard fought. At Toppenish, the Huskies had to deal with a quick and consistent Wildcats team and Shahan said every set was close with the final tally showing Othello leading by only six points. "They were very quick on their feet and they were able to pick up everything we threw at them," she said. "When it came down to it, they just made a few more mistakes than we did so we know what to work on when we play them again." This match was a learning experience and Shahan said the team needs to get better at finding gaps in opponents' defenses to build their score up earlier. On the defensive side, Shahan said the team played a strong game with players like Keestan Andersen and Abi Garza making good plays all night. "We had amazing defense by Keestan and Abi," she said. Holly Fleshman and Becky Boersma were on the attack all night and Shahan said their strong hits kept the Huskies in the game. Shahan said the team fed off each other's play and using that to stay positive is very important to pulling off road wins like this one. "They've now seen they can do it and know they can do it, so it's just keeping that attitude ... and not getting down on ourselves," she said. "They get along great and I think that helps a lot."
Huskies outlast Ephrata at home It was another close one when Ephrata paid a visit Sept. 26, with the Huskies once again surviving all the way through the fifth set to seal up their fourth win of the year. Othello took the first set 25-23, but dropped the next two before rallying in the two final sets to get past the Tigers. "It was evenly matched and it really could have gone either way," Shahan said about the narrow win. "Ephrata was right up there with us and again, I think it just came down to them making a few more mistakes than we did." After watching her team eek out another win by only a handful of points, it was plain to Shahan that her team had some real determination to pull off the win. "I think my girls just wanted it a little bit more so they worked a little bit harder and they shot a little bit harder than Ephrata did," she said. Boersma once again had an impressive offensive performance and picked up multiple kills with hard hits at the corner of the court. "Becky is a powerhouse hitter," Shahan said. Senior Carly Gearheart came in off the bench to help the Huskies rally ahead of Ephrata in the fourth set with some excellent serving while fellow senior Kim Villarreal showed some great hustle to pick up almost every ball sent her way. Chelsea Brunetti earned the game MVP trophy for the team for coming in and making clutch plays on an injured ankle. "I was hesitant to put her in, but she begged me so I did," Shahan said. "She did well ... and I think she definitely deserved the MVP for that game." The Huskies close out their non-league games with a 4-2 record before they took on Ellensburg Tuesday in their first CWAC matchup of the season. Results weren't available for the Ellensburg match as of press time, but fans will have another chance to catch the team playing at East Valley tonight at 7 p.m. and a tournament in Quincy this Saturday beginning at 9 a.m.