The win is the first over the Bowmen since the Northwest Oregon Conference was formed.

by: JOHN WILLIAM HOWARD - Kali Moore (center) leads a pregame ritual before the Lions' faceoff with Liberty. St. Helens has won nine straight matches, including their first seven league matches, and is ranked second in the state.It's been a good month for St. Helens volleyball. They haven't lost since they gave up a 2-1 game to Reynolds on Sept. 14. Total, the No. 2 Lions (12-2, 7-0 NWOC) now boast a winning streak of nine matches, including something the Lions haven't done since the formation of the Northwest Oregon Conference: knock off Sherwood (4-6, 3-4 NWOC), the perennial Class 5A power, who the Lions toppled 25-9, 22-25, 25-11, 25-19 on Tuesday evening.

Coming into the season, head coach Tom Ray knew that Sherwood would be a major obstacle in the way of the Lions taking the NWOC championship. However, at the beginning of the year Sherwood's setter didn't return to the team, and the Bowmen have been off their game ever since.

Taking advantage of the disjointed play from Sherwood, St. Helens ran away with three of the four sets behind the play of hitters Gabby Susee and Taylor Albertson. Both girls finished with 16 kills each, continuing their torrid play. Senior Kali Moore had 11 kills and 10 kills for Logan Kalauli. The Lions had 58 kills total and served 95% with five aces.

The win marks the halfway point in league play for St. Helens, who has gone 20-2 including pool play and lost only eight sets all year. That number sits just behind the top ranked team, West Albany (14-2, 7-0 Mid-Willamette), who has lost five.

“It was a great win for the Lions,” said Ray. “Going undefeated in the first round was a goal of ours. Now we need to take care of business in the second round.”

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